Brian Thomas, owner of the BLT Companies in Yuma, Ariz., got into the business of recycling concrete largely out of necessity. As a supplier of Ready Mix Concrete, he often had waste, which ended up in his company yard.
“You multiply it over time and you have a big mess,” Thomas said. “Now not only do we recycle our own, we move the crusher to the property of our customers.”
To fit inside the opening of the crusher, the concrete has to be no more than 2 in. (5 cm) or smaller. But usually the material Thomas’s crews worked with was much bigger. So Thomas bought a hydraulic hammer for his 325 excavator to break the bigger pieces into manageable sizes. It was a good idea in theory, but in practice, not so much.
“It would sit out there and ping away and hit at that concrete,” Thomas said. “The problem with the hydraulic hammer is when you are trying to drive a straight wedge into objects that are not flat, you are always ricocheting off that piece. You can’t get a good hit. So you’re wasting time when the operator is sitting there just trying to find the sweet spot on whatever object you are trying to break.”
And while the operator is sitting there waiting to find the so-called sweet spot, the rest of the crushing spread —the crushing machine, the water truck, the loader, the ground man — is sitting idle and that costs money.
“You have a symphony of things all working in unison and when that hydraulic hammer is the key tool that makes all the other machines work, it needs to be efficient. It needs to be very efficient.”
But it wasn’t.
So Thomas went in search of a piece of equipment that would do the job better. He wasn’t sure what that was or if it even existed but if it did, he was going to find it. He read magazines and perused the Internet. He even traveled to Las Vegas for the Con/Agg Show earlier this year. He met a half a dozen or so vendors and all had something they thought might do the job, but none of them sat well with Thomas.
“I just didn’t feel comfortable with any of them,” he said. “I didn’t think the machine was the right set up, I didn’t like the product, or I didn’t feel the support was there.”
Back home in Arizona, Thomas continued his search.
“I had a magazine next to me and I was thumbing through it and there was a whole page on National Attachments,” Thomas said. “I just called them up out of the blue and the first person I got on the phone was Gabe. And so I ran through for just a couple of minutes of what we did, why I was calling and literally it was about a two minute conversation of me trying to explain what we did. He said, ’I got it. I know exactly what you are doing. I know what you need. I have the exact application you need. Go to this Web site right now. He said, ’What you want to buy is an NYE, no ifs, ands or buts about it.’”
So, while he continued the conversation with Gabe Guimond, vice president of demolition products of National Attachments Inc., Thomas went to the Web site.
“We run a 345 excavator,” Thomas told him. “That’s a 40 to 50 ton unit weight machine. I told him I wanted something extremely heavy duty, that could penetrate the concrete along with pulverizing the concrete. After telling him that, he said not only do you have the right company on the phone, we are the only company that makes a penetrating ripper attached to the concrete pulverizer. We’re the only guys that have what you want, a NYE 40CP49DU. I went to the picture. It was exactly what I was talking about.”
But Thomas had one more concern.
“I told him that I really didn’t want to have to be pulling the pin on and off the stick on the excavator,” Thomas said. “That right there is at least a three-hour job. It’s 110 degrees in Yuma in the summer. The last thing we want to be doing is knocking out three inch diameter pins. I said, ’How do we use our quick coupler. Is it even possible?’ He said, ’I got it. I know exactly what you want to do.’ I said, ’Gabe you sold me.’ Finding you was just a lucky day for me.’”
The pulverizer arrived in March and required no assembly, other than one weld, which is normal, Thomas said. The pulverizer is every bit as good as Guimond promised, said Thomas.
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