We Energies recently purchased a Dressta TD-40C Tier 2 crawler dozer from Roland Machinery Co. to work at its power plant in Pleasant Prairie, WI. The dozer features a tier-2 engine, joystick control, a new cooling package design and has the distinction of being the first TD40-C Tier 2 sold in North America.
The company will use the dozer to move coal, as well as bottom ash that it receives from other operations.
“Coal is burned at other We Energies’ facilities and the bottom ash is brought to this plant,” said Jeff Podjasek, utility/sales specialist for Roland Machinery. “The coal generators here are so efficient that they can burn the bottom ash and reuse it and turn it into energy.”
We Energies’ new TD-40C Tier 2 will use its Rockland 60-yd. coal blade to push the coal and bottom ash into piles as it is delivered by rail car. The piles will then be distributed so the material can be gravity fed into the conveyors that lead to the furnaces.
“Predominantly, what it will be used for is working our berms and our coal pile, which are at about a 45 to 50 degree angle that our rubber tired machines do not handle as well as a crawler dozer,” said Mike Miller, yard supervisor of the Pleasant Prairie plant. “And then we also have some alternative fuel in the back of our coal pile that has different properties than normal coal. It gets a little slippery and a crawler machine is better for moving that material.”
The company plans to use the TD-40C Tier 2 as a backup to the rubber-tired machines as well. “Currently, the majority of our coal moving activities are handled by the Cat 854G rubber tired machines,” said Miller. Until recently, a 1979 International TD25E with a 20-yd. blade was the backup to these machines.
“Through the years we found that [the TD25E] was undersized for our operation and we did not have a viable back-up machine to our two rubber tired machines,” said Miller. “So, we went researching crawler-type machines of a bigger size that would be a more direct replacement.”
The company made contact with several dealers and made some site visits before making its decision. “The Dressta machine, we found, was very similar operationally to the TD25 that we had,” said Miller. “It mirrored what we were used to as far as a crawler machine.”
During its research, We Energies had an opportunity to operate a Dressta TD-40C Tier 1 and an older 40B –– the predecessors to the 40C Tier 2 –– at Dairyland Power Co. “To test this particular dozer we took Mike Miller and three operators up to Dairyland,” said Podjasek.
“We were quite impressed with the power and ease of operation,” said Miller. “Through research we found that the Dressta, price wise, was very reasonable compared to other similar sized models. We chose the Dressta for price and ease of operation and maintenance.”
The TD-40C Tier 2 is designed with a number of features to improve both ease of operation and maintenance. A single left hand joystick controls all machine motion functions –– direction, gear ranges, and steering modes. “Therefore, all of the direction or speed selections can be made with the complete joystick and the electronic controls that are integrated into the joystick,” said Bernie Winker, manager –– marketing and engineering services of Dressta.
“The single lever joystick with push button shifting and high/low steering, and dual tilt with pitch, make it very easy to operate,” said Wally Wagner, field service manager of Dressta. “The two-speed steering allows you to make gradual turns with full power to both tracks by just pushing a button.”
“That is to say, whatever transmission selection the operator made, he also has the choice of shifting the steering system into a high or a low range,” said Winker. “So coupled with the three gears in the transmission, he effectively gets six speeds forward and reverse.”
According to Dressta, the TD-40C Tier 2 continues to be the only dozer above 410 hp to offer the steering/power advantages of a geared steering system.
The TD-40C Tier 2’s 520-hp Cummins QSK-19C is a tier-2 engine designed to reduce emissions. The engine utilizes full electronic control, dual overhead camshafts, a variable output turbo system, and oil change intervals of up to 500 hours.
Keeping an engine of this size cool during continuous operation is critical, so the TD-40C Tier 2 features a multi-unit modular cooling system.
“The major changes of this tractor compared to earlier versions is the introduction of the tier-2 engine, which also necessitated a lot of changes to the cooling system and the air induction system,” said Winker. The cooling package includes engine, power train, charge air, fuel and hydraulic system cooling.
“This cooling package, since most of the coolers are positioned side by side, is not expected to cause preheating of the air other than that which is drawn in around the engine,” said Winker. “The engine compartment is ventilated heavily by perforations in the hood and the side doors, so we are drawing air in around the engine and being sucked through cooling system by the fan that is located ahead of the coolers. This decreases the velocity of air flow to the radiator, therefore giving us a better heat transfer as well as a reduction of the erosion of the radiator fins.”
The cab also is equipped with a multiple-mode filtration system to improve pressurization and comfort for the operator.
“The result is cleaner air for the operator, especially working in a dusty environment, but ensures high pressurization of the cab, so we can keep a positive pressure inside the cab,” said Winker. “We have learned in the past that this is a major goal for operators in coal handling environments where they have an issue with their safety and health. By keeping the environment as clean as possible they ensure good productivity and good health of their operators.”
This full-recirculation system is another feature not offered on earlier machines.
“The left side rear access compartment houses various maintenance points. For example, the transmission and the hydraulic oil filters are located here as well as the dipstick for the main transmission and power train oil check,” said Winker. “There are also six pressure-pickup points for the diagnostics capabilities that this tractor affords.”
“In other words, a technician can do a so-called EKG on the power train just by checking pressures at various points in the power train, which are all centrally located in the same compartment,” Winker added.
Three other diagnostic ports also allow the technician to check the pressures in the main hydraulic system including the tilt and lift system. According to Winker, just by doing a walk around an operator can check his hydraulic oil and coolant levels visually, minimizing time and effort in checking the tractor before it is run for the day.
In addition, all hydraulic hoses to the tilt and pitch cylinders are completely enclosed. “The cover plate is a cast assembly and shields the hoses coming from the hydraulic pump and valves from the main chassis of the tractor,” said Winker. “There is no evidence of any hydraulic hoses in an area where they can be damaged during operation.”
Dressta North America, a fully owned subsidiary of Dressta Company Ltd., is headquartered in Buffalo Grove, IL, and markets the Dressta crawler tractor, wheel loader and crawler loader lines of construction equipment.