Narrow Aisle Lift Trucks
Narrow Aisle Lift Trucks are electric trucks designed to operate in narrow aisles. A counterbalanced lift truck can turn within the aisle as standard storage aisles are 3.6 meters wide and this is enough space. Then again, narrow aisles could be about 2.4 meters wide to as little as 1.8 meters. The narrow area needs specific types of lift trucks which are capable of tight turns, small, can put away loads without turning. The common types of narrow-aisle trucks are turret trucks, order pickers and reach trucks.
Narrow-aisle reach trucks
Reach trucks were the first narrow-aisle lift truck to be manufactured for warehouse applications. These small trucks could easily turn within narrow aisles as their design has eliminated the requirement for a huge counterweight. Stability is instead provided by outrigger arms extending in front of the truck. The disadvantage of this particular design is that the outrigger arms could hinder access to the storage rack because the truck cannot get close enough. These types of trucks really work well inside a warehouse which is well lit, has clean, even floors, enough turning space and good flow of traffic.
The turret truck design has turning forks on side of the truck. The forks pivot 90 degrees and move from side to side. The load faces forward whilst the operator drives down the aisle. Once stopped at the designated storage location, the forks of the truck pivot to the storage side and raise the load to their full extension, and then easily deposit the load before resuming their original position. Turret trucks can come with a wire guidance system which keeps the truck on its path in very narrow aisles. Operators remain at floor level in man-down trucks.