For any construction project it is imperative that only the most suitable types and sizes of equipment are selected as this will have a direct impact on the time and effort expended and subsequently the project’s productivity. Construction planners and site managers must therefore be well versed with the characteristics of the major equipment types whose use is widespread in today’s industry.
For purposes of excavation and loading the type of equipment used can generally be described as being of the crane-shovel design. These equipment have three main components i.e. a carrier which ensures the machine’s mobility and steadiness, a revolving deck where the power and control functions are housed, and an attachment at the front-end which is used to carry out the required operations. Where the attachment is in form of a bucket the resulting construction machinery equipment is referred to as a loader.
Compaction and grading have to do with the use of mechanical means to achieve higher soil density and ensuring that earthwork is modified to a required shape and elevation respectively. In the case of compacting, the equipment used works through the exertion of static weight, impacting, vibrating and kneading forces. Rollers of various types are used including grid rollers and self-propelled segmented steel wheel rollers. Grading equipment mostly involves grade trimmers for heavy construction projects and motor graders for all-purpose grading requirements and surface finishing.
Lifting and erecting are fundamental processes in today’s construction industry. For lifting tasks the construction machinery equipment most commonly used are derricks. A derrick’s main components are a vertical mast and a boom at whose top end is the hook to which loads are hung. Steel building frames are typically erected with the help of tower cranes including the horizon boom and inclined boom varieties.
What selection factors should planners and managers consider in finding the best suited equipment for a particular aspect of construction? Taking excavation construction machinery equipment as an example, arguably the most important consideration will have to do with the volume of work. Where extensive excavation is required it will be best to employ several large excavators, or indeed opt for many excavators of smaller capacity. Time constraints must be thought out too – if time is running out contractors may have to bring in larger excavators or add to the number of the smaller ones. Cost of transporting construction machinery equipment to the site is another vital consideration – it is a factor of job size, transportation distance, and means of transport used. Indeed the type of equipment available may affect the project’s productivity in the event that its design is not particularly suited for the type of excavation required at the site. The nature of the soil at the site must also be investigated because different excavation equipment will achieve varying outputs in different soil types.
Construction machinery equipment: Which are the most common