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Germany, with 34 million tons of cement production, is Europe's leading cement producer*. When TBA, a renowned concrete supplier needed assistance to lift the roof of a concrete silo used for an infrastructure project, they turned to RUD.

The Challenge:

The project required lifting and placing a roof on top of a silo located near Unterkochen.

The project presented several challenges for the lifting operation:

The Solution:

Due to the heavy lift and the lifting configuration, RUD engineers proposed that a 13mm, 2 x 2-strand ICE 120 chain was ideal for the operation. To maintain the chain's working load limit (WLL) within safe parameters, it was calculated that a minimum length of 6.402 meters was required for low sling angles.

However, there were only 2 x 7-metre 2-strand chains and 2 x 4-metre chains in stock. Instead of postponing the project to another date, we decided to use IH (ICE-H) Connectors to extend the 4-metre chains.

The I-H Connectors are a fast, simple, and cost-effective solution for converting ICE chains into endless configurations. They are compact, easier to manage than conventional chain connectors, and flexible enough to fit the ICE chain.

Once the chains were extended to the necessary length, ICE Star Hooks were attached to the chain ends. Due to their innovative skeletal design, ICE Star Hooks can be used in temperatures from -60°C to 300°C and are up to 25% lighter than Grade 80 hooks of the same WLL.

This solution enabled a safe and secure lift of the silo roof. The roof was lifted to its final height of 35 meters above ground for the final assembly.

Products used in the project:


This project demonstrates how RUD's innovative lifting solutions, such as the flexible ICE Chains, can solve complex lifting challenges. RUD is the innovator and sets standards for lifting technologies through expertise and flexible solutions to ensure safe and successful operation even in challenging conditions.

* The European Cement Association. Key Facts & Figures: Main World Producers in 2018; The European Cement Association: Brussels, Belgium, 2020

Article copyright to RUD Ketten and RUD Australia. This information is accurate at the time of publication, and RUD Australia takes no responsibility for any errors, inadvertent or otherwise. Some pictures are for illustration only.

Part 2 of the 2-part article. Click here to read Part 1.

Identifying Chain Grades:

Chains are stamped with their grade for easy identification. Grades 80 and 100 use the "(H)" stamp followed by the number (e.g., H8 for Grade 80, H10 for Grade 100). However, Grade 120 employs the "(D)" stamp. It is important to point out here that unlike lifting chains, hoist chains cannot be used for lifting and are stamped with letters to prevent potentially dangerous mix-ups.

Safety Certifications and Testing:

Safety is paramount. Always opt for chains approved by relevant regulatory bodies (e.g., DGUV in Germany). Traceability through batch codes and RFID chips (offered by RUD) is also recommended. Regular inspections and electromagnetic crack tests (every three years) are essential for safety assurance.

Choosing the Right Lifting Chain:

Selecting the right chain hinges on several factors.

RUD will help you with the best chain suspension for lifting based on the following:



By understanding the types, grades, and applications of lifting chains, you can ensure safe and efficient lifting operations. Remember to prioritise safety by adhering to regulations, conducting proper inspections, and selecting the most suitable chain for your specific needs.

Click here to download our Lifting Points and Lifting Means Catalogues.

Article copyright to RUD Australia. This information is accurate at the time of publication, and RUD Australia takes no responsibility for any errors, inadvertent or otherwise. Some pictures are for illustration only.

This is a 2 part article.

The age-old proverb, "A chain is only as strong as its weakest link," first used in Thomas Reid’s “Essays on the Intellectual Powers of Man” in 1786, perfectly encapsulates the critical role of lifting chains in material handling. This article delves into the world of lifting chains, exploring their types, grades, uses, and essential safety considerations.

What are Lifting Chains?

Lifting chains are crucial connectors between a load and a lifting hook. They are typically secured to a designated lifting point on the load, ensuring safe and secure lifting. Lifting chains form part of chain suspensions, which, along with the chains, include a master link, end components like hooks, connecting or shortening components and balancers if required.

Evolution of Lifting Chains:

Modern lifting chains have significantly improved compared to their predecessors. While past chains suffered from low material strength and cumbersome weight, today's chains offer high strength, durability, and cost-effectiveness, making them the preferred choice for lifting and lashing applications. They also weigh considerably less for the same WLL (Working Load Limit), which is beneficial when lifting heavy loads.

Types of Lifting Equipment:

While wire rope and synthetic slings offer alternative lifting options, they have limitations, particularly in terms of adjustability, susceptibility to sharp edges, and performance under extreme temperatures.

Lifting chains stand out with their:

Choosing the Right Chain Grade:

Several chain grades (Grade 80, 100, 120) exist, each with its own WLL (Working Load Limit). Selecting the appropriate grade is crucial for safety and efficiency.

Grade 80: This has been in existence since 1970. It is very popular in some parts of the world because it offers affordability. However, it has a lower breaking force and weight limitation.

Tip: RUD was the first chain manufacturer, approved for Grade 80 in 1972

Grade 100: It has been in existence for the last 30 years and is popularly used by many operators. It is a step up over Grade 80 and provides a balance between cost and performance.

Tip: RUD launched Grade 100 as VIP (Verwechslungsfrei in Pink) in 2006, and it is still a popular product used in many lifting applications. Click here for more details on the RUD VIP Grade 100.

Grade 120: Grade 120 is the latest and strongest grade, offering lighter weight and higher breaking force than Grade 80. Exclusive to a few manufacturers (including RUD).

Tip: Grade 120 offers a 30% reduction in weight than Grade 80 because it uses less material. It also possesses a 60% higher breaking force than a Grade 80 chain, and it is extremely robust, tough, and resilient to sharp and rough edges.

What this means is that an ICE Grade 120 Lifting or Lashing Chain - no matter the nominal thickness - can replace a Grade 80 chain of a next-higher nominal thickness.

Click here for more details on RUD ICE 120 Chains.

To be continued ...

Article copyright to RUD Australia. This information is accurate at the time of publication, and RUD Australia takes no responsibility for any errors, inadvertent or otherwise. Some pictures are for illustration only.

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