Stephenson Equipment

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7201 Paxton Street Harrisburg, PA 17111

Author: Kyle Hoffman

Manitowoc introduces extended warranty program to support Grove GRT series of rough-terrain cranes

From a Manitowoc News Release Dated May 7, 2018

Manitowoc Cranes has announced a new, extended warranty program for the Grove GRT series of rough-terrain cranes. The program consists of a two-year standard warranty on newly ordered cranes, complemented by three additional tiers of total extended coverage for three, four and five years.

The new standard warranty term and extended warranty program were introduced to support the improved reliability of Grove’s GRT rough-terrain cranes, which have benefited from extensive design improvements and rigorous reliability testing at Manitowoc’s Product Verification Center (PVC) to ensure quality.

Customers could previously extend their GRT series warranty from one to two years for an additional cost, but the two-year term is now standard across the entire GRT series product line.

“Our new warranty program demonstrates to the market that we stand behind the reliability of our cranes,” said Barry Pennypacker, president and CEO of Manitowoc. “With the new GRT series, we’ve taken the necessary steps to increase customer uptime, reduce maintenance and provide a better user experience for operators. And now, we can exceed that level of quality with a best-in-class warranty for customer peace of mind.”

SEI’s Mike Becker Named to PA State Board of Crane Operators

Mike Becker, CCO Trainer at our Harrisburg branch, was appointed to the PA Board of Crane Operators in March 2018. The primary purpose of the Board is to assure all crane operators in PA are certified and subsequently PA licensed. Requiring crane operators to be certified and licensed requires crane operators to be better trained which leads to safer operation. Mike was appointed to the Board as a professional member in 2018 by Governor Wolf under the advice and consent of the Senate for a four year term, after which he will seek reappointment for his second term. The PA Crane Board regulates the licensing of crane operators of mobile cranes of 15 ton maximum rated capacity and higher and tower cranes of 10 meter tons and higher. The Board is made up of four professional members, two public members, Board administrator and Board Attorney. Board members are limited to two consecutive terms.

Mike is not the first SEI employee to serve on the Board. Ray Feidt, CCO Trainer/OSHA Inspection Manager, also previously served on the Board. He was appointed to the original Board as a professional member by Governor Rendell under the advice and consent of the Senate in 2008. The original Board spent two years writing the regulation which was enacted in December of 2010. He was reappointed to the Board for a 2nd term in 2012 by Governor Corbett. His second term ended in May of 2017.

Superb team members like this are what make our NCCCO/CCO Training Courses so successful. Stephenson Equipment, Inc (SEI) fully endorses the national crane operator certification program offered by the National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO). We offer several classroom CCO training facilities and practical CCO training facilities in Pennsylvania for the advancement and skills training required to become a certified crane operator certified within the OSHA recognized NCCCO standards. If you would like to ­view our upcoming course schedule, please visit If you have any other questions, please contact Chris Traino at 717-558-7248.

Manitowoc releases free diagnostic mobile app to increase crane uptime for customers

(From a Manitowoc News Release dated April 4, 2018)

  • The new smartphone app is available for iOS and Android devices, and will help crane operators to interpret diagnostic codes that are generated by on-board control systems.
  • The app aims to increase crane uptime by enabling customers to diagnose technical issues without third-party assistance, leading to faster repairs and maintenance.

Manitowoc Cranes has announced a new smartphone app that will help customers to diagnose technical issues on their cranes much faster. The free app will be available on iOS and Android devices, and will enable users to understand the numeric diagnostic codes that are generated by their on-board control systems. Manitowoc is the first manufacturer in the crane industry to release an app of this kind.

In the past, when cranes had technical issues, Manitowoc customers had no way to interpret the diagnostic codes that would appear on the main display of the crane’s cab. Specialized technicians would have to be called to the job site with proprietary equipment, and any time spent waiting affected the project schedule. Now, with this freely available smartphone app that instantly tells users what codes mean, crane owners can begin working on solutions immediately, boosting their uptime.

“We’re entering into a new era of crane operation where we can harness the power of mobile devices and Manitowoc wants to lead the way,” said John Alexander, director of all-terrain crane service, mobile training and telematics at Manitowoc. “By accessing a cloud database right from their smartphones, companies can quickly get valuable diagnostic information to keep their cranes up and running.”

The first version of the app will address diagnostic codes on all Grove- and Manitowoc-branded cranes that run on Manitowoc’s Crane Control System (CCS), as well as all-terrain (GMK) models that have ECOS 1 or ECOS 2 installed. National Crane boom truck functionality will follow in a future update.

The smartphone app is available now for free in both the App Store (Apple) and Google Play (Android) by searching for “Manitowoc Diagnostic Code App.”


Syracuse Technician Adds Grove Certification



Anthony Perrotta from our Syracuse branch recently passed his Domestic Grove Certification. The certification concludes with two days of tests to prove a technician’s ability to troubleshoot, diagnose, and resolve issues with Grove domestic cranes of both current and post production. The testing consists of a written general knowledge test of items incurred across all Grove RT and TMS product lines. Hands-on testing includes troubleshooting and diagnostics of any or all of the following: electrical, hydraulics, programming, systems calibration and mechanical operations.

This certification gives us another Grove certified mechanic to better serve our New York market.

Congratulations Anthony!

Bob Criste Named President of Stephenson Equipment, Inc.

Bob Criste 2016

Dennis Heller made the announcement official the first week of February that Bob Criste is now president of Stephenson Equipment. Heller, who was president and CEO of the company, will still remain as CEO.

“Bob’s many years experience as CFO, and more recent promotion to COO has given him the experience and passion for this promotion,” Heller said.

Criste said, “We have a great team of leaders here at SEI, I look forward to continuing our journey of growth. Dennis will remain CEO of the company and continue to work on company projects, marketing and provide oversight for the company.”

2017 was a great year of accomplishments for SEI, their employees and customers: In February, the company moved their Albany, NY branch location into a vastly improved facility better serving the Albany area. In addition, SEI built a new crane shop to better serve customer needs at their Pittsburgh, PA branch location. Just a few miles from their previous location in Wilkes-Barre, PA they built a new and much improved facility from the ground up. Then amongst all this activity SEI acquired the Walsh Equipment company and their locations, one near Butler, PA and the other near Ebensburg, PA.

“SEI will continue to focus on doing what is right for our customers and our employees; which is what has brought SEI to this point,” said Criste.

Kriger Construction finds the new Grove GRT8100 ideal for bridge work

Kriger Construction finds the new Grove GRT8100 ideal for bridge work

From a Manitowoc News Release dated 1/11/18

  • The Pennsylvania-based company is impressed with the build quality and smooth operation of the 100 USt rough-terrain crane.
  • Equipped with Manitowoc’s Crane Control System (CCS), the GRT8100 is especially well-suited to the precise work of building precast bridge components.

Kriger Construction (Kriger) has been using one of Manitowoc Cranes’ latest rough-terrain models, the Grove GRT8100, for more than six months in its bridge-building operations. The Scranton, Pennsylvania-based company has found the new, 100 USt crane to be a beneficial addition to its fleet, thanks to the competitive capacity, build quality and smooth operation that the GRT8100 offers.

“Compared to traditional rough-terrain cranes I’ve used, the GRT8100 operates a lot more smoothly,” said Joe Palickar, general superintendent for Kriger. “I was able to notice it even on a 10 percent roadway pitch with the outriggers deployed at 50 percent. From the movement of the boom to the stability of the house and tilting cab, you can feel how well-built this crane is.”

When Kriger received its GRT8100 in June of 2017, the company immediately put the crane to work on a new bridge project, setting 3.5 USt barriers in a river to build a cofferdam. After completing that task, the crane installed 32 ft-long beams that weighed 6 USt each, all within a tight, 18 ft-wide work space. Operators then used the GRT8100 to lift 18.5 USt precast segments to build the bridge itself. It was the first of five projects on which the company would use the GRT8100 in 2017, and according to Kriger, all five of them went well.

In 2018, the company is scheduled to build more than 30 bridges, and the GRT8100 will be used on all of them. According to Jason Wilson, crane operator for Kriger, the GRT8100 is especially well-suited to bridge-building applications.

“The GRT8100 is great for precise work that requires lifting accuracy, such as building precast bridge components,” he said. “When I have to hit a 1/8-inch gap with an 18 USt deck slab, this crane makes it easy.”

Kriger Construction finds the new Grove GRT8100 ideal for bridge work

That precision is made possible by Manitowoc’s Crane Control System (CCS), which comes standard on the GRT8100. The intuitive user interface has an operator-adjustable controller setting and full proportionality to assist with the precise setting of loads in any critical application, as well as many other customer-focused improvements.

“I’ve been spoiled by the new CCS,” Palickar explained. “Everything I need to scroll through the menu is conveniently located on the arm rest, right at my fingertips. Not only do I have the option to deploy outriggers to 50 percent, but the deployment process is easy with CCS. I also like being able to see the percentage of the boom that’s extended.”

In addition to CCS, the GRT8100 has several other features that were designed with today’s construction market in mind, including a 154 ft, five-section main boom that provides better reach and greater versatility. The rough-terrain crane also has a tilting cab, impressive load charts and the benefit of extensive component testing at Manitowoc’s Product Verification Center (PVC) to ensure quality and reliability.

Kriger’s GRT8100 was provided by Stephenson Equipment, which has been offering sales and rentals of construction equipment, paving machinery and cranes since 1957. The Harrisburg, Pennsylvania-based company serves customers from six locations across its home state and New York. Stephenson is an official dealer of Manitowoc, Grove, National Crane and Potain cranes.

Kriger Construction was founded in 1978 by Alfred Kriger and has served northeastern Pennsylvania as a family-owned company ever since. Based in Scranton, the construction firm specializes in heavy highway and utility work, and is currently run by president Linda Malinowski and vice president Jim Marzolino.

Grove GRT8100 streamlines operations on Pennsylvania energy projects

Grove GRT8100 streamlines operations on Pennsylvania energy projects

From a Manitowoc News Release dated 12/19/17.

Sam Hess, crane manager for B&K Equipment and Crane Service, uses the new Grove GRT8100 rough-terrain crane on a variety of energy projects in Pennsylvania.

  • Pennsylvania-based B&K Equipment & Crane Service used two new Grove GRT8100 rough-terrain cranes to help build a gas-fired power plant and to work on a hydraulic frack well.
  • The GRT8100s’ reliability, competitive load chart from a small footprint and user-friendly Crane Control System (CCS) gave them the versatility to handle a wide array of tasks on both job sites.

B&K Equipment and Crane Service (B&K) is one of the latest North American companies to discover the benefits of Grove’s new lineup of rough-terrain cranes, which have been designed and tested at Manitowoc’s Product Verification Center (PVC) to ensure dependability in a wide range of working environments. Wyalusing, Pennsylvania-based B&K has been renting two Grove GRT8100 rough-terrain cranes for over a year. The 100 USt cranes have helped to streamline operations on several of the company’s projects, including the construction of a gas-fired power plant.

Sam Hess, crane manager for B&K, said that the GRT8100’s reliability and competitive load chart gave it the versatility to handle a wide array of tasks while building the plant.

“My crew and I are all 100 percent impressed with the GRT8100,” he said. “It’s reliable enough to handle any task we throw at it. Our operators have used it for everything from setting 0.5 USt steel beams to lifting 12.5 USt boilers. It has a very strong chart for a crane of this size. You don’t normally see a crane of this capacity with this small of a footprint.”

Shortly before construction of the power plant began in September of 2016, Hess got the chance to operate the crane himself at a hydraulic frack well, also located in Pennsylvania, and the crane’s reliability made an impact on that job, as well.

“I used the GRT8100 to hoist an 11.5 USt coiled tubing injector above the well-head,” he explained. “We needed a crane that could hold the injector in place for 30 hours on a very congested job site, and this crane was ideal for getting the job done.”

The GRT8100 has been designed and built for today’s construction market with a 154 ft, five-section main boom, which provides better reach and greater versatility. The rough-terrain also has a tilting cab, impressive load charts and the benefit of extensive component testing at Manitowoc’s Product Verification Center (PVC) to ensure quality and reliability. In addition, the crane comes standard with Manitowoc’s Crane Control System (CCS), which offers operators the most intuitive interface on the market.

“The CCS has been very user-friendly,” Hess said. “You can adjust your controls and deploy your outriggers using the same convenient dial. You don’t have to reach up and use a touch screen each time. Accessing all of the crane’s boom length configurations is very intuitive, too.”

B&K rented its GRT8100s from Stephenson Equipment, which has been providing sales and rentals of construction equipment, paving machinery and cranes since 1957. The Harrisburg, Pennsylvania-based company serves customers from six locations across its home state and New York. Stephenson is an official dealer of Manitowoc, Grove, National Crane and Potain cranes.

B&K Equipment and Crane Service was founded in 1989 in Wyalusing, Pennsylvania. The company is family owned and operated, and has grown to comprise more than 50 employees, three locations, a fleet of trucks, trailers, cranes, oil field equipment and hundreds of construction equipment assets.


Contractors use Grove GHC75 to assemble Manitowoc crawler on tough terrain

From a Manitowoc News Release dated December 4, 2017

  • Mosites Construction & Development Company is using a Manitowoc MLC165-1 crawler crane to help construct seven bridges along the Pennsylvania Turnpike near Pittsburgh.
  • The maneuverability and 100 percent pick-and-carry function of the Grove GHC75 telescoping crawler crane made it possible to erect the MLC165-1 on a creek bed, where access proved difficult.

Mosites Construction & Development Company (Mosites) is working on a $93 million infrastructure project that will add seven new bridges along four miles of highway on the Pennsylvania Turnpike near Pittsburgh. The pier caps of the first bridge have already been completed, and two Manitowoc cranes – a Manitowoc MLC165-1 and a Grove GHC75 – were crucial to the success of the project.

The Pittsburgh-based company chose the MLC165-1 to build the pier caps, but conditions on the job site made erecting the 182 USt crawler crane difficult. The site was located at the bottom of a creek bed, where trucks could not easily traverse the wet, uneven soil to deposit the crane’s parts for assembly. The ideal solution to this challenge was a Grove GHC75 telescoping crawler crane.

“The MLC165-1 had the size and capacity we needed to build the pier caps, so choosing it was easy,” said John Dove, superintendent for Mosites. “But since we were working on such uneven terrain, erecting it on the job site was a challenge. Our trucks couldn’t travel down the 17 percent grade to the bottom of the creek bed, so we needed a maneuverable lifting solution that could get the MLC165-1’s components to a level area where we could assemble them.”

The 75 USt GHC75’s combination of crawler maneuverability, telescoping boom versatility and 100 percent pick-and-carry function enabled contractors to move the crawler crane’s parts into position.

“The GHC75 was the perfect crane for the situation we were in,” Dove said. “The crane can be 4 percent off level and still make picks, which is ideal in a swamp. We were able to extend the GHC75’s tracks and tackle the terrain without spending time and money on additional matting.”

Once the MLC165-1 was erected with 197 ft of boom, operators used it to install 20 USt sections of formwork, which were lifted to heights of 80 ft. After the formwork, the crane lifted 17.5 USt rebar cages, which were placed at 150 ft. The pier cap installation was completed in August of 2017, and the bridge is on schedule for completion in early 2018.

“We found the MLC165-1 to be very effective for bridge work,” Dove explained. “And given the restraints of the job site, we were glad to have the GHC75 on hand, too.”

Mosites rented both cranes from Stephenson Equipment, which has been providing sales and rentals of construction equipment, paving machinery and cranes since 1957. The Harrisburg, Pennsylvania-based company serves customers from six locations across its home state and New York. Stephenson is an official dealer of Manitowoc, Grove, National Crane and Potain cranes.

Since its founding in 1959, Mosites Construction & Development Company has grown into one of the leading construction firms in the Greater Pittsburgh area. The company offers numerous services, including civil estimating, CPM scheduling, value engineering analysis, bidding and procurement, purchasing, pre-construction and construction management, and concrete construction.


Grove launches new best-in-class GMK4090 all-terrain taxi crane

Grove launches new best-in-class GMK4090 all-terrain taxi crane

From a Manitowoc News Release date November 1, 2017

  • The 90 t (100 USt) capacity taxi crane has the strongest taxi load chart in its class and can easily maneuver on narrow job sites due to its compact design.
  • The new crane will replace the GMK4080-1/GMK4100B, bringing more modern and efficient features that ensure better return on investment for crane owners.
  • The GMK4090 crane features the new MAXbase outrigger system that expands options for crane set up on the job site.

Manitowoc has introduced a new all-terrain crane, the best-in-class Grove GMK4090. The new taxi crane features a modern, compact design that puts emphasis on roadability and maneuverability.

The new crane comes in response to customer demand for lightweight, flexible taxi cranes in the 90 t (100 USt) capacity class. It represents a generational upgrade over the previous GMK4080-1/GMK4100B, a popular all-terrain crane in Europe due to its versatility in applications, especially with rental companies.

Manitowoc has also introduced the GMK4080-2, a similar crane with 80 t (90 USt) capacity. The GMK4090 will be released globally, whereas the GMK4080-2 won’t be available in North America.

Andreas Cremer, global product director of Grove all-terrain cranes, said the GMK4090 and the GMK4080-2 models are essentially the same crane, but the GMK4080-2 carries less counterweight, to match the load chart of its predecessor, the GMK4080-1/GMK4100B.

“The GMK4090 has been designed with flexibility and maneuverability as main focuses,” he said. “With its best-in-class taxi load chart and compact footprints, this crane will be ideal for a variety of jobs, such as general construction and plant maintenance work. Various counterweight options also give it versatility in roading, which can increase efficiency and return on investment for many owners.”

The GMK4090 offers a 51 m (167 ft), six-section MEGAFORM boom that utilizes Grove’s TWIN-LOCK pinning system. Boosting its overall reach is a 9/15 m (49 ft) bi-fold swing-away jib that can be extended with a 6 m (20 ft) boom extension for a total jib length of 21 m (69 ft).

The new taxi model also offers excellent roadability and travel features. The GMK4090 can travel with a maximum 18.3 t (20.2 USt) counterweight, and within 12 t (13 USt)/axle it can transport up to 9.1 t (10 USt) to the job site without the need for an additional transport truck. The result is a taxi crane with a strong capacity that can keep transport costs low.

The crane features compact dimensions, with a narrow 2.55 m (8.37 ft) width, so it can easily access and maneuver within the tightest of job sites. It has a minimum tailswing of only 3.53 m (11.58 ft), so it stays within the maximum outrigger width. The GMK4090 also offers the new MAXbase feature as an option — this variable outrigger setting gives the crane more setup flexibility on the job site, especially when erecting it on irregular job site grounds, and also more capacity when compared with the 360° standard load chart.

The new crane also features Manitowoc’s Crane Control System (CCS), an easy-to-use operating interface that has now been standardized across the company’s crane offerings and is featured on every new model.

“We spoke to many customers when designing this new crane to fully understand their needs and desires for cranes in this class,” Cremer explained. “When seeking to replace the very popular GMK4080-1/GMK4100B, we had to ensure that the GMK4090 would be extremely versatile in travel, set up and lifting options. This is The Manitowoc Way in action, and the result is a new crane that should help crane owners increase efficiency and utilization in their fleets.”

40 Years of the JCB Loadall

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From an Access International post by Euan Youdale dated October 20, 2017

JCB is today celebrating a major milestone in its long record of innovative machine design – the 40th anniversary of the Loadall telehandler.

First launched on October 20, 1977 the machine mechanised lifting and loading tasks on building sites more usually carried out by a small team of men. The potential for the Loadall in agriculture was also quickly harnessed and it went on to revolutionise materials handling tasks on farms, stacking bales, loading muck and shovelling grain, replacing rudimentary tractor mounted hydraulic loaders.

JCB has sold more than 220,000 Loadalls to date, generating more than £7 billion ($9.2 billion) in sales – £4.5 billion ($5.9 billion) of which has been from exports.

Today daily output of JCB telehandlers at the World HQ in Staffordshire, UK, is currently at its highest level since the launch, with the number of machines built expected to increase by 25% by the end of the year compared to 2016. One Loadall rolls off JCB’s Rocester production line every six minutes. The business making the machines today employs more than 1,200 people.

Today JCB Chairman Lord Bamford said, “When we launched the Loadall in 1977, we sold just 64 machines that year but we were very confident that the telescopic handler would grow in popularity simply because it made jobs so much easier on construction sites and on farms.

“The concept soon took off and the faith we put in the telescopic handler four decades ago has been repaid. It’s wonderful to celebrate 40 years of success of the Loadall with production hitting historic levels.

“I’d like to congratulate everyone around the world who has contributed to this success over the past 40 years. We must now look forward to the next 40 years and build on what has been achieved so far.”

Experienced hands

Eddie Finney, 59, is a Team Leader in Loadall. He said, “I started my JCB career in 1976 in the machine shop but the following year I transferred and started working on the Loadall assembly line. At the time there were only four Loadalls coming off the line every day. I can’t believe the volume we have now achieved 40 years later.”

Kevin Holley, 60, works in the Loadall Fabrication Shop on a laser machine. He said, “I joined JCB in 1978, working on a gas cutter for several types of machine. I then became a gas profile cutter for the Loadall division. At that time, with only four a day coming off the line, Loadall was thought to be the poor relation because it wasn’t as busy as backhoe. But I could see the potential straight away. It did amazing things and nobody else had anything like it.”

Keith Weston, 61, has worked in Maintenance at JCB since 1973. He said, “I have been on general manufacturing maintenance for most of my career but I was responsible for shot blasting and painting on the Loadall assembly line in the 1980s. In the early days I never realised Loadall would reach the volume of sales that it has. I have been proud to work on it.”

It took almost 30 years for JCB to sell the first 100,000 Loadalls but it took less than 10 years for the next 100,000 to be sold. JCB says it is world number one for telescopic handlers with more than one in every three sold being a JCB.

The public launch of the JCB Loadall on October 20 1977 was promoted under the banner of ‘Obsolescence Day is Coming’ as an indication that the new machine, with its ability to reach forwards and upwards, would render the masted forklift obsolete.

JCB Loadall production facts:

  • There are 34 base models and over 1,000 individual configurations.
  • Welding during Loadall manufacture consumes more than 14.5 million metres of wire per year.
  • Each Loadall takes around 35 stages to produce and 8 hours to assemble.
  • Loadall manufacture consumes more than 35,000 tonnes of steel a year.
  • A recent £1 million investment brought new precision laser and plasma cutting equipment.
  • A 650-tonne steel press forms the telescopic boom box sections.
  • On average, it takes 45 minutes to make two sides of the heavy-duty chassis.
  • Robots handle 70% of chassis welds – but skilled operators tackle hard to access welds.
  • Preparing and painting booms, chassis and stabilisers (on construction models) takes two hours.
  • The painting facility uses 73,000 litres of primer and 50,000 litres of gloss paint per year
  • Every Loadall spends 13 minutes at full speed in a roller test booth to calibrate the driveline.
  • Every Loadall must hold a test weight with the boom fully raised and extended for 10 minutes.