Heavy Equipment Graders
Heavy equipment graders, also known as motor graders, are a common tool for constructing and maintaining the grade of a road. They are usually used on roads made of dirt or gravel. Motor graders are an essential piece of equipment for every road construction company and also those that specialize in dirt work.What do heavy equipment graders do?
Heavy equipment graders use a long blade to form a flat surface on the road. This is known as the grading process. These machines can also be used for what is known as finish grading, a term from the field of civil engineering that refers to refining or setting precisely, and are typically used when building houses and commercial buildings.How much do they weigh?
The weight can vary greatly depending on the manufacturer and many other factors. Weights are often broken down by axle. Here is an example of weight specifications for a Caterpillar machine, which is a common maker of heavy equipment graders:
- Front axle, 7,870.5 pounds.
- Rear axle, 20,128.2 pounds.
- Total weight, 27,998.7 pounds.
Six-wheel drive models have a number of features, including the following:
- They are able to power through tough cuts, because power is flowing through all of the wheels.
- They provide the grade operator with greater safety due to better traction.
- They are efficient, being able to do a lot of grading work in little time due to fewer passes.
- They can offer up a blade pull increase of up to 30%.
A number of improvements have been made to motor graders over the years. It is not uncommon for contemporary models to include features such as these:
- All-around lighting.
- First-rate radios.
- Excellent rear view cameras and dedicated monitors.
- Easy access to servicing the cooling package, including fan doors that swing out, coolers that pivot, fans that run only as needed due to hydraulically controlled reversing fans that cool on demand, and easy-to-access filters.
There are many factors to consider when deciding between motor graders. Here are some things to consider:
- Size of the project: If the grade project is large and/or the time to complete it is short, opt for a model with more power and a longer scraper. For smaller projects or those where time is not a factor, medium or small-sized graders will do the trick.
- Safety: Many models include anti-rollover features, as well as precautions for machine noise and engine emissions.