The quick attach system mounted to the front of the grader allows flexibility for easily changing out plows or attachments for the front end of the machine.
One day in the future, residents of New Milford, Pa., will be driving on smooth roads, rather than the dirt roads they’re accustomed to, courtesy of the gas company.
But until that time, New Milford, located in northeastern Pennsylvania, in the heart of the Marcellus shale drilling area, is finding its local roads suffering from the equipment being driven back and forth on them.
Big Equipment, Small Roads
The Town of New Milford has 68 mi. (109 km) of dirt roads, many of which are being used for the hauling of massive equipment instrumental to the construction of the drilling platforms and natural gas pipelines. These roads are very old and were designed for vehicles like automobiles, pickup trucks and farm equipment. The roads also are very narrow, typically 16 ft. (4.8 m) wide.
As the gas companies finish their construction projects they are repairing these roads way beyond their original specifications. The bottom line is that there is a good relationship between the township and the gas companies with regards to the impacts caused by their necessary construction projects.
Picking and Choosing
With the economics of the township being stronger than they have ever been before, the town is making an effort to keep the equipment fleet more up to date than in the past. It all adds up to New Milford buying a new motor grader.
Several options were available to them through the Pennsylvania state contract or by piggy backing off of other municipal contracts.
As a part of the buying process Road Master Supervisors Jack Conroy and Jim Hunter were sent to Case’s Tomahawk training grounds in Wisconsin. This facility is specifically built and staffed by Case for potential buyers to come and spend a couple of days to try out and actually operate various pieces of construction equipment manufactured by Case.
“The Tomahawk experience was very helpful and enlightening and aided us significantly in our decision-making process. The factory representatives are highly skilled in answering my questions and making me familiar with the various aspects of the Case machine. Yet it was done in such a way that you felt no pressure to make a purchase. All of the major components to the motor grader were on display with cutaway views so that I could actually view the engine, the transmission and the cab and see for myself the engineering and workmanship. It was very helpful and impressive,” Conroy said.
Case Is on the Case
Ultimately there were a number of reasons that the township opted to purchase the Case machine, but the driving factor was the visibility of the grader blade to the machine operator, according to Conroy.
The blade on the Case 885B is located directly below the front of the operator cab; from a seated position the grader operator can see the entire blade including the back.
Other key features included on the Case machine are:
• A uniquely designed moldboard, which improves blade life and increases the blade’s hardiness. The moldboard’s radius design cuts, mixes and rolls material more efficiently.
• The durable front A-frame drawbar for stability. The A-frame drawbar is a heavy-duty box frame design that supports the circle with a wide stance, thus increasing the life of the circle and the drawbar components.
• Case graders are designed with external rather than internal circle teeth, which are easier to clean and provide a larger contact area for longer wear life and greater leverage when turning the blade.
• The grader is equipped with anti-shock accumulators that act as a shock absorber and allows the moldboard to move over and around obstructions and then return to its exact original position. This happens fully automatically with no operator involvement.
• The Case machine is designed with serviceability in mind. With a flip open lid all daily maintenance checks can be made from the ground level.
“Another reason that we felt comfortable with the decision to go with the Case grader is our familiarity with Medico Industries,” Conroy said. “We have owned several pieces of Case equipment, including a Case backhoe and a Case 621 loader with a tool carrier, and we have always experienced very, very good service from the people at Medico Industries. Any time that we have had a problem with a machine that we could not troubleshoot ourselves, Medico has had their service people at our facility the same day that we call and they have had whatever parts necessary in stock.”
Located in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., Medico has been selling equipment to 14 counties in northeastern and central Pennsylvania for more than 50 years.
Medico carries a wide selection of construction equipment, including wheel loaders, skid steers, forklifts, excavators, backhoes, crawler dozers, articulated dump trucks and more.
For more information, call 800/633-0027 or visit www.medicoind.com.