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1.1 History of Fork Lift: -

A fork lift truck, also known as a forklift and other names, is a powered industrial truck. Its
main purpose is for material handling within facilities or compounds, especially the capability
to lift loads to be positioned at height as well as to lower them as needed. Fitted with specific
attachments, the fork lift truck also is used to perform other related functions such as the
transfer loads from slip sheets onto pallets, as well as to clamp them or to invert them.Since
their introduction in the early 20th Century, fork lift trucks have played a powerful role in
materials handling. This article provides an overview of lift trucks, including their evolution,
an overview of the various categories of lift trucks, and considerations for safe operation Fork
lift trucks first emerged in the late 19th Century. These were low lift trucks that raised platforms
just a few inches high. Typically, these were used for moving material within a shop, such as
work-in-progress. High lift trucks emerged in the late 1910s, and truck design improvements
continued to take root. In the 1930s, tier trucks allowed the stacking of loads, allowing for
greater storage efficiency. Growth of lift usage was slow in the 1930s, however. During the
Great Depression, labor was freely available while capital for investment was much harder to
source. Then in World War 2, the use of forklift trucks became a strategic part of the war effort.
With manpower shortages resulting from wartime enlistment, the forklift and an operator (and
increasingly female operators as World War 2 progressed) could do the work of many men,
increasing productivity versus manual handling. After the War's conclusion, lift trucks emerged
as a mainstay of material handling equipment. Forklifts and pallets left behind by the U.S.
military in Australia became the basis for the Commonwealth Handling Equipment Pool
(CHEP), which became the worlds largest pallet pooling company.

1.2 Definition: -

Forklifts are the material handling devices which are used to transport the load from
one station to another.

Forklifts are either powered by gasoline, propane, or electricity. Electric forklifts rely
on batteries to operate. Gasoline or propane forklifts are sometimes stronger or faster than
electric forklifts, but they are more difficult to maintain, and fuel can be costly.

Rough terrain forklifts have the highest lifting capacity of all forklifts and heavy duty
tires like those found on trucks, making it possible to drive them on uneven surfaces outdoors.

Several Types of forklifts are:

1) Pallet jack

2) Rider motorized pallet truck

3) High lift pallet trucks

4) Front rider pallet trucks

5) Automated guided vehicle

Forklifts are rated for loads at a specified maximum weight and a specified forward center of
gravity. This information is located on a nameplate provided by the manufacturer, and loads
must not exceed these specifications. In many jurisdictions it is illegal to alter or remove the
nameplate without the permission of the forklift manufacturer.

An important aspect of forklift operation is that it must have rear-wheel steering. While this
increases maneuverability in tight cornering situations, it differs from a drivers traditional
experience with other wheeled vehicles. While steering, as there is no caster action, it is
unnecessary to apply steering force to maintain a constant rate of turn.

Another critical characteristic of the forklift is its instability. The forklift and load must be
considered a unit with a continually varying center of gravity with every movement of the load.

A forklift must never negotiate a turn at speed with a raised load, where centrifugal and
gravitational forces may combine to cause a disastrous tip-over accident. The forklift is
designed with a load limit for the forks which is decreased with fork elevation and undercutting
of the load (i.e., when a load does not butt against the fork "L"). A loading plate for loading
reference is usually located on the forklift. A forklift should not be used as a personnel lift
without the fitting of specific safety equipment, such as a "cherry picker" or "cage".

1.3 Types of forklift: -

Pallet jacks: -

Pallet jacks are the most basic form of fork lift. Pallet jacks are intended to move heavy or light
pallets for relatively short distances. These do not have powered propulsion system but are
powered by the operator pushing and pulling the track. It consists of hydraulic lifting
mechanism controlled by the operator.

Rider motorized pallet trucks: -

These are used when the transport distance is too great to make walkie practical, and are ideal
for frequent movement over extended distances. The rider truck travels at high velocities
presents an extreme hazard to the operator and any one near the lift is the major problem.

High lift pallet trucks: -

These are used as an alternative to forklifts, often performing same functions such as moving
loads on shelving.

Front rider pallet trucks: -

These are pallet trucks where operator stance is located between the front of the lift where the
forks are, and the rear of the lift where battery is stored. This provides some protection to the
operator. With a physical barrier in front and behind the operator, there is less injury to the

Automated guided vehicle (AGV): -

1It represents the future of materials handling technology. AGVs do not require operators but
travel along a route that is demarcated by frequency sensors, light beams or induction tape. The
removal of the operator from the fork lift saves the companys wages, and can decrease the
hazard level associated with the material handling responsibilities.

where the forks are, and the rear of the lift where battery is stored. This provides some
protection to the operator. With a physical barrier in front and behind the operator,
there is less injury to the operator.

Automated guided veh(icle (AGV)

Fig (1)


The main aim of our work is to help small scale industries. It will lift the load of about 100 kg
Fork is raised by turning a crank with your hand, and you transport the goods by pedaling with
your feet.

Quite a lot of forklifts are electric anyway Quite a lot of forklifts are electric anyway though,
but this one will moreover save electricity along with fuel by eliminating their use. It does not
require a battery too. So it could be fairly green to start with.

But it is not applicable for hilly or sloppy areas where a large amount of power and effort would
be required which is not possible with pedaling. This unique design of the fork lift can be used
on flat paths in industries/companies where repeated loads are to be transported from one
station to another thereby helping in transferring the load easily which otherwise would be
difficult through just manual interference.



1. Body or main chassis :-

The body is rectangular in section. It is made of mild steel. The front part is
called as channel where the frame travels. It is welded with stainless steel for
easy movement of the frame and to reduce friction.
2. Frame :-
It is rectangular in section. It is made of mild steel. Its dimensions are
1500x900mm. The frame reciprocates inside the channel and is welded with the
fork which carries the load.
3. Fork :-
The fork is made of mild steel and is welded to the channel .The dimensions of
the fork are 600mm. The load to be lifted is placed on the fork and the frame
along with the fork is lifted using worm gear mechanism.
4. Worm and worm wheel :-
This is used to lift the frame through chain. The material used is cast steel. The
worm is rotated by cranking the pulley.
The worm wheel is also called as worm gear. The material used is phosphor
gear bronze. The output from the gear is connected with chain and is fixed to
the frame to lift the load.

5. Hand wheel :-
The hand wheel consist of pulley and is welded to the rod. The diameter of the
pulley is 200 mm. It is made of cast iron. The rotation of the pulley in turn
rotates the worm.

6. Gear box :-
The gear box consist of two shafts and idler shaft with five gears. The material
used for the gears is EN8. The gears are covered with the plates made of mild

7. Pedal :-
The input to the shaft which enables the gear to rotate inside the gear box is
achieved through pedaling. The pedals are made of steel. It is situated such that
operator feels comfortable to operate.

8. Sprockets :-
There are two smaller diameter sprockets with diameter 65 mm which provides
input to the gear shaft and two larger diameter sprockets with diameter 160 mm
is provided at the output and is welded to the axle. The material used for the
sprockets is alloy steel.

9. Tie rods :-
The tie rods are made of mild steel. The dimensions is 400x20mm. It is
connected to bell crank which is linked to the stub axle.


The fork lift which we have designed consists of three main mechanisms:

Lifting mechanism using Worm gear

Steering mechanism
Pedaling mechanism for the movement of the vehicle

We have designed the system for 200N and it can be used in small scale industries.

Lifting mechanism: -

The load will be lifted by using worm gear assembly wire rope system. It consists of worm,
worm wheel, wire rope and a pulley for cranking. The rotation of pulley enables the worm to
rotate which in turn rotates the worm wheel. The wire rope which is fixed to the output of gear
helps in lifting the load placed in the fork of the fork lift. The below figure shows lifting

Flow chart lifting mechanism

Fig (2)

It consists of bell crank lever, tie rods, steering rod consisting of eccentric pivot pin. One end
of both the tie rods are connected to the pivot pin and the other end of the tie rod is connected
to the longer arm of the bell crank lever on each side. The short arm holds the front wheels.
The pivot pin is connected to the steering rod. The wheels are steered by rotating steering

pedaling mechanism: -

A pedaling mechanism to permit a forward force to be applied to the drive wheel by backward
rotation of them pedals in addition to permitting a forward force to be applied to the drive wheel
by a forward rotation of said pedals. The bicycle mechanism preferably has pedal arms, having
pedals mounted thereon, mounted on a pedal shaft to drive the pedal shaft in a clockwise or
counterclockwise direction, and a driving means to cause the forward movement of the bicycle
when the pedal shaft is driven in either a clockwise or a counterclockwise direction.
Alternatively, the mechanism includes a pedal sprocket mounted on the pedal shaft, a first chain
assembly operably connected to the pedal sprocket, a second chain assembly operably
connected to a drive wheel, and a third chain assembly operably connected to the first and
second chain assemblies wherein the first chain assembly is capable of imparting a forward or
clockwise rotation to the drive wheel when the pedal sprocket is driven in either a clockwise
or counterclockwise direction.


Fig (3)


Worm Gear: -

n1 = rpm of worm = 45 rpm

z1 = teeth of worm =1

n2 = rpm of gear =?

z2 = teeth of gear =?

p = power = ?

m = module = ?


Let us assume velocity ratio i = 21

i = n1/n2 = z2/z1

z2 = 21 x 1 = 21 teeth

n2 = 45/21 = 2.14 rpm

assume dimaterial quotient q = 7

considering worn diameter d1 = 40mm

d1 = m * q

m = d1/q = 40/7 = 5.61


d2 = m * z2 = 6 * 21 = 126 mm

center distance a = d1+d2 / 2 = 40+126 / 2 = 83 mm

torque on worm gear

T2 = load x radial distance

T2 = 4000 x 63 = 252 KN/mm

Power = P = 2 * 3.14 * N2 x T2 / 60000 = 2 * 3.14 * 2.145 * 252 / 60000

= 0.056 KW

Design Of Weld (Fork)

Total length of Weld

= 35 + 75 + 35 = 145

1. Direct Shear load per unit length of Weld

Pd = p/l = 2500/145 = 17.2 N/mm

2. Load due to bending per length of the Weld

Pn = p * e * y / I

Zwtop = z + b + d2 / 3 = 2 * 75 x 35 + 352 / 3 = 2158.3 mm2

Zwbottom = d2 (2b + d ) / 3(b + d) = ( 352 *75 + 35) / 3(35 + 75)

= 686.74 mm2
Pn = p * e / z = 2500 x 750 / 686.76 =2730.2 N/mm
Resultant Load Pr = (pd2 + pn2) = 17.22 + 2730.22 = 2730.25 N/mm

Size of the Weld

Allowable Stress = p * r / 0.707 wl

240.6 = 2730.25 / 0.707 * w * 1
W = 8mm
Design Of Fork

Fig (3)
The load acting on fork is uniform distributed load
Load acting on the fork =4000N
Length of the fork L=750mm
Load / unit length=4000/750=5.3N/mm


Consider any section at distance x from the end B. The shear force at section is given by,
At B, x=0 FB=0
At A, x=0.75m, FA=5.3*0.75=3.97Kn

Bending Moment Diagram

The bending moment at any section at distance x from free end B is given by
M= -(w*x*x/2)
= -(5.3*x2/2)
= -(2.65*x2)

At B, x=0 MB= -(2.65*0)
At A, x=0.75, MA = -(2.65*0.752)
= -1.49kNmm



4.1 Main Frame

Fig (4)

4.2 Slider Frame

Fig (5)

4.3 Tie Rod

Fig (6)

4.4 Stub Axle

Fig (7)

4.5 Stub Axle Frame

Fig (9)


Fig (10)


The Pedal operated Fork lift which we have designed is limited to load capacity of 2500 N
further improvements can be made in designing the chain blocks of higher dimension to
increase the lifting capacity. Weight reduction of the structure is reduced to 30% of the whole
structure. The specialty of the existing design is that no need of providing the counter weight
for balancing since the load being lifted is transferred to the rare part of the structure through
the chain block being mounted on the ISMC which rests on the pipe frame. Also further
improvement in the movement of the vehicle can be obtained by replacing the chain drive with
differential system.


Hydraulics can be applied for lifting mechanism.

Pedaling mechanism can be replaced by using an engine.

The load capacity of the system can be increased by increasing the worm dimensions.

Other steering mechanism such as rack and pinion etc can be introduced.


Design of machine elements by J.B.K.DAS.

Design data hand book by K.Mahadevan & K. Balaveera reddy.

Kulwiec,R.A,1985, Materials handling hand book ,wiley interscience.