Yard Ramp Design

Every manufacturer of mobile yard ramps (container ramps) naturally has their own unique design solutions, but what they all have in common is a need for robust and rigid construction.

The basic layout of all mobile yard ramps is an inclined section of about 9m. length and 2.25m width followed by a flat approach section of about 2.6m length at the top, with a lip to enter into the container or truck being unloaded. Both sides of the ramp are provided with safety raves to prevent forklifts from accidentally driving over the edges. The elevated end of the ramp is supported on adjustable legs with wheels which are used to transport the ramps around. The front end of the ramp is normally provided with some kind of towing hook, or other attachment device, to allow the ramp to be towed by a forklift. The legs are normally adjustable so that the height of the ramp can be raised whilst the truck is put into position and then the ramp is lowered so that the front lip supports the weight of the ramp on the container or truck floor.

The height adjustment mechanism can be hand operated jacks, hydraulic via a hand pump, or occasionally motorised if a suitable electrical or compressed air power source is available for convenient connection.

Some light duty yard ramps have been constructed from aluminium, but although this has weight advantages, aluminium is often not well suited to the rough operating environment and abuse that yard ramps have to withstand. Most yard ramps are therefore constructed from welded steel. Every manufacturer has its own views on the best combination of standard sections and custom manufacture.

There are a variety of choices for the decking material, but as it required to be both tough and non-slip, most makers utilise some form of open grill sheeting supported on a rugged base structure. Non-slip paint finishes on the decking have been tried, but with limited success as they are unable to withstand the conditions of usage for very long.

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