Blog | Sheedy Crane | San Francisco Cranes, Hauling & Lifting


October 15, 2018by elite0

At Sheedy Drayage Co. we are capable of performing almost any hoisting, rigging, or hauling task efficiently and safely. We have an extensive fleet of mobile and specialty cranes to get the job done in any industry. From tanks, refineries, power plants, steel and rebar, and mechanical equipment to emergency assistance or movie and television support, we have decades of experience working with every type of business.

A crane uses a variety of simple machines to create large amounts of support and leverage. Using wire ropes or chains, sheaves, and a hoist rope, cranes can move extremely large and heavy loads that are far beyond the capability of humans. The Ancient Greeks were the first known inventors of the modern construction crane and employed the use of human treadwheels and animals to power the structures. Since then, technology has grown exponentially and so has the use and complexity of cranes. There are hundreds of various crane forms, with each design tailored for a specific use. Our cranes can be used to construct high buildings, while our flying jibs can be used for highly specific purposes, such as getting a load into a building with an overhang.

Anatomy of a Crane

Cranes are a staple of any large construction site. As said above, there are a large variety of crane types; however, they are all engineered to perform a similar task. That is, to lift and move heavy loads. Cranes are generally mobile pieces of equipment due to the fact that they must travel to many different construction sites around the country. If you’ve ever seen one while in operation, maybe you’ve wondered how the metal arm can lift and support a huge amount of weight while not toppling over. There are quite a few engineering and physics feats that go into each lift and having engineers that know the mathematics behind each job is imperative to the success of the job. Some jobs are completed in busy cities with many people around the job site; because of this, error is simply not an option.

The majority of cranes feature a number of pulleys and cables to lift and lower heavy pieces of equipment and material. Think generators, turbines, huge slabs of concrete and other materials that weigh thousands of pounds. Ever wonder how they get those huge glass windows into skyscrapers? The answer is simple: cranes. Here’s the basic anatomy of one:


  • The boom – This is what the very end of the crane looks like. It’s the long steel arm that has the hook or another specialized piece of equipment on the end of it.
  • The hook and ball – the shape and size of the hook depend on a few things, such as how much weight the crane is carrying and what industry it is being used for. For example, gigantic steel claws are used in scrap yards to pick up huge amounts of steel debris. For another application, a hook is more suitable for lifting large shipping containers from port to ship.
  • The jib – either connected at the top or end of the boom, its structure carries the load and extends the boom to provide increased mobility. Think of the jib as the wrist and the boom as the arm, with the hook being the fingers of the crane.
  • Counterweight – this is one of the measures used to make sure that the crane does not topple over due to the weight differential. Either found at the base of the crane or near the cab of the crane, these counterbalance the weight being lifted by the boom to ensure the safety of the workers and the construction site.
  • Outriggers – Severe shifts in balance occur when operating a crane, due to the weight of the load. These are used in addition to counterweights to help stabilize the entire crane by using hydraulics to lift the entire crane at once.
  • Steel Cables – these travel alongside the arm, with the average cable capable of carrying an excess of 10,000 pounds of weight or more per cable. More cables are used for certain jobs, with some varieties being able to handle much more weight than others.


Crane Rentals in California

With over 85 years of experience with small jobs and large jobs alike, Sheedy Drayage Co. has distinguished ourselves as a leader in the industry. It doesn’t matter whether it’s residential, commercial or heavy industrial; there is simply no job that we can’t handle. Contact Sheedy today for all of your crane rental and hoist rental needs.



September 19, 2018by elite0

Safety in the workplace is not only a good idea; it’s mandatory under most workplace safety regulations.

In the US, the requirements fall under the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), and the associated standards and regulations.

Because of the dangerous nature of construction sites, they are hotbeds of problems awaiting an OSHA inspector.

Cranes are one area where there are a lot of potential risks. Guess what? Being proactive in your approach to safety will head them off at the pass, and significantly reduce the chances of anything disastrous happening to your staff or equipment onsite.

Appointment of a Safety Officer

It’s mandatory to have a safety officer appointed responsible for the site. The safety officer should complete daily checks of all at-risk areas to identify hazards.
Identifying hazards is an important preventative measure for reducing risks.

Development of Procedures

The next important part of site safety regulations is developing proper compliant procedures for crane operation.

These are the responsibility of the employer or contractor. All personnel must be aware of the procedures, and operate according to their specifications.

Crane Specific Risks

The federal regulation guidelines are rather complex when it comes to cranes and derricks, as one would expect with the nature of the equipment. The following details some of the key areas that are covered by the regulations. It is by no means a comprehensive list!

This is merely food for thought regarding what needs to be in place before crane operation can commence.

Applicable Regulations

The OSH Act, and Regulation Standard 29 CFR parts 1910, 1917-1919, 1926 apply to workplace safety and construction sites, with many subsections specifically detailing the operation of cranes along with risks of overhead loads, heavy lifting, and falls.

All crane operators must comply with the requirements of these standards.


A system of warning is needed to indicate to workers when overhead loads are in progress.

Fall Protection

A barrier system is needed to prevent access to areas where overhung loads may cause a problem. Compliant lifting platforms must be used where personnel are to be hoisted.

Ground Conditions, Assembly and Disassembly

The employer must have procedures for proper assembly and disassembly, and for assessing ground conditions. Competent and qualified persons must perform all work.

The procedures will include ensuring brake testing and application prior to movement, security of all attachment points, and the stability of footings, among other items.


All operations and maintenance personnel must be properly trained. The regulations define what is required to be considered a competent person, and a qualified person when it comes to crane operation.

Securing Loads

Attention by qualified persons to properly securing loads prior to lifting is of vital importance.

Everyone is Involved in Safety

A safety management system that is proactive ensures that all employees and contractors have a stake in the safety process. Having a vested interest means that employees are encouraged to identify hazards and suggest solutions.

Those completing the work often have a far better knowledge of what is safe and unsafe in their own jobs. Workers are also usually very understanding of the need for efficiency from commercial pressure, so solutions will often involve streamlining of processes while improving safety.

Once they have received proper safety training and have been provided with guidance on safety attitudes, workers can help improve safety processes, moving the operation from reactive to proactive, making it an OSHA inspectors dream.

Seek Expert Assistance

If you’re not sure about the adequate safety of your crane and the workplace environment, the best solution is to seek professional assistance from an industry expert.


September 1, 2018by elite0


Difficult lifting or jacking jobs are like puzzles for those of us in the industry. We thrive on helping businesses solve difficult lifting safely and efficiently.

What are some of the most puzzling types of jobs we’ve come across in our years of heavy lifting?

Foundation Replacements

One of the most diverse jobs in lifting and support is the need for propping up buildings. An unsurprisingly common need in San Francisco is seismic retrofitting. That is, jacking up older buildings to upgrade foundations for earthquake proofing. The foundation replacement requires specialized jacks, frames, and lifting equipment, alongside project design co-ordination to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Seismic retrofitting requires a difficult balancing act where support columns are jacked up with temporary support, while base isolators are installed. With our list of accomplishments including San Francisco City Hall and the Benicia-Martinez Bridge, among some of the largest seismic isolation projects in the world, no job is too big!

Overhanging Roofs

Where an overhang exists, it’s hard to get a crane in position. This is where a type of crane called a flying jib comes in handy.

The flying jib is a counter-weighted arm, which allows the load weight to hang at a distance from the crane pick-up point, therefore allowing the item to be placed under an overhanging roof easily.

A flying jib can also be a pivoted and weighted arm attached to a crane for more diverse angles.

Awkward Shapes and Sizes

When an item is regularly shaped, it’s easy to pick up with standard equipment. When there are irregular shapes, off-center weights, and difficult attachment points, the means of securing the load can become more complicated. The solution to this is simple. However, if one of our non-standard rigging solutions doesn’t suit the item, then a custom rigging solution can be designed to fit, which will make critical lift planning a breeze.

Extremely Heavy Items

While the cranes and hydraulic locking jacks at Sheedy Crane can handle up to 500 tons easily, it’s not as simple as just putting a crane on a truck and setting it up to lift your load.

Firstly, large cranes require special transport, which needs permits and coordination. Then, assembly and rigging need critical attention to ensure the equipment is secure, and that it is structurally and mechanically sound. The rigging for the actual lifting often requires expert design by our specialty engineering team.

Finally, all the strength and safety aspects of the lift need to be thoroughly checked and certified by qualified engineers, in accordance with engineering and safety regulations, an extremely heavy item can’t have any risk of failure.

Specialist Rigging Design

For difficult jobs, a specialist rigging design is required. For complex jobs, professional engineers use 3D CAD modeling to complete the design. 3D modeling enables all aspects of a lift to be considered, from all angles, before the job begins.

Difficult rigging and lifting jobs are the ones we thrive on, so ask us if you need help planning your next critical lift. Contact Sheedy Crane today!


August 28, 2018by elite0

Over the past decades, we’ve had the opportunity to talk to some of the “best of the best” in the rigging industry. We’ve seen everything from priceless pieces of art hanging from a crane over a body of water, and an entire bridge being driven through a dirt road in a remote jungle.

Our industry is all about logistics. Some of the top factors we look into when moving anything from a Toyota Camry to a 4-ton block of concrete are how much it weighs? How is the weight distributed? Is it awkward in size? Does it have hazmat limitations?

Here are some of the top considerations when  driving an oversized load through a busy location:

First and foremost, know your route. Take the time beforehand and plan exactly where you are going. You don’t want to get stuck on a bridge with a boat crossing when you don’t have to. Cement trucks often times have to plan this out down to the minute when transporting wet cement to a job site.

san francisco map


Know local regulations. There are some towns and municipalities that don’t allow big rigs to come through city streets. Others require you to get a permit for such jobs. You don’t want to get stuck driving tons of equipment across the state only to find out last minute you can’t make it down the “final stretch.” You will also know well in advance whether or not you need a pilot or an escort car, but if you are going across state lines you’ll also need to know if there are any additional regulations for the pilot car.

Know your lodging and stops. Amateur drivers might skip over this part, but in a multi-part or destination trip, it is imperative you know this beforehand. Imagine this: you are 8 hours into a trip and its legally time to clock out. You need to find a hotel, but the only ones nearby don’t have parking for semi’s, and definitely not for oversized loads.

San Francisco, for example, has a map of what it is considered “urbanized” and has special requirements when traveling in those areas.

san francisco street restrictions


Get to know your pilot car/escort. Many times you’ll be required to drive along with an escort car. This is normally a sedan-sized vehicle with a marking on the car alerting other motorists of your presence. A good escort car will stay in constant communication with the driver, and in some cases have a passenger in the pilot car equipped with GPS and laptop. Maintaining a good relationship with the pilot vehicle is very important, especially when you are navigating busy city streets or tough intersections.

Hazmat Considerations. Hazmat considerations are important not only for legal reasons but for your own safety as well. If you watch the news you can see some of the results of these accidents in real life. If you are transporting flammable liquids or solids it’s even more important for your own safety and for the general public.

Other considerations. Most States have special considerations for inclement weather, holidays, weight/height, and for mobile homes etc. Transporting an over-sized load can take weeks to plan.


August 10, 2018by elite0

Choosing The Right Crane: Construction and engineering companies rarely own their own cranes, since they are a specialized part of operations and can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.

With that in mind, crane rental is the preferred option for most companies needing temporary or long-term heavy lifting.

A company that specializes in crane rental will provide a range of affordable solutions for short or long-term hire and a variety of crane types. A professional crane rental company will always have professional marketing on multiple platforms such as web, social media, and more traditional forms of advertising.

Crane Types Typically Available for Rental

Mobile cranes and assembled on-site cranes are available for rental by most crane rental operators.

Truck Cranes

randon 900crane rental

A truck crane removes the need for separate transport for a crane, and thus provides excellent versatility for short jobs and is a very popular rental option.

In some cases, for very large truck cranes, counterweights are transported separately.

Rough Terrain Cranes

A rough terrain crane is a crane mounted on a four-wheeled platform, which allows it to be maneuvered in tight and rough access areas. Once in position outriggers stabilize the crane. The crane can perform off road pick and carry tasks. A rough terrain crane is much smaller than a truck crane for slick maneuverability and is not designed for long road trips.

All-Terrain Cranes

The all-terrain crane combines the properties of a rough terrain crane with a truck crane, meaning that it can operate on rough terrain and travel on highways for transport.

The all-terrain crane uses all-wheel and crab steering to increase the access and maneuverability of a truck crane but is not as compact as a rough terrain crane.

Lattice Boom Cranes

lattice boom cranes rental

Lattice boom cranes are used for large and excessively heavy operations and can be constructed on site on different types of platforms or may be mounted on a crawler.

They provide mechanical lifting via a series of guy wires and the well-known lattice shape. This shape consists of intermeshed high strength steel alloy provides the lattice boom cranes with their high strength capacity.

Crawler Cranes

A crawler crane is a type of crane that is mounted on movable bulldozer style tracks. It has the advantage of not requiring outriggers. This is very useful for heavy pick and lift operations as it easily changes position.

Specially Constructed Cranes

Specialized technical requirements can be catered for on individual jobs by combining different types of equipment and accessories.

This may include the use of hydraulic jacks, gantries, flying jibs, and frames to maneuver items into position for crane access. Design and combinations of modular cranes to suit application is possible.

Crane Accessories

Crane rental services will usually provide options for all the accessories needed for the job, such as platforms, baskets, and flying jibs for unusual access areas.

Specialized Transport Vehicles for Cranes

Cranes need dedicated transport capable of hauling large loads, loading and unloading and power supply. Often, compliance with road rules is required, such as a pilot car, special use permit, and in some cases a police escort.

Rental Options

Rental is either on contract for long-term jobs or under daily rates for short-term work, usually called jobbing work. Renting ensures maintenance is taken care of, and whichever rental option is chosen, the service provider will include full details of maintenance, repair, and service in the contract.

Let Sheedy help you in choosing the right crane for the job.


July 15, 2018by elite0

If you are looking for a cost-effective solution for your crane rental needs, consider Sheedy Crane. Due to the variability of each task, many construction companies choose not to buy their own cranes. Training crane operators, finding storage space for the cranes, and employing regular maintenance costs time and money. Due to this and a few other factors, sometimes it is in a contractor’s best interest to rent a crane, rather than buy a crane. If you are looking to rent a crane in the near future, there are a few determinants to consider.

1.    Experience of the Operator

An important aspect of crane rental is to ensure that the crane operators are properly screened and trained. All of our operators are NCCO certified and all of our cranes are maintained in our in-house maintenance shop. This can help you save on training costs and maintenance fees. All of our operators have a large amount of experience and can be included in the rental of our cranes. All of our drivers are well-versed in OSHA and NCCO regulatory guidelines.

2.    Type of crane required

At Sheedy Crane, we have an extensive list of cranes for any job type. We carry rough terrain, roof mounted, hydraulic truck, and all-terrain cranes. All of these cranes have specific applications and differ in arm length, size, and lifting capacity. Call us today so we can send a representative to your job site with the process in making more efficient by the actionac san diego to determine what type of crane you need. Some operations, such as demolition and construction, require longer arms to ensure maximum safety at the job-site.

3.    Crane insurance

Insurance is a necessary part of this business. In the case of an accident in the workplace, having a company that is insured and certified is a must. Regardless of who you choose for a crane rental, make sure to ask about the terms of their policy and what is covered.

4.    Cost of the service

The cost of renting any crane depends on the type of services offered. A company that provides bare rentals will obviously charge less when compared to a rental that includes an operator. You can call to discuss the pricing of a bare rental if you have a certified crane operator in your employment.

5.    Work permits

We have the legal right to operate in many areas around the Western United States and have contractor licenses in CA, HI, AZ, NV, and WA. Call and ask about what contracting services are available. It should go without saying that you need to hire a company that operates within your state. We have cranes for rental in California and the San Francisco Bay Area.

Engineering Services with an Emphasis on Safety

Sheedy Crane has a staff of in-house engineers, riggers, and project managers who are specialists when it comes to the field of heavy lift rigging and overweight/over-dimensional load transport. We have reliable and quality engineering services in the San Francisco Bay Area and California. Contact Sheedy today. 


Sheedy Drayage Co.

Capable of performing almost any hoisting, rigging, or hauling task efficiently and safely.
Headquarters San Francisco



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