Tractor & Construction Plant Wiki
Type Wholly owned subsidiary
Founded 1880
Founder(s) William Dana Ewart
Headquarters Lexington, KY, USA
Products cranes
Parent Sumitomo Heavy Industries

Link-Belt are a manufacturer of cranes based in the USA. The origins of the company was the invention of an alternative to conventional chain or belt drives by William Dana Ewart in 1874 of the Link-Belt drive, for farm machinery, which he refined and then patented. The company was founded as the Link-Belt Machinery Company in 1880, and the Link-Belt Engineering Company in 1888 to manufacture and market the invention.

A Link-Belt Telescopic crawler crane at the SED show on the stand of UK dealer NRC


From the early drive system of the Link-Belt the company went on to develop around the turn of the dcade (1890), the early Link-Belt companies developed the forerunner of today's Link-Belt construction equipment, the a wide-gauge, steam-powered, coal-handling crane with a clamshell bucket.

By the turn of the century (1900), the steam-powered, heavy-duty coal handling cranes had developed into a lighter, more versatile mobile crane that formed the basis for all future crane and shovel designs.

By the 1939 the company had merged the Speeder Machinery Corporation line of small cranes (3/8 to 3/4 yd.) with there own crane lines and created the Link-Belt Speeder Corporation which was then located in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

The company in 1962 formed the start of a development partnership with the Japanese Sumitomo Corporation.

In 1967, the FMC Corporation merged with the Link-Belt Company. The company produced FMC Link-Belt branded cranes and excavators.

FMC also produced fire truck fire pumps and pumper bodies, and had an OEM arrangement with LTI (Ladder Towers Inc.) to market aerial ladders. In the early 1980s the Fire apparatus division of FMC tried to expand its role in aerial ladders on fire trucks, leveraging the Link-Belt crane division. FMC was ultimately unsuccessful in its expansion into production of aerial ladders. The FMC Fire Apparatus division was also ultimately shut down in 1990.[1]

Then in 1986, the Link-Belt Construction Equipment Company was formed as a joint venture between FMC Corporation and Sumitomo Heavy Industries.

In 1998, the excavator products were spun off from the Link-Belt Construction Equipment Company to the LBX Company, a stand-alone, joint-venture company formed between Sumitomo Construction Machinery Co. and Case Corporation to market and sell Link-Belt Excavators

In 1998, in a reorganization the company decided to focus on the cranes business, and the excavator product line was spun off from the Link-Belt Construction Equipment Company into the LBX Company. The excavator division as LBX Company became a independent, joint-venture company between Sumitomo Construction Machinery Co. and Case Corp. to market and sell Link-Belt brand excavators.

The current Link-Belt Construction Equipment Co. is headquartered in Lexington, Kentucky and is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sumitomo Heavy Industries.

Product range

A Modern Link-Belt Hydraulic truck crane type HTT 8675 at SED 2009

  • Mobile cranes
  • Lattice Crawler cranes with capacity up to 300 ton
    • H5, HSL - Lattice Crawlers with capacity up to 300 ton
  • TCC - Telescopic Crawlers with capacity up to 45 ton

Former products

  • Crawler excavators (Draglines)
  • Crawler shovels
  • Steam cranes

See also

References / sources

External links