Ropes and Chains


  1. Never drag a rope. This hurts the outer fibers and leads to the eventual deterioration of the rope’s overall strength.
  2. Avoid kinking.  This strains the rope and overstresses the fibers.
  3. Splice, don’t knot.  When the job requires joining lengths of ropes, they should be spliced, not knotted. A properly done splice will hold up 100% of the strength of the rope, but a knot only half.
  4. Dry out rope after use to prevent deterioration.
  5. Don’t allow rope to freeze.
  6. Store away from heat, moisture, chemicals, rodents, and sunlight.
  7. Clean rope before storage.


  1. Use sheaves and drums of suitable size and design.
  2. Lubricate properly, and according to schedule.
  3. Don’t exceed the rated capacity of wire rope.
  4. Be sure to use the correct lay (twist) for the application. 


  1. Take up slack slowly and make sure every link seats correctly.
  2. Never force a hook over a chain link.
  3. Chain shackles are to be used for shortening and/or splicing chains together.
  4. Using bolts as makeshift links or fasteners is prohibited.


  1. Make sure your hoist anchor point is rated and adequate for the job.
  2. Always inspect the hoist for defects before each use.  Check the full length of the chain for worn, gouged, twisted and distorted links, proper lubrication and foreign material.
  3. Check the full length of the wire rope for broken strands, abrasions, kinks, and corrosion.
  4. Do not operate hoist with twisted, kinked, or damaged chain or rope.
  5. Check the limit switch settings prior to loading. Operate the hoist in the up and down position to determine if the limit switches are set correctly.
  6. Make a load test by lifting and lowering a load slightly.  Check for unusual sounds and make sure the hoist is operating smoothly and that the brakes hold without slipping.
  7. Do not lift more than the rated load.
  8. Always center the hoist over the load. Be sure the hoist and load chain are in a straight line.
  9. Always stand completely clear of the load when operating a hoist.