The Belgian armed forces Air Component has taken delivery of a military grade eight tonne Jekko SPX1280 spider crane.
Jekko, working in partnership with its Belgian distributor Rentalift, has upgraded the SPX1280 with a reinforced chassis to STANAG standards and additional anchor points for safely securing it within an Airbus A400M. They can also double up as parachute anchor points for low velocity airdrops.
As with standard models, the SPX1280 features a 17.7 metre five section main boom and a 7.6 metre four section hydraulic luffing jib to offer a maximum tip height of 26.6 metres. It can handle 600kg at its maximum height and up to 100kg at a maximum radius of 20 metres. It can also pick and carry loads up to two tonnes.
The crane - painted in bright yellow to aid its visibility on airstrips - will be used to assist with aircraft maintenance anywhere around the world, from the arctic to the desert. As such the unit has been fitted with an anemometer, a cold weather engine starter kit and additional filters for working in dusty or sandy environments.
Rentalift sales manager, Davy Bintein, said: “We are excited about this new military grade Jekko crane. The Belgian Defence Forces first approached us in 2018 at Matexpo exhibition, looking for a crane able to fly on an Airbus A400M and working on the aeroplane maintenance. The standard SPX1280 already had the main features they were looking for - its balance between size/weight and lifting capacity, the pick & carry function, the automatic stabilisation, the fully radio-controlled crane, and the many customisations available. It possesses a natural sturdiness and reliable stability, and the outcome is a special model for special operations that embodies the most advanced technical solutions!”