Guide to Buying Telescopic Cylinders

Telescopic cylinders pack high-quality and long-lasting operations into a compact package, but determining the correct telescoping cylinder replacement for your equipment can be a challenge. Hydraulic Cylinders, Inc. is here to help. As your full-line supplier of aftermarket telescopic cylinders and provider of advanced cylinder knowledge, our experts are at your disposal as we walk you through what to consider when choosing a telescopic hydraulic cylinder, including:

  • The difference between telescoping cylinders and other hydraulic cylinder designs
  • Available types of telescopic cylinders, such as single-acting, double-acting, and custom configurations
  • How to identify suitable telescopic cylinders for your market and application
  • Why choosing aftermarket hydraulic cylinders is your best option
  • Steps for maintaining telescopic cylinder replacements after delivery

No matter your needs, we are dedicated to delivering your best result. Always consult your equipment’s manual before purchasing any hydraulic cylinder replacement or custom hydraulic cylinder to ensure you have selected the proper options for your fleet. Call 888-771-1894 to speak with a highly trained representative if you are unsure how to find your equipment’s requirements.

What is the Difference Between Telescopic Cylinders and Other Designs?

Understanding when to choose a telescopic cylinder over other hydraulic configurations is the best way to begin your cylinder purchasing journey. Various hydraulic cylinder designs are available to meet your industrial or mobile equipment’s needs, stand up to the rigors of your job site, and deliver the powerful performance required to complete your work.

What is a Telescopic Cylinder?

Telescopic hydraulic cylinders are a type of linear actuator. Featuring a multi-stage design, they are built with several sleeves or stages to allow the cylinder to extend and retract in a straight line. They can achieve an angular motion to improve the accuracy, efficiency, and overall power of your equipment and operations. Various types of replacement telescopic cylinders—including single-acting, double-acting, and combination constructions—are available to match your equipment, workload, and operational expectations.

Benefits of Telescopic Cylinders

Telescoping cylinder replacements add many benefits across industries. In addition to their long reach and compact retracted form, they can:

  • Meet specific and precise angle requirements
  • Provide long-term cost savings
  • Maintain constant thrust and speed
  • Function at a high level in harsh environments
  • And much more!

When Should I Not Use a Telescopic Cylinder?

Despite their extreme versatility, durability, and effectiveness, telescopic cylinders are not the best solution for all fleets and applications. You may be better served by choosing another hydraulic cylinder option if:

  • Your equipment requires a welded rod design, such as for Bobcat, Kubota, and other OEM machinery
  • Your system requires high-pressure operations over approximately 3000 PSI

If you are unsure if a telescopic cylinder is right for your equipment, planned use, or other specifications, contact us today. A knowledgeable HCI representative will talk through your needs to identify a telescopic or other cylinder for your job or fleet.

Types of Telescopic Hydraulic Cylinders

Once you’ve determined that a telescopic hydraulic cylinder is the best option for you, you will need to find the configuration and construction for your equipment and anticipated work requirements. As selecting the right cylinder type for your application is critical for safe and effective operations, learning the differences between available telescopics is an important step to ensure you purchase the correct cylinder.

Telescoping cylinders are available in two standard configurations: single-acting and double-acting. Custom options are possible for specialty applications or equipment. There is no one-size-fits-all answer, and your choice will vary depending on your load requirements, mounting space, and other factors.

Single-Acting Telescopic Cylinders

Single-acting telescopic cylinder replacements are low-maintenance and cost-effective options for a variety of equipment. They use hydraulic pressure to extend and use gravity, load weight, or other external factors to retract. Single-acting telescoping cylinders are excellent options for dump trailers, platform truck trailers, and similar equipment.


Benefits of Single-Acting Telescopic Cylinders:

  • Simple design leads to low-maintenance requirements
  • Compact construction saves space
  • Low upfront and operational costs
  • ·Ideal for mobile equipment

Limitations of Single-Acting Telescopic Cylinders:

  • Less control and maneuverability compared to double-acting cylinder options
  • Only provides hydraulic power during extension
  • Requires gravity or other external force to retract

Double-Acting Telescopic Cylinders

If your application requires a higher degree of precision, then a double-acting telescoping cylinder replacement may be your best choice. As with single-acting telescopic cylinders, double-acting cylinders use hydraulic force to extend. However, they also use hydraulic power to retract, lending more accuracy and control to your operations. They are used to power an extensive range of industrial and mobile equipment.


Benefits of Double-Acting Telescopic Cylinders:

  • Two-directional power adds increased control and precision
  • Versatile performances provided by multi-directional power
  • Ability to accelerate faster compared to single-acting models
  • More precise stroke movements for increased flexibility
Limitations of Double-Acting Telescopic Cylinders:

  • Higher upfront cost
  • Lower level of output force compared to single-acting cylinders
  • Complex designs lead to higher maintenance requirements and more expensive repairs compared to single-acting cylinders

Custom Telescopic Cylinders

For OEM production lines or fleets with non-standard work requirements or equipment, custom telescoping cylinders are often the correct choice. Custom telescopic cylinders are built to your specifications and may include a combination single-acting and double-acting design, irregular mounting fixtures, or other custom components.

Custom telescopic cylinder suppliers, like HCI, will work with you to discuss necessary custom telescopic cylinder considerations, create a design, and manufacture your unique solution. From evaluating your working conditions to accounting for unusual load capacities, custom telescopic cylinder replacements will provide excellent results for your fleet.

Determining the Right Replacement Telescoping Cylinder for Your Application

Which type of cylinder should you use for your application? It depends. Verifying your equipment’s requirements is the first step. Evaluating the needs of your specific application comes next. Heavy loads, long operational hours, and general operating conditions can all impact which telescoping cylinder replacement is suited to your goals.

Dumps, Trailers, and Trucks

The most common use for telescopic cylinders is powering dumps, trailers, and trucks for construction, agriculture, and other markets. Telescopic cylinders’ design, performance capabilities, mounting versatility, and innovative bleederless designs make them ideal for many types of equipment, including but not limited to:

  • Dump trucks
  • Transfer trailers
  • Platform truck trailers
  • And much more!

Whether a single-acting telescopic cylinder, double-acting telescopic cylinder, or custom hydraulic cylinder is the best choice will depend on the unique requirements of your dump, trailer, or truck. Consult your owner’s manual to find your machinery’s specifications.

Job Sites with Tight Space

Regardless of industry, some jobs and operations must be carried out in areas with low maneuverability, tight space, or restricted mobility. Hydraulic equipment powered by telescopic cylinders is the ideal solution for these applications. Telescopic machinery’s compact designs and long extended strokes enable them to navigate these tight areas with precision, control, and accuracy.

All telescopic cylinder designs perform well in small spaces, and the correct choice will depend on your equipment, load requirements, and similar factors. However, double-acting telescopic cylinders’ advanced precision and control give them a slight advantage over single-acting configurations.

Extreme Environment Applications

Certain jobs take place in rugged, remote, or challenging conditions. Telescopic cylinders are built to withstand extreme environments, providing reliable and safe operations in tough or difficult locations:

While single-acting, double-acting, and custom cylinders all perform well in extreme environments, the accessibility of your job site is worth considering. Single-acting cylinders have significantly lower maintenance requirements, which could prove beneficial at hard-to-reach locations. Additionally, heavy-duty applications may require a custom heavy-duty telescopic cylinder design. Call 888-771-1894 to discuss your work environment with a cylinder expert.

The Benefits of Ordering Telescopic Cylinder Replacements from a Trusted Third-Party Supplier

Once you’ve determined the right telescopic cylinder replacement for your equipment and planned application, you can begin to research hydraulic cylinder suppliers. Many buyers believe going straight to the OEM who manufactured their equipment is the best way to purchase a replacement telescopic cylinder. However, purchasing hydraulic cylinder replacements directly from the OEM will often result in longer turnarounds, needlessly higher prices, and delivery delays due to supply chain disruptions.

The solution? Ordering replacement telescoping cylinders from a reliable third-party supplier. Aftermarket telescopic cylinder replacements offer the same or better performances than OEM-supplied options for a significantly lower price point. Other advantages of choosing a third-party hydraulic cylinder include:

  • Higher quality materials and manufacturing processes compared to many OEMs
  • Greater variety of custom telescoping cylinder options
  • Faster turnaround times and fewer supply chain delays
  • Improved overall operational performances

Get the Most Out of Your Telescopic Replacements with Regular Maintenance & How-To Guides

Purchasing replacement hydraulic cylinders is a big investment, and you want to make sure you or your customers can get the most out of their hydraulic machinery. Regularly scheduled maintenance routines and prompt repairs can extend the lifespan of your equipment despite harsh work conditions, long operating hours, and other factors. To help you get the most out of your telescopic cylinder replacement, the HCI experts have compiled a variety of step-by-step guides:

Discover the HCI Hydraulic Cylinder Difference

Hydraulic Cylinders, Inc. is your trusted aftermarket hydraulic cylinder supplier. We’ll help you demolish downtime at your job site with our vast in-stock inventory, same-day shipping capabilities, and complete cylinder knowledge. Order today, and get back to work as soon as possible. Contact us or request a quote to get started.

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