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Complete Guide to Sack Trucks

Sack trucks have always been invaluable both in the workplace and in everyday life. They can come in extremely useful when moving large loads in warehouses and delivering parcels, as well as making the process of moving homes much easier.

There are many different types and models of sack trucks, each designed to suit a specific application. If you are thinking of purchasing a sack truck for your business, you can use this ultimate guide to help you along the way.

Simply work through all the key points and deciding factors that our experts here at First Mats have put together to find out everything you need to know and help you decide on the best sack truck for your needs.

What Is a Sack Truck?

Put in very simple terms, a sack truck is an L-shaped box-moving piece of equipment with handles at one end, and wheels at the base. It has a small ledge that is used to set objects on and lies flat against the floor when the hand truck is upright.

When a load is placed onto the ledge (or platform), the wheels can be used as a pivot point and the sack truck can be tipped to wheel around the heavy load with minimum effort.

What Are The Benefits Of Sack Trucks?

Increased Safety

Heavy-Duty Sack Truck with Skids

When heavy loads need moving there is often a risk of injury, especially if the person is lifting the load manually. Sack trucks have been designed to prevent this type of injury from occurring and keep your business compliant with all the relevant health and safety legislation.

They are very safe to use and allow you or your employees to transport items that are far too heavy to carry, helping out with tasks such as unloading deliveries, loading lorries and shifting boxes around.

Higher Productivity

Since sack trucks increase the overall safety of your workplace your employees feel much safer. This in turn leads to better productivity and increased revenue as people feel safe, protected and happy while working.

Also, the use of sack trucks reduces the number of trips it takes to transport documents and equipment. This improves productivity and allows processes to be completed at a much faster rate.

Space Saving

Super Compact Foldable Sack Truck

With prices for office and warehouse spaces rising, making the most of the space that you do have may be a high priority to you. One of the great benefits of sack trucks is that they come in many models and sizes.

Some sack truck types are compact, lightweight and collapsible, which makes them an ideal choice for smaller work environments or for where space is very restricted.

Understanding Sack Truck Capacities

All sack trucks come with a symbol on the packing that lets you know their maximum weight capacity. It is very important to bear in mind how much weight your sack truck will be transporting and to select a truck designed to cope with that amount of weight.

Choosing a sack truck that has a smaller weight capacity and then overloading it is very dangerous for the user, and it can also cause damage to the truck and the items being transported. This could also possibly breach certain health and safety regulations, so understanding the capacity of the truck you need is vital.

It is also important to note that the rating of a sack truck means the capacity of the actual frame, rather than how much weight you can move around. Here at First Mats you will find our sack trucks range offers products with weight ratings between 30kg to 400kg.

Sack Truck Wheel Types

All sack trucks are fitted with one of two types of wheels: solid or pneumatic. Pneumatic wheels are air-filled and can be pumped up like a bicycle or car tyre, whereas solid wheels are constructed from solid rubber.

Pneumatic wheels are suitable for use on almost all types of ground, as the pressurised air inside them will absorb the impact of a bumpy surface. Solid wheels, on the other hand, will not puncture if they hit something sharp, nor will they go flat over time. They are best for use on smooth and hard surfaces.

Some sack trucks also have wheel guards that help to protect the wheels from the weight of the load and keep the load clean if the ground is muddy or wet.

Sack Truck Handle Shapes

Sack trucks come with a variety of handle designs, each providing different ergonomic and practical benefits. And since this is the part of the sack truck where the user has most contact it is important to choose the shape that promotes both comfort and practicality for the worker.

  • Loop handle: This consists of one long, sturdy handle in the shape of a loop across the top of the sack truck. It can be used single-handedly and makes it easier to pull the sack truck over obstructions.
  • ‘P’ handle: This is a long and sturdy handle across the top of the sack truck with a loop in the shape of the letter P. It allows the sack truck to be loaded horizontally much more easily before being raised to the upright position. It also means that you can use the truck with one hand and keep the other free to open doors or steady the load you are carrying.
  • Two handles: Considered to be the standard and more ‘classic’ design, this handle option consists of two handles fitted on either side of the sack truck. This option usually comes fitted with rubber knuckle guards to protect your hands when transporting loads.

Sack Truck Toe Plates

The toe plate is the loading point of the truck and can also be referred to as footplate, platform, shoe or ledge. It is a component that most people overlook when they are choosing a new sack truck, but luckily, we have got you covered. Three types of toe plates can be found on sack trucks:

  • Fixed: This toe plate is fixed in its place, which means it cannot be moved during transportation or folded when in storage. It does however support the highest loading capacity, which makes it ideal for more heavy-duty applications.
  • Folding: This type of toe plate is usually bigger, which allows you to carry bulkier items. As the name suggests, it also folds into the sack truck to reduce the amount of space required when storing.
  • Combination: This option is a combination of both a fixed and a folding toe plate. Combination toe plates are the best option if you will be using your sack truck for a range of different load types.

Sack Truck Materials

All sack trucks need to be made from a durable and strong material so that they can handle the weight of the loads that will be placed on them. It is for that reason that sack trucks are constructed from either aluminium or steel.

Steel

Stainless Steel Sack Truck

Steel sack trucks are the most long-lasting and strong so, if you are looking for one that will last you for years to come, then steel is the right choice. It can also handle heavy weights.

Aluminium

Aluminium Sack Truck

Aluminium sack trucks are also very strong but weigh a lot less, which makes them easier to carry around. They are also very manoeuvrable and rust-resistant, which means they will last for a very long time even when placed in storage.

What Types Of Sack Trucks Are Available?

Now that we have covered the benefits of sack trucks, we will dive right into all the models and types that are available. Our extensive range of sack trucks is suitable for a large number of jobs, so selecting the most appropriate truck will make your life a lot simpler and keep your business running a lot smoother.

Standard Sack Trucks

Lightweight Budget Sack Truck

Made from strong and resilient metal materials, and with a wide range of weight capacities, the standard sack truck is an original and irreplaceable piece of equipment within the workplace. Here at First Mats, we stock an extensive range of standard sack trucks that have all been tried and tested to the highest of standards to ensure they efficiently and safely move loads around your site.

Heavy Duty Sack Trucks

Angle Iron Premium Sack Truck

These sack trucks have a super-strong, robust design with double-strength welded joints for added stability. They usually feature pneumatic rubber tyres making for a smoother ride, especially over bumpy ground.

Our range of heavy-duty sack trucks can carry loads of up to 300kg, which is more than enough for the average workplace as well as for schools and the majority of retail outlets.

Multipurpose Sack Trucks

Multi Function Three Way Sack Truck Trolley

These types of sack trucks are extremely versatile, each in a different way, to help the user transport loads much more effectively. For example, there is our multi-function sack truck that folds out into three different positions to suit the load that is being carried. We also have sack trucks with a built-in bag holder that can be used to dispose of litter and waste while transporting goods.

Stair-Climbing Sack Trucks

Steel Stair Climber Sack Truck

Moving loads up and down flights of stairs is never easy. Even with a standard sack truck it is still quite difficult to get the wheels up and down the bumpy stairs. That’s where stair-climbing sack trucks come in.

They are uniquely designed with a specialised wheeling system designed to climb with you as you move carefully up flights of stairs. This reduces the risk of jolting or damaging the object being carried, which is a potential risk when using a standard truck for the job.

Folding Sack Trucks

Compact Foldable Sack Truck

Folding sack trucks are very similar to standard sack trucks, the only difference is that they can be folded up when not in use. These types of sack trucks can still transport goods very efficiently and safely around a site, and once everything has been transported, the platform can be folded in to allow for easy storage and portability.

Final Word

Sack trucks are an invaluable piece of equipment that can be found in the majority of workplaces and educational facilities up and down the country. So whether you are buying a sack truck for the first time or looking for an upgrade you have come to the right place at First Mats.

We hope that this thorough guide has helped you with your decision making. You can view our entire range of sack trucks by clicking here. Of course, if you have any questions or queries our dedicated team are always on hand to help by phone 0121 702 1659 or via our website.