How to Choose the Right Lifting Sling

There are many things to consider when choosing the right lifting sling for an application. The load, the weight of the load, center of gravity, lifting conditions, and height restrictions are just a few of the things to consider when choosing lifting products. Each material of slings have their own unique features as well. In this post, we will break down basic characteristics of Wire Rope Slings, Alloy Chain Slings, Web Slings and Roundslings that make them the best choice for specific applications.

Wire Rope Slings

Wire Rope Slings have been a popular choice for many years. They are reliable, strong, and flexible lifting slings. They also offer a great fatigue resistance and are successful at lifting heavy loads.  

There are several downsides to wire rope slings. They have a low strength to weight ratio, meaning the larger the load that’s being lifted, the heavier the wire rope sling is going to be. That can make it challenging to transport and move ropes on a job site. Additionally, wire rope slings are not repairable. If damage is detected during an inspection, the wire rope sling must be removed from service immediately and discontinued from use.

Even with these obstacles, wire rope slings are still popular among many industries. They are great for lifting steel and are often seen on construction sites as well. Each of our facilities fabricate wire rope slings in-house. Whether you need an Eye & Eye, Braided, Bridle, or other wire rope sling, we’ve got you covered.


Web Slings

Web Slings are lightweight, flexible and perfect for lifting delicate loads. Made from primarily from nylon, web slings easily conform to the shape of the load and maintain its strength, all while preventing damage to the load due to its soft material. It is also significantly lighter than using wire rope slings. For these reasons, web slings are used in a wide variety of industries and conditions.

Like all slings, web slings do have their limitations. Chemical factors and temperatures have to be carefully considered based on the type of material being used (nylon or polyester). Additionally, all edges must be protected against cuts and abrasions. While sling protection is a great way to protect your sling investment, it does add an extra step and cost to the sling.

Ashley Sling fabricates various configurations of web slings to the specifications needed for an application – Eye & Eye, Endless, Return Eye, Continuous Eye, Bridle and more.


Roundslings are another great choice when lifting a heavy, yet delicate load. They are soft, but their inner core yarns and woven outer jacket give roundslings great strength.

Roundslings are flexible and soft, allowing for it to conform to the shape of a load and prevent damage. Because of the material, it is significantly lighter than options such as wire rope and alloy chain. This allows the sling to be easily transported and moved in a job site.

Like Web Slings, Roundslings are also susceptible to cuts and abrasion. For this reason, it will need sling protection from all corners and edges. Chemicals and heat also set limitations on the applications it may be used in.

Endless and Eye & Eye Roundslings are available at each Ashley Sling location. Additionally, the HPZ Extreme Lift® High Performance Roundsling is an excellent choice when needing a great strength-to-weight ratio.

Alloy Chain Slings

Alloy Chain Slings are durable slings and have many features that make them favorable for various lifting applications. Alloy Chain Slings are made to lift heavy loads, available in several configurations, and are good for abrasion. Additionally, alloy chain slings are one of the few slings that are good for extreme temperatures.

Inspections on alloy chain are also easier compared to other sling choices. Depending on the nature of the damage, alloy chain slings are more likely to be repaired than wire rope slings, nylon web, and other sling options.

As with other slings, there are drawbacks to choosing alloy chain slings. They can be quite heavy, making transport and use difficult on the job site. Alloy chain is also more easily damaged or crushed


Final Thoughts

Various slings can get the job done, but do you know which one is best for your application? Every sling has its advantages and disadvantages. What’s most important is to choose a sling that is both safe and efficient for your specific application. Our team is always ready to help choose the right sling. You can contact us using the quote form or reaching out to the Ashley Sling location nearest to you.

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