Aber’s Towing & Crane Service adds to its fleet of Grove cranes.
Aber's Towing & Crane Service, founded by Miles and Alene Aber in 1950, has grown into an 18 to 20-employee operation, which divides its time equally between its hauling, towing and crane services.
Jerry Aber, son of Miles and Alene, and Aaron Aber, son of Jerry, now share the responsibility of running and managing the business. The company conducts business primarily within a 50 to 60-mi. radius of its home base in Ashland, Ohio.
Aber's fleet consist of light-duty and heavy-duty tow trucks, rollbacks, Landolls, flatbed and detach trailers and cranes. This wide variety of equipment in its fleet allows Aber's to assist its customers — seldom having to turn work away because the company doesn't have the equipment needed to perform a job. This is important to the company.
Jerry Aber decided it was time to acquire a crane to fill the gap between the company's 40-ton (36 t) and 90-ton (81 t) cranes. His concern was that if the 90-ton crane was out on a job and the 40-ton wasn't big enough, that he wouldn't be able to meet customer's needs and would have to turn away work. His experience led him to see if he could locate a used crane (the company had always purchased used cranes in the past).
As Jerry began the process of trying to find a used crane, he primarily looked at Grove cranes because of brand familiarity — three of the four cranes in his fleet were Grove.
“They produce good quality equipment and have excellent service and support for a good price,” he said.
Jerry already had a working relationship with Grove's authorized Ohio dealer, Cleveland Crane & Shovel Sales, so it was natural he start his search with them. In the past, the dealership had been very responsive to his equipment and service needs, Jerry said. One time, Jerry had a crane out of service and was able to get a Cleveland Crane & Shovel Sales technician on the phone who walked him through the process of getting the crane up and running again, without the expense of a service call.
Cleveland Crane & Shovel became a Grove dealer in 2008 when Manitowoc was in the process of consolidating its dealers who handle both lines. As one of the oldest Manitowoc dealers in the United States, Cleveland Crane & Shovel was a natural choice for the Ohio market. All of the dealership's technicians attend Grove schools, starting with Crane Systems Theory and Crane Technology & Operation. Two of Cleveland Crane & Shovel's technicians, Joe Nanni and Carl Goins, are GMK (Grove Mobile Crane) certified, and Scott Lowries, service manager, has achieved 6.1 GMK certification.
When Aber discussed his plans to purchase a used crane with Andy Forepaugh, Cleveland Crane & Shovel Sales vice president of sales, their conversation quickly turned to the benefits of purchasing a new crane instead of purchasing a used crane. The new 2016 Grove TMS 700E 60-ton hydraulic truck crane met all of the criteria that Aber's was looking for.
The Grove TMS 700E 60-ton hydraulic truck crane is ideal for use in a wide range of applications, such as setting transformers, small generators and small pre-cast work; pouring concrete for bridge abutment footers; and loading and unloading steel coils from trucks. The crane also is well suited for truck accident recovery, which fits in nicely with Aber's Towing & Crane Service's towing work.
Among the many features that appealed to Aber's are the 110-ft. foursection main boom, two winches, the one-man operation and quick set up. The crane carries its own counterweights and, with permits, is easily road transportable. The compact design is not over width or length, is powered by a Tier IV Cummins diesel engine, and can reach highway speeds of up to 65 miles per hour.
Technical specifications of the Grove TMS 700E 60-ton hydraulic crane include:
• 50-ton or 60-ton capacity;
• A four-section, full-power sequenced synchronized MEGAFORM vertical boom with a maximum tip height of 118 ft. designed for exceptional vertical and lateral strength;
• A 33- to 56-ft. folding lattice swing-away extension that is off-settable at 0,
• 25 and 45 degrees with a maximum tip height of 172 ft. and stows alongside the base boom extension;
• Two 20-ft. lattice extensions which increase maximum tip height to 212 ft. when employed with the swing-away extension;
• A quick reeving type boom nose mounted on heavy duty tapered roller bearings with removable pin-type rope guards;
• Counterweights consisting of two 5,500-lb. sections for a combined 11,000- lb. weight or an optional “Heavy Lift” package, which provides a total of 16,500 lbs. counterweight'
• Standard graphics display with a load moment indicator and anti-two block system provides audio-visual warning and a control lever lockout with an electronic display to monitor boom position and load status; and
• Powered by a Cummins QSM 402, 10.8 L diesel (Off Highway EPA Certified) six cylinders, after cooled 300 kW (402 bhp) at 1800 rpm.
In addition, Grove offers online support with access to load charts and additional technical information.
For Jerry Aber, purchasing the Grove TMS 700E 60-ton hydraulic crane was an easy choice. Grove cranes maintain their value so the difference in price between a new crane and one that is eight or nine years old is small. Purchasing new would mean owning a crane that is Tier IV compliant and Aber was confident that at this point, DPF is a proven technology. It also meant that the company would be taking on a crane with no hours and miles and therefore would be free of any potential maintenance issues that come with purchasing a used crane.
For the company's first new crane purchase, Aber found that Cleveland Crane & Shovel, along with Grove, provided excellent service throughout the entire process. The company was able to use Manitowoc & Grove financing and the delivery and training went smoothly.
“The new Grove TMS 700E 60-ton hydraulic crane is already making a valuable contribution to the company and our customers,” said Jerry Aber.
Aber's took delivery of the crane on a Saturday and put it to work on a job the following Monday. Aaron Aber said that with the company's current fleet, his company is well positioned for growth and they are only limited by a current need for more quality operators and service technicians.