This exhibit is believed to be the first mobile crane built in the world.
It was designed and built in 1923 by Ransomes & Rapier and registered YN
154. The idea was to build a simple self propelled crane that could unload
goods wherever it was needed, rather than use the fixed cranes then in use.
A petrol engine drives an electric generator which is used to supply power
to motors for lifting, luffing or driving. There are no electric controls
with speed of movement and lifting being dependent upon engine speed alone.
|Acquired by the Museum:||1968|
This crane was exhibited at the British Empire Exhibition at Wembley in
1924, where it was bought by Pickfords, who used it to dismantle the
exhibition and then in their Tower Bridge Road Depot, where the crane was
nicknamed Pluto. At some point, it was moved to Pickfords Stratford Depot
in London, although probably not until the mid 1960s.
In view of its historical significance it was returned to Rapiers in 1966,
who in turn presented it to the Museum in 1968.