“Things could not have gone better from our perspective,” he says. “The silo erection and the lime erection equipment was outstanding and we were really impressed with the system on the silos for material load out.
“The whole process, though, was made better in part because of the help the crew from ADM provided,” he continues. “They’ve run plants before so they understood the challenges and the aches and pains you go through to get a plant up and running. It’s obvious that they are not just office workers who came out to direct things. That meant a lot to us and allowed us to be ready when we needed to be.”
Tiffin adds that the EX8842’s ease of use was one of the plant’s selling points and it has not disappointed. “It’s just not complicated,” he says. “I have better than 20 years’ experience running asphalt plants with previous employers, but we brought in a guy who never ran a plant like this before and he was still up and running it in no time at all.”
AWA’s plant includes a 88” x 42’ drum with ADM’s patented counterflow technology which utilizes separate drying and mixing zones to maximize heat transfer and fuel efficiency. This design raises asphalt production volumes while lowering costs-per-ton.
Other components of the system include a 47,000 acfm baghouse, a four, 30-ton cold feed bin system, a 75-ton self-erecting silo, a 400 TPH drag conveyor, a pair of 30,000 gallon hot oil heated AC tanks, a 750 BBL self-erecting mineral filler silo, and a 15 ton RAP bin.
“I’ve run or supervised plants from almost every major manufacturer, and learned that the more bells and whistles a plant has, the better the chance that something will go wrong,” says Tiffin. “The ADM plant we bought does everything we need it to do — and does it well — without the added risk of needless downtime. And, by keeping the number of ‘extras’ down, ADM is able to offer a plant that doesn’t break a company’s budget. That’s saying something these days.”
No rap on RAP
The TCH project to which Tiffin referred to, had a requirement that the asphalt mix contain 30% reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP), a stipulation that, with some plants, could have presented challenges. The ADM plant, he says, handles the RAP without any problem.
“Because you indirectly heat RAP, some plants have trouble heating the aggregate making it difficult to keep your tonnages up,” says Tiffin. “In addition, using RAP often increases the possibility of plugging up the bag house due to light ends of the fuel coming in. We never found anything like that to be an issue. We got the production rates we needed — even with the RAP — and never had a plugging issue with the baghouse at all. The plant ran very well with RAP for us.”
Satisfaction extended beyond the asphalt production phase of the project as well, with Hoban’s crews laying down the 17 km of roadbed on schedule, within budget, and in spec.
“We have Topcon System 5 paving systems on our paving equipment which we feel probably resulted in one of the best rides in the Province on this road,” says Tiffin. “In fact, Provincial inspectors brought out profilographs to check the road for smoothness and rideability and the quality was so high that we will probably receive a nice bonus for our efforts. How can you argue with that?”
Change of seasons
Hoban is currently prepping the ADM plant for its next project. Tiffin says during the winter season they performed general maintenance on the plant’s components, so it was ready to get back on the road again this spring.
“We really only had the plant up and running for the last half of the paving season last year,” he says. “We got a good feel for what it can do, putting out better than 60,000 tons in that time frame.
“We are looking forward to taking it out this year and tackling a full plate of projects,” Tiffin concludes. “The work is definitely out there and with this new capability, we are better equipped than ever to handle it.”