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Mecalac Introduces Next Generation 216MRail for North America

Tue August 01, 2023 - National Edition #17

Mecalac's 216MRail is a dedicated compact railroad excavator for heavy-duty railway construction and maintenance tasks.
Mecalac's 216MRail is a dedicated compact railroad excavator for heavy-duty railway construction and maintenance tasks.
Mecalac's 216MRail is a dedicated compact railroad excavator for heavy-duty railway construction and maintenance tasks. The 216MRail features leading lifting performance-to-weight ratio for efficiency and productivity on the rails. The 216MRail's color display monitors are easy to read and provide useful data in real-time. The 216MRail also improves safety with anti-drop safety check valves, load sensing and flow sharing.

Mecalac, a global designer, manufacturer and distributor of compact construction equipment for urban environments, introduced the next generation 216MRail for North America.

A dedicated railroad excavator for railway construction and maintenance, the 216MRail offers new features, such as dual drive, along with a leading power-to-weight ratio that offers the performance of a much larger railway maintenance machine. While designed for heavy applications, such as towing rail cars and handling all equipment and materials, the 216MRail is still compact, agile and flexible, especially in confined areas, such as tunnels or below catenaries.

The 216MRail is ideal for light-rail, metro systems and tunnel applications, according to the manufacturer.

Mecalac will exhibit at the Railway Interchange 2023, Oct. 1 to 4 in Indianapolis, with Superior Sales and Service, its dedicated railroad dealer for North America. Product experts will be on hand at booth 5034 to discuss the 216MRail and the other machines in Mecalac's innovative railroad excavator line.

"The 216MRail is a new alternative for heavy-duty rail equipment," said Peter Bigwood, general manager of Mecalac North America. "The machine's power for heavy applications, combined with the boom's flexibility and the safety of the double cab, highlight Mecalac's commitment to providing innovative machines for efficient and safe railway work to the rail industry."

The 216MRail is based on Mecalac's MWR wheeled excavator series and can be operated as a wheeled excavator off the rails. As the largest machine in the MRail series, the 216MRail weighs in at 44,902 lbs. and is designed for heavy lifting, towing and working with large buckets, mowers, grapples and more.

Dual drive provides operators with the choice of placing the machine's wheels directly on the rail for increased traction, or completely off the rail for less wear and tear on the tires and to prevent damage to equipment along the track, such as rail sensors. Like the 106MRail and 136MRail models, the 216MRail is equipped with a hydrostatic transmission, enabling the machine to be propelled without the road wheels, leading to considerable savings on tire replacement. Operators also prefer the hydrostatic transmission for its smooth movement on the track, the manufacturer said.

The upgraded 216MRail, like the original model, features a rail-dedicated boom specifically designed for the rail industry. It offers the lifting capacity of a much larger machine — up to 8.5 tons on rails over the front — but offers the stability and boom flexibility other machines lack. Its Mecalac articulated boom design provides greater compactness and range of motion by allowing it to extend almost entirely straight or fold back on itself, making it agile in confined spaces.

For some larger machines, working below catenaries or in tunnels can be awkward and inefficient due to limited boom angle adjustments. The operator must completely unfold the boom and work at maximum reach, losing force, compromising stability and taking longer to complete the task. Due to the extraordinary flexibility of the boom, the 216MRail easily handles heavy-duty tasks even when there is limited space to maneuver.

The 216MRail also improves safety with anti-drop safety check valves, load sensing and flow sharing. A double cab allows space for a second crew member when accessing the job on rails. The cab also has windows on all sides and a low-height hood behind the cab, providing operators with 360-degree direct visibility.

Mecalac presents the 216MRail in a user-friendly package. The 7-in. color display monitors are easy to read and configured to provide useful data in real-time. Driver-assistance functions, such as rail mode, are available with a simple switch.

Other optional features include:

  • A pneumatic braking system for rail trailer and rail car brakes
  • An automatic hook for towing

"Our 216MRail is game-changing for the rail industry," Bigwood said. "It's a compact machine that can accomplish everything necessary for heavy-duty projects, while maintaining a level of simplicity and ease of use."

The 216MRail is the largest in Mecalac's series of dedicated rail excavators, including the 106MRail, 136MRail and 156MRail. The manufacturer builds the MRail series to meet all railway needs from routine maintenance to constructing new tracks.

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