As the name would suggest, hoists are devices used to lift or lower a load by using a rope or chain wrapped around a drum or lift-wheel. They can be powered by electricity, air pressure or by manual means. The component to which the load is actually attached to is called the lifting hook.
A basic hoist can be defined by two characteristics; the lifting medium it uses and its source of power. Regular hoists can use either wire rope that can be wrapped around a drum or something cylindrical, or a load-chain that is raised by a pulley and a profile to engage the chain in order to lift loads. The power supplied for hoists to lift weights can come from hydraulics, electrical or air driven motors. Despite the fact that hoists have been around since the 1800s, electrical hoists only came about in the early 1900s.
Hoists come as integral-package units or can be customizable. Integral-package units are cost-effective and can only be used for moderate applications. Customizable units allow for more access on the application of the hoist as a user can decide on which of the different parts he wants to use. However, these hoists are more expensive as compared to integral-hoists though they can be easily repaired and are more durable. The type of hoist a person selects depends on the application of the hoist.
Electronic hoists have an additional feature called the hoist controller that can have various features depending on the preset specifications. Some examples of such features can be for the hoist to automatically lift a load when a container is full or acceleration and deceleration of the hoist’s speed when picking up or putting down a load. They also supply the electrical energy needed for the hoist to function.
As compared to the various types of hoists, electrical hoists are the most economical as they are more cost effective and easier to repair. As compared to the manual hoist that would require extensive manpower to run it, electrical hoists save cost on man power and are more efficient. Hydraulic or pneumatic hoists have their own advantages as well but may have a tendency of needing repairs more often as compared to the electrical hoist.