A BRIDGE TO SCRAPER PRODUCTIVITY
Better Roads Staff | February 7, 2011
Delhi, ON – As Mike Kloepfer and his engineering team designed the new Titan S4412B scraper system, they were looking for more than just another entry into the scraper category. “We were after a complete earthmoving system that would actually help contractors to earn more money for their business,” says Kloepfer, President of Titan Earthmoving Equipment (EMD), a division of Titan Trailers Inc. “That simply means moving more material over the life of their investment in the equipment.”
With his background in designing custom hauler bodies for specialized on-road/off road applications, Kloepfer has an intuitive understanding of load stresses and axle loads. His first priority in developing the scraper system was to re-examine how scrapers carry their loads and deliver power to the ground.
“We had a great head-start with the drawframe concept that Jim Bult brought to us,” Kloepfer says. “He understood where the problems were with traditional pull-scrapers, and brought us the challenge of refining the High Arch drawframe into a well-engineered solution.”
Kloepfer had consulted with Jim Bult in the past to develop trailer solutions for Bult’s transportation business, and Bult returned with his experience and ideas after taking on a major earthmoving project for an airport development near Chicago.
One key to improving the scraper Kloepfer found was to focus on its power unit. To create a productive end-to-end system, Titan went to work integrating a new high-capacity bowl with a highly efficient, purpose-built power unit: the Bell 4206D scraper tractor. To achieve that goal, Titan engineering built on Bult’s own design concepts to achieve the most important innovation in the S4412B: its distinctive High Arch Drawframe.
The Titan Drawframe is based on a heavy box-section gooseneck coupler fitted to a robust yoke that spans the entire bowl. The arch terminates in a receiver that fits to a massive 12 in. (30,5 cm) diameter ball hitch designed especially for the Bell tractor. Notably, the ball hitch is positioned well ahead of the tractor’s rear axle.
Kloepfer notes that Jim Bult had brought a fresh perspective to how scrapers work, with a vision about how they “ought” to be designed. The unique coupling system helps Titan overcome many of the inherent shortcomings in traditional pull-scraper design. “Usually, you see scrapers hooked up to farm tractors that are built for pulling implements behind them, not for hauling and supporting heavy loads. The stresses are completely different. In spite of that knowledge, newer, larger scrapers are being designed the same way as older smaller agricultural scrapers, and still compensating for the built-in deficiencies by putting as much load as possible on the scraper axle.”
“The genesis of the Bell 4206D scraper tractor goes back to the Bell 40 ton articulated haul truck,” he continues, “so it’s engineered to carry more of the load. Then Bell turned that baseline into the 4206D with a shortened frame, new axle and transmission configurations and a new cab configuration specifically for scraper operations. With the High Arch Drawframe, we can really take full advantage of Bell’s tractor design. The High Arch puts the weight right where it does the most good, at the center point of the tractor’s frame. All four wheels carry the weight equally when loaded, so all four wheels deliver more power to the ground. They easily carry 50% of the total load, without getting overstressed. Now, rimpull actually improves as you increase the load in the scraper.”
The result is a system that produces better traction in all soil conditions, greater agility, increased maneuverability and safety at high speeds, as well as heavier payloads – all without compromising the service life of the tractor.
In principal, the High Arch Drawframe distributes half of the total weight between the bowl and tractor, and it distributes the weight on the tractor equally over its two axles. In the test loading, 108,000 lbs. (48 988 kg) [52%] is carried by the rear scraper axle, well within its rated limit. On the tractor, each axle carries very close to 50,000 lbs. (22 680 kg). “There’s no need to be shy about putting this kind of weight on the Bell axles,” claims Kloepfer. “Fully loaded, they are still well under their rated capacity. The system is designed to move 55 tons of material on every cycle, every day without overstressing the equipment. And this system is built to keep up that pace for years to come.”
The arch configuration also allows a very compact connection from the ball to the yoke of the drawframe. With the Bell tractor’s 42° of articulation, the 55 ft. (1 676,4 cm) long scraper system is able to turn within a radius of just 39 ft. (1 189 cm), giving operators the maneuverability to navigate quickly and safely on congested worksites. The large ball hitch also helps to isolate the cab from the roll and pitch of the scraper as it traverses rough terrain. The wildly rocking ride that scraper operators have come to expect is replaced by a smoother, more comfortable, safer work environment.
Kloepfer is confident that the S4412B will prove to be the moneymaker for customers that he envisioned it to be. “Jim Bult brought us the High Arch concept as an earthmoving contractor and businessman; and the result is a business solution. It will move more material, whether it is a struck load or a heaped load, it will haul out the material faster, and it will keep on producing long after it paid for itself. I think that’s a winning a formula.”
About Titan EMD
Titan Earthmoving Equipment is a division of Titan Trailers Inc., a world-class innovation leader in purpose-built equipment designed to meet the most demanding hauling applications for customers in forestry, scrap recycling, waste-hauling and demolition industries. Since 1973, Titan has earned its reputation for reliability and durability through a combination of old school craftsmanship and new age design and manufacturing technologies. The S4412B scraper system builds on Titan’s experience in optimizing weight distribution, maximizing bulk load capacities and building in strength against the severe structural stresses.
The alliances that have been built with Bult Equipment and Bell Equipment, powers Titan’s ongoing development of efficient, integrated scraper solutions backed by generations of world-class expertise and experience.
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