New ultra-high-demolition excavators such as the Apex 70 combine a Caterpillar carrier (upper structure, lower structure and undercarriage with Jewell UHD fronts, cab guarding and demolition control system.
Photo credit: Caterpillar Inc.
Caterpillar has joined forces with Jewell Attachments LLC to add new Ultra High Demolition (UHD) excavators to its lineup. New UHD models—Apex 50, Apex 70 and Apex 100—will use Caterpillar-manufactured carriers (upper structure, lower structure and undercarriage) combined with Jewell UHD fronts, cab-guarding package and Demolition Control System (DCS).
The Apex 70 is now available. A choice of two, three-piece front structures offer reach of 84-ft. (maximum vertical pin height) boom with a maximum tool-weight capacity of 9,600 lbs. and 98-ft. with maximum tool-weight capacity of 6,700 lbs.
The Apex 100 and Apex 50 will follow in the first and third quarters of 2012, respectively. Apex units will be sold exclusively through North American Cat dealers, and Caterpillar will continue to offer all other demolition product families in the current Cat product range.
The new UHD machines incorporate a 30-degree tilting cab and the upper frames are reinforced with plates at critical stress points. Heavy-duty boom structures, using high-strength-steel plates plasma cut with 30-degree bevels for weld fill, are fabricated "in position," then line bored for fit.
High-carbon, hardened steel pins and bushings are used throughout the front structure, and plumbing is a combination of DOM (Drawn Over Mandrel) seamless tubing and high-pressure (5,000- to 6,000-psi) hoses. Boom structures protect hydraulic cylinders, and an available dust-suppression system features dual adjustable nozzles, hydraulic pump and plumbing that conforms to standard fire-fighting components.
The full FOPS (Falling Objects Protective Structure), secured to the tilting cab platform, wraps thick-wall tubing and vertical bars around the cab enclosure, but the protective structures are designed to allow unimpaired visibility. Glass in the cab is made of tempered inner and outer panels heat-vulcanized over a multi-layer polycarbonate core. Cab features include a programmable touch-screen-computer interface that allows presetting work parameters, an automatic climate-control system and an available attachment-observation system featuring two high-resolution cameras.
Machine working range is limited by the DCS computer to maintain a safe operating envelope. The DCS boom-monitoring system constantly determines boom position and keeps boom travel within safe parameters when raising, lowering or using work tools. If the boom approaches pre-established boundaries, the operator is advised via an audible warning system, and if operation continues, the system allows only boom movement that will restore the safety margin. In addition, the DCS modulates hydraulic-function speed to mitigate dynamic forces, thus contributing to a stable working platform.
The new Apex models also are equipped with pilot-assisted load-lock valves for the boom-hoist, mid-stick and working-stick cylinders, and the machines use locking anti-burst valves with a pilot-assist cartridge. These safety features are used in conjunction with a remote pilot source to provide failure protection, load control and load-holding capability.
Front structures for the Apex 70 include the three-piece 84-ft. boom with a maximum tool-weight capacity of 9,600 pounds; the three-piece 98-ft. with a maximum tool-weight capacity of 6,700 lbs.; a straight main boom; and custom booms as customer requirements dictate. In addition, boom extensions and multiple working sticks are available.
Boom configurations are designed to be within transport-height regulations when fully crowded. Also available are custom boom trailers that allow correct pin height for "walk-up" connection at the transport joint. Also, cradles can be customized to accept extensions and additional sticks.
Among the work tools available for the new Apex UHD models are multi-processors, rotating shears and hydraulic breakers—all available in a range of sizes and configurations.