Mònica is back home – Lifted by Grúas Minguella’s Liebherr LTC 1050-3.1
She rings again! Eight years ago, on 7 May 2014, Mònica one of the two original 15th century bells at La Seu Vella Cathedral in Lérida, Catalonia, left its location for the first time since installation in 1486. A crack that could have caused it to break apart needed to be repaired at the Grassmayr workshop in Innsbruck, Austria. It wasn’t until eight years later that it was finally returned to the top of the bell tower due to various bureaucratic hurdles – the tower is a listed building.
The contract to mount the restored bell in its original position was awarded to the crane specialist Grúas Minguella in Lérida. The company’s Liebherr LTC 1050-3.1 mobile crane took on this difficult task and lifted the 1.5t bell, which is an essential part of the bell tower of Lérida Cathedral and also part of the historical heritage of La Seu Vella, to a height of 40m with a radius of 15m.
“One of the main challenges for this manoeuvre was providing access to the work site for the crane. In order to get to the construction site, the LTC 1050-3.1 had to pass through two stone arches that are only 3m high and offer extremely little space,” says Tomás Minguella, Managing Director of Grúas Minguella. The Liebherr LTC 1050-3.1 compact crane was a good choice for this job due to its compact dimensions, especially in terms of its height and manoeuvrability. “To ensure the highest level of safety due to the historical value of the Mònica bell, we carried out a simulation of the lift in advance and worked out a special lifting plan,” Minguella continues.
“For Grúas Minguella, it was a great honour to be able to support this project, because it allowed us to contribute to the history and development of our region,” concludes Tomás Minguella.
Raising the bell was not Grúas Minguella’s first assignment at La Seu Vella Cathedral. Twenty-five years ago, the company used a Liebherr LTM 1030 mobile crane to carry out maintenance work on Mònica. However, since the boom of the LTM 1030 was shorter than that of the current LTC 1050-3.1, the 30t crane was supported on stacked timber at the time, which allowed it to be raised by almost 2m to reach the required height.
Grúas Minguella has relied on Liebherr machines since day one due to the latter’s high-quality products and excellent customer service. The company has a fleet of 13 cranes, all built by Liebherr. Grúas Minguella was also one of the first companies in Spain to procure the Liebherr LTM 1450-8.1 mobile crane. The 450t machine is currently the largest crane in its fleet.
Grúas Minguella was founded in 1948 and was initially mainly involved in the repair of heavy machinery. In 1975, the company moved to Lérida and was the first crane operator in Catalonia, Aragon and Valencia to have mobile cranes with a lifting capacity of up to 100t. Currently, the company’s business activities are focused on the industrial, energy, hydraulics and public works sectors. Grúas Minguella celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1998.