Compact Equipment

JUL 2018

Compact Equipment is a magazine dedicated to equipment owners and operators of small, nimble, tool-carrying construction, landscape and ag equipment — such as skid steers, mini excavators, compact tractors, generators compressors and beyond.

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130 Compact Equipment JULY/AUGUST 2018 T racks and pneumatic tires represent a significant percentage of total cost of ownership (TCO) for any piece of landscaping equipment. Proper maintenance and operating practices can go a long way to ensure that equipment owners are getting the most out of their in- vestment, as well as working toward a safe and productive job schedule. Maintenance Considerations and Best Operating Practices: Tracked Equipment The undercarriage of a tracked machine is a system of moving components con- sisting of sprockets, rollers, idlers, tracks and other miscellaneous parts. Proper op- eration is critical to controlling the cost of these wear items. Consider the following operating practices for tracked equipment: • Remember that proper operating proce- dures start before the machine gets to the jobsite. Check the ground condi- tions and the terrain to make a number of informed decisions (if you have nu- merous machines/track styles to choose from) such as: the need to minimize travel; the use of steel tracks versus rubber tracks depending on the need to control ground pressure or navigate debris; choosing the narrowest shoe width possible to meet the required flo- tation; and discussions with operators about the proper operating techniques that match the terrain. • Counter-rotation, or pivot turns, cause accelerated wear and increase the potential for de-tracking of rubber- tracked machines. Operators should take wider more gradual turns whenever possible. • Constant operation on a slope or hill in one direction can TRACKS, TIRES AND TOTAL COST OF OWNERSHIP Selection, Maintenance Considerations and Best Practices for Tracks and Pneumatic Tires By Perry Girard

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