Sometimes, to do great work, you need to go to great lengths — or great heights. The tallest boom lifts in the world allow you to do just that.
This article explores the tallest boom lifts in the world and what they’re capable of. First up, the Snorkel 2100SJ, a diesel telescopic boom lift.
1. Snorkel 2100SJ
The 2100SJ is a telescopic boom lift that offers extreme reach and height, with its arm horizontally extending to 115 feet and its platform full height listed at 210 feet. It has a limited platform capacity of 770 pounds unrestricted.
The 2100SJ operates using a 115 horsepower diesel engine and weighs in at a hefty 92,000 pounds. It features five steering modes: front, rear, crab, complementary, and lateral.
2. JLG 1850SJ Ultra Boom
With a platform height of 185 feet, the JLG offers access to the equivalent of a 17-story-tall building. Its 360 degrees of continuous swing maximizes its reachable space, in any direction.
Its axles can retract or extend within about one minute, and its arm can provide 80 feet of horizontal reach. The 1850SJ’s platform capacity is 500 pounds unrestricted. It’s powered by a 99.8 horsepower diesel engine with a fuel capacity of just under 53 gallons.
The JLG boom, manufactured by JLG Industries Inc., tips the scales at 59,900 pounds. It includes three selectable steering modes.
3. Genie SX-180
With a platform height of 180 feet and a working height maximum of 186 feet, the SX-180 provides similar benefits to the JLG.
It has the same 8-by-3-foot platform, can provide a horizontal reach of 80 feet, and offers 360 degrees of rotation, with its lift capacity of 750 pounds unrestricted. It weighs slightly less at 55,000 pounds and operates using a 74 horsepower turbo diesel engine.
Its telescopic boom can reach its maximum work height in 5 minutes. The SX-180 has four steering modes: front, rear, crab, and coordinated.
Types of Boom Lifts
Boom lifts come in two basic varieties: telescopic boom lifts and articulating boom lifts. Both can range in height from 30 to more than 100 feet. Both types are classified by OSHA as aerial lifts: devices mounted on vehicles that are used to elevate workers. (Other types include scissor lifts, for example.)
Articulating Boom Lifts
An articulating lift comes with a bendable, jointed arm that’s attached to a turntable. This reduces its work envelope (the area needed for it to operate), allowing it better versatility and maneuverability in confined spaces.
There are several different articulating boom lifts available for rent, ranging from 30 to 135 feet, including diesel and electric models. Costs range from roughly $208 to $339 a day or $520 or $780 a week.
Telescopic Boom Lifts
Telescopic boom lifts lack the jointed arm present on an articulated boom lift. Instead, the arm extends straight out via a telescopic jib (like a telescope, naturally), maximizing its reach.
Telescopic boom lifts are available to rent in dual-fuel diesel models ranging from 40 to 185 feet. Costs vary from $248 per day or $572 a week for a 40-foot model to $1,229 a day or $3,227 a week for a 120-foot model, and you can request a quote for larger models such as the JLG 1850SJ.
What Sizes Do Boom Lifts Come In?
Boom lifts come in platform heights ranging from 30 to 210 feet, so you can choose one that’s right for your job and the area you need to access. We offer a variety of models available for rent.
When reviewing specs, make sure to note both the platform height and the working height. The platform height is the distance between the ground and the floor of the elevated platform; the working height is about six feet higher, adding the typical height of the person standing on the platform.
How High Can Boom Lifts Go?
The tallest boom lifts can reach up to 17 stories high when fully extended, or in some cases even higher.
When choosing a boom lift for your job, you’ll want to consider the specs, such as how much horizontal reach you need. As with any other man lift, you’ll want to consider the weight capacity of the aerial work platforms you’re considering. In general, the taller the boom lift, the greater its horizontal reach will be. (A 40-foot lift will have a maximum reach of 34 feet, while a 120-footer will have a maximum reach of 75 feet.)
You won’t want to overload your platform, so you’ll want to be sure it’s big enough to carry the number of workers and the amount of material you’ll be lifting.
(If you want to compare lifts in person, you can get an up-close look at them at Conexpo, the largest construction equipment expo in North America, held every three years in Las Vegas.)
Boom lifts can reach great heights and can allow construction workers and maintenance crews access to a variety of spaces. The tallest boom lifts in the world can make seemingly out-of-reach places accessible. You may not need a supersized boom lift for your job, but if you do, it’s helpful to know you have the option of renting one.