Heavy Equipment

Discussion in 'Shiny Things' started by Sniper X, Nov 14, 2012.

  1. Sniper X

    Sniper X De Oppresso Liber

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    I did a cool job a few years ago. It was up at a local coal mine, open pit. They scrub off the spoil with this thing called a drag line, which is a big (very) shovel. They then go down to the coal vein and drill holes for explosives and blow it up. After that they go in with huge trucks and front end loaders and scoop it up and transport it by rail car to the plant. One of the drag lines, which are so huge, they can't be driven on tracks, was in need of a little accident investigation since the operator had managed to knock the wire ropes off the top sheaves (rollers or pulleys) and it costs many hundreds of thousands of dollars when that happens in lost revenue and repair. I installed four CCTV cameras on it including one at the top of the front bar which is like 200ft off the ground. It worked, and they found out why the wire rope came off. Fun job too. Here is a pic of myself and my tech standing in front of the SMALLER of the three buckets. The big one holds 30 full sized pick up trucks....

    [​IMG]

    BTW this pic is where the shovel fell, it is almost half buried in the dirt!
    #1
  2. Heyload

    Heyload Remastered Classic

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    Day-um! :eek1
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  3. Sniper X

    Sniper X De Oppresso Liber

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    You should see the thing that uses that shovel. And being inside it is awesome, It looked like a building inside.
    #3
  4. adam_c_eckhardt

    adam_c_eckhardt halfway there

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    Do you have any pictures of the rest of it? How the hell do they move that around?
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  5. GP640

    GP640 Long timer

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    Used to be that Trans Alta had a really big drag line working on the North side of hwy16
    west of Edmonton. Maybe it's still there, dunno.

    Most of them move(the really big ones) by walking on pads. No tracks.
    #5
  6. Sniper X

    Sniper X De Oppresso Liber

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    It has a big round pad under the center and it "walks" or scoots by picking the pad up off the ground with a couple arms that have long horizontal feet on them and moving the pad forward or backward. Imagine it as if you sit on the floor legs sticking out forward, and pressing on the floor with your hands picking your butt up off the floor, and ricking forward then letting your butt back down on the floor. I call it the imperial walker. It is weird since you can't FEEL any of this happening when it is underway if you are inside it.
    #6
  7. Sniper X

    Sniper X De Oppresso Liber

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    They can't ship it built either, the guy told me it had to be brought there is pieces, on 30 rail cars and assembled on site.
    #7
  8. Nailhead

    Nailhead Free at last!

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    Those things are common as mushrooms in a lawn around here.

    Still cool though.

    I was taking my pre-employment tour with a safety officer at Black Thunder, and we were parked several hundred yards from the spoil pile Ursa Major (the largest dragline in North America, IIRC) was dumping on. The truck shook every time a load hit that pile.

    That machine made me feel very small. :bow
    #8
  9. kobudo28

    kobudo28 Banned

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    The Discovery Channel ran a story on large drag lines and shovels a couple of years ago. Some serious shit! They are all assembled on site because of their size. The part about how they move, as you described, or some they showed that "walked"....very cool.
    #9
  10. crazydrummerdude

    crazydrummerdude Wacky Bongo Boy

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    My explosives classes were part of the mining department of my university, so I got to see some cool big tools like that. Probably the smallest power tool a miner uses is the jack-leg drill. I ran one a few times in limestone and even that was a terrifying (awesome) experience. A good friend of mine works on a drag line in Texas. I still want to see a drag line or cast blast in person. Anyways..

    Cool stuff!
    #10
  11. Hardware02

    Hardware02 Long timer

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    Big Muskie!

    <iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/jcmGKsHZXZ8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
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  12. Nailhead

    Nailhead Free at last!

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    They're fun.

    More fun if you don't actually have to load the holes yourself.
    #12
  13. Craneguy

    Craneguy British Hooligan

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    This is me in front of Big Muskie's bucket. It's all that's left...

    [​IMG]

    I get to work with the big stuff all the time, mostly cranes.

    This is the biggest one to date. It's a ringer crane that will lift 1,800 tons. The building next to the crane is 150 feet high, and the load was 450 tons. We lifted it 170 feet away from the crane.

    [​IMG]

    The hook alone weighs 25 tons. It wasn't the biggest hook the crane uses. It has 5 miles 2" hoist cable, and came to site on 120 trucks. Assembly took 6 weeks.

    [​IMG]

    This gives some idea of scale...

    [​IMG]

    Not nearly as big as the old school walking draglines, but the fact it all breaks down in to 40ft container sized loads is pretty impressive.
    #13
  14. pnhd65

    pnhd65 renaissance man

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    Steam Generator replacement?
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  15. Craneguy

    Craneguy British Hooligan

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    Yup. Watts Bar, Tn in '06
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  16. Cumminsman76

    Cumminsman76 befuddled

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    How do you pave 31 degrees banking?

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  17. Hardware02

    Hardware02 Long timer

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    You suck! :D

    How does one get started in a career working on big cranes? I've always been fascinated by them...

    Oh...and you suck! :D
    #17
  18. Hoo Rider

    Hoo Rider Been here awhile

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    Those draglines are all electric, so they run off the grid or really big generators. Depending on the size of the dragline, they use as much electricity as a town of 20,000 to 30,000 people. :eek1
    #18
  19. Sniper X

    Sniper X De Oppresso Liber

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    Yep and you should see the supply lines! They are at least a foot in diameter for this one I worked on that day. They never turned it off or even slowed it down except for when I was out on the arm. It was incredibly smooth and I never noticed the movement when on it. When standing near it whilst it was moving, it was awesome, you have no idea how big a man made thing is until you see some of this stuff....or of course air craft carriers.
    #19
  20. ysr612

    ysr612 Long timer

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    my brothers roommate in college worked as an engineer for a company in Wisconsin called Peabody or something close and they made big things like that. They would build them run and test them and then take them all apart for delivery to the site.
    #20