JLG celebrates manufacturing 250,000th telescopic boom lift

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Updated Oct 30, 2018
JLG’s 250,000th self-propelled boom lift was manufactured this year in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania.JLG’s 250,000th self-propelled boom lift was manufactured this year in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania.

In 1970, JLG manufactured the world’s first self-propelled telescopic boom lift. Nearly 50 years later, the company is celebrating the manufacturing of its 250,000th boom lift in North America.

The milestone device, the 660SJ, rolled off the assembly line at JLG’s plant in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, this year.

An early JLG boom liftAn early JLG boom lift

The company’s first aerial work platform was manufactured a year after John L. Grove founded JLG in 1969. It took 20 workers to build the first JLG aerial work platform in a small metal fabrication shop in McConnellsburg, Pennsylvania, a town where JLG’s headquarters are still based.

Today, JLG has thousands of employees and its products are made and sold globally.

For a video of how JLG makes boom lifts today, see below:

The current 660SJ model was launched in 2017. It has a platform height of 65 feet, 7 inches; horizontal reach of 57 feet; and a platform capacity of 750 pounds. It runs on a 67-horsepower Deutz diesel engine.

The milestone aerial work platform was delivered to rental company Skyworks LLC of Buffalo, New York. It was one of many firsts for Skyworks, which also purchased JLG’s 100,000th boom lift in 2006, its 100,000th telehandler in 2015 and took first delivery of the world’s tallest self-propelled boom lift, the JLG 1850SJ, in 2014.

It’s no coincidence that Skyworks is often one of the first buyers of JLG milestone products. The company founder’s father, Jerry Reinhart Sr., founded Access Rentals in 1974 and bought JLG’s lift commemorating the nation’s bicentennial in 1976. His son, Jerry Reinhart Jr., went on to start Skyworks, where a third generation of the family has joined the rental business.

“I distinctly remember buying the commemorative lift in 1976, and I’m proud that my son and granddaughter are here with me today to celebrate another historical moment in our relationship with JLG,” Reinhart Sr. said of JLG’s 250,000th boom lift.

Jerry Reinhart Jr., founder and president of Skyworks, poses with this commemorative JLG 660SJ, outside his rental company in Buffalo, New York.Jerry Reinhart Jr., founder and president of Skyworks, poses with this commemorative JLG 660SJ, outside his rental company in Buffalo, New York.

“We feel very privileged to receive this commemorative lift,” said Reinhart Jr., president of Skyworks. “As a family-owned business with a long and successful partnership with JLG that spans three generations, this lift underscores our commitment to JLG and the company’s commitment to us and the rental industry.”

“Our relationship with Skyworks dates back to the company’s founding,” says Bill Dovey, JLG product manager for boom lifts. “It’s a relationship we value, not only for the business it brings to us, but also for the opportunities it presents to celebrate together as we reach important milestones like this one.”

Here are some other milestones in JLG’s history:

  • 1976 – introduces its first scissor lift
  • 1977 – expands into Europe
  • 1983 – opens Australian operations to serve Asia
  • 1991 – launches 150HAX, the first 150-foot boom lift
  • 1996 – launches first mobile vertical lift
  • 1999 – acquires Gradall, which adds telehandlers to its product lineup
  • 2000 – introduces first 60-foot electric boom lift
  • 2003 – acquires Lull and Skytrak
  • 2004 – acquires Delta Manlift
  • 2005 – enters global alliance with Caterpillar to manufacture and sell all Caterpillar telehandlers
  • 2006 – acquired by Oshkosh Corporation
  • 2008 – breaks ground on manufacturing plant in China
  • 2014 – introduces world’s tallest self-propelled boom lift, the 1850SJ, with a platform height of 185 feet, 7 inches
  • 2015 – acquires Power Towers Ltd.
  • 2016 – unveils world’s tallest articulating boom lift, the 1500AJP, with a platform height of 150 feet