The Contractors’ Top New Products Awards showcase new equipment, technology and products that the construction industry and the Equipment Today team have identified as the most intriguing and important of the year. Award recipients are based on nominations and page view data on new products featured in Equipment Today and on ForConstructionPros.com/Equipment over a one-year period. The winning products shown represent the most significant introductions or updates for each manufacturer from April 2021 through April 2022.
Much has happened in the last year—supply chain challenges, inflation and more. It seems like just yesterday we were gearing up for the busiest part of the season, and now we are looking at winding down for fall and preparing equipment for winter. 2022 saw another busy season for the construction equipment industry. I am seeing compact equipment trending, along with highly versatile attachments, as I keep my eyes on the industry’s hot topics. These equipment trends showed up in various places in this year’s Contractors’ Top 50 New Products.
I hope our readers find the products they seek to best support their fleets among the awarded equipment. I know that you will find these Top Products to be as useful and best-in-class as the Equipment Today team does, from excavators to cranes to portable compressors. Thank you to all who nominated products, and to Dave Haglund, Art Director, and Gigi Wood, Managing Editor, for making these pages pop with exciting equipment.
In the meantime, fleet managers, I'll be focusing on the earthmoving equipment, fleet management and technology trends you want to read about. From dozers, loaders and excavators to skid steers and retrofit kits, I plan on prioritizing the equipment categories you care about most in the Equipment Today print magazine and on ForConstructionPros.com/Equipment in the coming months.
Congratulations again to the winners of the 2022 Contractors’ Top New Products Awards! Here are a few stand-outs:
The Merlo DBM 3500 self-contained mini cement mixer features a drum volume of 1,321 gallons delivering 4.6 yd.3 of concrete. The self-loading bucket handles up to 25 ft.3 of aggregate at each load cycle. The pump moves 66 gallons of water per minute into the mixing drum, suppling up to 37.7 sq. ft of concrete to be made in less than 15 minutes.
The DBM 3500 is available through Applied Machinery Sales—the official importer and distributor of Merlo telehandlers and rotos in the U.S.
The drum ensures a high-quality mix, thanks to the high geometric volume of the drum, a reduced angle of inclination, and a double spiral propeller with variable pitch. The hydraulics on the self-loading bucket lifts and rotates the bucket as needed. The bucket door automatically opens to unload the aggregate into the drum.
The hydraulic water system is composed of a self-priming pump (66 g/min.) with a 3-way diverter to the barrel, tank, or the 20 ft. hose with washing lance. A gallon counter placed on the dashboard, and on the ground controls, regulates the amount of water delivered into the barrel and the lance.
A unique feature of the Merlo DBM3500 is the ground controls that replicate controls found in the cab. From the ground, an operator can control engine acceleration, water pump activation, drum rotation, barrel lift, chute lift and emergency stop.
The drum sits on a ‘fifth wheel’ allowing 180-degree lateral rotation. Added to the vertical tilt capability, the DBM3500 can discharge concrete up to 330 degrees around the machine. The maximum unloading height of the discharge chute is 6.7 ft. /in. This hydraulically lifted and adjustable chute (+/- 90° F) and its two 10 ft. extensions are standard. Machine performance is controlled from the cab or the ground.
The ROP-certified cab is built with double controls split between front and rear. The front controls are for driving. The comfortable seat spins 180° to access the rear controls that drive the vehicle, manages the mixing drum and self-loading bucket. A lever is used to reverse the direction of machine travel.
Operator and machine safety are designed into every DBM concrete mixer. When unladen, the barrel offset, in relation to the frame axle, compensates for the cab weight and supplies optimal front and rear visibility. When fully loaded, the concrete mass is pushed onto the longitudinal axis of the machine to maintain the gravitational center.
The 100 HP (Tier 4 Final-compliant) engine is placed on the front side of the frame, maximizing ventilation for cooling and accessibility.
The DBM3500 is a compact machine (ft./in.: 17.9 x 7.7 x 12.7) with excellent weight balance and a travel speed of up to 25 mph. The DBM comes equipped with: portal axles (increased ground clearance), 4WD with three steering modes, hydrostatic transmission, and a robust engine. Combined, the DBM 3500 delivers high torque to the wheels providing safe, nimble maneuvering on any terrain.
Thanks to its agile characteristics, such as the angles of inclination, tight turning radius, and reduced overall dimensions, the DMM cement mixer is suitable for working in confined, difficult-to-reach spaces. Plus, the large water tank means the DBM3500 cement mixer can fully operate in areas without water supply sources.
The 50V5 has a 12-ft. 7-in. dig depth, 9,100 lbs. of breakout force at the bucket and weighs in at an easily towable 10,830 lbs.
- Kubota V2403-CR-E5B diesel engine rated at 43.5 hp at 2,400 rpm
- 43-gpm total hydraulic system flow and 16-gpm maximum auxiliary hydraulic flow
- Features an offset boom, stable track frame and 6-ft. 6-in. dozer blade
- Operating environment comes in open canopy or cab configurations with highly responsive pilot controls and easy to read instrument panels
- Wide-opening access panels and large compartments ensure ease of service
Thermal Intelligence introduces BASECAMP, a Smart 3-in-1 Heater, Light Tower & Generator. BASECAMP delivers market-leading efficiency as a Flameless Heater and provides a 360° LED Lighting Package and 27kW of Available Power.
The Basecamp green-certified heater, light tower and generator delivers efficiency as a flameless heater, provides a 360° LED lighting package and 27 kW of available power. Also, SmartTalk IoT technology monitors and controls the heater 24/7 and alerts via SMS or email before there’s a problem. The Basecamp light package produces 192,000 lumens 5K color.
It has a minimum run time of 48 hours with 27 kW of continuous power and features three twist locks (30-amp ground fault circuit interrupter to 20-amp 120 volts). The Basecamp has a Kubota 2.4-Liter, electronic Tier 4 Final engine with a 119-gal. fuel tank capacity and a dry weight of 3,000 lbs. with cabinet dimensions of 3' 5" x 7' x 5'.
Significant cost savings can be realized from the technology that burns the least fuel, and that’s where the Green Seal Certified BASECAMP’s 97% efficiency shines. The operational savings don’t stop there: 24/7 Remote Monitoring & Control, Smart Controls (resolving problems like potential wet-stacking autonomously), 2,500-hour service intervals, 48-hour fueling intervals, a built-in load bank for the generator, and No-Fire Watch all add up to significant operational savings, reliability, and simplification. Thermal Intelligence customers appreciate those attributes.
In comparing the cost of the 3-in-1 BASECAMP to its competitors, operators need to consider not only the cost of the separate lights and generators for a traditional worksite but the need for additional heaters to obtain an equivalent heating capacity. Depending on the exact equipment the BASECAMP is displacing, the fuel savings alone are $500–$700/day.
BASECAMP was developed to eliminate the pain and suffering that goes with traditional heating equipment from the lack of reliability, lack of connectivity and overall lack of product quality in the marketplace. In developing the unit, Thermal Intelligence drew on their years of experience working with temporary heat on plant sites and winter construction projects, looking at how they could solve the numerous challenges with existing equipment, including high fuel consumption, issues of reliability, and equipment monitoring in sub-zero temperatures. The company’s patented ultra-efficient heat generation design effectively captures all waste heat produced, pairing a reciprocating engine with an electrical generation system. Combining state-of-the-art technology other industries have been using for years — like high-efficiency engines, low-maintenance heat generation, and wireless communication — brought their goal to life.
Horizontal Steering Control functionality on the Trimble Earthworks Grade Control Platform for Soil Compactors provides an automatic steering control solution for soil compactors. Horizontal Steering Control automatically steers a soil compactor using a 3D model or compaction pass line, helping to improve compaction productivity and quality for operators of all skill levels by precisely controlling overlap between passes. Auto steering helps reduce operator fatigue while minimizing over- and under-compaction, providing a more consistent sub surface for a higher quality, longer lasting finished product. Compatibility with all soil compactor makes and models enables contractors with mixed fleets to achieve a faster return on investment.