Monthly Archives: February 2016

Construction business is a dynamic business – Do not take decisions alone

Whenever you are about to take an important decision in your life, it is prudent that you have a talk with your near and dear ones or the ones whom you trust that they can help you cross the challenge with their expert advice and then take your decision. If you skip taking any advices from people, it may so happen that you start doing something without knowing much about it and end up endangering your life or career. That was about life and so it is with your business and especially when you are dealing with a dynamic business like construction, you got to be all the more cautious about what you are doing. Any incorrect step can prove very costly to you and also to the people who are connected to you with your business. Construction business is quite dynamic in nature:- If you have set your foot in the construction domain, you have probably entered into one of the most dynamic industry of today’s time which is dominated by players who are pretty old in this business. They are also the one who has a bit of hold in the construction market and can change things to their convenience. Having said this, it does not imply that they can play around with things as per their whims and fancies. That is never the case and will also not be feasible in the future. The construction sector is influenced by large number of factors and the big players are just one small factor. Other than that, you got to be cautious about other factors as well that has the potential of causing enough harm to your business if ignored. Expert advices are needed in every stream also in construction domain:- You may have spent quite a good number of years in the construction business, yet you may find yourself in a situation where you may need advice from people. It is not that you do not know the way out but it is just that you are tensed then and may not be able to pick the right way out. Therefore, you may need some consultative talks from your peers and people you know in this industry from a long time. They should be the right guys who can give you appropriate suggestions and may get you out of a mess. Taking decision along can be harmful. Take people along:- When you are taking important business decisions, it is very important that you do not skip the presence of other people working in your company. They are the ones who can come down with valuable advices, something that you may have never thought about and after hearing them you may just wonder “how can I skip this?”. Well, a single head may not be sufficient to take all the load of a business and therefore it is better if you can share the load with other trusted people in your company. That will set things right for you.

Diminishing the ground pressure to increase efficiency

Heavy equipment is unable to perform to its maximum ability when its wheels have to move on wet lands. Wet land makes things very difficult for heavy equipment and it has to exert additional strength to move on it. Especially equipment with wheels are vulnerable to wet lands. Exerting extra strength directly puts more pressure on the engine of the machine which in turn has to work more to just move in that space.  This means that the engine also becomes vulnerable and it may be possible that it may soon need a replacement or a checkup by a mechanic. People dealing with heavy equipment believed that regular crawler tracks will suffice the soft lands but when it was put into practice, it was found that crawler tracks are not sufficient to move on such lands. It was therefore necessary to build something that can diminish the ground pressure and can thus increase the efficiency of the machines.

Machines without low ground pressure also causes lot of problems to the terrain. For instance, machines that are used in forest areas uproot the weeds that are not meant to be uprooted and also cause damage to the land and trees. Understanding the need of the user, Caterpillar along with John Mackay Ltd. Has manufactured the world’s first low ground pressure excavator. They named the excavator as CAT 312 hydraulic excavator. The engineers while building this new machine have customized it with reconditioned undercarriage that involves old track motors that were initially reconditioned by Finning. They also customized the 1.4 meter non-offset track pads. These pads originally belonged to a 312C model. Extra care was taken to ensure that the machine fits the needs of the customers and also offers higher efficiency.

The problem was not only limited to small contractors but was more attuned with big construction companies who take big projects and eventually end up with unlimited hurdles. Same was the case with one Scottish contractor named Malcolm Construction. This company also had to work on swampy grounds and experienced the same problem that many did in the past. Malcolm Construction used a JCB JS145 excavator to excavate the land. This machine had longer track frame and the track pads were 1500mm wide. JCB ideally do not have this wide track pads and it was modified on request of the company to meet its requirements.

There was another crane named Manitowoc 21000 that was known for exerting low ground pressure but it was last seen at Las Vegas Conexpo in the year 1999.  Manitowoc not only reduced the ground pressure but it also eliminated the requirement for huge tracks. This made it simpler for the cranes to move things from one place to the other. It has been a great success for the heavy equipment manufacturing companies to have solved the problem of high ground pressure by introducing mechanisms that are easy to use and also solves the problem.

Heavy equipment with latest technology is an asset

Just buying heavy equipment for the sake of possessing one does not make any sense. The equipment that you buy should have the latest gadgets that can ease the work for the operator and will also fasten things up. Today everybody expect us to complete the work in stringent deadline and this is only possible with the help of machines fitted with advanced technology gadgets. This also helps you to make an impression in the overall construction segment and allows you to establish a brand value of your company. Heavy equipment manufacturing companies are in the process of selling 2 types of products. The first one is machines that are competent in doing all the work but may relatively take more time and the second one is equipment that is quick, easy to maneuver and can manage to get the work done with a lot of precision.

The first type of heavy equipment is not so expensive and is mostly bought by small construction companies or contractors but the second one is usually bought by mighty construction companies who work on strict deadlines. They are specifically designed to bring precision to the operator job and therefore they cost dearly in the market. It also depends upon the company that you buy these machines from. Not all heavy equipment companies charge you the same amount for the type 2 machines. The companies which have its brand value charge more and the one which is competing to make its place in the industry may out the price a bit lower than its competitors.

If you are using the type one class of machines and if you aim to get bigger projects, you have to switch into the type 2 class of machines. You also need to ensure that you have the staff who knows to operate those advanced piece of metal. This means that you have to hire some experienced people and also need to ensure that you use those experienced men to train the men who have worked with you for years. They also need to know how the technologically advanced machines work. The reason to train your old staff on the latest machines is that they are with you for years and there is less chance that they will leave you. So it is better that you train your old men with new tricks and utilize their experience. You also do not have to pay more to them for working on advanced class machines. They on the contrary will be grateful to you to allow them a simplified version.

Now comes the cost of the machine. These heavy equipment are quite expensive and you may have to apply for a loan to possess them. It will be very unlikely to get these machines on rent. You would be lucky if you manage to get them on rent. Before you make any headway towards buying these heavy equipment, ensure that you have good financial standing. Do not shell off all your heard earned bucks behind possessing the metal.

Have the other two talk about renting different pieces of equipment

Giving heavy equipment on rent is a very lucrative option when you are out of business or do not have many projects in hand. You will keep getting some money at the end of every month. Simultaneously, it is very important for the two parties to talk in clear terms about the terms of agreement. The owner of the equipment should make all his terms clear to the taker like how frequently he should be servicing the machine, how many hours he can make the machine work in a day and if by chance any accident happens then the cost of repairing the machine has to be billed to the taker. He cannot give the machine back to the owner in a damaged condition. It is advisable that they should make an agreement once they have finalized their talks so that their communication does not remain verbal and have some evidence to back.

At times, there are people who are particularly looking for a piece of equipment and not the entire machine. They may have the entire machine with them but just want to put an add-on which is perhaps missing in their machine. They just want to rent that piece of equipment to complete his work and then return it after using it for a couple of months. He may not have the need to use that piece for a year or so but the need may be very temporary in nature. Their needs may be unique and he may not always get what he wants. It is ideally that the guy who rents his machine would like to rent the entire equipment and not just the part. However, things are changing now and more and more heavy equipment owners are ready to rent pieces of their equipment to others.

The best way to know who is renting what is to search for it on the net. There the seeker may get plenty of options and can come down to the best suitable option. The online sites also offer the option to make the payment online and then the giver can ship the item to your doorstep. Nevertheless, before you make the payment it is important that you get in touch with the party and if possible inspect the item you’re willing to take on rent. It is only when you find the item good enough to take it on rent that you should go ahead with it.

It won’t be wise enough to make the payment before you even inspect the item or have a talk with the owner. Remember, having a clear communication is far more important or else it may lead you to bigger problems. Once you have talked about all the important aspects and are willing to make a written agreement on it, you can then go ahead and pay him/her online. Always make the payment of the item through the website as that will leave nothing at risk for you.

Top Selling John Deere Machines

John Deere has been a renowned company for the last many decades and they have maintained their reputation consistent in all these years. It is perhaps one of the companies that have managed to give tough competition to the leaders of the heavy equipment manufacturing industry. It has rather managed to show their presence in the heavy equipment industry and often come across products that others feel are highly advanced and that compels them to come out with something that is befitting to its product. John Deere never wanted to be the market leader but has always wanted it to outperform others and make its mark in the heavy equipment business. Today, they stand amongst the top selling brands and have scored good profits in the last many years.

Though the construction industry was quite volatile all across the globe, they still managed to keep their nerves cool and advance in a way that can keep the company floating during turbulent times. Not only have they capitalized in the construction industry but they have also made their mark in the agricultural sector. With the help of their tractors, famers are able to do their work with much ease and comfort and it also saves a lot of their time. Time is certainly a factor for the farmers as well as they need to bring the agricultural products to the main market on time and the heavy equipment produced by John Deere directly benefits the farmers there.

John Deere’s heavy equipment are sold all over the world and this time it was in the European Union that it made significant sale. They in fact became the household name as there were not many houses who did not own a machine of John Deere. In the year 2012, the total number of John Deere tractors sold in UK alone was 4,734 which is indeed a commendable figure. Not many heavy equipment companies have managed to hit this high volume during that year considering that 2012 was not an enthusiastic year for the manufacturing companies. It was John Deere that has managed to set aside all odds and sold high volumes of tractors that were above 50 hp.

This figure also suggests that John Deere has been the number one company for straight 14 years. This is a mighty achievement for any heavy equipment company who faces stiff competition from all sides. When you have companies like CAT, Hitachi, Komatsu and stuff, it gets tougher to get going. The year 2011 was better than 2012 as they were able to sell more tractors in that year. However as stated the year 2012 was invariably not a good year for the entire heavy equipment companies, it can be said that John Deere managed to not burn its finger in that year.

John Deere has its presence in many other countries and it seems that their sales are always top notch in whichever country they operate their business. Though they manufacture other machines as well, however it is the tractor that gets sold the most.

Buy medium range heavy equipment than spending a fortune on larger ones

In a construction business, one need to be very particular with his finances and just can’t afford to spend money lavishly in buying heavy equipment. This does not mean that one should simply refrain from buying heavy machineries but should take ample care before deciding the kind of equipment he would like to go for. The only reason why he should be cautious is heavy equipments are highly expensive piece of metal and if you go for machines that is installed with latest technological devices then the price of the machine rises even further. So you must have kept a budget for your machine and when you go to shop you are astonished to find that it is more expensive than what you have estimated.

In case if there is a dire need for you to procure heavy equipments, you can go for medium range machines that work pretty much at the same level as the bigger ones can do (perhaps with few basic differences pertaining to the make and technology of the machine) and that will also cost you much lower, thereby will not make a big hole in your pocket.

Few facts one should consider before they go for medium range heavy equipment.

It should meet your business requirement:-

Meeting your business requirement is the first priority that you should be looking for when you decide to buy medium range heavy equipment. Though medium range heavy equipment is capable of performing every task as perfectly as its larger version could have done, but it has its own limitations. So while you are picking up medium range machine, you should check if it is viable for your project or you have to stick to its larger version. It makes absolutely no point later to remorse over having picked the wrong one.

It should be economically convenient:-

The reason you are picking medium range machine is that it is economically convenient to you. However, it is advisable that you do a bit of market research before you take the final plunge. It is very crucial to study the price of different machines with different features. A medium range heavy equipment with latest technological devices can be more expensive than the bigger one. Now the question is do you really need those many features in your machine and if no, then it does not make much sense to go for that model.

Should be low on maintenance cost:-

Heavy equipments are undoubtedly highly expensive but there is something more worrisome than just its cost and it is the maintenance of the machine. People have to spend good chunk of money in repairing their equipments which proves to be a much costlier affair. Not all heavy equipments will cost you high on maintenance but some definitely does and you got to pick the one that sounds good as far as the maintenance part is concerned.

Medium range machines are always a better option. However, at times the project you are working on may demand the use of the bigger ones. But if you can work it out using a smaller version, you should be going for it.

New Caterpillar Bulldozers

Construction business owners invest a lot on heavy equipment and they are always in the look of technologically advanced machines that has the capacity of working for hours at length, consumes less fuel, emit less carbon and provide enough comfort to the operator so that at the end of the day they do not feel dead tired. Reliability is something that they are not ready to compromise a bit and if they find that the machine is not up to the mark, then very soon the demand diminishes for that machine incurring huge loss to the manufacturer. Keeping everything into due deliberation, Cat always comes up with products that matches consumer’s needs, wants and demands and in this process they turn out to be the undisputed leader in the heavy equipment manufacturing industry leaving every other company far behind.

Caterpillar is renowned for producing different types of equipment and is best known for producing dozers. We will be speaking in length about one of its new arrival and that is CAT D11T dozer.

Starting with the dimension of the machine, the total length of the machine with blade is 34.9 ft in and without blade it is 19.8 ft in, the width over the tracks is 11.8 ft in, the height to the top of the cab is 13.4 ft in and the length of the track on the ground is 12.7 ft in. Paying little attention on the specs, CAT D11T has a gross power of 935 hp and net power of 850 hp. The power measure is at 1800 rpm and the displacement is 1958.9 cu in. The total number of cylinders installed in the dozer is 12.

The total operating weight of the machine is 104590 kg with a fuel capacity of 425 gallon. The cooling system fluid capacity, the engine oil capacity, hydraulic fluid capacity and power-train fluid capacity is 63 gallon, 28 gallon, 64.2 gallon and 91 gallon respectively. The operating voltage is 24 V with alternator supplied amperage of 100amps.

Moving to the transmission of the machine, the total number of forward and reverse gears is 3 with a maximum forward speed of 7.3 mph and maximum reverse speed of 8.7 mph. The standard shoe size of the machine is 28 in. The total number of shoes on each side is 41 and the total number of track rollers on each side is 8. Moving the focus to the blade of the dozer, the width and height of the blade is 18.3 ft in and 109 in respectively. The capacity of the blade is 35.5 yd3 and the cutting depth is around 30.2 in.

It is fitted with hydraulic pump that is ideally gear driven and has a relief valve pressure of 3500 psi and the pump flow capacity is 66 gallon per minute. People who are intending to buy this machine should first go through its specifications and decide to buy it only if they find it suitable for their projects which it ideally is.

Caterpillar 613 Scraper

Heavy equipment is more in demand in both the construction and mining industries. Over the period of last few decades, it has shown the world that the overall construction industry has moved into a new dimension and the one that is responsible for this shift is the heavy equipment that is been used for construction work. With the help of internet, finding out which heavy equipment can be used for what kind of work is fairly simple these days but when it comes to choose your pick on the brand, things start becoming confusing from there. A number of brands associated with heavy equipment have made their presence in the gigantic industry. So now people have more options which means that they can pick up anything that they feel is the best for them. However, having more options also leads them to a sort of confusion where it becomes very difficult for them to identify the brand they should be making way with.

It has been witnessed that Caterpillar is a brand that has managed to penetrate deep inside the hearts of major construction companies. Many of them would prefer to go with Cat products as they believe that CAT is known for producing quality produces at quite a reasonable price. CAT is also brand that has been in the market for years with an untarnished image and it is quite a hard job to keep your image spotless especially after having stayed in a competitive environment for so long.

CAT is known for producing many heavy equipment but it has a reputation of designing some world class scrapers. Speaking a bit about the scrapers, we would be discussing briefly about the CAT 613 scraper. The net power of the machine is 150 hp with a displacement of 636 cu in and the power is measured at 2200 rpm. The total fuel capacity is around 65 gallons and the size of the tire is 18*25, 12 PR. It is also known for its solid grip in muddy ditches and rocky slopes. The maximum speed while going forward is 24 mph. The operating weight of the scraper while it is empty is 14305 kg. Talking about the bowl of the machine, the heaped capacity is 11 yd3 with a maximum depth of cut of 6.7 in and width of cut of around 8 ft in.

Moving to the dimension of the machine, the overall length of the scraper is 32.1 ft in and the width is around 8 ft in. The overall height of the machine is 9.4 ft in and the wheelbase is around 20.8 ft in. Many are of the opinion that CAT products are usually high priced ones and are not within the budget of many small to some mid-sized companies. However, the fact is completely opposite as far as the 613 scraper is concerned. Many small to medium sized construction companies can easily afford to buy a new 613 scraper without hurting the overall budget of their company and will find it a worthy purchase.

Middle East can give good sales figure for heavy equipment companies

The year 2015 has been an overwhelming one for the heavy equipment producing companies. There will be hardly any company that has not registered profits in the last year and the kind of expectation they are having in the year 2016 is just magnanimous. They have given the credit of good sales to the sales team and also to the engineers who have worked endlessly to give the consumers the stuff they want. It was not a simple task but it seems the work was completed with a lot of vigor and heartiness by all those who were associated with the heavy equipment producing companies. They have achieved the sales figure with the help of the engineers who played an instrumental role in bringing innovative products and the marketing team who have done incredibly well to market them to the end user.

Now if we check which region has been more successful, we get few names and out of them, it was the Middle East region that outshone others. Sale of heavy equipment was not restricted to few companies but it seems that almost all the heavy equipment companies that have their existence in the region has made considerable amount of profit. It was basically a good year of business for almost all the companies and they have pretty high hopes with this year. It becomes quite instrumental for the heavy equipment companies to carry on with the same good work that they have been doing all the way and ensure that they outperform the sales figure of the previous year.

Keeping Middle East as their focal point has been a good strategy and they are already on the way to deploy more of their units in other Gulf nations. They see these places to be the most crucial zones as far as the construction and oil industry is concerned. Though Europe and North America too have been good business for them but the Middle East countries have been just superb.

The heavy equipment companies have to focus on few things. Do what they have been doing. That is give them the same quality machines and if possible customize machines to their needs. This can be done primarily by understanding their business requirement. This is probably how a construction equipment manufacturing company can get partnered with them and will customize every machine for them. In this way, they will make sure of few things. First, the construction equipment manufacturing company will be selling their brand to the construction company and will thus bar other heavy equipment companies to sell their products. And second is they will find ease to manufacture machines for them as they now understand what the company is looking for. The construction company no longer has to buy models that are used by everybody.

By applying this tactic, they can certainly acquire a major share of the market in that region which will only boost their sales figure.

Don’t let your equipment be the reason of pollution. Get it serviced regularly

It has been observed that construction equipment have been a major source of intoxicants in the atmosphere. It has also been the reason of many respiratory ailments in the neighborhoods and which is why people want such machines to be lifted off permanently. One of the major reasons why the construction equipment emit such intoxicants is that they are not serviced on a regular basis. These machines are used exhaustively all throughout the month and since the project goes in full swing the construction company does not have the time to clean up the machine or change the engine oil. This is not only affecting the health of the equipment but also leads to more critical problems. They become one of the major reasons of polluting the environment and make the place unlivable for the locals.

There are a number of steps that one can take to get rid of the problem.

Assign designated staff to service the machine:-

For big construction companies, it is not possible for the owner to take the responsibility of servicing the machine. He needs to delegate this work to his employees or a company like B&R Equipment. For this, he needs to select members who takes every work with utter responsibility and delivers any assigned activity on time. Such people should be assigned the work of getting the construction equipment serviced on a regular basis. The operator who works on the machine should also take the onus of informing the designated staff member if there is any problem with the machine. Keeping it with themselves is not going to solve the bigger problem and it may turn worse from there. Therefore, it becomes important to speak out if there is any issue with the machine and get it sorted in time.

Have an expert mechanic to repair the machine:-

Always take help of an expert mechanic who knows how to fix a problem pertaining to the machine. Taking help from guys who are newbie will not help. If the newbie works under the supervision of an expert then that should be fine. However, he should not be the decision maker as he may not understand the problem quite well and may make a blunder. In order to avoid any mix-ups, ensure that you have the expert right next to his associate and let them both work with the same machine.

Simultaneously, it is also very crucial to repair any part of the machine without causing much delay. If a particular part has gone bad, it needs to be replaced or else it can cultivate graver issues all boiling down to the downfall in the performance of the engine leading to serious environmental problems.

Use construction equipment that are eco-friendly:-

It makes more sense to buy equipment that are eco-friendly rather than using the orthodox version. However, the challenge is many construction companies have invested a lot in procuring the earlier version and are not ready to get rid of them. Buying an eco-friendly equipment means shelling out more money and that may not be good for the financial health of the company. Therefore, they can stick to just keeping the machines well maintained and ensure that the engine oil is changed at regular intervals.