If Jerry Moshier, salesman for a roofing company, went to a fortuneteller and was told that he would become the owner of a crane rental business, he probably would scoff at the prediction. However, that’s exactly what happened. Today, Moshier is out of the roofing business and is the owner of Action Crane Inc., in Brewertown, NY.
In the early to mid 1980s Moshier worked for a roofing company and his venture into the crane business came about in an unusual way. While in the roofing business, the business of a substantial customer was folding. He owed Moshier a sizeable amount of money. The only unsecured thing that the customer had left was an ancient cable-operated Bucyrus-Erie crane, which he offered to Moshier as payment.
The acquisition of that “white elephant” started Moshier on the road to the crane rental business and the founding of Action Crane in 1988.
“That machine was so old I couldn’t even find parts for it. When I took it to the local crane dealership, I think they were holding back the laughter, but that old crane got me started in the custom crane rental business,” explained Moshier.
“Frankly, I was tired of roofing so I literally went door-to-door to every contractor I could think of drumming up business. I started contacting some of my friends in the building and roofing business trying to find some people willing to set their trusses. I really wanted to see this lift business grow. It didn’t take me long to figure out that I really liked this [crane] business. Before I knew it, I was out of the roofing business completely and very gradually [I] started to put together a fleet of cranes,” he said.
When Moshier wanted to modernize his equipment, he went to Paul Lonergan, president, of Empire Crane located in Syracuse, NY. With the help of Lonergan as sales representative, Moshier’s first purchase was a JLG-1250 single-axle, 12.5-ton boom truck. As Action Crane’s fleet was updated, the business grew and diversified.
Today, Action Crane also owns two National 1395 boom trucks, each 30-ton with 95-ft. of boom and 44-ft. of jib. These machines are swing cabs and have really sold Moshier and his operators on that type of swing cab design.
In addition, Moshier purchased two Pioneer 4000 cranes and last year the company added a Terex 6100-RS 60,000-lb., 100-ft. truck crane to its fleet. More recently, a Terex T-340-XL with 105 ft. of boom was added to the company’s inventory. “We really knew that we wanted a bigger, longer truck crane.
“Our new Terex gives us bigger reach with more picking capacity. There are a lot of truck cranes on the market and we looked at most of them. I really feel that the Terex is the best value in the marketplace,” said Moshier.
“Mobility is important to us and the Terex is 8 ft. wide, road legal, and that gives us the mobility we were looking for. It is a New York State permitted machine. The Terex is a good machine at a good price … that makes it a good value all the way around. So far the Terex has been very dependable,” he explained.
In addition to the equipment that Moshier purchased, he also is pleased with the service he has received from Empire Crane and its employees.
“We’ve done business with the people at Empire Crane for a long time. They are very dependable and are located right here locally. They respond very well when we call them. The best crane in the world is no good to me if it’s not running. Down time costs me, and costs my customers money. Service is everything,” concluded Moshier.