New Rigs on the Runway

July 1, 2002

Loader moves on rubber tracks that disperse the machine’s weight more than tires would, allowing the unit to enter delicate or landscaped areas where only crews on foot once trod. In fact, the ASL treads very lightly, producing just 2.5 psi-far less than that of the average human.

Powered by a 1.5-lit. Caterpillar three-cylinder diesel engine, Polaris’s All-Surface Loader offers 10 in. of ground clearance and is topped off with protective ROPS/FOPS. Available quick-attach tools-including backhoe, pallet forks, power sod roller, snowblower, large-capacity steel bucket, trencher, and power auger-provide flexibility and versatility.The Gehl Company, which has built skid loaders in Madison, SD, for nearly 30 years, is unveiling the 35 Series skid loaders. Models range from 20 to 80 hp with SAE operating capacities from 750 to 2,300 lb. While providing extra lifting strength, the units’ power-view boom also affords good operator visibility. The 35 Series extended wheelbase (42 in.) and lower center of gravity provides stability and a smooth ride, and the rider also enjoys a comfortable, expansive operator platform. For further driver comfort, the 35 Series cabs can be customized with an all-weather rigid enclosure with sliding side windows and front-door wiper kit and a heater/defroster kit.Available Gehl accessories include a utility bucket, a light material bucket, pallet forks, a manure/utility fork, backhoes, brooms, trenchers, graders, industrial grapples, cold planers, breakers, hydraulic augers, a fork grapple, and tracks.Daewoo Heavy Industries of Suwanee, GA, offers four model lines of mini-excavators and skid-steer loaders. The 1,700-lb., 65-hp model 2060XL, which tops Daewoo’s skid-steer loader line, offers a 2,000-lb.-rated operating load and a 4,338-lb. tipping load. The machine allows a 93.6-in. dump height at bucket discharge, with a dump reach (at maximum height) of 27.3 in.Designed to be versatile, the Daewoo 2060XL skid-steer loader accommodates many attachments. For earthmoving/construction work, there are available augers, auger buckets, backhoes, hydraulic hammers, a postmaster/slabmaster, a rock wheel, a scraper, a tiller, tracks, and a trencher. For landscaping or moving other plant materials, Daewoo offers bale movers, a flail mower, landscaping tools, lifting devices, a shear, and a stump grinder. Other attachments include dozer and snow blades, buckets, a cold planer, forks, a snow blower, sweepers, and a vibratory roller.As All Season Vehicles’s (ASV) slogan says, “Your next skid-steer might not be a skid-steer,” and the Grand Rapids, MN, firm, an affiliate of Caterpillar, offers its All Surface Loaders as proof. The newest machine, the RC-50 All Surface Loader, features the R-Series Traction and Support System undercarriage for high traction, low ground pressure, and maneuverability. Powered by a 50-hp Caterpillar 3024C model engine, the RC-50 weighs nearly 4,700 lb. but, with an RTSS rubber-track undercarriage, has a ground pressure less than 3 psi, half that of the average adult human. The unit has an operating capacity of 1,500 lb., with a 115-in. height (to the hinge pin). Equipped with a standard loader and quick-attach coupler, dozens of dedicated work tools are available for the RC-50.ASV’s R-Series line began in 2000, with the introduction of the RC-30, a small, all-surface loader built for the landscaping industry. Powered by a 31.5-hp Caterpillar 3013 model engine, the RC-30 also uses the RTSS rubber-track undercarriage, resulting in a ground pressure of 2.5 psi.John Perkins of Perkins Landscape Contractors in Chanhassen, MN, is a fan of the ASV RC-30. “It’s a neat little tool for us, a small version of the bigger vehicles, so it works great in small, tight areas, eliminating a lot of hand work,” he points out. “We picked up a new one last year, and it sure came in handy. We’ve done a lot of municipal work because we can get at small spaces. Some of this work entails erosion control on creekbanks that adjoin residential areas. We put down fabric and rock to stop erosion. To get to the job site, sometimes we have to go through people’s yards or other finished areas. With the RC-30, we can get in and get our job done without tearing up the lawns. Since the machine uses a smooth track, we can even go across golf greens.”In addition to using the RC-30 to do any needed earthmoving, Perkins also uses the machine to haul materials in and out of job sites. “I’ve even transported trees in it,” he relates. Transporting the RC-30 from one site to another is also no problem: “It’s small enough, you can drive it up a ramp into the bed of a heavy-duty, full-size pickup.”Perkins has used both a hole digger and a backhoe on his unit. “It has high-speed outlets on it where you attach these, and that’s easy to do. One or two guys could landscape a house with this one tool. Some jobs, to do by hand, would have needed five or six guys,” he notes. “With the RC-30 and its attachments, two guys can do the work in about a day. It’s so small, you can get around nearly anywhere, even in wet ground.”His trusty ASV RC-30 also allowed Perkins to finish a near-impossible task: “We got a call about making a 12,000-square yard ball field ready for a tournament. Luckily the RC-30 has an attachment that rolls out and cuts large rolls-30 inches wide by 96 feet long-of sod. On Monday we graded and prepared the field, making it ready for laying the sod; we put down the sod, and by Thursday the kids were playing their tournament on the field. I did the whole job with just four people.”
Potpourri Picks
Dressta North America, located in Buffalo Grove, IL, recently introduced its EXTRA series, three small crawler-dozer models: TD-7H EXTRA, TD-8H EXTRA, and TD-9H EXTRA. Features in this line reflect input from users of current Dressta small dozers. The EXTRA series includes blades up to 18% larger than previous models. Fuel-tank capacity was increased 17%, a dash-mounted fuel gauge was added, and all models are also available in low-ground-pressure versions. For fire-control applications, the TD-8H and TD-9H are available in direct-drive versions.Operator comfort and safety also were reworked for the EXTRA series. Among other improvements, the machines boast a modern-style ROPS canopy, with new sweeps, screen, and exhaust; a more comfortable suspension seat with lumbar support is now standard equipment; and air conditioning is available. The EXTRA series is easier to enter and exit than previous models, as its steps and handrails were relocated at the suggestion of customers.Maxon Industries in Milwaukee, WI, now offers its TO730H-K Soil Stabilizer with a 152-hp Cummins 6BT5.9 turbo diesel engine. Touted as an economical alternative to larger mixers, the TO730H-K is the market’s only 150-hp soil stabilizer.In addition to its powerful engine, the Maxon TO730H-K features a hydrostatic ground drive with infinitely variable speed control, which eliminates the need to shift gears. Its mixing system’s fully enclosed rotor drive, which utilizes a ring-and-pinion setup, allows the machine to process more than 1,000 ft.2 of material per hour. The rig can reach a depth of up to 12 in. and blend together different lifts of aggregates and soils into a homogenous mix.Long known for its hydroseeding equipment, Finn Corporation of Fairfield, OH, also offers a Bark Blower line. “Originally, back in 1992, Bark Blowers were small trailer models,” recalls Finn’s Walter Butman. “We started expanding into blowing other materials, wood and greenwaste materials, wood chips, soil, and soil waste. To do this we had to enhance the machines.” Bark Blowers are now available in a variety of sizes-from a small 2-yd. machine to a 40-yd. model-that are used on huge highway projects. Bark Blowers can be truck-mounted; some, usually the smaller models, are available in trailer versions.Building upon its hydroseeding technology, Finn made enhancements to its Bark Blower line. For example, a Bark Blower hose must be much stronger than one for hydroseeding. “The hose is smooth on the inside so no material will catch and clog,” Butman states, “and the hose is reinforced with a metal helix to make it more sturdy.”Thanks to its beefed-up Air Lock system, Bark Blower will apply particles up to 4 in. in diameter; however, when applying bark or pine nuggets, there are sometimes a few larger pieces in the mix that might block the Air Lock system. Bark Blowers are prepared for such instances.“The Air Lock system contains spinning knives, which can cut some materials down to size, to allow them to go through the system,” Butman explains. “Or if the matter is too green, the system will reverse itself and spit the matter out-in essence, it’s self-cleaning. The Bark Blower is so powerful, it can apply sand and even small aggregate. Of course, the spinning knives would have to be removed before such an operation.”Finn’s seed injection system is also available on Bark Blower equipment. “You can build up the soil profile and add compost while seeding,” Butman adds. “It’s a great alternative and option for a contractor-accomplishing several steps at once. Many customers are now also using Bark Blowers to fill Filtrexx Filter Socks on-site, to stop sediment, and to meet [National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System] Phase II requirements.”After its Henderson, NV, branch used Finn Bark Blowers on some projects, the Suzuken Company liked the product enough to begin exporting units to Japan. “Finn Bark Blowers are very good; ecologywise, they work very well,” comments Suzuken’s Shinji Izawa. “Our company, originally a lumber business, is now also a landscaping business; we blow bark for erosion control around dam constructions. We can grind trees at the site and blow it there-it’s more economical. We also can make compost right at the site, and if needed for a certain effect, we can put colors on bark chips.”Suzuken Company, located in Toyota City, Aichi, is importing Finn equipment. “It’s a new market for both of us,” Izawa says. “The cost savings we get here by using Finn Bark Blowers will be even greater in Japan, where transportation of materials costs even more.”In addition to gaining Japanese sales, Finn gets more benefit from the Suzuken deal, Izawa points out. “We have our own traditions of woodwaste and erosion control systems and are introducing our systems to the Finn Corporation.”