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Ryan Leech

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How-to: RockWheel Installation and Excavator Flow Testing

Posted by Ryan Leech

Oct 21, 2014 2:40:00 PM

 

flowtest_screenshot

Rockwheel installation, like any hydraulic attachment installation should include a flow test and adjustment on the excavator, backhoe or skid steer loader. This assures that the attachment is receiving the correct amount of flow and that the relief pressure is set accordingly. These numbers will be different for each and every Rockwheel model and will ideally differ according to the application. Alpine always recommends flow and pressure settings for each RockWheel that goes out the door. 

This video takes you step-by-step through the flow test and installation process, which is pretty easy with the right tools. Check it out here:


Resources: Flo-Tech meters
Horsepower Calculation: Here and Here


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Topics: How-to

Bedrock Excavation with Adjacent Sensitive Structures

Posted by Ryan Leech

Oct 13, 2014 11:27:00 AM

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Excavation of bedrock adjacent to aging or historic historic structures on problematic foundations is not a task for the faint of heart. Blasting is definitely a no-go and large impact hammers can cause seismic waves that propagate and cause micro or macro fractures well away from the work zone, potentially weakening the existing foundation leading to cracking or in the worst case, collapse. Moreover, hydraulic hammers are not suited for such “dental work” where precision rock removal is required. Unintended overbreak is also a significant risk. 

This is a case where Alpine rock grinding attachments (aka RockWheels) are often the tool of choice. 

pick-force-diagram2012

Through a high-torque (up to 41,400 ft lb),  low-speed (60-120 rpm) cutting action rock grinders attack the shear strength of the rock by “raking” at a 45°-50° angle with conical carbide tipped teeth (picks). Cutting drums typically have 50-80 picks depending on width. Picks are arranged in a spiral fashion with successive picks offset laterally.  As the rotating drum cuts, picks overlap the fracture zone created by the ones ahead. 

The result is an excavation mechanism vastly different from hammers (cutting vs. breaking) and much lower vibrations compared hammers. Smooth, continuous cutting keeps disturbance to surrounding rock and structures to a minimum. Rock can be removed rapidly and with a precision simply not possible with hammers. Tight corners can be milled and walls and bottoms can be made smooth.  Another benefit is the usability of the cuttings. Instead of hauling off large rocks and crushing and disposal, the milled rock (typically 1”-3”) can be reused on site as bedding or back fill eliminating costs associated with transport.

Recently an Alpine TC-E (190-hp) was successfully on a Komatsu PC390 in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania just across the street from the historic courthouse built in 1805. Limestone bedrock with a strength of 15,000-20,000 psi was successfully cut without disturbance to adjacent historic brick buildings or the underlying rock. 

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Topics: Excavation

Alpine+Penn State R&D collab seeks to optimize soil mixer efficiency

Posted by Ryan Leech

Oct 8, 2014 11:40:00 AM

Alpine's partnership with researchers at the Pennsylvania State University continues into 2014 as we continue to improve our soil mixer designs.  

Using numerical modeling and particle tracing, the research team at PSU has simulated the complex interaction between fluid-solid mixtures and mixing tools in order to evaluate torque demand, mixing quality, and drum geometry.

The images on the right show a time-lapse animated model at different views, which indicate how particles move within a substrate with a specific soil pick configuration. These models are run with different drum configuratuions to compare how the particles move and disperse.

What this means for you: we're still digging into complex models to provide the most efficient, cost-effective and thorough mixing tools on the market.

See Alpine's Mixing equipment >HERE

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Topics: Soil Mixing

Custom Extension Brackets for Mixers and Grinders

Posted by Ryan Leech

Aug 25, 2014 10:25:00 AM

 

Alpine Mixer w/ 8' extension bracket

In addition to providing industry-leading rock & concrete cutting attachments and soil mixing equipment, Alpine offers customized extension brackets to accommodate tough applications such as underwater cutting, deep mixing or extra-deep trenches.

We have designed and built a variety of extension brackets of different lengths for different applications. Most recently, we designed an 8' boom for a soil stabilization project. The 8' bracket for our TM-B2 mixer has internal hydraulic housing to reduce interference, dry mix delivery piping for stabilization medium (cement or similar) and easy-access portals that opened into the water-tight boom and mixer motor compartment.

This system offers clients a clean, easy-to-service mixer and boom attachments for applications such as in situ drilling mud stabilization and solidification.

Alpine TM-D Mixer with 6' extension for mixing in barge containers

 

 

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Stump Grinding: Alpine grinder attachments for many applications!

Posted by Ryan Leech

Aug 18, 2014 10:30:00 AM

We recently visited a land-clearing site that was utilizing an Alpine TC-E with stump grinding picks toboss1web remove dozens of small to medium sized stumps. Although the ground was very rocky and the stumps were shallow, the TC-E grinder made short work of these hardwood stumps. Although the low-speed grinders aren't your typical stand-alone, high RPM stump machine, the super-high torque eats stumps, no problem.
Check out this video of the TC-E on a Volvo360 Excavator. Notice the low spray of the wood chips due to the low-RPM grinder, the ease of moving about the site with an excavator and the mulch-sized wood chips produced:

 

 

If you're interested in a hydraulic stump grinding attachment from Alpine-send us a message, we'll be glad to get you a quote or talk details about the technology. Click here to contact Alpine.

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Topics: Stump Grinding

Alpine How-to Video: RockWheel Installation and Excavator Flow Testing

Posted by Ryan Leech

Aug 13, 2014 11:26:00 AM

 

flowtest_screenshot

Rockwheel installation, like any hydraulic attachment installation should include a flow test and adjustment on
the excavator, backhoe or skid steer loader. This assures that the attachment is receiving the correct amount of flow and that the relief pressure is set accordingly. These numbers will be different for each and every Rockwheel model and will ideally differ according to the application. Alpine always recommends flow and pressure settings for each RockWheel that goes out the door. 

This video takes you step-by-step through the flow test and installation process, which is pretty easy with the right tools. Check it out here:


Resources: Flo-Tech meters
Horsepower Calculation: Here and Here


download-rock-and-concrete-grinding-brochure  

 

more

Topics: How-to

New video series for RockWheel Rock & Concrete Grinders

Posted by Ryan Leech

Aug 6, 2014 2:02:00 PM

We made some new how-to videos to assist in set up, installation and maintenance! Alpine Maintenance Video

Whether you're using a RockWheel to cut trenches or grind concrete, this short how-to will help you keep your unit in tip-top shape.

 

 

Click on the video below for the Rockwheel daily maintenance overview: 


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Topics: Rockwheel, How-to

Hyundai and Volvo Use July to Introduce New Excavation Products

Posted by Ryan Leech

Jul 31, 2014 7:00:00 AM

Hyundai_and_Volvo_Use_July_to_Introduce_New_Products

Hyundai Construction Equipment Americas, Inc., long recognized as one of the leaders in earth moving and material handling equipment manufacturing has expanded their offerings in the North American market.

The company announced this past week that it will be rolling out a line of attachments to accompany their supply of excavators.

The new series of attachments boasts 15 models and marks the first time Hyundai has offered these products in North America.

To mark their entry in the new market, Hyundai announced a new HDB hydraulic breaker series.

With 15 different models and a variety of features, the breakers offer a significant amount of versatility and can be useful in a wide range of applications.

The attachments have a powerful capacity, operating with a chisel diameter ranging from 1.6 to 7.9 inches. Other specs from the breakers include operating weight ranges from 271 to 21,401lbs and lengths range from 44.4 to 159.8 inches.

The HDB series breakers also come equipped with innovative technology to improve productivity. Some key features include an Anti Blank Firing (ABF) system designed to stop the breaker to continue breaking material after it has been crushed. Another feature that gives operators improved control in the field is a Two Stroke Selector system that comes standard on most of the models.

The Two Stroke Selector System gives operators the ability to decide whether they want long strokes or short strokes depending on the circumstances.

While Hyundai expands their offerings to attachments, Volvo Construction Equipment announced recently a launch of crawler excavators that put an emphasis on fuel efficiency.

The two crawler excavators are the Tier 4 Final EC250E and the EC300E.

These two excavators come outfitted with a full set of technologically advanced features.

These features enhance efficiency and give manual control the flow to hydraulics by implementing an integrated work mode system. By giving operators the ability to vary their approach based on the conditions of the current job they can work more productively.

One of the excavator’s best design features is that they reduce fuel consumption without compromising performance.

Volvo has designed an ECO mode for their excavators. This mode allows operators to set idle controls that will automatically reduce engine speed if the machine is idle for too long and shut down completely if the machine remains inactive for 5 minutes.

Several other features make these excavators fuel efficient options that several companies could find appealing.

These new products come at a time when construction projects are on the rise and demand is growing. Continuing to invest in innovative solutions will help deal with the increasing number of projects in the best way possible.

July was a big month for new excavation product offerings in the North American market. As companies continue to develop creative solutions to problems in the industry, expect more to come.

Find out everything you need to know about rock grinding with a cutterhead

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Topics: Excavation

EPA Proposes Further Restrictions to Shut Down Mine Before It Starts

Posted by Ryan Leech

Jul 29, 2014 7:00:00 AM

EPA_Proposes_Further_Restrictions_to_Shut_Down_Mine_Before_It_Starts

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) took further action on Friday to prevent construction and development of the Pebble Mine region in Alaska by attempting to place prohibitive restrictions on the future project. Pebble Mine is an initiative looking to capitalize on the Pebble deposits natural mineral reserve. The site of the deposit sits roughly 200 miles Southwest of Anchorage. The area is inhabited by a few thousand residents and hosts a large ore body that consists mostly of porphyry copper.

The driving factor behind the EPA's plan to block the mine's construction is to protect the ecosystem in Alaska's Bristol Bay watershed, a pristine body of water that supports, among other species, the world's largest run of sockeye salmon.

To this point, Bristol Bay remains untouched by many man-made pollutants that have devastated other bodies of water, which has allowed its ecosystem to thrive.

The EPA contends that the disposal of dredge and filler material that will result from mining activities will do irreparable damage to the wildlife in Bristol Bay.

This belief is one reason the EPA has taken such a strong position of opposition to any construction despite the fact that the Pebble Mine project hasn't even progressed to the point of submitting an initial project description for permitting.

Based off of their independent research, the EPA concluded that even a conservative projection of a small operation could cause too much irreversible damage to a rare and precious ecosystem.

They also have reason to believe that the mining project won't be a small one.

They cite a plan filed by the mine owner, Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd., to the U.S. Securities and Exchange commission that details a desire to excavate the largest open pit ever constructed in North America. According to the EPA, the depth would approach the depth of the Grand Canyon.

With a project of that size dredge and other material needed to be disposed by the mine would be significant.

Pebble Limited Partnership, the group in charge of developing the Pebble Mine project, disagrees with the EPA's position. They maintain that their first priority is to protect the Bristol Bay watershed and the surrounding environment. The fishing industry is a major source of provision for the local population and they would never do anything to jeopardize that.

They also disagree with the methodology of the EPA in this situation, believing that exercising preemptive action before an initial permits have been applied for is not only unfair, but beyond the scope of the federal agencies abilities.

The Pebble Limited Partnership filed suit against the agency in May to that effect.

They believe that they can arrive at a solution that allows the state and country to reap the benefits of a rich mineral deposit without negatively impacting the environment.

Time will tell if they get the opportunity to try.

Find out everything you need to know about rock grinding with a cutterhead
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Topics: Mining

Universities Try to Solve Cracks in Infrastructure Dilemma

Posted by Ryan Leech

Jul 25, 2014 7:00:00 AM

Universities_Try_to_Solve_Cracks_in_Infrastructure_Dilemma

Without trying to sound overly dramatic or sensationalistic, there is a significant problem with the current state of infrastructure, particularly the condition of bridges, in the country.

You know you have a problem on your hands when the most accurate phrase uses to describe your bridges are “functionally obsolete” and “structurally deficient”.

Those descriptions apply to one out of every four bridges in the country.

The age of the average bridge is currently 42 years. It is estimated that more than 30% of bridges in existence have already passed their 50-year design life, creating a backlog of repair and replacement projects that is currently being unmet.

According to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), we are currently spending $12.8 billion annually to address the backlog. This is only a fraction of the funds needed to put a dent in the problem. To fully address the problem and eliminate deficient bridges, we need to bump that funding up to $20.5 billion annually. At that rate of spending $8 billion more annually, it would still take until 2028 for every bridge to be brought up to ideal operating conditions.

Unfortunately, not only do we need to find ways to funnel more funding into infrastructure, the funding that is currently being allocated is in jeopardy of disappearing. 

As the Highway Trust Fund borders on the brink of collapsing, Congress contemplates a temporary measure to stave-off insolvency until next May.

Temporary measures of this nature are not sufficient solutions. They allow for band-aids to be placed on major issues, but without securing long-term funding, there can be no long-term strategy for improving the situation in the future, instead of just preventing it from getting worse.

To draw attention to the issue Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx and 11 of his predecessors penned an open letter to Congress this week.

These 12 men have served both Republicans and Democrats and bring over 35 years of experience to the table.

So when they say "Never in our nation's history has America's transportation system been on a more unsustainable course.", it can be safely assumed that they aren't using hyperbole.

While Congress works on securing the $140 billion necessary to complete these bridge repairs, others work on trying to prevent tragedies like the 2007 collapse of the Interstate 35W bridge in Minneapolis.

States like South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and New York are a few of the states that have began relying more on wireless sensors to receive up-to-date information on bridges to help them prioritize which bridges need immediate attention.

The benefits of these sensors include relevant time-sensitive information and higher reliability than visual inspections.

A team of researchers from North Carolina State University and the University of Eastern Finland have developed another product that might help monitor vital bridge information.

The product is a new paint-on "sensing skin" that can be applied to concrete structures to detect weaknesses.

This low-cost option uses electrodes and a small electric current to run through the paint to pinpoint weakness in the structural integrity of the concrete before they spread to dangerous levels.

The product is still in the testing stages, but advances like this one in monitoring bridge conditions will be necessary until we begin to invest the money to change the way we describe our bridges.

Descriptions that don't include the words "functionally obsolete" or "structurally deficient".        

Find out everything you need to know about rock grinding with a cutterhead    

 

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Topics: Construction

About this blog

This blog is a resource for research, how-to's, and general news regarding rock grinders, transverse cutter heads, roadheaders, and alternatives to hydraulic hammers. 

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