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We like this image because, unless someone tells you what this machine does or you’ve actually seen one fully loaded, you wouldn’t have any idea what the hell it is.  When we saw it in the photo pool, we had to click on it just to find out.

Where we live, in a landlocked part of Texas, we don’t have much need for what turns out to be a boat-launching crawler — but we’re glad reader Fredboness posted this up so we can live vicariously through the folks up in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.

We’re guessing wherever they keep it must be close to the water;  negotiating traffic in this rig must be horrifying for both the crawler operator and other drivers.

Toolmonger Photo Pool [Flickr]


14 Responses to It’s Just Cool: A Rare Lake Monster

  1. ShopMonger says:

    These can get even bigger i will try to find one of my fathers boat out of the water….

    he has a 50′ catamaran with a 26.5′ beam and also we had our old 38′ bayliner out of the water a couple times……these are so fun to watch…

  2. Dustbuster says:

    These typically don’t get used on public roads, they are largely restricted to marine and dock areas. They are often used for stacking smaller pleasure vessels in dry docks such as this:


    Although sometimes they just use an industrial sized forve lift with really long tines, like so:


  3. rick says:

    I am aware of a 100 ton travel lift… pretty amazing capability!

  4. Frank Townend says:

    These would be great in traffic, just go over the cars in front of you.

  5. Fred Boness says:

    Here is another view with a boat in the slings at the launching slip.


  6. Pete Judd says:

    I have my 32,000 lb. sailboat hauled out on one of these every 3 years. Always a little scary watching it when its your boat in the slings. I have seen two dropped over the years, and it’s not a good thing. One from improper placement of the slings and the other when a strap broke.

  7. Jon says:

    When I worker for Carver Yacht Company (in Pulaski, WI) they had some of these for moving the yachts around between buildings. You would always see someone with a car that would drive right under one of these while they were going down the road because they didn’t want to wait behind it.

  8. Craig says:

    They have one of these at Grandpappy Point, in Sherman.

    If I recall, their’s is four-wheel-drive. It’s awesome.

  9. Craig says:

    Sherman, TX, that is.

  10. I have a theory that if you watch every episode of Dirty Jobs, nothing will ever surprise you again.

    (Mike wasn’t very good at steering it.)

  11. asbestos says:

    These are to the Puget sound what Zambonis are to Canada

  12. paganwonder says:

    Saw one in Mexico with driver and motor on top!! They used it to get boats past the shallows into deeper water- about a quarter mile off-shore!!!

  13. JKB says:

    Well, they are usually parked over their dock since they need two piers arranged just so to facilitate the wheels as they move over deep water. The few I’ve seen did have to negotiate a parking lot and more than not cross a road to get between the water and the boatyard.

  14. T says:

    We have a similar gantry crane we used to use for picking up large (218″ diameter) spools. We’re trying to sell it off since it is no longer used.

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