Frequently asked questions


What’s a “mini crane”? Why are mini cranes sometimes referred to using the word “spider”?


Mini cranes are cranes designed and built intentionally small and compact, for relatively light lifting. When lifting requirements are in a location with tight access, restricted space or obstructions, a mini crane will be perfect for the job. Mini cranes are designed to go places where conventional or large cranes cannot go, or their use is economically unreasonable.


The word “spider” is often used in describing mini cranes due to the design of the outriggers. The outrigger legs have a spider leg style design appearance, often resulting in user references to a spider when describing mini cranes.


Do the MAEDA mini cranes meet North America crane regulations? ?

All MAEDA crane models distributed in North America are built to official design and manufacturing standards and regulations. This includes the ASME B30.5 and CSA Z150 compliance standards, which applies to all mobile cranes. In the U.S., OSHA regulations require adherence to ASME B30.5. These are not “gray market” machines.

Are the MAEDA machines approved for use in New York City?

All 3 MC models have official NYC Buildings Department – Cranes & Derrick proto-type approval. No de-rating, no shadow games. Full approval.

Do I need a certified or licensed crane operator?

This is an issue that is dependent on your location, job application and sometimes size of the crane. Federally (OSHA) this topic is in a period of transition and is not final. Currently this question must be answered on a local level. With 50 states and 13 provinces there is an array of regulations on a local level. But in many cases there are no local regulations. There is not one underlining policy that answers this question. Call us to discuss in detail based on your situation.

What’s the difference between a MAEDA “MC” model and a “CC” model?

The MC series machines have outriggers, are smaller and lighter, and offer better application inside tightest spaces and inside buildings. The CC series machines have no outriggers, lift from the tracks and offer the ability to “pick & carry” lifted loads. CC machines offer heavier duty undercarriages for outdoor work in tight spaces.

Do the engines meet EPA Tier requirements?

Yes. All MAEDA crane models distributed in North America are built to meet current EPA regulations. As new Tier requirements roll in, MAEDA will continue to act accordingly to meet the regulations.
What options and attachments can I get with the crane?

Depending on the model you are inquiring about, a multitude of options are available. We offer glass manipulators, man baskets, searcher hooks, fly jibs, engine power options, non-marking tracks, and much more. We can give you exact details of what options are available on your favorite MAEDA crane model.

Who can help me with parts and service?

MAEDA USA has a network of dealers to support the machines in local territories. MAEDA USA and our dealers are always available to support your needs of sales, rental, service and parts. Where we do not have a dealer, MAEDA USA will help you efficiently with whatever you need. MAEDA USA stocks new & used machines, has a rental fleet, and inventories and extensive parts in Houston, Texas.

Will the crane fit through a door?

Yes. The most popular mini crane in the world is the MAEDA MC285. It is the epitome of the tight access restricted space workhorse. When in its travel configuration it is less than 30” wide (750mm) and will fit through any standard door. The larger MC305 and MC405 will fit easily thru double doors.

Will the crane fit into an elevator?

Yes. Between construction/skip hoist elevators, freight elevators, or standard elevators we can often fit in an elevator depending on the situation. Our cranes are intentionally small and lightweight. There are numerous examples of jobs where the MAEDA mini crane worked inside or on top of a building via elevator access. When necessary to reduce dimension or weight to fit the elevator, we can advise on disassembly. The design of the Maeda cranes makes disassembly easy for elevator access.

Can I walk the crane up and down steps?

It’s all about gradability, terrain, and stability. Most of our mini cranes are rated to travel up and down inclines of 15? to 24?. Steps are often steeper than this. Generally stairs are not compatible with mini cranes, but there are possibilities. Ramps are not a problem. Call us to discuss.

How does the crane travel & perform on rough terrain?

Excellent. MAEDA has larger tracks, wider footprints, more ground clearance, lower center of gravity and more power than the competition. The result is a more stable machine that is easier and safer to travel especially on the rugged job site.

What does “dual power” or “dual fuel” mean?

Depending on the option of each model, the crane can be run on multiple sources of power. If the crane is equipped with the electric motor option, the machine can be run on either the internal diesel engine or the electric motor. If the crane is equipped with the LPG/propane option, the crane can be run on either gasoline or LPG/propane fuel. It’s all about minimization or elimination of exhaust issues when in a confined area. Switching from one power source to the other is as easy as flipping a switch.

Do you have cranes that run on LPG/Propane?

Yes. The MC285 is equipped with a gasoline engine, which allows for an optional LPG/propane fuel kit for operation on either fuel. With the flip of a switch the operator can choose between gasoline or propane fuel.

Are the cranes “GREEN”? Can I run the engine on Biodiesel?

MAEDA is committed to always meeting the required EPA emissions tier status. Combine this with numerous options such as, electric motors, diesel particulate exhaust scrubbers, vegetable based hydraulic oils, the ability to use bio-diesel or propane, MAEDA can meet environmental concerns and requirements.

What are the electrical requirements for the electric motor option?

The electric motor option offered in North America is 230volt, 3 phase, 60 Hz. Single phase is an option on the MC285 model. In Latin America most power is the same as North America. However, a few countries require 380volt, 3 phase 50 Hz, and this is offered as an option.

Will the electric motor run on 208 volt or other electric power supply besides 230 volt?

Yes. As long as the power supply is not deficient or under voltage. The 230V system will operate properly within a 10% range. This encompasses 208V, 220V, 240V, etc. Other voltages may require buck boost transformers to convert power to what the machine needs. Ex. 480V to 230V. This is relatively uncomplicated and we can offer the transformers.
Will the crane lift and perform properly when using the electric motor option?

Yes. Lifting is not compromised when using the electric motor. The electric motor option does not diminish the cranes maximum lifting capability or crane functions.
Are there concerns about crane performance at high altitude?

There is not any special risk to the engine and hydraulic oil cooling itself at high altitude. In general, engine output will be decreased gradually based on high altitude. Depending on the engine model, power decreases 13.5% per 9,842 ft. (3000m) from rated output. According to the test data, necessary output for lifting maximum capacity and power requirements for traveling is considerably lower than the rated output of the engine. You may see exhaust smoke more frequently at high altitude. Not until you get to 18,000’ elevation, will relevant power decrease need to be addressed. MAEDA’s experiences in the high altitudes of Japan and Europe have been proven.

What are multi-position outriggers?

They are outriggers that can be set up in several different configurations based on available workspace. The spider leg style outrigger design on MAEDA mini cranes is used to facilitate the use of the crane in confined space and tight access situations. Each outrigger has different positions it can be pinned or extended to. Each outrigger does not need to be set in the same configuration. In the case of the MC285, each outrigger can be pinned in any of 12 different positions. The MC305 and MC405 have 3 positions.

Does the crane have 360 degree swing?

Yes. On all MAEDA models swing is continuous without limit. The MC305 and MC405 come with a safety device that limits the boom from swinging through the operator seat position. This is to prevent contact of boom to operator, and to prevent unsafe lifting over the operators head. 360 degree swing is permissible on the MC305 and MC405 when using the remote control, since the operator is not in the seat during remote control operation.

All MAEDA cranes come standard with a Moment Limiter & Load Indicator Safety System. What is a Moment Limiter system?

The Moment Limiter (ML) is an aid to the crane operator that displays an array of operational information pertinent to the lifting process. The most important data displayed is the load data, i.e. how much the crane can lift, and how much it is lifting currently. It is an electric device, programmed with the Rated Total Load Chart. Every second the ML calculates and displays outrigger position, radius, boom length, boom angle, and parts of line. Those factors result in the display of the allowed load that can be lifted, and the load that is on the hook at that time.

Any time the design capacity of the crane is exceeded; the ML system will stop the functions of the crane that are leading to danger. This keeps the operator out of trouble, and prevents tip over or overload damage.

In North America, the moment limiter is a must for safe crane operation, and lift planning. This is an OEM designed and installed system, not an aftermarket add-on. It offers the same safety as you find on virtually all larger conventional lift cranes. The ML is a distinct advantage of owning a MAEDA.

What is the ”Interlock Outrigger System”?

Incorporated into the Moment Limiter system is Outrigger Interlock. This system monitors the outrigger positions automatically. If the operator does not set the outriggers properly, the ML will restrict crane operation to prevent turnover from improper or incomplete outrigger placement. Also, if the operator does not stow the boom properly, the operator cannot operator the outriggers, again to prevent turnover. This feature is added safety only Maeda offers to prevent turnover.
Does the machine come with remote control?

All MC series machines come standard with full function remote control. The remote control displays the load data from the ML system so that the operator can see his allowed load and actual load during his lift, right from the remote handset.

Do you have wireless remote control?

Yes, as an option. We find many applications and jobs where wireless is not allowed or desired. Thus our remote can operate cabled or by wireless.

Can I pick & carry?

Yes, on the CC models. All CC series machines offer a very useful pick & carry capacity chart. The MC series machines do not lend themselves to pick & carry due to their narrow design when not on outriggers. MC machines are designed to walk into position, set the outriggers and commence crane work.

Can the crane be operated and stored outdoors, in the weather?

Yes. MAEDA cranes are indoor- outdoor machines. For storage, machine covers are available for all models (standard on the MC285).

Are the cranes suitable for cold weather?

Yes. Northern latitude cold conditions can be met with these machines. We offer cold weather preparation modifications as an option for extreme climates. Maeda design has been in use in the cold climates of Japan, Europe, and Scandinavia for many years.