APRIL 2011

Equipment Spotlight

Container Loaders

Manufacturer List

A-Ward Attachments, Ltd.
Steve Colton

Container Handling Solutions, Inc.
Lee C. Prunty

General Kinematics Corp.
Dick Reeves

Metso Minerals Industries, Inc.
Kyle Vidovic

Greg Haub

TEME Engineering
Paul Halpin

In the past, many scrap metal exporters loaded shipping containers horizontally – with Bobcats, conveyers and other techniques that could not achieve maximum volume or weight loads. Not only were these techniques slow and often hazardous, it was also difficult for companies to accurately weigh their containers during loading. This would often result in scrap metal recyclers exporting less than maximum weight in a 20 foot container, or recyclers using a 40 foot container to achieve maximum weight. Because of the difficulties inherent in horizontal loading, a number of new systems have been developed to facilitate faster loading of shipping containers.

Simon Ward, founder of A-Ward Attachments, said that his firm identified the need for more efficient container loading systems in 2005, following more than 10 years’ experience in designing and manufacturing specialized excavator attachments for the recycling industry. Ward said, “A-Ward has always been ‘customer wired’ – we have been closely involved with bulk materials handling businesses around the world for many years. Our customers regularly face new operational challenges but they know they can rely on A-Ward to devise the right solutions for their evolving needs.”

In 2006, after conferring with scrap metal customers and 18 months of product development, A-Ward launched their patented container tilter system. Now, A-Ward sells an average of 20 container tilters per year in North America. Tilters are manufactured in Savannah, Georgia and there are over 100 tilters in use across the country.

When discussing the advantages of his product, Ward said, “Our tilters are completely portable, approximately half the price of many horizontal container loaders, and by loading at an angle, our tilters enable 100 percent of the container’s volume to be filled. Also, A-Ward’s new container rear brace option eliminates damage to the shipping container.

A-Ward Attachments

“The ACT20R-US Container Tilter model was specifically designed to suit North American trailer units. This means that trucks reverse into the container tilter with the container doors facing the rear of the container. An IP68 Digital Weigh System was developed with weight display on the power pack and on the hand-held remote control. The accuracy of our weigh system is currently plus or minus one percent,” Ward said.

Four power pack options are now available; including 15 KW and 30 KW options in either diesel or electric motors, and A-Ward’s transport kit option was recently launched. The kit enables customers to easily condense a container tilter for easy transport to different yards.

A-Ward processing volume, according to customers, is over 1,100 tons of scrap per day for each container tilter. This is based on a 10 hour shift and 28 ton loads in each container. Tilters can be operated by a single operator via a remote control and provide 15 minute turnaround from the time an empty container arrives on site, until a full container leaves the site on a trailer. Each tilter weighs approximately 10 tons and can be delivered 4 weeks from order date.

STECO Trailers

“The uniqueness of the Swing Thru system is its ability to handle containers,” stated Lee C. Prunty, president of Walker-Schork International, Inc. & Container Handling Solutions, Inc. “This includes from either side, and to transship containers from one side of the host vehicle to the other in a single, continuous movement. The system can be utilized as a mobile container crane to efficiently load and unload other vehicles and it also has the ability to transport on or off highway. Our product is also operational wherever the host vehicle can travel and therefore, a paved surface is not required. Swing Thru can transfer containers to and from the ground, trucks, trailers or rail wagons,” Prunty said.

Container Handling Solutions manufactures the Swing Thru, and Prunty explained, “When used in a truck/trailer configuration, the double-sided nature of Swing Thru enables the product to easily load and unload its own trailer, thereby transporting two containers in a pick-up-and-carry application. Swing Thru can drop a full container at one side and collect an empty container from the other, without moving the vehicle. The product handles transship to ground, transship to rail, and transship to truck or trailer.”

The Swing Thru system provides a stable, safe operating platform with four-corner stabilization for maximum stability. This makes it impossible to roll the machine during lifting operations. Swing Thru has never been involved in a roll-over and no operators have ever been injured while using Swing Thru, according to Prunty. Swing Thru models with 60,000 lb. and 77,000 lb. lifting capacities have comprehensive safety systems, including a minimum leg pressure setting. This ensures safe footing prior to the boom activation and load transfer. It also ensures that the ground where the leg is deployed is firm enough to handle the load.

The 77,000 lb. Rail Link Swing Thru is an alternative to large, heavy, traditional container lifting methods, in areas of seasonal or low-container volumes. The new 59,500 lb. Swing Thru was designed to offer maximum operational flexibility and provide the most efficient and stable platform for any application. The 10T machine was designed for both road transport and military markets, for handling empty or full containers weighing up to 22,000 lbs.


Paul Halpin is president at TEME Engineering, which manufactures the TEME 90° container tilter. “Our tilter allows for the utilization of a container’s full loading capacity. The trailer and container enter the tilter station where the container is unlocked from the trailer and secured to the tilter. Once locked into place, the tilter lifts the container free from the trailer, allowing it to drive away. The doors of the empty container are opened against the automated closing mechanism. The tilter then lifts the container to a maximum of 90° to allow for a crane or a magnet to load the material into the container. This ensures that all of the container’s volume is used and it is filled to capacity,” Halpin said.

An optional load cell in the base frame of the TEME container can be used to monitor container weight. This ensures that a load is in compliance with transport and shipping regulations. Once loaded, the container doors are automatically closed and held shut as the load is returned to the container’s home position. Operators can then lock down the container doors before releasing the closing mechanism. The tilter transfers the loaded container back onto the trailer and it is ready to accept another empty container.

Halpin commented, “Tilting the container through 90° allows customers to fully load product to the container’s maximum capacity, which reduces shipping costs and maximizes profits. The angle of the container can be adjusted during loading as product height is increased, ensuring total distribution of the product in the container.”

Standard product features include: a pendant remote control with normal and slow speed capability for use in accurate container loading; gasoline or diesel fueling; and a hydraulic-control locking mechanism for quick and easy container control. A detachable power unit that extends up to 30 feet from the tilter is optional. The 20 foot container includes a 17 horsepower diesel engine that powers a hydraulic pump. Other start-up and operating safety features are also part of the hydraulic unit, which ensures added control for smooth and efficient operation.


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