Lift trucks are mobile machinery which utilize 2 forks or prongs in order to place cargo into positions that will typically be hard to reach. Typically, forklifts fall into 2 main categories: industrial and rough-terrain.
Most commonly, industrial lift trucks are used around truck loading docks and train loading docks along with in warehouse applications. These machines have smaller tires which are designed to run on paved surfaces. Typically, industrial forklifts are powered by an internal gasoline engine running on propane or diesel fuel.
Smaller forklifts may run off an internal battery charging an electric motor. And as the name implies, the rough terrain lift truck is designed to be operated on unpaved and rough surfaces. Usually, they are the great choice for construction and military applications. Rough terrain forklifts generally have large pneumatic tires that are generally powered by internal industrial engines which run on propane, diesel or propane fuel. These lift truck units could have a telescoping boom, that can lift loads up and out from the base of the machine or they could utilize a vertical tower, which is responsible for carrying cargo straight up.
During 1946, the rough terrain forklift emerged as a 2 pronged lift attachment was placed on a tractor chassis or a power buggy. This initial machinery was used around construction locations and can lift to a height of 30 inches or 76 centimeters and had a lifting capacity could carry 1000 pounds or 454 kg. Vertical tower forklifts were rapidly developed for industrial application and rough terrain forklifts became popular as well. By the time the 1950s came around, there were units available that can raise up to heights of 9 meters or 30 feet and had lift capacities of 2500 lbs or 1135 kg.
During 1958, the original 4-wheel drive rough terrain lift truck was introduced with a capacity of 6000 lbs. or 2724 kg and had a lift height of 22.5 feet or 7 meters or 3000 lbs. or 1362 kg and 35 feet or 11 meters. The very first telescoping boom rough terrain forklift emerged on the market in 1962. This model allowed cargo to be positioned out from the base of the machine both below and above grade.