Over the past two decades the machines used to excavate have become increasingly more powerful and easier to use. Today, the machines that are used for excavation activities vary in terms of their strengths and weaknesses. So, the type of equipment which is used to perform a particular type of excavation work will mainly depend on what type of excavation has to be done.
Site Development excavation
The majority of people even in the earth moving industry are familiar with site development excavation activities. This type of activity usually involves digging a huge hole in order to lay the foundation of a home or a building. Then the area surrounding the home needs to be graded so that it is ready for the home’s landscaping. In the construction industry a hole will also be needed when there is a need to construct a swimming pool as part of the plans.
Using Backhoes in the construction Industry
The most commonly used machine for construction excavation are backhoes. These machines are best suited for smaller site excavation activities mainly because of their versatility. Most backhoes have a huge boom along with a digging scoop on the other end of a loader shovel. However, these machines need to be used in conjunction with dump trucks that will carry out the material that is excavated. Usually the material is placed on some other part of the property that will later be graded.
While the backhoe is used in most construction industry excavations its basic function is to dig holes, with the front end being used for grading. Most machines have a loader that tends to be slightly larger than the attachment to the backhoe, this makes it possible for the machine to grade considerably large areas.
Front end Loaders
They are often referred to as bucket loaders. These excavators are something that most people are familiar with. They are called front end loaders mainly because they have a bucket, shovel or scoop attached to them. They are often used to dig holes for pleasure fishing at residential homes. Excavation companies use them as an alternative to backhoes when digging deep holes.
Excavations for Large construction Projects
Many times large construction projects will also require site development work. Each time a company puts up a new building or an office extensive excavation work is the first stage of the project. This often means that a huge hole needs to be dug out for the foundation of the building. Often times large projects like these will require the use of excavators to dig the foundation, plus bulldozers will be used to transfer all this excavated dirt and also grade the huge expanse of earth.
Trenching and laying out Electrical Lines
This too requires excavations but these excavations are slightly different from ones used in the construction industry. Often times the excavation company will be hired by a utilities company who will use its team of experienced machine operators to handle the trenching operation. Electrical lines, phone lines and plumbing requires that long trenches measuring several feet are dug in order to lay down the lines. This is why the size of the backhoe or any other excavation machine used will mainly depend on the extent of the work, it all depends on how much material can be removed with every scoop of the backhoe.
If the excavation work to lay down the utility lines is not too extensive then skid steer loaders will be used. This type of loader is very agile and can turn by simply spinning the rear wheel on both left and right. Many times these machines come complete with a backhoe attachment as well as an assortment of other attachments can be added which makes the machine very versatile for smaller jobs. However, because of its size a skid steer loader is very easy to transport to and from the work site.
When it comes to excavations it all boils down to choosing the right machine based on the extent of the excavation work. Deeper excavation work or work that requires moving lots of material is best left to heavier machines. It also all depends on the space in which the machine needs to work. Skid steer loaders are more versatile and agile but they are not as powerful as backhoes.
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Mark has been in the mining and construction industry all his life. He knows more about heavy excavation machines and excavations than anyone else. Which is why he runs his own excavation service based in Sydney.