(L-R): Juan Delgadillo, operator; Roger Lisy, president of Break Thru Enterprises; and TJ Lisy, project manager/safety director of Break Thru Enterprises show off the new Volvo excavator purchased from Alta Equipment Company.
Break Thru Enterprises Inc. of Lombard, Ill., was presented with an opportunity to work on a rather challenging project. The job, located in Bannockburn, Ill., required a mix of demolition practices — office gut, selective structural removal and total building removal. The project involved three buildings: the 17,000-sq.-ft. center structure (original building); the 12,000-sq.-ft. east addition; and the 5,000-sq.-ft. west addition.
"The original center building needed to be removed down to the slab, but the steel columns needed to remain for reuse to build a second story," said Bill O'Neill, project manager of Break Thru Enterprises. "The challenge of this portion of the project was the building had a basement with a cast-in-place slab."
Roger Lisy, president of Break Thru, knew what size and class of excavator was needed for the job and contacted a dealer he was familiar with for advice. The team at Alta Equipment in Orland Park, Ill., was able to help.
Mark Cristino and Jeff Ader, prime sales account managers, and Ron Anderson, demonstration operator, made sure the options and how the unit would be equipped met Break Thru's needs in the demolition market. It was decided the Volvo EC480EL excavator with an operating weight of 100,310 to 117,510 lbs. was the machine that fit.
Along with the excavator, the proper attachments were necessary. The Alta team recommended a Werk-Brau 54-in. severe duty bucket with teeth and the Werk-Brau 3/2 stiff arm grapple with 120-in. jaw opening, 48-in. wide.
High Production, Fuel Efficiency
Volvo designed this machine to reduce fuel consumption and increase productivity, with ECO mode and a new hydraulic control system that uses intelligent technology. Its work mode system now includes G4 mode, which optimizes performance. Operators can choose which work mode — idle, fine, general, heavy and power max — is best for the current tasks at hand.
The Volvo EC480EL's D13 Tier IV Final engine, automatic idling system and auto engine shut down (after a pre-set amount of time) are just some of the features that enhance fuel efficiency.
Volvo's ECO mode optimizes the hydraulic system by reducing flow and pressure loss, improving efficiency. This option is automatic, but can be switched off when necessary.
Durability in Tough Conditions
Demolition requires a machine that can withstand harsh conditions. The Volvo EC480EL has a three-piece undercarriage with a high-strength tensile steel X-shaped frame. The undercarriage components are reinforced to help prevent damage from rocks and debris.
The track links and bottom rollers are also built to withstand tough job sites, including quarries, demolition sites and mass excavation sites.
Volvo's EC480EL Put to Work
Break Thru took delivery of its new Volvo excavator with Werk-Brau attachments and put them to work. The west addition was wrecked as operator Juan Delgadillo was careful not to damage the adjacent steel structure. A portion of the slab and foundation also was removed.
Delgadillo used the Volvo EC480EL to strip the exterior perimeter walls and the outer bays of the roof that could be reached outside the footprint of the building. This had to be done carefully to not damage the steel columns.
Another challenge was a one-stop freight elevator that needed to be removed. Once again, the Volvo excavator was put to work to hoist the car out of the shaft.
In the final building, the roof and slab needed to remain. For this portion of the project, the Volvo EC480EL was used to carefully remove the exterior walls.
"The Volvo cab is comfortable," said Juan Delgadillo, operator. "All the controls and accessory features are easy to use and access. The machine itself performs well."
"Buying new equipment is always exciting," said Lisy. "The Alta team took the time to understand the application we were going use the equipment for. They presented the appropriate equipment/attachments options and explained the necessary maintenance. They made it an easy decision to purchase the Volvo 480."
Volvo EC480EL Excavator Specs
- Gross power: 373 hp
- At engine speed: 1,800 rpm
- Bucket capacity: 2.03 to 4.32 cu. yds.
- Lifting capacity, along undercarriage: 38,040 lbs.
- At reach/height: 20/5 ft.
- Max. digging reach: 39 ft. 10 in.
- Max. digging depth: 25 ft. 8 in.
- Breakout force, SAE J1179 (normal): 51,616 lbf
- Breakout force, SAE J1179 (boost): 56,472 lbf
- Tear out force, SAE J1179 (normal): 44,085 lbf
- Tear out force, SAE J1179 (boost): 48,311 lbf
- Overall width: 11 ft. 11 in.
- Tail swing radius: 12ft. 6 in.
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