The Case for Manual Quick Couplers

Wed June 25, 2014 - National Edition

Manual quick couplers may provide benefits hydraulic quick couplers don’t.
Manual quick couplers may provide benefits hydraulic quick couplers don’t.

When given the choice, the majority of operators would pick hydraulic quick couplers over manual — right? But manual quick couplers can provide significant benefits to operators and owners.

• Cost

Manual quick couplers cost significantly less than hydraulic couplers. When you look at the cost of plumbing, safety valves, and electronic controls associated with hydraulic quick couplers, manual couplers can cost 30 to 50 percent less to install.

• Simple Design

Because the design is less complicated, manual mechanical couplers are less prone to jamming and breaking down. This, in turn, saves money for the machine owner.

• Health and Safety

With a manual quick coupler, the operator must always get out of the cab and secure the attachment manually and visually secure it before climbing back into the machine. This means there is a smaller chance for operator error. It also provides an opportunity for an operator to move out of the seat, which lessens the chance for health-related issues from staying in a seated position for too long.

• Speed

While a hydraulic coupler is quicker to change attachments on a machine, some manual options such as a multi-grab screw coupler only takes about five minutes.

Users will save a few minutes with a hydraulic coupler, but the other benefits such as cost and safety make manual couplers favorable for machine owners and operators.

TRK Attachments Multi-Grab Manual Screw Coupler

A multi-grab screw coupler is a type of manual coupler that differs from conventional couplers because the operator can pick up attachments with different pin centers and it only requires one person to operate.

To change an attachment using a multi-grab screw coupler, the operator only needs a ratchet with a 1-1/8 in. socket. The grabber is driven back and forth by the screw mechanism using the ratchet and socket. This system enables the coupler to cinch up tightly to the pins even when there is wear in the pins or coupler. An easy-lock plate is then placed over the top of the screw head and secured with the 1-1/8 in. socket.

At the front of the coupler there is a secondary lock system. This system prevents the attachment from coming off due to operator error or the unlikely event of failure of the screw mechanism.

While there are many instances where hydraulic quick couplers are advantageous, there is still a case for manual quick couplers, particularly when it comes to cost, productivity, and safety.

For more information, call 905/641-9981 or visit