Lift trucks are mobile equipment that use 2 forks or prongs to be able to place cargo into positions which will usually be difficult to reach. Typically, forklifts fall into 2 main categories: industrial and rough-terrain.
Most often, industrial lift trucks are utilized around train loading docks and truck loading docks along with in warehouse applications. These equipment have smaller tires which are designed to run on paved surfaces. Typically, industrial lift trucks are powered by an internal gasoline engine running on diesel fuel or propane.
Smaller lift trucks may run off an internal battery charging an electric motor. And as the name implies, the rough terrain lift truck is engineered to be operated on rough and unpaved surfaces. Normally, they are the great choice for military and construction applications. Rough terrain lift trucks normally have big pneumatic tires which are normally powered by internal industrial engines that run on propane, diesel or propane fuel. These lift truck units can have a telescoping boom, capable of carrying loads up and out from the base of the equipment or they can utilize a vertical tower, that is responsible for lifting loads straight up.
The rough terrain lift truck emerged in 1946, after a 2 pronged lift attachment was attached to a tractor chassis or a power buggy. This first machinery was used around construction sites and could lift to a height of 30 inches or 76 centimeters and had a lifting capacity could carry 1000 pounds or 454 kg. Vertical tower forklifts were quickly developed for industrial use and rough terrain lift trucks became popular too. By the time the 1950s came around, there were models available that can lift up to heights of 9 meters or 30 feet and had lift capacities of 1135 kg or 2500 pounds.
The original 4-wheel drive rough terrain forklift was introduced in the year 1958. It offered a capacity of 2724 kg or 6000 lbs. and had a lift height of 22.5 feet or 7 meters or 1362 kg or 3000 lbs. and 35 feet or 11 meters. The very first telescoping boom rough terrain forklift emerged on the market during the year 1962. This particular model enabled loads to be positioned out from the machine's base both above and below grade.