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Roadbuilding: The road to success

The beauty of the roadbuilding sector is the vast amount of products used, as many different types of manufacturers’ services are required when building roads, and this makes competition fierce.

In the wake of Bauma 2016 in Germany, many new products have been released on the market. Wirtgen, for example, has launched two new machines for road rehabilitation.

One of these was the W 120 Ri from the new generation of small milling machines, which is a mobile rear loader on wheels. The second is the W 150 CFi, which is a front loader and said to be the most powerful model in the new compact class.

The company has also launched its new slipform paver SP 64i and the curing unit TCM 180i – two machines that the company described as “pioneering” – for high-quality concrete paving.

Together with the SP 61i and SP 62i models, the SP 64i makes up the new SP 60 series which is set to replace the SP 500 slipform paver in the future.

The new SP 90 series comprises the SP 92i and the SP 94i, a completely modular inset version with four steered and pivotable crawler tracks.

The PKD cutters for cold milling machines are also new from Wirtgen, as well as two further innovations in the form of point-attack cutting tools of Generation Z, and the quick-change toolholder system HT22. These have been specially developed to meet the requirements of cold recycling and soil stabilisation. Across the Atlantic, Minnich launched a new concrete barrier wall drill at the World of Concrete 2016 show in Las Vegas, US.

The company said the powerful new drill helped contractors maximise the efficiency and safety of drilling vertical holes for the pins used to secure temporary concrete traffic barriers.

Air-driven and self-propelled, the Minnich concrete barrier wall drill straddles and rides along the top of the temporary wall.

A tethered controller enables the operator simultaneously to drill three accurate, consistent pin holes – through pre-moulded holes in the wall, through the road, into the sub-base – while positioned on the non-traffic side of the barrier.

Todd Jurjevic, director of sales, said, “The new drill saves contractors significant time and cost, and promotes safety by eliminating the need to hand-drill pin holes on the traffic side of the barrier.”

Advanced technology

Volvo Construction Equipment has added the SD75B, SD115B and SD135B soil compactors, which the company said were packed with advanced technology that adapted to the application and jobsite, providing maximum versatility and performance.

The new machines are EU Stage IV/Tier 4 Final-compliant.

Volvo’s advanced drum control system allows the operator – via an easy-to-use console – to adjust the frequency and amplitude, compensating for changing soil types and conditions. Two frequency settings come as standard but five can be included as an option. High or low amplitude can be selected to adjust the drum’s dynamic force based on the job and material depth.

The traction system provides improved climbing and traction capabilities in difficult applications, such as steep inclines or slippery surfaces, preventing wheel or drum spin for excellent gradeability, performance and productivity, said Volvo.

The B-Series compactors can be set up in three different configurations and are available with a smooth or padfoot drum. The compactor can also be quickly and easily converted from a smooth drum by clamping on a padfoot shell, said the company.

Looking at the performance of the engines, it is said to deliver high torque at low rpm for lower emissions and decreased fuel consumption, without compromising on power. ECO mode now comes as standard on the SD75B, SD115B and SD135B models and can achieve up to a 40% reduction in fuel consumption by matching engine speed to operation mode. Furthermore, the new eccentric design provides quicker ramp-up speeds at lower pressure, also for increased fuel efficiency.