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Questions about pallet pullers

Solar

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I’ve been reading in the van links about pallet pullers. I’ve always wrapped the strap around the backside of the pallet, but I’ve always been fearful that the strap will slide up off the wooden pallet and onto the product.

I saw 2 types of pullers, one that resembled scissors, and another that looked like a block that slid in and hooked.

Do any of you have any experience with these?
Also, is it better to get a piece of chain to work with this?
Lastly, any stores that sell these, or must I order online?
 

Turtle

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I just use a strap off a flatbed truck with a flat hook on the end. It's 27 feet, I think.

FAQ132_11_250.jpg

I jusually ust wrap the hook end around the center stringer and loop the hook over the strap, then wrap the loose end of the strap onto tie forklift rack. Occasionally, there won't be clearance to get the flat hook around and under the stringer, so in those cases I'll run the strap around the entire pallet and pull it that way, but that doesn't happen very often.

I seriously considered getting one of those lobster claw pallet grabbers when I first started, but the strap I stole off my brother's flatbed works great (it's frayed, so he couldn't use it to secure anything). I like the pallet pullers, but they're heavy. If I were to get one I'd use a hravy-ish duty nylon rope instead of a chain, tho.
 

danthewolf00

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Northern tools have 2 sizes in most stores of the scissor kind one is for 2,000 lbs and one for 5,000 lbs.
I also had a tow hook from a tow truck mounted to a 22ft chain for when the pallet was weirdly to thin for the scissors to grab and pull.
 
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Solar

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I never saw any at Harbor Freight, going to a Northern tomorrow.
 

Solar

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Reading how you guys are using straps, it got me thinking. I haven’t had 1 issue sliding out any loads with my straps, the issue was doing it on the blind side of the load.

I saw the scissors type pallet puller, and I saw a large metal hook that you just reach in and hooked in. The hook definitely looked to be the “quickest”, but the hole was small, would have to put a chain link in it for room to connect a chain or strap. The hook was lighter than the scissor pallet puller, but still had some heft.

That’s when I looked at one of the car hauler straps, goes over an axle. It’s about a yard long, decent size rings that are flat, and it was the same carrying strength as my straps. Also, incredibly light. So I decided to take a chance on it.

I was hoping to have had an opportunity to try it out before posting about it, but once I give it a shot, I’ll report on it.
 

BobWolf

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The better ones have diamond shaped knurled square or rectangle jaw pads, they grip the pallet better and are less likely to slip or split a damaged or cheaply made pallet. They are not cheap but worth the money. Use a grade 80 or higher chain.
 
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Birthday Expediter
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The hook you saw being used sounds like what is called a J-hook and it was used by tow trucks when they hook to lower control arms of cars and attach it to a sling but it would be also used by flat bed type tow trucks ....they don't use them much any more because of wheel lifts but they are still around and your right they are attached to a chain with a t-type hook and a small hook on the other end . I think you should be able to find them at a tow company and get a used one cheap
 
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Solar

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The hook you saw being used sounds like what is called a J-hook and it was used by tow trucks when they hook to lower control arms of cars and attach it to a sling but it would be also used by flat bed type tow trucks ....they don't use them much any more because of wheel lifts but they are still around and your right they are attached to a chain with a t-type hook and a small hook on the other end . I think you should be able to find them at a tow company and get a used one cheap
There was some pallets nearby, and I tried the hook out on it, worked perfect.

What kept me from buying it on the spot wasn’t the price, it was the weight. It was lighter than the lightest scissor pallet puller, and as posted before, with a grade 8 chain you can get a lot of power with smaller, lighter chain, so not talking about some serious weight increase to the van. It’s just, I see a lot of people are just using a strap, I’ve always used my straps and never had a problem, so using a strap on the front side of the pallet would be no different. It’s really light, and I’d use it with straps I’m already carrying, so I went with the less is more route.

We’ll see how it works out for me... eventually...
And if it doesn’t, going all in on the hook.
 
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Just to say that there is a second use for the J-hook, as it is a easy tool for hooking under the truck if you need someone to pull you out of a snow bank or ditch
 
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Moot

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I've always used a set of pallet tongs and a chain until I bought my Transit. Because of the short wheelbase and long overhang of the Transit I have pallets pushed forward as far as possible with the heaviest going in first. Even a single pallet gets pushed up over the axle requiring it to get pulled to the rear for unloading. I have found it is much easier to use a tow strap rather than the tongs and chain.

If the load will require pulling, I secure the tow strap to my stop board with duct tape and run the ends along the sides. I still carry a chain but not the tongs.
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Pallet Puller 1 - Copy.JPG
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Pallet Puller 2 - Copy.JPG
 
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Solar

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Curious question, you said that you put your heaviest pallet to the front.

One load a while back the shipper was going into the warehouse and bringing out each pallet. It’s only as I saw the 3rd pallet coming out that I realized he had put the heaviest one in first. I went ahead and rolled with it, and I was amazed how well my promaster handled it, because it was a +3,000lbs load.

Are you doing that, heavy pallet first, simply for the off loading, or because the Transit handles it better?

I always thought it’s best to have the heaviest on the back axle, but maybe having that weight in the middle does better for the front wheel drive.
 

Moot

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I always thought it’s best to have the heaviest on the back axle, but maybe having that weight in the middle does better for the front wheel drive.
The rear axle on my Transit is almost 6' forward from the back doors. I give my carrier 120" of cargo length and 2400 lbs.weight.
 
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Solar

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Wow 6’?
My promaster is about 3’ from back to center between wheel housings, over back axle.

Well that definitely makes more sense why you load heavy first.
 

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No matter how much space is from your back doors to your axle.....you should always but the heavy one, first and that way your front and rear axle can share the weight
 
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Moot

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No matter how much space is from your back doors to your axle.....you should always but the heavy one, first and that way your front and rear axle can share the weight
Not necessarily. Weight distribution varies with different van makes and models. The ProMaster is front wheel drive and a very light rearend. My last two long wheelbase Chevys had a V-8 sitting over the front axle, generally if I loaded two pallets the lighter pallet went in first. Lots of variables with freight also.
 
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