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Nevada Paver Thrives in the Fast Lane

Tue May 16, 2006 - West Edition
Construction Equipment Guide

When Q & D Construction starts a subdivision project, it has the capabilities to complete the entire project, from the underground work, to dirt work, curb and gutter and paving and building the cabinets in its own shop for the new houses.

The Sparks, NV, contractor prides itself on the quality of its construction and impressive turn-around time once crews are on site.

It was the drive for quality that led it to buy its first GOMACO GT-3600 curb and gutter machine in 2000.

In 2005, the inventory expanded to include a three-track Commander III. The new machine would allow Q & D to pour more curb and gutter, as well as tackle larger barrier wall and monolithic curb and gutter and sidewalk.

“Last year we were constantly chasing projects, trying to get one done so we could move onto the next one. We had to work a lot of hours, a lot of weekends and overtime to get everything done,” Johnny Glantz, concrete superintendent of Q & D, said. “This year it’s nice to have two curb and gutter machines. It’s less stress on one operator and the rest of the crew. Plus, the new Commander III gives us more versatility and more production.

“The GT-3600 is super efficient for building parking lots because it has a shorter turning radius and makes curves easier. The larger Commander III is great for mainline pouring, which is a huge portion of our subdivision work.”

In the past few months, Q & D has broken the company’s top two curb and gutter production records. The first new company record happened on Vista Boulevard in Spanish Springs, NV.

Timing on the project was tight and the curb and gutter and street paving had to be done before cold temperatures moved in.

If all the dirt work, utilities and project preparation could be completed in time to slipform all the curb and gutter on the project in one day, it would be a record-setting 14,000 ft. of curb and gutter for the company.

“Down one side of Vista Boulevard is 3,500 feet and then back again another 3,500 feet,” Glantz explained. “We could have easily done that in a single day with one machine, but with everything ready to go on the project and time a consideration, we decided to bring in our other curb machine and pour the median island. We did them both at the same time for a 14,000 foot total.”

The GT-3600 and its crew were in charge of slipforming the median curb while the Commander III slipformed the larger L-curb and gutter. Work started at 6 a.m. and the race between the two crews started almost immediately.

“Each of the crews and machines had their own foreman and each was trying to grab the ready-mix trucks for their machine,” Glantz said. “Of course, the median curb goes twice as fast and far because it’s a smaller curb. We were getting 35 feet per cubic yard with the median curb and only 20 feet per cubic yard with the L-curb. It was a challenging scenario.”

Coordinating the effort both before and during the pour was a huge task. Working space was tight and getting concrete trucks to the curb machines required careful timing.

“We always had one concrete truck on each machine, two trucks stacked up in front of them and there wasn’t a whole lot of room to drive in between,” Glantz said. “We had to coordinate the trucks coming in and out, coordinate the slump and make sure it was always right, the stringline had to be sighted and everything just had to be right where it was supposed to be. There was no room for error.”

Sixteen ready-mix trucks kept the two curb and gutter machines supplied throughout the pour. The concrete mix was a 4000 psi (30 MPa) city mix with fiber added. Slump averaged 1 in. (2.5 cm).

Crews were poured out by 3:30 p.m. that afternoon. Each machine averaged 40 cu. yd. (30.6 cu m) per hour of production or an 80 cu. yd. (61 cu m) per hour combined total.

“It takes a tremendous effort for everyone involved in a project like this to end up with a record-setting day,” Glantz said. “That whole road was done in two weeks from the time we got on the project. That’s a tremendous effort from the dirt end, from our engineering department, mechanics and everyone involved. We had a six-man line crew and they worked three days to get the stringline up. Then it took 26 people and two curb machine operators 9.5 hours to pour 550 cubic yards of curb and gutter.”

Q & D Construction wasn’t content with just one new company record. Just a few months after setting the new benchmark for two machines, it took the new Commander III out and broke the record for a single machine’s one day production.

The second record pour took place at a subdivision called Mount Rose Estates. Glantz and his Q & D concrete crew slipformed 8,000 ft. of curb and gutter in a 10-hour day.

“We set a new benchmark thanks to our new GOMACO machine, a perfect grade set by our dirt crew foreman and great coordination from our concrete team,” Glantz said. “The team slipformed 380 cubic yards of concrete and did a superb job.”

(Article originally appeared in “Gomaco World.”) CEG

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