Front Loader Gets Owned By Much Smaller Skid Steer
If you’ve ever been to a construction site debacle, you’ll know there’s always two groups of people – the guy fixing the problem and twenty others standing around looking. Uprighting a tipped over dump truck is no easy feat. Whether it’s because the road gave way or simply a heavy load, dump trucks can have a real rough time.
And once a big giant goes down, it’s no small feat to get him back on his feet. This was actually a pretty intelligent way of going about it using two good pieces of equipment – the GEHL V400 skid loader and a CAT 986H. But good equipment is nothing without a few good operators – so cheers to the fine folks helping to get this tri-axle truck back on its wheels.
A big thing we wanted to point out is the presence of a dozen knuckleheads mucking up the scene while these two heavy pieces of machinery get to work. While it’s good to have ground guides and another set of eyes directing movement, a dozen guys gaggling about while tons of machinery are moving feet away isn’t a smart move.
For reference, a CAT 986H front loader weighs something to the order of 94,000 pounds. That’s pancake breakfast if it lands on the wrong spot. Let’s forget for a moment that t
For reference, a CAT 986H front loader weighs something to the order of 94,000 pounds. That’s pancake breakfast if it lands on the wrong spot. Let’s forget for a moment that the front loader and skid loader are working hard to get a massive tri-axle truck on its feet. From the looks of the truck, it’s an International 2574 or similar. Either way, unloaded, those tri-axles weigh upwards of 64,000 pounds. This is no place for squishy people to get in between. As much as it’s fun to gawk and stand about, there’s a difference between helping with an incident and potentially mucking it up. Also, there’s going to be some heavy priority placed on getting that International’s Cummins engine back up and running – it’s worth a tight fortune in the construction business and a truck that’s down is serious money lost.
What’s Up With GEHLs?
You know what we don’t hear a lot about? Gehls. Maybe they’re just more popular in Germany or where-ever, but I just don’t see a lot of them on construction sites. Their skid loaders are pretty rugged and actually pack more power than most compact Kubota excavators. And, with a rated operating capacity of 8818 pounds, it’s not enough to upright a tri-axle truck by itself, but it is certainly powerful enough to help steady and balance the upended truck’s weight while that CAT 986H gets to work. Well, because I was curious, I did some digging around on Gehls. No pun intended, of course, because it seems most of Gehl’s line of construction vehicles is geared to excavation and digging. And that’s when I found something I bet those guys wish they had on that accident site: an RS series telescopic handler. That’s like a fork lift that has an extendable arm for lifting objects high above the ground. There’s definitely some challenges with a telescopic handler, though. For one, you gotta be real careful when lifting heavy objects up. A wrong turn could result in a shift in weight and cause the telescopic handler to end up like that tri-axle truck – no good. But, honestly, if you had something like an RS10-44 Gen 2 out there, it has a rated lift capacity of 10,000 pounds. Well, for fear of it punching through the hull of the truck, you’d probably need the CAT 986H to assist, but you could definitely leverage that telescopic arm to pushing that truck back right again. And the one cool thing about CAT front loaders is that they can also come with detachable front loaders. So, if you want to switch between something like a forklift or a shovel, you can do that. Or, as is more the case, switching from a flat-lipped bucket to a toothed bucket if you’re going from scrapping debris to digging in the dirt and rock. I think the coolest bucket I saw for the CAT front loader is probably the one they use for millyard operations. It looks like a giant dinosaur mouth and it just grabs a hold of a huge pile of timber and moves it around like a tyrannosaurus rex tossing around a pterodactyl.
But, as we all know from working out on construction sites – we tend to have to work with what we’ve got. And having a CAT 986 out in the field is surely a blessing every time.