10-02-2014, 08:20 PM
City: Tri Cities, WA
Vessel Name: Beachcomber
Vessel Model: Sea Ray 550 Sedan Bridge
Join Date: Nov 2012
I like BIG THINGS!!!
I mentioned early on in the thread about getting my boat lifted out of the water that I would post some information on the company that did the lifting for me.
Lampson International has been here in the Tri Cities for over 67 years and was founded by the current owner’s father, Neil F. Lampson. Neil built Lampson Crane into one of the world’s largest manufacturers and operators of cranes of all sizes. Mr. Lampson passed away several years ago and the company is now managed by his son Bill. Coincidentally, Bill owns the land next to our home and is a heck of a nice guy. Both Bill and his father have been avid community supporters. One of our local high school football stadiums is named after Neil.
The crane that lifted my boat is a tiny one compared to some of their equipment which, by the way, is stationed all around the world so they can respond quickly in case of an emergency situation. The skyline in the industrial area of Pasco, WA is dominated by the crane’s at Lampson’s manufacturing yard. If you were to go to Google Maps and enter a search location of “SE Road 21 and E. Crane St, Pasco, WA” you will see their yard. It stretches about 1.25 miles long by about .25 miles wide and occupies much of the Port of Pasco Industrial Park.
After I finished on the boat one day I took a drive through their yard to take some pictures of their equipment. The scale on which these guys operate boggles my mind. They have rolls of 2” cable just sitting around, with each roll carrying about 3500’-4000’. There are hundreds of cranes, mostly disassembled while they wait to be shipped out somewhere.
But the biggest crane I’ve ever seen is sitting there. Lampson made it for Hitachi to use on a project but the project fell through. According to my sources, Lampson has been paid for the crane so they have it for free. So I took several photos of it and here they are.
Here’s the crane from a distance…
The crane sits on two sets of crawlers, each powered by its own diesel engine and controlled by people who sit in a little cockpit that you can see between the crawler treads...
I don’t know the lifting capability of this crane. I was told it can lift and move around a load of 3,000 tons but I’m not sure of that. Obviously a load that heavy would require some serious counterbalance weight. Here’s a shot of the counterbalances. They’re made of concrete and come in two sizes. The larger ones run about 75,000 pounds and the smaller ones on top around 41,000 pounds. By my guesstimate, this crane is carrying around about 4,000,000 pounds of concrete.
On the lifting end of the crane there are actually three ways to lift. There’s a small (by comparison) hook right at the top, a larger one at the lower end of that top extension, and a huge ring further down. That huge lifting ring looks to have 19 or 20 cables running through its pulley system.
The lifting boom is held up by more cables than I can count in the picture, but suffice it to say there are plenty.
Here’s a couple of random shots that I took, one showing a large spool of 2” cable and the other just a piece of “yard equipment”, a front end loader that’s enormous.
In case you didn’t already realize it, big things fascinate me. My bucket list includes operating several different kinds of large equipment including one of those huge farm tractors with 8 wheels and AWD, and a huge truck of the type that are used in open pit mining.
So far I’ve been lucky enough to scratch off a few things from my bucket list….
When I was in the USAF I got to fly (for about 10 minutes) a 4-engine C-130 prop plane. I got to drive a freight train that was about a mile long, and I got to drive a cruise ship. More on those at another time.
I hope you enjoyed seeing these as much as I did taking them.
Mike and Tina
Beachcomber 1995 Sea Ray 550 Sedan Bridge