Forklifts are machinery that forklift operators use to transport supplies from one place to another in manufacturing and warehouse environments. The machine carries pallets, also called skids, which are loaded with things. The lift truck is designed with forks that insert into the rungs of the pallet. At times, forklifts are also referred to as Pallet Trucks, Lift Trucks, High/Low, Skid Trucks, Side Loaders and Stacker Trucks.
The very first forklifts were sold in the early part of the 1900s by companies like Clark and Yale & Towne Manufacturing. Today the majority of supplies are shipped to warehouses and stores on pallets. Forklifts are usually found in warehouses and manufacturing plants, where they are depended upon for the smooth operation of business.
Among the different kinds of skid lifts or pallets are as follows: Walkie low lift truck - with electrical motor; Rider low lift truck; Hand pallet truck; IC counterbalanced truck; Telescopic handler; Towing tractor; Sideloader; Slip Sheet machine; Walkie stacker; Rider stacker; Reach truck; Electric counterbalanced truck; Walkie Order Picking truck; Rider Order Picking truck - also known as "Order Picker"; Articulated Very Narrow Aisle Counterbalanced trucks - also called "Flexi Truck"; Truck Mounted Forklift / Sod Loader; Guided Very Narrow Aisle truck; 'Man Down' - utilized for narrow aisles; and 'Man Riser' Combination Order Picker/ Stacker truck
There are counterbalanced forklift trucks available for specialized uses, like for example the articulated counterbalance truck. This particular hybrid is recommended for very narrow aisles as it could offload and onload within really tight spaces.
Capable if lifting as high as 12 meters are the Guided Vary Narrow Aisle Trucks. The "non top-tied" kind could lift up to 30 meters high. These trucks are available in man down and man-riser models. This equipment should only be used on flat and even floors.