The fleet your business relies on to get the job done on time and on budget is not only an important investment but a major one that needs to deliver the best possible returns. Building a fleet takes time and, due to cost restraints, many businesses find that they need to choose one item of construction equipment over another. That means it’s crucial to investigate and evaluate your options before investing in new or used construction equipment, especially if you have projects planned that require new additions to your heavy equipment fleet to deliver the project to the highest standards.
As one of the most powerful and reliable construction equipment, bulldozers are a must-have on construction projects. While primarily used to move dirt and other materials around a construction site, bulldozers are adaptable equipment that is also used for site levelling and cleaning, shallow digging and ditching, spreading soil, aggregate and other materials, and removing stumps and demolition waste from sites. In addition to the straight blade (‘S blade’), bulldozers can be fitted with several attachments, including sidewall blades, folding blades, sloping blades and PAT blades, enabling operators to carry out a wide range of functions on construction sites.
The Cat Bulldozer range is extensive and features a range of sizes, from the ‘small’ 9.2-tonne Cat D5 Dozer with a 2.2m3 blade capacity that makes it ideal for landscaping projects and navigating limited access sites through to the 104-tonne Cat D11 Dozer which delivers a massive 634kW (862hp) net power and boasts a 42.2m³ blade capacity.
Highly versatile and ideal for multiple applications, backhoes feature both front and rear arms that can be fitted with a wide range of attachments, including buckets, brooms, breakers, drills, hammers, ploughs and rippers. Unlike tracked construction equipment such as bulldozers and excavators, backhoes are wheeled and road-ready, which means they can be driven from site to site and used in urban areas. The many applications that backhoes can deliver include digging, ditching and excavation tasks, backfilling, landscaping, demolition and breaking tasks, and as they’re highly maneuverable and the rear arm pivots across a 2000 range, they’re capable of working in limited space and access sites.
Cat backhoe loaders, including popular models such as the Cat 428, Cat 432 and Cat 444 backhoe loaders, deliver power and precision for operating in areas where using larger equipment isn’t practical.
Widely considered the most versatile item of heavy machinery, excavators are must-have construction equipment that features a long bucket arm attached to a pivoting operator cabin which delivers 3600 functionality. Along with material handling, excavators are used across a range of applications, including excavating, digging and ditching, heavy lifting, grading and so much more.
Excavators are available in a range of sizes, with some mini excavator models small enough to be used for interior applications, making them indispensable on demolition and construction projects with access point constraints or where there are potential obstacles relating to weight and maneuverability. Additionally, with the ability to rotate the operator cabin a full 3600, using an excavator can overcome issues relating to the location of other equipment, like articulated trucks and wheel loaders, as it can spin around and place the load wherever is required.
Cat offers an extensive range of mini excavators and excavators, including the 935kg ‘micro’ Cat 300.9 mini excavator which is ideal for interior applications, and larger models like the tracked Cat 349 and the Cat M316 wheeled excavator.
Skid Steer Loaders
As skid steer loaders are wheel-driven, which helps to minimise soil compaction and surface damage to finished areas, they deliver excellent traction across a range of surfaces and are ideal for working in interior spaces where even small tracked equipment, including micro and mini excavators, may not be suitable. Highly maneuverable, skid steer loaders can turn within their own footprint, which makes them handy when working in confined spaces on worksites and areas where other machinery is operating. Like other construction equipment, skid steer loaders can be outfitted with a variety of attachments to perform compacting, digging, drilling, jack-hammering and a wide range of other construction tasks.
Cat skid steer loaders are used across multiple industries in addition to construction, including agriculture, landscaping and forestry. Popular Cat skid steer loader models include the 2.5-tonne radial-lift Cat 216 and the 4.3-tonne vertical-lift Cat 272.
Primarily used for cutting, grading and levelling surfaces, and spreading material, motor graders are widely used on road and civil construction projects to create flat surfaces where bitumen, concrete or another surface coating will be placed. Although motor graders aren’t as versatile as excavators, backhoes or skid steers, they can be fitted with a range of attachments, including wide blades, angle blades and rotary brooms, enabling them to perform a variety of grading and related applications.
Cat motor graders enamble your team to get more work done in less time, minimising operational costs and helping to maintain standards of workplace safety. Popular Cat motor grader models include the 16-tonne Next Generation Cat 120 motor grader and the 73-tonne Cat 24 with its 7.3m moldboard.
Capable of handling multiple applications on construction sites, wheel loaders are versatile construction equipment that all construction businesses will find indispensable on worksites. While primarily material handling equipment, when fitted with one of many compatible attachments, wheel loaders are used for a diverse range of applications, from pipe grabbing with a pipe fork to stockpiling materials with a high-dump bucket. As they’re wheeled not tracked, wheel loaders can be driven from site to site and used in urban areas, and deliver superior traction, whether digging, grading or loading trucks.
The Cat wheel loader range is extensive, ranging from the compact yet powerful 4.4-tonne Cat 903 to mid-sized models like the 20.2-tonne Cat 962 and significantly larger models that are used in large-scale construction and mining projects like the Cat 994.
Dump trucks are must-have heavy equipment on all construction and related projects, including demolition projects where large loads have to be moved off-site. While by no means versatile items of equipment, articulated trucks perform essential functions and are available in a wide range of sizes to meet the needs of all construction businesses, from small-scale operations to mining companies that utilise the largest models on the market.
Articulated trucks are road-ready and ideal for moving materials to and from a range of worksites. When evaluating your articulated truck options, be sure to focus on models that are size-compatible with your bulldozers, excavators, backhoes and skid steers.
Cat articulated dump trucks are useful for hauling a wide spectrum of material in a variety of applications and ground conditions. The Cat articulated trucks that are suited to construction businesses tend to be the smaller models, including the 24-tonne Cat 725 and the 28-tonne Cat 730.
Source: Hastings Deering