Bigge Crane and Rigging Co.

Bigge Crane

Bigge Crane and Rigging provides its customers and partners with the tools for success.

By The Editors of Construction Today

Bigge Crane and Rigging Co. aims for complete satisfaction when serving customers. “We have always been very thorough when it comes to servicing our customers and learning about and understanding their needs,” Vice President Joe Nelms says. 

This has driven the company to invest in the best-in-class cranes and equipment available in the market. “If in the rare scenario Bigge does not have the right equipment we have the ability to acquire what we need or build it ourselves,” he says.Bigge Crane info box

Bigge also brings to its customers the benefit of more than 102 years of industry experience and innovation. “Our team is the best in the industry and we have the crane, rigging and engineering knowledge in every industry and job that we service,” Nelms says. “Our people, processes and equipment are what make us stand out.”

Based in San Leandro, Calif., the privately owned and operated Bigge stands as one of the premier national crane rentals, global crane sales and project services companies in the United States. Henry W. Bigge along with his father Christian Bigge started the firm as Bigge Drayage Co. in 1916.

The company initially hauled materials from a rail siding in Oakland, Calif., but over time became known as an innovator in its industry, with the creation of equipment such as the lattice boom truck crane. They also moved into construction as it helped build such projects as the Golden Gate Bridge and the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge. 

Nelms adds that Bigge has experienced tremendous growth in the last 20 years, as it moved from less than 100 cranes to more than 1,200 nationwide. “With this huge growth, our team has grown as well, and we are constantly striving to be the best in our industry,” he says.

Large and Small

Today, Bigge takes on both large and small projects. “We have partnered with a large number of various industrial and commercial contractors across the nation to help build America,” Nelms says. 

The company also serves multiple industries, the crane rental division offers both Operated and Maintained as well as Bare Lease for rough terrain, crawler, truck, all terrain, tower cranes and construction elevators. The company’s major facilities provide receive, store and haul services with secure indoor and outdoor storage options, to compliment their crane and rigging offering.

Through its crane sales, the company offers its customers industry leading equipment, outstanding customer support along with delivery and commissioning of cranes, parts and accessories. Currently, Nelms says, the company is an authorized dealer for firms such as Enerpac hydraulic gantries and strand jacks, Kobelco crawler, Tadano rough terrain, Comedil and Peiner tower cranes, and Potain city class and self-erecting tower cranes, in addition Xtreme and Merlo forklifts, and Maeda mini cranes.

Additionally, “We source all of our cranes from the manufacturers and as a steward to the industry we have partnered/collaborated with them on the development, fine tuning, and specialized features for the benefit of all end users,” he says, noting that Bigge Crane has partnered with such companies as Kobelco, Liebherr and Manitowoc.

High-Scale Work

Bigge recently provided cranes for two stadium projects, including the Chase Arena in San Francisco, which will be a multi-purpose arena and new home for the Golden State Warriors. When finished, the structure will also feature entertainment, dining, retail and commercial space alongside the San Francisco Bay.

Bigge provided seven cranes for the project, including four Comedil CT 721-40 flat top and one Potain MD689 tower cranes to move materials throughout the job site, and two Manitowoc 16000s crawler cranes, which performed all lifting and setting of concrete forms structural steel, respectively. The arena is expected to be finished in early 2019.

The company also provided four tower cranes for the new Dickies Arena in Fort Worth, Texas, which will seat 14,000 and be home to the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo. Bigge provided a Peiner SK 575-32 and three Peiner SK 415-20s that will help with the pouring of concrete, setting of precast, steel, rebar and other materials. The arena is expected to open in November 2019.

The Family Business

Bigge continues to operate under family leadership, with Weston Settlemier, president and CEO, representing the fourth generation to lead the company.

In addition to Settlemier, many current employees represent a second, third and even fourth generation at Bigge. The family leadership also promotes Bigge’s culture, which is not only focused on its No. 1 core value of safety, but also includes teamwork, innovation, results and passion. 


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