The Differences Between Hoists, Robots and Industrial Manipulators

Industrial Manipulators

When looking for comprehensive material handling solutions, many manufacturers explore their options. Whether you’re looking at a hoist, a hydraulic manipulator, a fully-automated robot or an articulating arm, there is a definite payoff to learning all that you can about your chosen technology. More importantly, there are questions that you need to answer before truly considering any one solution in particular. Do you need to move objects in three dimensional space? Will your employees be required to pitch, roll or yaw parts to change their orientations? Are you hoping to purchase a solution that will grow – and evolve – with your company’s needs? In this post, we’re going to help you answer these questions by discussing the differences between industrial manipulators and hoists and robots.


Hoists are great for lifting things up and down but… that’s about it. As a material handling solution, they are fairly limited in their ability to adapt and be repurposed based on your needs. Industrial manipulators, on the other hand, have the ability to reach horizontally into spaces and, more importantly, the ability to roll, pitch and yaw parts.


Robots are great at what they do… unfortunately, their capabilities are limited outside of that scope. Without massive retooling and complex reprogramming, a robot is always going to be great at one thing. Manipulators, however, aren’t just more versatile, they’re less expensive! Requiring less complicated maintenance and less floor space, industrial manipulators are a great option for shops looking to save time, space and money!

At TDA Buddy, we aim to offer the world’s most versatile pneumatic, electric and hydraulic manipulators. With years of experience in the industry, we have served a wide range of markets and helped countless shops streamline their workflow, reduce instances of workplace injury and lower their bottom line. If you’ve been looking for a new material handling solution, be sure to take a look at our products!

Tags: Industrial Manipulators