A sling (also known as a lifting sling) is a length of webbing, chain or rope used to attach a load to a separate lifting device such as a crane or hoist. They support the safe lifting and manoeuvring of large, heavy or awkward shaped objects. The slings can be used in multiple ways to increase the capacity of the sling and support the load more effectively. Lifting slings come in various styles, materials and load limits depending on application and environment.
All lifting equipment has a Working load limit and Safe working load limit:
Working load – Is the tested limit of a piece of lifting equipment. It is the maximum amount it can lift, anymore and it breaks.
Safe working load – Is the limit stipulated by the manufacturer. It is the load that you must adhere to in order to ensure the safety and longevity of lifting equipment.
Types of Sling
Webbing Slings - A flat strap of woven polyester material with eye loops at either end that is resistant to oil, grease and most acids nor will they lose strength in water. Colour coded, assisting easy identification of safe working load limits. Used in a range of applications, including offshore oil industry, cargo handling and industrial applications.
Wire Rope Slings - This sling consists of multiple steel wires that form individual strands in a helical pattern around a fibre or steel core. This construction provides strength, flexibility and the ability to handle bending stresses. Wire rope lifting slings are popular in construction, automotive, oil and gas industries, with a variety of heavy loads.
Chain Slings - These slings can be used to lift very heavy and bulky loads on a regular and repetitive basis. Their strength and durability allows them to be used in foundries and steel mills as they are resistant to corrosion, chemicals and UV exposure. A length of chain with hooks at one end which can be configured into different combinations to make up 2, 3 or 4 legged slings.
Round slings - These endless round slings have load bearing fibres or core yarns that are protected by a woven outer jacket. They are strong, flexible and soft, so can protect smooth or polished surfaces from scratches. Similar to web slings, roundslings are susceptible to heat damage and should not be used in environments that exceed 90°.