Bulldozers Parts in Massachusetts - Bulldozers, also referred to as dozers, are a type of tractor equipped with a dozer blade. Many models are known as crawler tractors, operating on a continuous track instead of using wheels; however, wheeled models are available. The dozer blade attaches to the front of the bulldozer to push materials easily and efficiently. The dozer blade is used to push large volumes of material, such gravel or dirt, during construction and alteration projects. The back of the bulldozer is usually fitted with large, metal teeth, called the ripper, useful in breaking up hard, compressed material.
The track system on a common bulldozer offers phenomenal maneuvering abilities and excellent traction on uneven ground and unstable or rough surfaces. The special transmission components let the machine function with increased traction. Sinking into unstable environments is prevented as the track width evenly distributes the weight of the machine. Swamp tracks refer to tracks that have increased widths, suitable for specific applications. Dozers are popular within mining applications, land clearing and construction jobs that need strong and stable equipment to transport materials within a variety of environments.
Bulldozers operating on a wheeled system usually have four wheels, moved along by a 4-wheel-drive system and a hydraulic, articulated steering system. Mounted directly in front of the articulation joint, the bulldozer blade uses a hydraulic system for operating instead of a mechanical setup.
What distinguishes the bulldozer from other large, construction equipment are its principal tools: the dozer blade and the ripper.
The Dozer Blade
The bulldozer blade consists of a sizeable metal plate that is situated at the front of the machine. The purpose of the dozer blade is to push heavy items and awkward materials. Snow, gravel, sand, dirt and garbage are some of the most popular items that bulldozers push around. Three typical kinds of dozer blade options are available including the semi-U blade, the universal blade and the straight blade.
The U blade, aka the universal blade, is curved and tall with sizeable wings on the sides to enable more material to be easily transported. The straight blade, or S blade, is short, has no lateral curve and no side wings and is also used for fine earth grading. The semi-U blade, or S-U blade, is a combination blade which is shorter, is less curved and has side wings, but which are smaller than those on the U blade. It is generally used for pushing boulders or large rock piles.
Usually, the dozer blade attaches to the tractor on an angle or in a horizontal fashion. The angle of the dozer blade can be adjusted with tilt cylinders. The dozer blade is sometimes sharpened to allow for cutting of objects, such as stumps or roots. An angledozer features a blade that is pushed ahead on one side to enable items to be cleared out of the path of the bulldozer. Angledozers are commonly used for snow removal.
A variety of bulldozers are equipped with a bull blade. The reinforced centre portion of the bulldozer is called a bull blade. The bull blade enables the dozer to push a scraper to move large portions of earth.
Dozer blades are also used on military vehicles. Several military vehicles are designed to allow a dozer blade to be affixed to the front of the vehicle, such as combat engineering vehicles, artillery tractors and battle tanks. Mounting a dozer blade on a battle tank enables it to push mines and obstacles out of the way or create combat positions by digging shelters. It can help establish a protective barrier against obstacles, artillery and explosive items, making it a valuable machine for military applications.
The Dozer Ripper
The shank or dozer ripper is the substantial tool situated on the bulldozers’ back with long teeth. Dozer rippers are available in multiple or single shank options. The single shank design is also known as a giant ripper and is preferred for large, very dense projects. Multi-shank rippers refer to multi-shank designs.
The boot refers to the tip of the shank and consists of a detachable metal piece. This allows for replacement of the boot when it becomes dull or broken, rather than replacement of the entire shank.
Solid objects including compact earth, concrete or rock can be broken up into tinier pieces thanks to the dozer ripper, creating material that is easier to transport by the dozer. This allows for quicker project completion.
In farming, a dozer ripper is used to break up rock and very dense earth to allow for ploughing and planting. Locations across Italy and New Zealand rely on dozer rippers to access nutrient-rich ancient lava flows that wouldn’t be farmable otherwise due to their dense nature. The ripper loosens the top lava rock layer to initiate farming applications.
The bulldozer has transformed over the years to become useful for a variety of applications that were not originally possible with the initial design.
The first bulldozer design was too large for working in confined spaces such as mining applications. These size limitations lead to smaller unit designs to enable more maneuverability in tighter locations. Calfdozers refer to small, lighter bulldozer models.
Snowier locations including ski hills rely on a lighter bulldozer version for snow removal and winter slope preparation.
The loader tractor is another popular adaptation. This was created by replacing the dozer blade with a large bucket, raised and lowered with the use of hydraulic arms. The new bulldozer is commonly called a Drott, track loader or trackscavator and used for loading dump trucks with earth, gravel and rocks.
A stump buster is one of the less common bulldozer attachments. A stump buster is attached at the back of the bulldozer. It is a single spike, protruding horizontally, used to split tree stumps for removal. Stump busters are commonly used by bulldozers to clear land. A brush-rake blade is also commonly used with the bulldozer in these situations.
Despite the many adaptations available, bulldozers in their original form remain popular in deforestation, earthmoving, ground levelling, and road carving. Large bulldozers are mainly used to flatten terrain for construction preparation. The construction is completed mostly by smaller bulldozers and loader tractors.
In 1923, the first bulldozer was designed when farmer James Cummings joined forces with a draftsman named J. Earl McLeod. The initial design created was the dozer blade made to plow fields by attaching to an existing tractor. They built the original bulldozer and it can be viewed in Kansas’ city park, Morrowville. Later that year, Cummings and McLeod filed for a US patent on their bulldozer attachment which was granted in January 1925. It was normal for tractors to run on a track system at this time. In fact, it was this earlier version of the tractor, with its superior maneuverability, that contributed to the creation of the armoured tank during World War I.
By 1929, home-made or custom-manufactured attachments began to appear on wheeled and tracked tractors alike. The bulldozer attachment did not gain popularity until the middle of the 1930s. Once hydraulic cylinders were added, sometime before 1940, bulldozers began to grow in popularity and by the 1950s, the term bulldozer referred to the entire machine.
Becoming popular for all types of construction applications, bulldozers grew into a variety of different stronger and larger models. Eventually, many companies such as John Deere and Caterpillar began to manufactured large tracked and wheeled bulldozers. The manual transmission was replaced over time with automatic transmissions and electric motors and hydraulic cylinders eventually replaced cable winch systems. These technological upgrades created more effective and accurate control systems. These days, GPS technology geared toward bulldozing tasks has added to improved grade control.
What started out as a tractor attachment for use in farming has not only become one of the most important machines in today’s civil engineering, it has become an important tool in military operations, mining and building and maintaining the vast infrastructures we rely on every day.