Forklift Attachments for the Wine Industry

by Bill Parks on April 11, 2017
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forklift attachments for the wine industryToyota Material Handling of Northern California has been a long time partner of winemakers in Napa / Sonoma. We’re proud to help vineyards large and small make more efficient use of their limited time and staff.

Forklift attachments are one of the most important tools utilized by wineries. Barrel handlers literally do the heavy lifting while carton clamps can eliminate the need for pallets. Rotators and forward bin dumpers quickly and cleanly handle macro bins full of grapes.

Most Popular Forklift Attachments Used in the Wine Industry

  • Fork Rotator with Load Hold Down
  • Forward Bin Dumpers
  • Wine Barrel Handlers
  • Carton Clamps
  • Single Double with Side-Shifter

Rotator with Load Hold Down - Rotators allow the operator to pick up a macro bin and rotate it 360 degrees in either direction. Of course gravity comes into play at a certain point, that’s when a load hold-down bar comes in handy so the bin doesn’t get dumped along with the grapes.

Forward Bin Dumper - A forward bin dumper, also known as a front dumper, can handle larger volumes than a rotator. It’s also a cleaner option because a front dumper surrounds the bin and dumps away from the lift truck. This forklift attachment can be used with plastic, wood, metal, wire and cardboard bins and allows for smooth and fast loading of grapes, citrus, nuts, etc.

When to Use a Rotator Vs. a Forward Bin Dumper

- The first question to ask is: do you need to dump forward or to the side?
If your setup doesn’t allow for front-dumping, a fork rotator is the way to go.

- The second question: what is the capacity of your forklift and is it needed for other applications?


A forward bin dumper mounts on the forks and, though easily removed, may reduce efficiency for operations with only one lift truck. A fork rotator can go back and forth between dumping bins and traditional forklift applications without any intervention.

Additionally, the forward bin dumper is designed for larger loads and is mainly used on lift trucks with a 5,000lb lift capacity or higher. A rotator is more universal and can be used on a forklift with only a 3,500lb capacity.

That said, for the right operation, a front dumper is worth every penny. It handles macro bin after macro bin - moving grapes cleanly and efficiently.

Wine Barrel Handler - This attachment allows a lift truck operator to either gently spin a wine barrel, or move it to a new location. The barrel handler is designed for caves and narrow aisles and can pickup on either the right or left. The wine barrel attachment we carry recently won an award from Wine Industry Network. See the barrel handler in action: 

Single-Double pallet handler - A Single-Double allows one forklift to handle two pallets. Two pallets at once means more product moved in fewer trips. It’s perhaps the best material handling innovation in the last fifteen years.

The Single-Double we carry at TMHNC can navigate down narrow aisles in single-pallet mode, then expand to four forks and handle two pallets. The attachment also includes a side shifter to maneuver loads into trucks and containers.

Carton Clamps - Carton Clamps are popular because they eliminate the need for pallets, which means less pallet debris like wood debris and nails. The Carton Clamps we carry at have 48” x 48” pads that can handle up to 56 cases of wine. 

If you’re interested in a forklift attachment, or have questions about whether your existing fleet is equipped to utilize an attachment, let us know. We also rent forklifts equipped with the attachments listed below. Please contact us a soon as possible to schedule a rental as we’re often booked up long before crush begins.

Carton Clamp
Single Double
Rotator
Push / Pull
Extra LP Tank

Further Reading:

Forklift Certification in California

Topics: Attachments/Other

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