sling | lifting equipment | types of slings | types of slings for lifting | types of chain slings | chain slings | slings used on ships | marine courses center

sling | lifting equipment | types of slings | types of slings for lifting | types of chain slings | chain slings

 sling | slings on ship

various types of cargoes require various types of slings

Cargo slinging utilizes rope, wire and chain, used either singly or made up into relevant patterns.
Although specialized cargoes such as containers, bulks, timber and steel, etc., require unique discharging methods.


Basics of safe slinging

1)    The load must be adequately secured by the sling.

2)    The sling must be adequately attached to the lifting appliance.

3)    The load must be slung so that it will not collapse or change form when it is lifted.

4)    The load must not damage the sling, perhaps causing it to part.

5)    The load must not be damaged by the sling e.g., wire rope 

slings may rip paper, score timber, distort steel, etc.; fibre rope slings can rupture paper sacks.

6)    All lifting parts should act as near to the vertical as possible.

7)    Use spreaders where appropriate to even out the load on each part of the sling.

8)    Attach a lanyard to heavy, long or awkward loads to assist in controlling its movement.

9)    If a single cargo hook is being used, this should be positioned vertically above the centre of gravity of the load. This can be achieved using legs of different length if the CG (centre of gravity) is off-centre.

10)    Whenever a shackle is used, any moving part such as the sling must pass through the bow, the pin must only be secured to fixed parts.

The following list, though not exhaustive, indicates a fair range of slinging requirements.




Automatic grabs.
Bulk cargoes
Board Sling
Fragile cargo such as bags of cement
Canvas slings.
Bagged cargo
Can hooks.
Barrels & Drums
Chain slings.
Packaged timber, timber logs, beans/girders ex hatch beams.
Car Slings
Motor cars and Lorries
Container Spreader
Electro magnets
Iron and steel products, scrap iron.
Fibre straps.
Bales of pulp
Looped rope slings.
Cases, two slings end looped together on the hook.
Metal cradles.
Loose, round timber.
Metal frames.
Paper rolls, where not lifted by hydraulic suction methods.
Metal stirrups
Net slings, wire or rope
Inhomogeneous packages of various ‘small’ sizes. Pallets with homogeneous loads
Nylon straps.
Paper rolls, where not lifted by hydraulic suction methods.
Plate Clamps.
Steel plates
Rope slings.
Wide applications, including general loads of cases, crates, bagged cargo, packaged unit loads, pallets, packaged timber.
Spiked clamps
Heavy cases
Small cases and packages, cartons, strapped units
Log timber
Wire slings (Snotter).
Heavy crates/cases, beams/girders, pallets, etc.
Wire spreaders (Heavy Lift).
Locomotives and similar cargo

In this chapter will cover the following slings:-

Rope sling

Rope sling

This is formed by joining the ends of a piece of 25-30 mm rope about 10-12 metres in length with a short splice. 

The sling is in very common use. Bags, baled goods, barrels and cases may all be slung with this.

Canvas sling:

Canvas sling

This is formed by sewing a piece of canvas between the parts of a rope sling. 

It is used for bagged grain, rice, coffee and similar cargoes where the contents of the bag are small. 

Any spillage is retained in the canvas and is not wasted. 

The stress on the outside bags is spread more evenly and thus the chance of splitting is reduced.

Board sling:

Board sling

Is similar to the canvas sling but wood is used in place of the canvas. 

This is used for slinging fragile cargo such as bags of cement.



May be made of either rope or wire by forming an eye at each end of a If. 20mm wire or 50~60 mm rope 4~6 metres  in length. 

It is used for slinging cases, bales, wet hides and timber.

Chain sling:


Consists of a length of chain with a large ring at one end and a hook HI smaller ring at the other end. 
It is used for lifting heavy logs, bundles of iron and most steelwork. 
Care must always be taken that no kinks are allowed to form in the chain when goods are being lifted.

Plate clamps:

Plate clamps

There are various types of plate clamp, but the principle is that the plate is gripped when the weight is taken, so that there is no chance of the plate slipping c n could do if a chain sling was used.

Can hooks:

Can hooks

The hook slips under the lip of the drum or barrel. 

There are frequently four or five sets of hooks on a ring, which enable drums and barrels to be handled very rapidly. 

They are not to be recommended for handling heavy barrels as there is a possibility that the staves will be pulled out.


May be square, rectangular or round. They are slung by short pieces of rope, called legs, attached to the corners. Used for small cases and drums.


Similar to the tray but a wooden side is fixed around it. Used for handling explosives.


Used for handling small packages and mails, A wooden board is sometimes placed in the net if there is a risk of the packages being crushed.
A canvas net sling is sometimes used for slinging frozen meat.

Car slings: 

There are many types of these. All are designed for the rapid handling of cars and Lorries. It is essential that spreaders should be fitted otherwise there is a possibility that the bodywork of the vehicle will be damaged (cave in). When heavy Lorries and buses or big chassis are to be slung, wire slings are usually attached direct to the ends of the axles.

Heavy Lift Slings:

Are used for the handling of locomotives and similar cargo. A large beam is employed to separate the slings which are of large gauge wire. The slings are attached to the ends of the beam.

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