Fracture of a Mild Steel Crane Hook
A crane hook was stamped S.W.L. 3 tons and, while its main dimensions were in approximate accordance with those specified in B.S. 482 for a hook of this capacity, its shape in some respects was not exactly in conformity with that recommended. At the time of fracture, the load being lifted was slightly under 10 cwts. Fracture occurred away from the normal wearing surface where the hook makes contact with the lifting slings. There was no evidence that fracture was preceded by any appreciable deformation locally or in the region of the failure. A sulphur print, taken on a cross section of the hook adjacent to the plane of fracture, showed the hook was made from a killed steel free from major segregation. Microscopic examination showed the material to be a mild steel in the normalized condition, the carbon content being of the order of 0.25%. Bend tests showed the material at the intrados of the hook would deform in a ductile manner both under slow and impact-loading conditions if in the form of an unnotched test piece, but if notched, it failed in a brittle manner under impact, though not under slow loading.