Manitowoc 31000 Crawler Crane in South Korea

One of the world's biggest cranes rental companies is using one of the world's biggest cranes. South Korea's Chunjo Construction Co. has taken delivery of the largest capacity crawler crane ever designed and built by Manitowoc – the Manitowoc 31000.

Chunjo has added the 2,300t (2,535 USt) crawler to its rental fleet and will supply it to contractors around the globe, including those working on nuclear power plants. The crane's first job is at Posco E&C plant in Gwangyang, South Korea, where cutting-edge technology is making liquefied gas from low-grade coal. There, the crane is making 12 lifts for three of the plant's vessels and is setup with 55 m of boom and a 60 m luffing jib.

Of special interest to Chunjo is the Manitowoc 31000's Variable Position Counterweight (VPC) system, which ranges from 8 m (28 ft) fully retracted to 29 m (95 ft) fully extended. The VPC minimizes the crane's footprint and ground preparation.

Chang HwanJang, chairman at Chunjo, explained why the company got so attracted to the 31000's VPC system, "The Manitowoc 31000 has a tremendous capacity and we will be able to use it for heavy lifts on a diverse number of projects," he said. "But the real advantage is the crane's VPC, which will keep the footprint of the crane manageable, giving us more space to work on the job site."

Also part of the deal, Chunjo purchased three 600t (660 USt) Manitowoc 18000 crawler cranes to add to its fleet. When working with the MAX-ER attachment, the 18000's capacity is boosted to 750 t (825 USt). It boasts a 97.5 m (320 ft) boom.

In fact, Chunjo owns more Manitowoc 18000s than any other company in the world. And that's not the only superlative it holds rights to - the company owns more Grove rough-terrain cranes than any other in the Far East.

Not including the four recent additions, Chunjo possesses: 9 Manitowoc 18000s, 5 Manitowoc 777s, 4 Grove GMK4100Ls, 3 Grove GMK5100s, 17 Grove RT875Es, 9 Grove RT760Es, 59 Grove RT650Es, 18 Grove RT530Es, 1 Potain MD1100 tower crane.

With such a large fleet, it's no surprise International Cranes and Specialized Transport ranked Chunjo as one of the world's 50 largest crane-owning companies on its IC50 list.

Ho JoonBang, vice chairman at Chunjo, described the special relationship between his company and Manitowoc, "The partnership between our two companies dates back many years and I can attest that Manitowoc makes the best cranes in the world, whether it's Grove, Manitowoc or Potain," he said. "This new Manitowoc 31000 is making its first lifts at the very same site as our first Manitowoc 18000, so it's a very important and symbolic milestone for Chunjo."

NBMCW June 2013

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