Single Girder vs. Double Girder Cranes

In the realm of industrial operations, selecting the right crane is pivotal to ensuring efficiency, safety, and cost-effectiveness. Among the various types available, single girder and double girder overhead travelling cranes are prominent. This article aims to provide an in-depth comparison of these two types of cranes, assisting businesses in making an informed decision that best suits their operational needs.

Understanding Overhead Travelling Cranes

Before diving into specifics, it’s crucial to understand what overhead travelling cranes are. They are cranes with a movable bridge running along an overhead track, typically used for lifting and moving heavy loads in various industrial settings. These cranes come in two main types: single girder and double girder.

Single Girder Overhead Travelling Cranes

Single girder cranes consist of one main beam with the hoist and trolley running along it. They are known for their simplicity and cost-effectiveness. Ideal for lighter loads and shorter spans, single girder cranes are commonly used in smaller manufacturing units and warehouses.

Double Girder Overhead Travelling Cranes

Double girder cranes, on the other hand, have two parallel beams with the hoist and trolley running between them. These cranes are designed for heavier loads and longer spans, making them suitable for large-scale industrial applications.

Comparing Load Capacity and Span

Load Capacity

When it comes to load capacity, double girder cranes generally have the upper hand. They are designed to handle heavier loads, often exceeding 20 tons, whereas single girder cranes are typically used for loads of up to 15-20 tons.

Span Length

For operations requiring a longer span, double girder cranes are more advantageous. They can efficiently cover more area, making them ideal for larger facilities. Single girder cranes are more suitable for shorter spans.

Considering Cost and Installation

Initial Investment

Single girder cranes are less costly compared to their double girder counterparts. This is due to their simpler design and lesser material usage. For businesses looking for a cost-effective solution, single girder cranes are often a better choice.

Installation and Maintenance

The installation of single girder cranes is generally straightforward, resulting in lower installation and maintenance costs. Double girder cranes, with their more complex design, require more intricate installation and maintenance, leading to higher costs.

Evaluating Structural Requirements


Single girder cranes require less headroom above the crane, making them a suitable option for facilities with limited vertical space. Double girder cranes, due to their design, need more headroom.

Structural Strength

Facilities planning to install double girder cranes must ensure that the building structure can support the weight and operational stress of the crane. Single girder cranes are less demanding in terms of structural requirements.

Assessing Operational Efficiency

Speed and Precision

Single girder cranes, being lighter, offer greater speeds and more precise movements. This makes them ideal for operations requiring agility and precision. Double girder cranes, while slower, provide stability and consistency for heavier loads.


Both crane types offer customization options, but double girder cranes provide more flexibility for customization due to their robust structure. They can be equipped with additional features like walkways and service platforms.

Making the Right Choice

Choosing between single girder and double girder overhead travelling cranes depends on several factors:

Operational Needs: Assess the nature of the operations, including load weight and span length.
Budget Constraints: Consider the available budget for initial investment and ongoing maintenance.
Facility Layout: Evaluate the physical constraints of the facility, including headroom and structural strength.

Consult a professional engineer for lifting solutions

Consulting a professional engineer for lifting solutions is an essential step when dealing with complex and potentially hazardous equipment like cranes. Professional engineers bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the table, ensuring that you choose the right equipment for your specific needs and that it’s installed and operated safely. Here’s a guide on how to approach this consultation:

  • Define Your Requirements: Clearly outline what you need in terms of lifting capacity, the type of materials to be lifted, the environment in which the crane will operate, and any space limitations. This will help the engineer understand your specific needs.
  • Safety Standards and Compliance: Discuss the relevant safety standards and regulatory compliance requirements for your industry and location. An engineer can provide guidance on how to meet these standards with your lifting solution.
  • Site Evaluation: Allow the engineer to evaluate the site where the crane will be installed. They can assess factors like structural integrity, space constraints, and environmental conditions, which are crucial for selecting the right crane.
  • Type of Crane: Based on your requirements and the site evaluation, the engineer can recommend the most suitable type of crane, whether it’s an overhead, gantry, jib, or another type. They can also advise on whether a standard crane suffices or if a custom solution is needed.
  • Load Testing and Inspection: Discuss the importance of load testing and regular inspections. A professional engineer can outline the best practices for ensuring the crane operates safely and efficiently over its lifespan.
  • Maintenance and Training: Maintenance is key to the longevity and safe operation of any crane. Talk about a maintenance schedule and the type of training required for operators and maintenance personnel.
  • Budget and Cost-Effectiveness: Be open about your budget. An engineer can help balance cost with the functionality and safety features you need, ensuring you get the best return on investment.
  • Future Scalability: If you anticipate changes or growth in your operational needs, discuss this with the engineer. They can suggest scalable solutions that can adapt to your future requirements.
  • Vendor Recommendations: Engineers often have extensive knowledge of different manufacturers and can recommend reputable vendors, like Dafang Crane or others, depending on your needs.
  • Documentation and Support: Finally, ensure that all recommendations, designs, and plans are well documented. Also, confirm the availability of ongoing support for any future queries or issues that might arise.

Remember, the goal of consulting a professional engineer is not just to purchase a crane, but to integrate a comprehensive lifting solution that is safe, efficient, and aligned with your operational needs.

Indeed, many crane suppliers offer free consulting services, and this can be a valuable resource for businesses seeking lifting solutions. Companies like Dafang Crane, DGCRANE, and KS Crane typically provide these consultations to help clients determine the most suitable crane types and configurations for their specific needs.


In conclusion, both single girder and double girder overhead travelling cranes have their distinct advantages. The choice depends on the specific requirements of your operation. It’s essential to conduct a thorough assessment of your operational needs, budget, and facility constraints to make an informed decision that ensures safety, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness in your industrial operations.

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