Category: Oil & Gas

Top 15 Considerations for Maintaining Undercarriage Health & Productivity

Undercarriage maintenance is critical to the overall productivity of a machine. It is the mechanism that gives tracked machines much of their power and stability. It also represents a high percentage of the total operating cost of the machine over its life.

Proper maintenance and operation play a critical role in controlling operating costs over the life of any piece of equipment. Here are the top 15 maintenance and operating considerations that will help you maintain the health and productivity of your tracked machine.

CASE Expands D Series with CX245D SR Minimum-Swing Excavator

CASE Construction Equipment has introduced the all-new CX245D SR minimum-swing radius excavator to its D Series lineup. Designed to provide increased digging and lifting power in confined work areas, the CX245D SR features a compact counterweight and modified boom placement that minimizes the machine’s footprint, resulting in a highly productive and maneuverable excavator that’s ideal for restricted conditions, such as road and bridge work, residential projects and urban construction.

With an operating weight of 60,400 pounds and a 160 HP Tier 4 Final engine, the CX245D SR offers increased bucket digging forces (up to 34,600 pounds) and lift capacity (up to 22,950 pounds) compared to the previous model.

CASE Launches Dynamic Total Cost of Ownership Calculator

CASE Construction Equipment has launched an all-new Total Cost of Ownership Calculator at CaseCE.com that provides both prospective buyers and current equipment owners insight into lifetime ownership costs. Based on a broad range of operational factors covering the entire line of CASE equipment, the program calculates data in U.S. and Canadian currencies, as well as metric and imperial measurements.

The calculator – available at tco.CaseCE.com – is free to use and is applicable in the U.S. and Canada.

2016 National Gas Rodeo Announces Relay Event Winners

The 2016 National Gas Rodeo, sponsored by CASE Construction Equipment, announced the winners for the two- and four-person team Relay events. Organized by the Midwest Energy Association, this year’s Rodeo was held at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds in Denver.

The 2016 overall Rodeo champion in the two-person team category was Late Start from Alagasco, Alabama. The four-person team winner was the Gas House Gang, from Laclede Gas Company in Spire-Laclede, Missouri, who are back-to-back Rodeo champions.

Ten Tips for Buying a New Excavator

When it comes to purchasing a new excavator, there are many important items to consider. Understanding the right specs and knowing what to look for will have the greatest impact on the productivity of your business. Here is a list of ten important considerations for buying a new excavator.

1. Operating weight/size, Application
It’s important to match the right size machine to the tasks at hand. Crawler excavators are generally grouped into three size-classes; compact/mini (0 – 6 metric tons; or <13,227 pounds), mid-size (6 – 10 metric tons; or 13,227 – 22,046 pounds) and standard/full-size (10 – 90 metric tons; or 22,046 – 198,416 pounds).

Lowering Wheel Loader TCO

When trying to manage the total cost of ownership of your wheel loader, there are several things you can do that will give you an edge on your bottom line—and your competition. Here are ten considerations that can help you lower your operating and ownership costs and increase your profitability.

  1. Right-sizing Equipment. Maybe more so than any other piece of heavy equipment, the size of the loader—and the bucket—can have a heavy impact on upstream and downstream operations. Production in an aggregate or concrete mixing plant can be reduced if a loader bucket isn’t large enough to keep the hopper full. Similarly, in a mass earthmoving application, if a wheel loader can’t keep up with the dozers pushing material to it, then those dozers will be forced to wait.It’s also important to remember that bigger isn’t always better. A wheel loader or bucket can be too large, depending on the application. An oversized machine may have to sit idle waiting to refill a hopper, or waiting for more material. Be sure to work with your CASE dealer and choose the right-sized machine for your application.
  2. Know Your Engine. Today’s Tier 4 Final wheel loaders are equipped with a variety of engine types and after-treatment technologies, and knowing the differences, as well as the impact that they can have on your operation, is essential in managing your ownership costs.CASE has adopted Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology for use in its F Series wheel loaders. SCR lowers harmful emissions through a simple chemical reaction by introducing Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) into the exhaust stream. These systems do not require any kind of regeneration, filter replacement or other maintenance practices found in other systems. SCR allows the engine to run at peak performance, which provides faster throttle response while also maintaining lower temperatures and delivering up to 20% better fuel efficiency over other solutions. It also helps the engine run at lower temperatures, which ultimately extends the service life of components that surround the engine as they are not subject to as much heat stress.It’s important to understand how your after-treatment system works, and how it can impact your productivity in different applications. For example, long warm-up periods in the cold months, as well as any excessive idle times can have a negative impact on the efficiency of SCR-equipped engines. Besides the obvious fuel costs associated with long idle times, this practice also makes SCR systems run less efficiently. Operators will experience higher DEF dosing rates and more frequent fill-ups, so we always suggest using the auto-idle or shutdown features to limit idle times and improve engine efficiency—this will lower your fuel and DEF costs over the life of the machine.
  3. Matching Axles to Operation 
    Pairing the wrong axle/tire configuration to a specific wheel loader application can cause increased wear to the tires, and can put the axles under unnecessarily excessive load.  Properly managing this lowers costs over time and prevents potential long-term damage to the axles.CASE offers three axle options designed to meet the unique requirements of nearly all applications—limited-slip, differential lock and open axle.Limited-slip
    CASE offers a standard limited-slip axle—both front and rear—on our 521F, 621F, 721F, and 821F wheel loaders.

End-of-Year Equipment Considerations

Work may slow down this time of year for contractors in northern climates, while others transition to seasonal work that keeps them busy throughout the winter. And if the ground isn’t frozen and the weather holds out, construction season is a year-round event.  

Regardless of climate, the end of the year and the holidays bring on a time of reflection and opportunity. Here are six tips and thoughts for contractors as they take stock of their equipment fleet going into 2016.

A Primer in Hydraulic Systems Maintenance

Whether you’re working with motor graders, skid steers, track loaders, backhoes or excavators, the one thing that each of these machines has in common is a hydraulic system. From a maintenance perspective, hydraulic systems are often one of the most overlooked components of a machine, yet they are arguably the most important when it comes to getting the best performance out of a piece of equipment. As best practices suggest, most operators will do a daily walkaround inspection, and as long as there are no leaks and the oil level is good, that’s the end of it. But if you want to protect your investment and keep your equipment performing at its best, a hydraulic system requires much more than that. In this article, we will focus on three key elements of any hydraulic system — oil, filtration and system integrity.

Oil
The mantra today is lowering operating costs. Some contractors will take this concept the wrong way and use the cheapest hydraulic oil in order to keep costs down—this can save a few bucks in the short term, but can cause serious harm to your hydraulic system over time. Will you see a failure right away? No, but using the right kind of hydraulic oil can be the difference between an axial piston pump (a very expensive component) lasting 10,000 hours instead of 5,000 hours.

New Dozer and Excavator Models Deliver Speed and Fuel Efficiency for KO Pipeline

One of the challenges for any new company is how to put capital equipment in place to get that very first job done. Kim Ozalas, owner and operator of KO Pipeline, was no different as her company embarked on its first project in 2014. KO Pipeline has kept busy in its first two seasons of work based out of Cambridge, Ohio – and much of the steel and horsepower required to get the job done has come from Todd Clipner and Southeastern Equipment (also headquartered in Cambridge).

“When I came to Cambridge to start my first jobs here, I didn’t even have a shovel,” says Ozalas. “Southeastern let our people come down, get on the machines, adjusting the equipment to the operator. [Input from the] CASE rep is common. Sitting down with them, talking with them, getting their ideas. It really gives people buy in. When you get buy in, then it all works out.”

Winter is Coming: How to Properly Prepare Equipment for Winter

With the winter months quickly approaching, contractors and business owners have to start thinking about preparing their equipment for harsh winter weather conditions.

Whether working in the freezing temperatures or storing equipment for the season, companies need to ensure proper winter maintenance to avoid costly problems come spring.

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