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Cranes, Manipulators & Machinery Manufacturer in the United States


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Roll Handling

Custom Cranes for Roll Handling

Roll handling griper for the inside of roll cores

  • After gripping, the roll can be tilted 90 degrees pneumatically 
  • The roll handler shown is mounted on a manipulator, but it can also be hung from a crane 
  • Roll Weights Up to 2,000 lbs  
  • Inside Roll Diameter 3 & 6 inches 

At Givens Lifting Systems, we stock roll handling mandrels for industrial manipulators that pneumatically expand inside 3-inch and 6-inch cores for rolls of: 

  • Plastic 
  • Fabric
  • Vinyl
  • Rubber
  • Aluminum

But what truly sets our machinery apart is the commitment to next-generation durability and customization. Our current line of manipulators is widely known for being well-suited to move rolls on and off horizontal and vertical shafts. 

Rotational Roll Handling Jib Crane End Effector
Roll Handling End Effector

Gripping: The inside of a roll is gripped with three jaws arranged at 120 degrees, each equipped with serrated teeth. The teeth make very slight marks in the interior of fiberboard cores. An external air cylinder grips the roll pneumatically. Holding the roll vertically, the grip is strong enough to prevent release by at least a 2:1 safety factor.

Roll Orientation: Vertical pick up (“eye-to-the-sky”) or horizontal pick up are both possible. It is possible to use horizontal mandrels to pull or set down rolls.

Shaft Length: The length of the roll handler’s shaft can be varied by pulling a pin and swapping shafts. 

Have any questions about our end effectors?

Roll Handling Safety Precautions

Weight and size: In relation to the length of the roll, the diameter of the roll determines the maximum lift weight capacity. For example the maximum weight for a roll with a 3” ID and a length of 60” is limited by the strength of the shaft that could be inserted inside. A 6” ID roll with a length of 30” could have a much larger weight. Depending on the roll ID, we can handle roll weights up to 2000 lbs. Custom shafts are available for lifting heavier rolls.

Safety: Pilot-operated check valves will lower the roll to the floor if there is no air pressure while it is hanging. The structure of the roll handler has a safety factor of about 3:1. 

Handling Guidelines

Crane handling: There are two ways to hang a roll handler: from a crane or from a manipulator. When a roll handler is hung from a crane and 90 degree tilting is required, a load leveler can be added depending on the size and weight of the roll. The load leveler is a device that actively moves the crane hook point under pneumatic power to level out the roll after tilting. 

Manipulator handling: Regardless of the size or weight of the roll, or where its center of gravity is located, lifting rolls with a manipulator (as shown in these photos) improves ergonomics when moving to a perfect horizontal or vertical position. Manipulators can also reach underneath other rolls in an array in an unwind machine. Additionally, they float the load, which eliminates the need for up/ down controls.

Extremely heavy rolls: Manipulators lift heavier rolls (that do not require rotation) by inserting shafts in either end.

Mobile Roll Handling: It is necessary to use a long-travel crane when loading many machines separated by a considerable distance. A mobile manipulator is an option for the roll handler. Forklifts move manipulators that have a heavy base. A forklift, for example, could move the manipulators with a heavy base. In the case of light rolls, pallet carts or a “walkie” is an option for mounting the manipulator.

Loading Guidelines

Loading Mandrels: It is important to take into account the tight clearance between the ID of a roll and the diameter of the unwind mandrel. For rolls weighing less than 300 lbs, the manipulator can float loads without up/ down controls.In this situation, the operator moves the roll up and down by pulling on the handlebars, and can ‘feel’ the roll slide over the mandrel. Binding is almost impossible because the roll can never be forced upward or downward against the mandrel, except to the extent that the operator can with his own hands.

Other Applications