Utility Contractor

SEP-OCT 2018

As the official magazine of NUCA, Utility Contractor presents the latest information affecting every aspect of the utility construction industry, including technological advancements, safety issues, legislative developments and instructional advice.

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makes utility maintenance more cost-effective, faster and less disruptive. Operators have also found coring attach- ments to be useful for turning corners on fiber jobs. With one machine, an operator can microtrench along a paved right-of-way, then quickly swap in a coring attachment for installation around tight, 90-degree corners. Subcompact Vacuum-Lifting Attachment Operators can use this attachment for larger utility main- tenance jobs that require more excavation than a coring at- tachment can provide. One example would be a project that requires operators to expose utilities beneath larger areas of concrete, closer to four square feet depending on the unit's operating capacity. They can cut the concrete and use the subcompact vacuum-lifting attachment to easily lift the en- tire section out, as opposed to using a backhoe or crane for removal. This attachment can also be used to place road plates over exposed areas on urban projects that aren't com- plete at the end of the day. Breaker Attachment When a job requires an operator to break up concrete, as- phalt pavement and rock, a breaker attachment, sometimes known as a rock hammer, is the optimal fragmenting tool. Compared to a jackhammer, a mini skid steer with a break- er attachment is ergonomic, faster and more cost-effective. This attachment frees operators from the jolting effects of jackhammering, allowing the durable mini skid steer to conquer the job. Sweeper Attachment On urban projects, such as microtrenching and coring jobs, sweepers are great for the final cleaning of the jobsite. The sweeper attachment makes cleanup quick and effective. Rather than using a broom, operators can attach the sweeper to the mini skid steer they used for microtrenching or cor- ing, and scoop everything into a bucket for disposal. With a mini skid steer and its variety of support attach- ments, it's easy to see how operators can effectively complete a variety of urban utility jobs from start to finish efficiently and at minimal costs. We see no signs of the market for these machines slowing. As the equipment continues to advance, we'll continue to see more municipalities and contractors using the versatile, compact machines for an evolving set of heavy-duty underground construction jobs. Chris Thompson is product manager for compact equipment for Ditch Witch, a Charles Machine Works company. Utility Contractor 27

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