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Breakers increase quarry productivity and reduce costs say operators

First publishedin Aggregates Business Europe & International
March April 2014
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Caterpillar MD5150C Track Drill
Caterpillar's is increasing its range of surface drilling products with the new MD5150C Track Drill
According to the European Construction Equipment Committee (CECE), the era of the sledgehammer and the wrecking ball is over in many parts of the world writes Patrick Smith. Instead, sophisticated tools such as crushers, pulverisers, grapples and scrap shears are what are sought after today.

The organisation has established a new product group, Hydraulic Attachment Tools, to serve as a communication and information platform for companies operating in this field. Companies active include Arden Equipment, Atlas Copco, Caterpillar, FRD, Indeco, Montabert, NPK, Okada, Sandvik, Simex, Socomec, Soosan, TABE, Toku and VTN.

The product group serves as a platform to discuss European Union legislation matters relevant to the section such as the outdoor noise directive and to share information about market developments.
Indeed, statistics on hydraulic breakers and demolition tools are another core service, and CECE says it is the only supplier of worldwide data of this kind.

“We are happy to supply such a tool to our manufacturers helping them to better understand their market situation and their competitive environment,” says Torsten Ahr, vice president marketing at Atlas Copco Construction Tools, who also chairs the product group.

“Especially the sub-segment of what we refer to as silent demolition tools will see a steady upturn over the next years as the industry turns towards more efficient solutions in demolition and recycling.” 

Only recently at the Conexpo show product group member Sandvik unveiled an “important new model” that further completes its large range of hydraulic hammers (along with a new drill). Designed to meet the demands of professional users, the new 5011 is backed by Rammer’s exclusive lifetime warranty and it uses the same operating principle first seen on the smaller 3288 and 4099 models. This revolutionary operating principle allows these hammers to be purpose-matched to specific applications for increased productivity and usability.
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Sandvik Construction Ranger DX800 surface drill
Sandvik Construction's new Ranger DX800 surface drill
Suitable for carriers in the 43-80tonne operating weight category, the 5011 model weighs 4,750kg and slots into the Rammer large range line-up between the popular 4099 and the proven 7013 models “to provide customers with a complete range of hammers.”

Meanwhile, in the Indian state of Gujarat, one of the leading blue metal quarries says it has seen productivity increase by 40% by using a rig-mounted hydraulic breaker from international construction equipment manufacturer Chicago Pneumatic.

Sushmit Quarry says that by purchasing a RX14 medium hydraulic breaker from the company it has made significant savings on its operational costs, and become one of the main customer references for Chicago Pneumatic equipment in the region. Indeed, it is said that the quarry has helped the RX range gain a strong reputation across Gujarat’s metal quarry industry, with nine light and medium RX breakers, including RX8 and RX14 models, being sold in less than three months.

“My top priority was to produce metal with less operational costs, so I chose Chicago Pneumatic equipment, which has, for decades, had a strong reputation in the Indian market,” says Monish Patel, the director of Sushmit quarry, who bought the machine following an on-site demonstration of the machine’s potential.

He says that with over 5,000 hours of work to date, the RX14 has lived up to his expectations.

In addition, the quarry’s consumption of explosives for use in breaking operations has been drastically reduced, with further savings being achieved, and the quarry’s overall production increasing by 40%.

With over 18 blue metal quarries located in close proximity of Sushmit, Chicago Pneumatic says it has seen a sharp increase in its sales of light and medium RX breakers, which are used both for primary and secondary demolition applications.   

At Matha Granites, Chicago Pneumatic has also been helping one of India’s leading producers of manufacturing and plastering sand to expand its quarrying operations in the Kerala district.

“Ever since we bought the CP1150, which was our first breaker, we have had a close and very productive relationship with Chicago Pneumatic,” says Mr Pauly, engineering manager at the Kerala quarry, which recently bought a model from the Chicago Pneumatic range of RX breakers.

Italian breaker and hydraulic attachment specialist Indeco reports an increase in sales in North America.
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Sushmit Quarry’s Chicago Pneumatic RX14 medium hydraulic breaker
Sushmit Quarry's Chicago Pneumatic RX14 medium hydraulic breaker has brought “significant savings on operational costs”
Marketing director Michele Vitulano said that the company has had a particularly strong demand for its well proven steel shears in North America. And he added that business trends suggest sales for 2014 to be better than those for 2013 in North America in particular due to steady gains in industry activity.

Elsewhere in the world, Indeco is looking for a new Russian sales representative so as to capitalise on the strong construction sector in the country. Meanwhile it is also keen to beef up its sales network in France, as well as to appoint a new German dealer.
The company is also supplying another large breaker to its customer in China. This will be the third HP18000 hydraulic breaker the firm has in its fleet, in addition to a number of smaller Indeco units.

Another Italian manufacturer, Promove says quarrying is one of the main applications where its hammers show their best features, “productivity and reliability.”

An XP4500, recently delivered to a marble quarry in southern Italy and installed on a Volvo EC460 B excavator, is performing different tasks but mainly breaking rock to expose the good blocks, which are then cut by saw. It also breaks oversizes, reducing the volume of big rock to be processed in a mobile crusher to obtain aggregates as a secondary product from the extraction activity. Another use is to break unstable rock on vertical walls to stop them from falling down accidentally.

Huntsmans has chosen another Atlas Copco HB 5800 breaker for primary breaking at company’s Cotswold quarry in England.  The breaker, used to selectively quarry stone to produce the highest quality possible, will work approximately 1,500 hours/year with regular service intervals to ensure its reliability.
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Metso’s new rock breaker series
Metso's new rock breaker series offers a remote controlled hammer-boom combination: the safest way to clear a clogged primary crusher cavity
Mounted on a Volvo EC700 excavator with a quick-hitch, the breaker can be easily swapped for other attachments when tackling overburden or weaker rock.

Late in 2013, the quarry had produced over 400,000tonnes of stone using this method.

Metso Mining and Construction's product portfolio is expanding with the addition of a new rock breaker series designed for primary stationary crushing stations. The proven hammer-boom combination, already well known in Metso's mobile solutions, is now available for stationary aggregates production and mining applications.
 
Rock breakers are commonly used in primary crushing stations to break oversized boulders that are fed into the crusher and to clear clogging in the cavity. Today, most of the primary stations use this combination to guarantee smooth, continuous performance and to minimise idling caused by build-ups and blockages.

“We have now introduced a range of breaker boom and hammer combinations and can offer our customers a complete turnkey solution. Besides the requested primary crusher, Metso can now offer a comprehensive breaker attachment: a boom with assembly framework, hammer, related hydraulic power pack and remote radio Controls,” says Ilkka Somero, product manager for Metso rock breaker solutions.

The new Metso MH-series hammers and MB-series booms include five boom-hammer combinations for jaw crushers and one for primary gyratory crushers.

In the drilling sector, Caterpillar is increasing its range of surface drilling products with the new MD5150C Track Drill, the first of the C Series drills, for holes from 101.6mm-152mm in diameter.

“The MD5150C offers a choice of three different rock drills, patented carousel rod changer, ergonomic cab and many other features that boost productivity and reduce operating costs,” says Caterpillar.
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Promove’s XP4500 hammer and Volvo EC460 B excavator
Promove's XP4500 hammer installed on a Volvo EC460 B excavator was delivered to a marble quarry in southern Italy
It replaces the MD5125, and is said to have 18% more power; a compressor that can deliver 33% more air volume; 40% more air pressure; 19% faster tram speed and 40% greater ground clearance.”

The standard rock drill on the MD5150C is the HPR5128, which uses 51mm drill steel.

Powered by a Cat C11 ACERT engine rated at 287kW at 1,800rpm, which meets US Tier 3 and EU Stage IIIA emissions standards, the cab on the MD5150C is designed to enhance safety and productivity, and a smart drill monitoring system tracks changes in rock formation and automatically adjusts impact and feed pressure based on hardness of the rock.

Sandvik Construction has also unveiled a new surface top hammer drill rig, an improved version of the former best-selling Ranger series.

The new version, Sandvik Ranger DX800, “combines the strong heritage of the famous surface drill rigs with the latest drilling innovations and a significantly smaller appetite for fuel,” says the company.

Known to many by their former name, Ranger, Sandvik’s DX series surface top hammer drill rigs all feature a revolving superstructure enabling large drilling coverage from the standard 17.6m2 to a USA standard 26.4m2 .

While able to rotate, the rig’s stability is guaranteed thanks to its innovative structure, keeping counterweight at all times on the opposite side of the boom.

In addition to these, the rig features, for example, a THC700 drilling control system that automatically adjusts to changing rock formations and sends an optimal amount of power to the rock.

“At Sandvik, we aim at continuously improving the energy efficiency in our rigs, and low fuel consumption can be considered a distinguishing feature of the entire product line,” says Pekka Kesseli, vice president, Surface Drilling, Sandvik Construction.

“The new Ranger DX800 is no exception to this rule. The new rig will significantly reduce our customers’ operating costs due to its low fuel consumption rates that are achieved with a new advanced eco-package and engine rpm adjustment.”
The unit can drill hole diameters of between 76– 27mm.

Rockmore adds new DTH hammer

Rockmore International is adding the ROK 250, a new 2inch (50.8mm) class down-the-hole (DTH) hammer to its range.
“The ROK 250 model is considered to be the first 2inch class DTH hammer ever developed to operate under high air pressure levels up to 350psi (24bar) and beyond. With a 2.6inch (66mm) wear sleeve diameter, the ROK 250 is designed to drill 3-3.5inch (76-89mm) diameter holes at high penetration rates.

“We recognised a niche market segment in the DTH drilling sector that could utilise higher air pressure input levels to improve hammer penetration rates and drilling performance for hole requirements as small as 3inches (76mm),” says Pejman Eghdami, executive vice president of Rockmore International.

“Our design team faced the arduous challenge of developing a compact 2inch class DTH hammer to withstand the technical demands of utilising higher input air pressure to produce exceptional hammer performance levels similar to larger high pressure rated models.”

The ROK 250, which incorporates the Rockmore SonicFlow technology to optimise airflow in the hammer, is said to exhibit excellent drilling performance in DTH applications for smaller diameter blast holes and construction projects that demand high drilling efficiencies and faster drilling rates by utilising larger compressors.

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