Getting creative with attachments

Screening bucket and attachment customers are finding creative and innovative ways of using their equipment to tackle worldwide delays in the supply of materials
Screening Static & Mobile / October 24, 2022
By Liam McLoughlin
An MB Crusher excavator bucket is being used in Italy to prepare clean crushed rocks to be laid for new rail tracks, all done reusing available materials
An MB Crusher excavator bucket is being used in Italy to prepare clean crushed rocks to be laid for new rail tracks, all done reusing available materials

MB Crusher says customers are using its crushing and screening buckets in innovative ways to avoid material wastage in the current climate where infrastructure projects are facing huge delays due to the global shortage of materials.  

The Italy-based company says it is noticing how customers are using resources efficiently and producing some “pretty amazing” results.

“They reduced construction costs, avoided waiting for supplies to arrive and used the carrier machine already part of their fleet to do so and one of our attachments,” it adds.

One example is in the maintenance of the railway that connects Warsaw to the nearby Polish regions, which provided an MB Crusher customer with many unused old sleepers. The customer bought one of the company’s BF70.2 mobile jaw crusher buckets for their Atlas 1604 excavator and began to reduce the railway sleepers, obtaining crushed material that can be used as a sub-base for railway ballast.

engcon is launching its third- -generation tiltrotators this year
engcon is launching its third- -generation tiltrotators this year

MB Crusher says that the development of railway infrastructure networks enhances economic development, as a train line is used to transport goods and facilitate commuting and tourism. A huge amount of track ballast is needed to make new rail lines because its layers hold the track in place as the trains roll over. Ballast also facilitates drainage of water and also restrains vegetation growth.

“We saw how in India and Italy our customers managed to prepare a great pile of clean crushed rocks ready to be laid for the new rail tracks, all done reusing available materials. Cleaning the rocks makes the process cost-efficient,” the company comments.

In India, the customer used a Sany SY220 excavator and an MB-S18 screening bucket during the actual construction, while in Italy the same rotary bucket model was mounted on a Hitachi EX215 to sift at the quarry, salvaging materials and loading the truck in one unique motion.  

In the Cerro Negro mine in the Atacama region of Chile, MB Crusher buckets have been used to enable 80km of trenching across the desert to be done without having to purchase and transport the sand needed to fill the trench.

The Chilean customer attached an MB-S18 screening bucket to a Doosan DX225LC excavator to repurpose the excavated material into the filler. MB Crusher says this produced both huge savings and a speedy execution of the job, as well as being environmentally friendly. “On-site processing not only reduces the number of trucks but also avoids contamination of material coming in from outside the region,” says MB Crusher.

Excavator attachment manufacturer engcon will start production of its third-generation tiltrotators during 2022.

The Swedish company says that, to meet future demands, the new tiltrotator system is taking progressive steps towards sustainability, applying smart technology to reduce energy consumption and is adapted ready for the electrification of excavators.

The new tiltrotator system was presented for the first time at the Norwegian trade fair Vei og Anlegg 11-13 May, with production getting underway in the second half of 2022 with the EC319 models for 14-19 -tonne excavators and the EC314 for 9-14 -tonne excavators. The model programme will then be expanded on an ongoing basis.

The technology is based on a newly developed type of valve in combination with smart software that collaborates with the excavator's load-sensing hydraulic system. This is designed to optimise both the tiltrotator's functions and the excavator's movements, which leads to smoother digging with higher precision. At the same time, the excavator's wear and need for maintenance also decreases.

"To meet increased demands for electrification, digitalisation, security and sustainability, we have developed a solution adapted for the future of digging," says Stig Engström, founder and owner of engcon and the leader of the company's product development. “Our new tiltrotator system shows that engcon is at the forefront of innovative solutions that drive the development forward to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and thus the climate impact of excavators.”

With an app, the third-generation  tiltrotator system also enables a higher degree of individual customisation in the form of improved possibilities for, amongst other things, connected remote diagnostics and mobile support.

In addition to the energy-efficient technology - the new series EC-Oil - the automatic quick-hitch system can easily and smoothly connect the tiltrotator and hydraulic gear automatically without the driver having to leave the cab.

For full compatibility with modern excavator systems, engcon is also building in a newly-developed tilt and rotation sensor as standard in its third-generation product. The sensors contain what is said to be one of the market's first ‘absolute’ sensors and have a plug & play solution for both integrated and third-party machine control systems.

"The third generation will be our premium offering where the excavator operator gets the very latest technology as standard, while at the same time they get an energy-optimised excavator that becomes even smoother to drive," Engström comments.

engcon has also started a listing on the Nasdaq Stockholm Stock Exchange. The company says interest in the listing has been great from institutional investors and private individuals since it began on June 17.

The listing on Nasdaq Stockholm was the result of a year of preparations and the company adds that it is now taking further steps towards securing future growth.

"We are proud of engcon's position as the world's leading manufacturer of tiltrotators," said engcon CEO Krister Blomgren. "Our innovative products enable a more efficient and sustainable use of resources by effectively turning excavators into tool carriers that replace the need for other machines. The listing on Nasdaq Stockholm will support our journey to change the world of digging and we will work hard to deliver on the trust that our customers and shareholders have placed in us."
engcon says the listing means it will have a broader ownership structure with both large and small shareholders, which will benefit the company's long-term perspective and stability towards the market.

A Simex TF 1100 drum cutter mining calcium carbonate at a quarry in Italy
A Simex TF 1100 drum cutter mining calcium carbonate at a quarry in Italy

Engström said: "This is a big milestone for me personally. We have come an incredibly long way since I started the company just over 30 years ago. engcon's ambition is to continue to develop future solutions for smarter, safer, and more efficient digging.

“It is gratifying that the interest in our fine company has been so great and that a strong investor base will be present and support us in the future.”

A quarry operator in the Italian province of Verona is successfully utilising a Simex attachment to extract calcium carbonate.

Monte Bianco, which is based in Stallavena di Grezzana, is using a TF 1100 drum cutter supplied by Simex’s local dealer Mac3, at one of its two quarries.

Simex says low vibrations and seamless milling make the TF drum cutter particularly suitable for quarrying. Firstly, the selective breaking of the rock mass is guaranteed, which ensures the stability of the surrounding structure. In addition, the TF produces crushed material of a suitable particle size, in this specific case for subsequent grinding within the company's specialised plants, for transformation and placing on the market.

Monte Bianco comments: “Calcium carbonate is in fact a natural material with exceptional physical and chemical properties, a fundamental component in many processes and an irreplaceable raw material in many different sectors.” Calcium carbonate has many uses, ranging from the zootechnical field - as an additive in the production of animal feed - to agriculture, being used as an eco-friendly material and absorbent of pollutants in the fertiliser industry.

Simex says that other attempts at crushing in the quarry with the hydraulic hammer had proved ineffective, as the tip of the equipment tended to get stuck in the material, an elastic and compact limestone. Furthermore, given the sensitivity of the area, the company chose to equip itself with the TF 1100 drum cutter.

Monte Bianco says that the continuous work, high precision and high productivity of Simex’s cutter heads have enabled extremely satisfying results. With an average production of 50 m³/h, it granted a constant flow of crushed material to the company's processing plants, maintaining a rapid and high-quality production chain.