Noob pallet jack question
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  1. #1
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    Default Noob pallet jack question

    My business is expanding and I'm going to have to start moving pallets of material, at most about 800 lbs./pallet. The pallets won't have to be lifted any higher than is necessary to move them, so a pallet jack can handle the weight no sweat. What I'm wondering is how hard it is for someone (say, 5'9", 160 lbs.) to push/pull a manual pallet jack with that load? I'd like to not have to get an electric one if a manual will do the job. I realize it's hard to quantify, but any advice is appreciated. Thanks.

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    I've moved much heavier loads with a pallet jack, what really matters is how smooth and level your floor is. Get a good quality jack, sweep the floor for chips and debris before running over it and embedding the junk in the wheels.

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    It's an inertia kind of thing. Once you get it moving it's easy but as previously mentioned any chips/rocks/bumps on the floor will make overcoming inertia that much more difficult.

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    800 lbs no sweat for you or even a 120 lb guy..
    I'm 6'4" 290 5000 lbs is about my limit on a smooth floor.

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    I am about your size and move stuff up to 2500-3000 regularly with a bit of effort. Under 1000 is really no big deal, get a good quality pallet jack.

    Steve

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    As noted the floor impacts what you can do. You can move up to a ton really easy, two tons can be moved with some effort and over that becomes very difficult with a pallet jack.

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    Pallet jack - Wikipedia

    There are more lengths available than the above implies.

    Think about the size of the pallets you will actually be using, and the room you have to maneuver. If you are limited in room or will only be using smaller pallets, look for one with shorter forks. It will be easier to maneuver, and you will not have the forks sticking out past a pallet to trip over, run over, ram into the wall, lift the edge of the pallet behind the one you intend to pack up... etc.

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    How often and how far?
    All day continuous over the length of a football field, load after load, or once a day and 30-50 feet?
    Bob

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    One thing not touched on but of major consideration do you have any inclines? One human won't do well with a pallet on much of a slope at all at this weight. 4" in 5-6' your probaly going to need a push!

    Inside on smooth level floors, hell yes at those weights there the answer and less effort than in - out of the forklift. I second the short tines comment too, You want the widest width, but shortest length you can get away with for your pallet size. Width stops em being tippy and they are if there narrow, length makes em far less manoeuvrable. My favourite was one we cut and shut that have barely 2'6" of tine, was incredibly manoeuvrable and worked awesome with the circa 2x3' pallets we were humping around all day from machine to machine.

    If your hand balling stuff on - off the pallets there’s a lot to be said for the scissor lift high lift ones too, really saves the back at the end of a long shift.

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    I would think about a Presto lift with forks rather than a pallet jack. Can be used for other things other than just moving pallets.

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    The weight you can easily move on a pallet jack is amazing.. I've got an electric 24?x48, and
    a beat to hell 22x36..

    The electric is out back, its a pain in the ass in the shop... Takes up too much room, too
    damn fast. The stupid battery adds more length. I haven't used it in years.

    That POS 22x36, $50 on Craigslist, will lift a Wells Index and move it no problem.

    800lbs, on a mostly level, slightly trashed concrete floor... It'll move like nothing, a
    4 year old could do it pretty easy.

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    A tool for every job.
    Manual pallet jacks are the cat's ass for what they do well.
    Electrics have their place and just plain ole fork trucks. Both of which need more room to work in.
    One looks at the tools job, defines what you need the employees to do.
    I can move a Blanchard with a pallet jack and have done it many times even though way over it's limit.
    All good to move a short distance or rearange a cell. Dumb to move from my front to back shop.

    The weight is light but no idea of what the OP is trying to do or how it fits into his operation and staffing.
    Not sure how you spec 5' 9" 160 as a job requirement and know a few way under this height perfectly capable of the job.
    Bob


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