Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Road Graders

Update: I have found a more extensive history of road graders.

Glen Miller posted
For $95 you could be in the road grading business in the 1890's.

Two road grader pictures in one day means it is time to post what I have on road graders. You don't see them very often anymore because most country gravel roads have been paved with asphalt.

I wonder if this plant in Marseilles was still using water power, or it they had converted to a steam engine.  I assume this plant used shafts, pulleys, and belts. The 1890s is too early for an existing plant to have been built using electricity.

Glen Miller posted
Another 1890 grader that is horse drawn. Since Carroll Avenue is along the Milwaukee Road, I assume it had an industrial spur.

See below for a 1948 vintage grader.

I now have a separate article on the Austin Western Road Machinery Co.
MWRD posted
Historical photo of the week: An elevating grader removes topsoil during the beginning of excavation for the MWRD Calumet treatment plant in Chicago near 123rd St. on the north side of the facility site on Nov. 18, 1920.
[See Grain Elevator for location information.]
1937 Cat Grader
To quote the reference in the caption: "There was no hydraulic system. The blade was managed by dog clutches and drive shafts turning pinions on racks, and the brakes were mechanical." Reading how a little gas engine was used to start the main diesel engine was fascinating. Note only did the driver have to hand crank the gas engine, he had to climb up on a wheel to manipulate three levers that controlled the compression, clutch, and starter pinion. He then had to let it run 1-20 minutes depending how cold the weather was and go into the cab to open the throttle. There are several more pictures of the grader on the referenced web page.

1948 Austin-Western
Austin-Western was a pioneer of using hydraulics to control the blade. Cat used two axles in the back and one in the front. A-W used just one axle in the back and it steered both axles so it was much better suited for working tight spaces such as parking lots. They also introduced front wheel drive.

When I wrote 8 to 3 tractor companies, I learned that we are left with John Deere, IHcase, and Massey Ferguson dealers. While in Florida, I went to what the Massey Ferguson web site said was a dealer in Plant City. When I got there I learned it was a construction equipment dealer with various brands such as John Deere and CAT.
When I came across a used Fiat-Allis road grader, I was reminded that Allis-Chalmers was one of the brands folded into Massey Ferguson. The Fiat-Allis brand was used from 1974 to the early 1980s (tractors.wikia)

20140806 0236

They also had a modern John Deere.

HWequipment provides a timeline of the graders development.

Update: a video showing road graders in action. Note the slanted steering wheels to help offset the sideways thrust of the blade pushing the dirt to the side.

Rick LaBonte posted
Beau Henderson Allis Chalmers 6-12 motor cultivator.

Richard M. Gaskill Taken near Eureka in northern California this view features the Russell Grader - one of the more popular graders of its time.After beginning with horse-drawn graders, the Russell company made the transition to gasoline power by providing their grader mechanisms to several tractor companies, who outfitted the graders with their engines. Besides Allis-Chalmers, the Caterpillar company also adapted Russell Graders for gasoline power. In the late 1920s Caterpillar bought the Russell company, and began making the graders under their own nameplate.

Brian Trimble provided a link for the Model 6-12.

Zac Breazeale posted
Doing some road grading yesterday in New Raymer

John W. Coke posted
[I had never seen a grader for more than one lane of traffic before. I wonder if this is intended for doing both lanes of a divided 4-lane highway or for a mining operation.]
A video of a dealer's sample. One reason for saving this link is that it also includes some hit-miss engines operating along the side.

A video of a 25M pushing dirt during its test run. I noticed that its model number is one more than the 24M above :-)

Highway Engineering Discoveries posted
Before & Now
Kelly E McClanahan commented on the Highway Engineering Discoveries post
Here is a "barn find" that saw.

Old & Vintage Machinery added to an album
[There are several other examples of graders in the album that use hydraulic motors instead of rams.]

Roger Alderman commented on above posting
Benjamin Davis commented on above posting
Mark Haby commented on a posting
This towed unit appeared on the side of the road in the district where I work. After sitting there for a couple of years it just as mysteriously vanished again.

At the 2016 Will County Threshermen's Show they had an Allis-Chalmers M 100 road grader. Note that this is an older design because everything is done with either hydraulic motors or "arm strong" shafts except moving the blade from side to side. That has a hydraulic cylinder. The shaft along the top of the box beam frame is obviously for stearing. The shaft along the right side of the beam (see second and third photos) is probably to adjust the tilt of the front wheels.

20160721 3705

Brad Young posted
Notice that there are no hydraulics, just "armstrong!"
posting, bad language in comments

posting, bad language in comments

posting, bad language in comments

Tim Tuel Once you use joysticks on a CAT you won't even want to drive this antique!
Kevin Thomas An updated and improved, operator designed, joystick option is now available on John Deere Motorgraders.
Bruce Robinson After running the new CAT I have to say JD Is much better.
Jeff Douglas Hey Paxton Robinson. You ever seen a grader exactly like that one going down the road moving that much dirt??
Dale W Funkhouser Lol nice sand he's moving round.
Richard Surrency Austyn Surrency that's me run that grader in that video.
Todd Marshall John Deere. Over priced and overrated.
Justin Elliott You spelled Cat wrong!
David Jr Firth Junk

Machinery Planet posted
A John Deere 872GP Motor Grader

I've seen this photo before, but I guess I didn't save it then. 
Construction Machines posted
Nicholas Patient: Does it stand like this?
Chris Turner: Nicholas Patient Yes. Until weathering which causes the sharp top corner to crumble and fill the ditch line. Then it’s time to grade it again.
Ml Hatch: I was never that good. The best to this operator.

10:59 video
16G was Cat's "flagship model" (biggest?) when it was introduced in 1973.

Best Machines posted, cropped

Embedded photo of video of largest in the world
Legendary Machinery posted
Francis McIvor: I remember reading about theese massive machines the were a special order for Libya but the orders were canceled due to trade restrictions and the machines remained in Italy ??
Gary Erskine: Was to be exported to Libya but after the Lockerbie crash Libya was deemed a threat and all exports were stopped.

Best Machines posted

Rudi Suryo commented on the above post
I think this 14 H is already big....just know 24 H was much more bigger.

Big graders need big trucks.
Heavy duty machinery operators posted
Kurt McDermott: 24H

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