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World of Concrete 2014 preview

Written by Helen Wright - 23 Dec 2013

With over 50,000 visitors expected to descend on Las Vegas, US, from 21 to 24 January for the 40th anniversary edition of World of Concrete, the exhibition looks set to start the year in style.

Organiser Hanley Wood is expecting another productive show, and hopes it will build on the growth of last year’s event, which attracted 54,869 visitors to the Las Vegas Convention Center and over 1,300 exhibitors, taking up more than
605,000 ft2 (56,206 m2) of exhibit space.

A testament to its 40-year history, the show has a strong reputation and is expected to be the platform for some noteworthy construction equipment and technology introductions.

For instance, Phoenix Curb Machines will showcase its latest compact curb machine – the PCM3300. Weighing in at some 1,500 kg, the PCM 3300 has been designed to be easy to transport. The manufacturer said the machine could be unloaded by one person, and then set up
and working in a matter of minutes.

The all-wheel drive curb former is designed for small curb/gutter jobs on sites that larger machines cannot access. The PCM 3300 also comes equipped with Topcon System 5 Sonar computerised controls which provide precise control over grade and slope operations.

Phoenix will also launch a new compact concrete saw at the exhibition – the Curbie. Weighing 1,800 kg, the machine features the manufacturer’s patent-pending multi-function articulated saw head. Like the curb former, Phoenix Curb Machines designed it to be easy to transport and unload, and quick to set up.

The saw is designed to cut curbs, gutters, concrete walls and pavement. It can carry blades up to 48 in (1.2 m) and make cuts up to 5 ft (127 mm) with the saw arm fully extended. A core drill can also be run off the articulating head.

Meanwhile, concrete paving equipment manufacturer GOMACO said it plans to showcase the benefits of its G+ control system at the exhibition. The technology features two-way communications between paver accessories and the G+ controller, and the company will demonstrate this using a four-track Commander III paver equipped with an independent dowel bar insertion attachment.

Both the paver and the attachment will be equipped with G+ controls, allowing the two systems to communicate. For example, when the Commander III stops and starts, the tamper bar and screed on the attachment turn on and off automatically in co-ordination with the paver.

Other exhibits on the company’s stand will include the newest updates for the GOMACO Smoothness Indicator, together with the company’s C-450 bridge deck finisher.

Caterpillar will also be present at World of Concrete, and plans to introduce examples from its latest compact loader ranges. Six new D Series compact tracked loaders will be on show, including three new multi terrain models, as well as two updated D Series compact tracked loaders. In addition, the manufacturer has developed a new D Series of skid steer loaders.

On the skid steer loader side, the D Series now consists
of six models ranging in operating capacity from 816 kg to
1.68 tonnes, together with two large frame models – the 246D and 262D – with rated capacities of 975 kg and 1.22 tonnes.

As far as compact tracked loaders are concerned, the six new D Series models are replacements for their B3, C and C2 Series predecessors and boast Caterpillar’s 3.3 litre C3.3B engine, which complies with US Tier 4 Final off-highway diesel engine exhaust emissions laws. 

Caterpillar says the 55 kW C3.3B engine provides +8% more torque and +6% improved fuel economy compared to the previous models.
In addition, the machines also feature a new cab, new lift arm design for improved sight lines, and increased engine performance for greater productivity.

Leak detection

E-Z Drill plans to showcase its Model 20 UTL drill, a tool it says allows contractors to pinpoint the site of a gas leak without tearing out a significant stretch of roadway.

By using the Model 20 UTL, the manufacturer said utility companies can drill through the road surface in periodic intervals to check for gas. This enables workers to narrow the potential leak area to a stretch between holes that would need to be removed for repair work, rather than digging up a much longer stretch.

While specialised for the gas industry, E-Z Drill said the Model 20 UTL could handle virtually any type of vertical drilling application. The manufacturer added that its standard 18 in (457 mm) drill depth could also be customised to several feet deep.

For its part, Handex Vertipower International will showcase its latest Side Door Twin-Shaft concrete mixer – a model with a door on both sides, which Handex says makes it a
unique design.

“Everybody knows it is not a safe work to go inside the mixer to do maintenance. So the best way is opening the side doors, standing outside to finish the work,” the company said.

On top of safety advantages, Handex also says the design improves efficiency. It said it required one person working for one day to change the lining plate for the mixer, instead of two people working over two or three days.

The manufacturer said the Side Door Twin-Shaft mixer also features an automatic lubricating system and a self-wash out system, among other technology.

Meanwhile, Subaru Industrial Engines will exhibit two new big block V-Twin engines at World of Concrete – the 35 hp (25.7 kW) H90 and 40 hp (29.4 kW) EH99. The petrol engines are designed for smaller machines  such as concrete polishers, riding trowels, utility vehicles, mowers and ride-on blowers.

Technology includes temperature sensors located on the engine heads which have an optional engine shutoff to prevent any damage from overheating, while a low oil pressure sensor allows equipment manufacturers to offer control panel alerts or automatic engine shutoff.
The models also feature dual element air filters that protect the engine from dust and reduce maintenance, and a pressurised lubrication system.

Demolition launch

On the demolition side, Brokk will launch its 400D remote controlled demolition robot at the exhibition. The introduction represents the 11th generation of Brokk machines, replacing the 330D with a heavier-duty, faster machine.

Indeed, Brokk says the 400D delivers a +60% increase in transport speed over the 330D. And, with a total weight of 12,125 lbs (5.5 tonnes), the machine can handle heavier attachments, including the 521 kg Atlas Copco SB 552 breaker.

The 400D can also reach out horizontally to nearly 23 ft (7 m).
And start-up company Paul Jacks USA, which is in its first year of operation, will also be attending the show. The company is the US distributor for Paul Maschinenfabrik, a manufacturer of concrete pre-stressing and post-tensioning equipment.

The company will be showcasing stressing jacks with hydraulic pump units, together with a wire pushing machine and load cells that check the amount of tension that has been applied. It will also have and post-tensioning equipment on its stand and will be offering a training course.

New components for the concrete industry will also be exhibited. Hengelhoef Concrete Joints will use World of Concrete to introduce its new expansion joints for industrial floors – the Cosinus Slide joint.
The manufacturer is striving to create optimum load transfer systems for flooring and said its new Cosinus Slide joint was unique in that it did not include a dowel system.

Instead of traditional anchor studs, the joint is fixed in the concrete through the use of a special wreathed continuous rebar system over the total length of the joint, with connections top and bottom. A small steel plate in the middle prevents overflowing of the concrete.
Hengelhoef claims the geometrical shaped form of the joint and the concrete means that load transfer is not realised by the joint (with dowels) but by the floor itself.

This is just a snapshot of the myriad of new machines and technology aimed at the concrete sector that will be on display at the 2014 event.
As the first show of the year, World of Concrete is not only a great opportunity for manufacturers to showcase new products for the concrete sector, but also a chance to gauge the mood among exhibitors on market conditions in North America.

Editorial teams from KHL will be scouring the show for product launches and market commentary, so check www.khl.com during the exhibition to stay up-to-date with breaking news from the event.

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