• Kristin Thompson

Building A Crane One Girder At A Time


In the spring of 2014, a producer of highly complex HVAC units at their state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in the South Foothills Industrial Park of Calgary, began looking at doubling the size of their existing facility. Kristian Electric was closely involved throughout the feasibility and design/planning stages with this company and on May 15, 2015 was awarded the contract for the supply and installation of four Demag double girder, top running bridge cranes and three runway systems for their new expansion.


Runways capacities were 40, 20 and 6 tonnes.

Each of the three runways are were designed to support two bridge cranes However, the customer decided to go ahead with four cranes in this initial expansion phase rather than the full six that the runways could safely withstand. Kristian Electric was called upon to supply the two (20 Tonne) cranes for the 40 tonne runway, and one (10 tonne) and one (3 tonne) crane for each of the other two runway systems.


During the construction process, the general contractor assumed the supply and erection of the runways, leaving Kristian with the responsibly of the runway rail supply/installation along with the crane systems. This presented a challenge to our team. Without the benefit of being able to install the rail supply on the floor of our Edmonton fab shop, our team needed to install on site. Nevertheless, in Kristian Electric fashion, we found a way, and the installation team got the job done.


Our biggest challenge arose when the manufacturing of the cranes would not be finished before our customer closed in their new building, leaving our project coordinator and his team with the tricky task of assembling these very large cranes directly on the runways. Which is no easy task! How do you put together cumbersome pieces of steel while 30 feet in he air? Well our installation team found a way. First the endtrucks were secured to the runway systems, then, very carefully, each girder was installed one at a time. It was a tedious undertaking and took a great amount of teamwork but once again we persevered and by March of 2016, some 10 months after the award of the contract, this Crane Project was complete; load tested, commissioned, and turned over to our very happy customer.