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BSH uses Tadano AC 3.055-1 to disassemble portable roller coaster

Crane service provider BSH’s résumé is certainly no laughing matter, as one of the specializations of the crane and recovery experts from Euskirchen is assembling and tearing down amusement rides – and that means working at tight work sites where people and vehicles are on the go at all times and obstacles can be found in every single corner and end. “That takes a steady hand and, above all, a crane that is extremely compact, maneuverable, and versatile,” Senior Director Peter Barth says – that is where his new Tadano AC 3.055-1 all terrain crane comes in. Together with his son and junior director, he recently picked up the crane in Zweibrücken, where it was handed over by Tadano Sales Manager Helge Prüfer.

“It’s almost as if the Tadano AC 3.055-1 had been made for us specifically. It combines a whole series of technical advantages that make it the ideal machine for our needs,” explains Junior Director Peter Barth. He mentions the extraordinarily compact design with a total length of merely 11.50 meters, the 50-meter-long boom, and, above all, the Flex Base system, which makes it possible to extend the crane’s outriggers to any point within their range, in conjunction with the IC‑1 Plus crane control system: “You’d be surprised at the extreme variety of objects that get in the way when putting together and tearing down amusement rides. Thanks to the Flex Base system, we can extend the crane’s outriggers all the way up to the actual obstacles even in asymmetrical configurations and then use the IC‑1 Plus to always take advantage of the crane’s maximum available lifting capacity,” Senior Director Peter Barth highlights. The Euskirchen experts also point out that the option of traveling with the AC 3.055-1 while remaining under a 10-tonne axle load limit is enormously advantageous, as this makes it significantly easier and faster to get travel permits for it. “In addition, we can also configure the AC 3.055-1 with a reduced axle load for the vast majority of our projects while maintaining adequate lifting capacities,” the junior director explains. Moreover, the crane is designed for one-man operation even when outfitted with its maximum level of equipment, making it especially cost-effective in addition to everything else. One more plus factor for the Euskirchen experts: Crane operators can rejoice in particularly spacious and comfortable carrier and superstructure cabs, which is all the more important given that only they sit in their own cranes.

1,000 meters of track disassembled

The new AC 3.055-1 got the chance to prove its worth at its first assignment at the Düsseldorf Rhine Fair a mere 5 days after being handed over. There, it was scheduled to tear down an amusement ride that projected far above everything else at the fairgrounds at the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Ring: The Alpina roller coaster. With a maximum height of 32 meters, a track length of more than one thousand meters, and a top speed of 80 km/h, it was a real dare for all fair visitors in Düsseldorf – and for crane service provider BSH as well! After all, the company had to disassemble and load 600 tonnes of steel and add-on components in record time for the job. “We ourselves were hard at work with the AC 3.055-1 and an AC 100-4. Meanwhile, the ten-person Alpina team took care of disassembling the components and let me tell you, they’re absolute experts that make every move count, and count perfectly,” reports Senior Director Peter Barth.

However, the crane first had to travel from Euskirchen to Düsseldorf, which took an hour with its full counterweight and a 12-tonne axle load – no additional transportation vehicles were required. The crane was set up for its first project just as quickly, with the procedure taking a mere 15 minutes. “The biggest challenge was to keep the way clear for other showpeople when positioning the crane. And this was important, since things always get really hectic on setup and teardown days and everyone obviously wants to get to the next fairground as quickly as possible. The crane’s compact design really came through for us there,” reports Junior Director Peter Barth, who also had words of praise for yet another one of the AC 3.055-1’s properties: Its ability to move quickly thanks to the fact that it can also be driven from the superstructure.

Full boom length and a radius of up to 36 meters

Tearing down the roller coaster meant that loads weighing from 300 kilograms to six tonnes had to be lifted. To take care of this, the crane operator equipped the AC 3.055-1 with its full counterweight, after which the lifts themselves went smoothly according to plan: First, all decorative components, as well as the lamp posts, ticket booth, catwalks, and illuminated advertising, were removed and loaded from the front area of the roller coaster. Then came the actual roller coaster elements with the tracks, their weight coming in at around two tonnes. In order to be able to lift these components, which had a height of up to 32 meters, the crane operator used boom lengths between 24 and the maximum possible 50 meters. Meanwhile, the largest radius was a good 36 meters. All in all, a total of two and a half days was all the crane operator needed to completely tear down the roller coaster together with the Alpina team.

Like with every first assignment for a new crane, a Tadano employee was on-site in Düsseldorf in the form of Helge Prüfer. “Obviously it really boosts your confidence when the manufacturer sends someone to provide help and advice as needed,” underscores Senior Director Peter Barth, who is very happy with Tadano’s service and, above all, how quickly support and assistance are provided. “Tadano’s service is simply perfect for us, and the live support with the Tadano IC‑1 Remote system is out of this world,” his son adds.

All expectations met

Not surprisingly, neither one of them could find fault with their new Tadano AC 3.055-1 after its debut. “The crane really proved that it doesn’t just set new standards on paper – it can really deliver everything promised at the work site, which makes it the perfect crane for our needs,” father and son agree.