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Crane Hot Line

Short-Chassis National Crane Makes Tightest Turns in 45-USt Class

National CraneAn ultra-nimble, short-chassis version of the National Crane NBT45-2 boom truck was on display at two recent industry trade shows: Work Truck Week 2022 in Indianapolis and ArborEXPO ’22 in West Springfield, Massachusetts.

Engineers at National Crane’s Truck Mod Center removed just under 2’ from the wheelbase, delivering a 36’ turning radius, the tightest in its class, while maintaining 45-USt maximum lifting capacity.

The boom truck highlights the role that Manitowoc’s Truck Mod Center and Lift Solutions departments play in developing customized solutions to meet the industry’s evolving needs. This short-chassis model is one example of the infinite configurations that can be engineered to ensure that a customer’s truck and crane are the perfect match and are field-ready when they leave the factory.

Based around a 2023 Peterbilt 567 chassis, the short-configuration NBT45127-2 boasts class-leading flexibility in confined spaces and congested jobsites as a result of shortening the wheelbase by around 23”, so it now measures only 250”.

“Our customers were telling us they needed a 40-USt to 45-USt capacity crane, but on a more compact chassis than standard,” said Bob Ritter, National Crane product manager. “Our application engineers put a lot of effort into fine tuning the chassis until they delivered a boom truck with a chassis with the tightest turning radius in its class.”

This impressive feat was made possible by relocating the hydraulic tank from the frame rail to the deck, freeing space between the back of the truck cab and the crane torsion box. With the full machine length now under 38’, its flexibility in both urban and suburban settings has been greatly enhanced.

National CraneAnother notable advantage of the new chassis configuration is the use of a 13,500-lb. pusher axle, rather than a tag axle, alongside the existing 46,000-lb. rear tandem arrangement. By helping operators better navigate inclines and narrow driveways, this improves the speed with which they can complete projects.

“The shorter chassis also makes it easier for the operator to ready the crane for transport by tying off the block without extending the boom,” Ritter said. “They can now stow the boom and hook the block to the front of the truck more efficiently, so they can get to the next job site faster.”

Once reaching the next job site, the simplified setup allows outriggers to be quickly set and hook blocks to be unstowed using front-bumper-mounted controls, removing the need to climb in and out of truck and crane cabs. Optional wireless remote controls make this process more efficient, while the NTC Performance Package adds more versatility during setup.

With a GVW of 79,500 lbs., propelled by a 500-hp Cummins X15 engine and Allison 4500 RDS transmission, the new crane also benefits from the optional 6,000-lb. counterweight package. It features a 127’ five-section full-power main boom, plus a 31’-55’ telescopic jib that produces a maximum tip height of 189’.


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