Grade-A CAT

How a Cat 299D com­pact track loader with Box Blade combo from Hast­ings Deer­ing is im­prov­ing ac­cu­racy and trim­ming costs for Cars­burg Earth­mov­ing

Earthmovers & Excavators - - Front Page - Greg Keane Pho­tos by Nathan Duff

Cars­burg Earth­mov­ing has bought the first Cat 299D com­pact track loader and Cat Box Blade grad­ing and lev­el­ling at­tach­ment sold by Queens­land dealer Hast­ings Deer­ing.

“There has been a lot of in­ter­est in the Cat Box Blade since the an­nounce­ment of its re­lease,” says Hast­ings Deer­ing sales rep­re­sen­ta­tive Ian Gun­ton, who sold the equip­ment to Cars­burg. “High pro­duc­tiv­ity can be achieved, with its front and rear mold­boards al­low­ing work to be done in both di­rec­tions.

“Dual par­a­bolic mir­rors pro­vide full visibil­ity of the front edge, and re­versible blades with wear in­di­ca­tors com­plete the pack­age,” Ian adds. “When com­bined with the Cat loader and Trim­ble sys­tem, they are a very pro­duc­tive and ac­cu­rate team for pro­duc­ing 2D and 3D de­signs in a range of ap­pli­ca­tions.”

Rod­ney Cars­burg, a di­rec­tor of Cars­burg Earth­mov­ing with brother Neil, cred­its con­crete con­trac­tor Bess Con­crete with point­ing them in the di­rec­tion of the tech­nol­ogy.

“They are us­ing 3D tech­nol­ogy with laser screeds to pro­duce ac­cu­rate fin­ished con­crete sur­faces with­out string­lines and with re­duced labour,” he says. “They were look­ing for some­one to take the same ap­proach to the slab earth­works to con­trol ma­te­rial and labour costs”.

The Cat 299D has a sus­pended un­der­car­riage sys­tem and sealed, pres­surised cab with air ride seat, which Rod­ney de­scribes as the most com­fort­able ride he has ex­pe­ri­enced in a com­pact loader.

With an op­er­at­ing weight close to 6 tonnes with the box blade, a pow­er­ful 73kW Cat en­gine and the trac­tion of tracks with in­de­pen­dent sus­pen­sion, the Cat 299D loader has more than enough power to the ground to com­fort­ably han­dle a full blade.

While creep con­trol is a fea­ture of the Cat 299D, Rod­ney notes that he and op­er­a­tor Ash Turn­bull are still learn­ing how to get the best out of the ma­chine and, for now, pre­fer to use man­ual throt­tle con­trol, at around 70 per­cent.

They find that a smooth fin­ish is achieved at this set­ting, whereas higher power can cause blade chat­ter and leave a fin­ish that needs fur­ther work.

The Cat Box Blade has masts on both sides and can be set up to work in 3D with a Uni­ver­sal To­tal Sta­tion, al­low­ing it to work in­side build­ings. It can also work in 2D with dual laser, or use 3D GPS when there is a line of sight to the sky.

There is a third mast on the loader arm for box­ing out house sites with a bucket.

On the job pic­tured above, the Uni­ver­sal To­tal Sta­tion was used. Cars­burg Earth­mov­ing was work­ing for builder Space­frame on a large com­mer­cial project, do­ing site prepa­ra­tion for Bess Con­crete, who sup­plied draw­ings of fin­ished lev­els for the slabs.

The set-up process took about 20 min­utes. Lev­els were set on the rear blade as the fi­nal pass was to be done in re­verse to re­move track marks.

In good ma­te­rial such as the fine, loamy sand used to top the sub­grade, Rod­ney has found that tol­er­ances of 2-3mm can be achieved – less than Cat’s ad­ver­tised 6mm. Work that would have taken two days with string line meth­ods now takes a lit­tle over half a day, with fewer peo­ple and greater ac­cu­racy.

Head­quar­tered in Bris­bane, Hast­ings Deer­ing sells and rents ma­chin­ery, pro­vides parts and ser­vice, and de­liv­ers fleet man­age­ment and pro­duc­tiv­ity so­lu­tions for min­ing and con­struc­tion job-sites. For more in­for­ma­tion call 1300 056 918 or visit www.hast­ings­deer­

Its front and rear mold­boards al­low work to be done in both di­rec­tions

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