It’s probably fair to say that most people don’t have much experience with construction vehicles beyond their childhood toys. There’s something intrinsically fun about them when we’re kids, but as we get older we tend to lose sight of exactly what that is. It makes sense, after all, I liked the Power Rangers when I was a kid, and I definitely don’t still keep up with the current Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers comic series that comes out once a month (definitely not). Being an adult comes with a full buffet of different stresses, and it’s more than normal for the things we enjoy to be forced right off our plate during the chaotic dinner rush that is modern life. That’s why it can be so refreshing, returning to simpler things from simpler times. Now, I’m not saying you should go buy a pile of Tonka trucks and play in a sandbox, and I’m not saying you should go searching for dump trucks for sale to fulfill the fantasies of your preschool aged self either. What I mean to say is that even if we’re too old to appreciate them the same way we did as kids, construction vehicles are still cool, and I’ll show you how.
1. BelAZ 75710
The BelAZ is the largest dump truck in the world. You might be imagining a pretty big dump truck in your head right now, but trust me when I tell you that whatever you’re picturing isn’t big enough. Introduced in 2013 by a Belarusian company named BelAZ, the 75710 is 68 feet in length, 32 feet in width, and 27 feet tall. The maximum payload is 450 metric tons (or 496 US tons), and the wheels alone are at least twice the height of the average person. The median weight for regular consumer vehicles is about 2 tons, so the 75710 could potentially fit a pile of 200 cars in its bed, the same way a kid keeps their Hot Wheels cars in a toy truck. If a construction company wanted to get their hands on a single BelAZ 75710, it would cost them over 6 million dollars. It’s funny, most people probably wouldn’t expect there to be a dump truck more expensive than luxury sports cars, but this one tops them all.(Its not likely you’ll see this dump truck for sale near you anytime soon!)
2. Hadrian X
The Hadrian X is a new automated construction vehicle being produced by Fastbrick Robotics. The Perth-based company has been working on the project the for three years, but their founder has been developing the technology since 2007. Functioning like an industrial-sized 3D printer, the Hadrian uses a stockpile of bricks and blocks to assemble a complete structure from the ground up, completing the amount of work in one hour that two workers would spend an entire day on. It continues through the night and doesn’t need to be moved once it begins working, so it’s expected to cut the standard construction time of residential homes by up to two full months.
3. Fractum Breaker
Forget Thor, the Danish company Fractum has the most powerful hammer in the world: the Fractum breaker. Primarily used for mining, the Fractum breaker is like a giant fist mounted onto your average everyday excavator. Once in place, it strikes the stone or ore beneath it repeatedly, leaving only fragments behind. The way it works is actually pretty simple. A large hammerhead is lifted to the top of a long shaft, then dropped back down onto the target, and the force of the fall is enough to crack stone. Watching one shatter a boulder is incredibly satisfying, and arguably more entertaining than anything Adam Sandler has done in the past decade or so.
4. Tunnel Boring Machine
Tunnel boring machines have existed for over 150 years, and as you might expect they’ve improved slowly over the course of time. Most recently, Elon Musk and The Boring Company have announced plans to improve the efficiency of contemporary designs, in preparation for their high-speed underground transport system. Tunnel boring machines usually incorporate some type of metallic teeth or disc cutters built into a spinning circular headpiece, as well as a propulsion system and a number of other auxiliary mechanisms. As the cutter head breaks apart rock and earth, the rubble leftover falls through openings in the head and onto a conveyor belt so it can be more easily removed from the tunnel. As the machine burrows deeper and deeper into the ground, circular concrete panels are installed one segment at a time in order to form the tunnel walls and provide stability. While currently tunnel boring machines require crews of at least fifteen people, Elon Musk’s plans for innovation involve automating the process as much as possible.
5. Bobcat Sand Cleaner
Have you ever been to a beach that would be a nice place to spend time, if not for an excessive amount of garbage? Or maybe frequented a specific beach growing up, only to find it covered in soda cans and plastic wrappers when you returned as an adult? It can be really sad seeing something beautiful being treated so poorly, but it helps to know that there’s equipment like the Bobcat Sand Cleaner helping us fix our mistakes. The accessory can be mounted onto a loader, and then used to collect trash and debris from messy beaches. The process that the Sand Cleaner uses to accomplish this is similar in many ways to how archaeologists filter through dirt and gravel to find artifacts. As the loader moves around a beach, it kicks sand and litter up onto a wire screen, and the movement of the screen sifts the sand and separates the trash into a bin. It seems simple, and it is, but it’s still a great tool, and probably a better way to find lost valuables than any metal detector could ever be.
6. Road Zipper
If you spend a decent amount of time on the highway, there’s a chance you’ve already seen road zippers in action. Also called barrier transfer machines, road zippers are mainly used to decrease congestion during heavy traffic. They accomplish this by using a special kind of connected concrete barricades, built in smaller segments to allow the barrier to move with more flexibility. The zipper is equipped with an S-shaped conveyor mechanism that lifts up each segment on one side and deposits them on the other, adjusting the number of lanes headed in each direction to accommodate traffic. Though some people might not know what road zippers even are, they’ve been in use since as early as 1984, helping make rush hour measurably easier.
Dump Trucks For Sale – How Work Gets Done
Construction vehicles aren’t like pickup trucks, which get a fair amount of use both commercially and recreationally. Their necessity is limited pretty much entirely to businesses, so most people never get a chance to drive one. Luckily that doesn’t preclude us from admiring them, though, or else we wouldn’t be allowed to like apache attack helicopters or the Millenium Falcon either. No matter how you’re forced to explain or justify your interest, a lot of people probably won’t understand how commercial vehicles can hold any entertainment value. While it’s certainly a niche hobby, it’s also just a rugged, modern version of being a train enthusiast, which has been one of the most popular pastimes in America for decades.