If you are planning to buy some lifting gear, then one of the questions you will have had to face is whether you should be using a chain hoist or steel wire rope. There are benefits to both systems. Chain hoists rely on chains constructed from steel or perhaps some other zinc-plated metal. These chains are linked together and connected using hooks. Creating wire rope involves twisting together strands of steel wire around a central core to fashion a strong helix-like cable.

How do chain hoists and wire rope differ?

In many cases the way that wire rope and chain hoists can be used are similar. Both systems will have been created to a high standard with safety as a top priority. Both systems can be used at a variety of heights, and both are straightforward to maintain. Despite these similarities, there are also some obvious differences, and in many situations using a wire rope would be a better choice. Here are three ways that steel rope has a clear advantage over using a chain.

A higher lifting capacity

In general, a wire rope can lift a much more than a chain hoist. In some cases they can lift up to three times as much weight, making them the ideal choice when particularly heavy loads need to be transferred.

An evenly spread load

Wire rope is created using multiple strands of wire, and having multiple strands allows the weight of the load to be spread across all the strands rather than placing all of the pressure on one place. Spreading the load makes it much less likely that the cable will break, but even if one strand should break, the remaining parts of the wire rope should still be able to hold the load, saving it from potentially serious damage and perhaps injuring anyone else who may be in the vicinity.

A wider range of uses

Wire ropes may be primarily intended for lifting heavy weights, but they have plenty of other uses as well, which makes them a more flexible option than a chain. They can be used for support on construction projects, they can act as internal cabling on industrial equipment to transfer force, and they can act as geothermal cables.

To learn more about how you could use wire rope in your company, talk to your local supplier today. They will be happy to explain the benefits of wire rope and all of the ways you can use it.