12 Useful Tips For Motor Grader Operators

Published by Admin Mico on

Motor graders are a versatile piece of heavy construction equipment, employed in all sorts of on-site grading tasks. Since it performs the all-important task of leveling the ground after the pitch has been laid, its operator needs to be perfectly trained in using its various controls for smooth working sessions. Below we present a number of tips and tricks that would ease the schedule of motor grader operators.

What’s In A Motor Grader?

A grader essentially has a refinement role to play. Its special long and curved blade performs the grading work through the construction and maintenance of dirt and gravel roads. The blade is built of toughened material and is sharp-contoured for scraping the road surface for its leveling purpose. Graders are most commonly employed in road works, civil construction, and mining sites for developing smooth and flat surfaces. Motor graders are capable of performing certain specialized tasks with the aid of multiple attachments, such as underground mining.

For The Novice And The Experienced……

Being an extremely versatile machine, skillful grader operators are incumbent for accomplishing a wide variety of road works, construction, and mining projects. Considering the machine’s importance in terms of dollars, it is undoubtedly an expensive equipment piece that imperatively demands a wise, experienced handler at the controls dashboard every time for achieving the best outcome.

At a professional level, an operator needs to adopt the best methodologies and techniques to enhance equipment’s performance in order to reach the desired level of output at the Jobsite. Let’s discuss some salient tips for the operator that would not only make their work effective but also turn them profitable. The below section works out equally well for the newbie and an experienced individual.

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Handy Tips & Tricks: An Operator’s Guide

  • Positioning Of The Moldboard

The right positioning of the moldboard is essential to its proper maintenance. An experienced grader operator is supposed to always keep it straight up, as rolling the grader blade forward turns the edge crude and blunt.

  • Maintaining Blade Sharpness

Operators should keep the blade top just slightly forward of the cutting edge, so as to incline the blade in a forwarding direction only when it is necessary to make a cut. This needs to be taken special care of so the grader blade keeps working fine for a longer period.

  • Safe Equipment Handling

Dealing with intense ground conditions like harsh or rocky terrain is a normal routine in a motor grader’s practical life. As a natural consequence, wear and tear do occur at varying levels depending upon usage cycles. Hence, in a bid to prevent any needless damage to the equipment, operators should handle the equipment with all safety measures in place while working at any unwelcome site.

  • Being Penny-wise

In order to be fuel-efficient and productive in the field, operators are required to exert an optimal amount of downward pressure while utilizing their grader. Applying excessive pressure on the hard and dry surfaces may give rise to cutting-edge wear in a swift manner which overburdens the equipment’s maintenance bill. Practicing some extra care does affect the overall unnecessary and unwanted expense incurred while the operation is in full swing.

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  • Smooth Working On The Field

A moldboard angle of 10 to 30 degrees is recommended by experts for light and free-flowing material. On the other hand, steeper moldboard angles of 30 to 50 degrees are usually employed by operators while processing wet and sticky material that requires mixing large windrows and ditching.

  • Ensuring Uniform Wear & Tear

Changing the blade angle periodically is an essential part of blade maintenance. If the moldboard is kept forward for longer work schedules, excessive wear just along the front of the cutting edge would be an inevitable result. Thence, the blade’s periodic tilting during routine works like mixing, carrying, combing, or spreading material can even out the wear across the edge, keeping the blade level and sharp for longer efficiency.

  • Careful Operation On Slopes

For personal and equipment safety, operators should keep the moldboard parallel with the front axle, centered to the frame, and lowered close to the ground when cutting or ripping across a slope. This measure helps to provide protection against accidentally rolling over.

  • Special Care With Certain Projects

Just as working along with a sloping ground calls for additional precautionary techniques, so does the grading work along curbs and troughs. A slight error from the operator side and the moldboard edge might chip off due to excessive scraping, resulting in nonstandard performance.

  • Putting The Ripper To Effective Use

It is necessary to keep the grader in motion while the toothed ripper is being employed, with the teeth lowered into the ground. While an especially hard surface is being dealt with, the number of ripper’s teeth should be reduced. For breaking old pavement structures, teeth under the pavement should be lowered with the ripper raised. For reducing wear on the equipment, the ripper should not be used when turning. The operator would raise the ripper if the rear wheels lose traction until the wheels regain their grip.

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  • Keeping It At Optimal Speed

The quality of work is greatly affected by the motor grader’s operating speed. Special care needs to be exercised where tasks like ditching or blading are at hand. Where the operation needs to be at a slower pace, a higher speed can sometimes result in the motor grader bouncing and roughening the surface rather than smoothening it. At times, the bounce can be fierce enough to cause the operator to lose control, producing a potential mishap. For completely safe operation, machine speed in the range of 3 to 6 mph is highly advisable.

  • Operator’s Personal Safety

While operating any heavy equipment, even an experienced operator is at some level of risk or hazard owing to several uncalled-for situations. Errors in the mechanical or electronic systems of the equipment may surface, not to rule out the human error factor. As a basic safety precaution, the operator needs to be familiar with all safety instructions and requirements. Wearing safety gear during the entire work schedule can minimize the risk of personal injuries.

  • Checking Prior To Operating

Of course, who would want a nonfunctional machine on the very day of project initiation or an urgent piece of pending task? Before the operator sets off for his busy schedule with his equipment, it is imperative that he makes sure about perfectly working brakes, checks transmission through all gear ranges, and operates all equipment controls through a complete cycle. This basic checking activity can help save the operator from undue frustration and stress when it’s time to act fast.

  • Being Watchful Of The Surroundings

While the operator keeps himself busy at work, he needs to remain alert and heads-up with respect to his immediate surroundings. Excessive exhaust fumes or abnormal noises within the engine are clear signs that you should consult a maintenance specialist sooner. Overworked equipment gives rise to an overheated engine that might cause immediate suspension of the ongoing task. In order to avoid unnecessary hitches (and glitches!!), the coolant needs to be kept to the full at all times, especially on scorching sunny days.

The Endnote Let us reiterate that driving heavy construction equipment to and from the Jobsite is almost child’s play. The real part comes in when the same sophisticated equipment needs to be operated in a smart fashion. By keeping in view a few useful tips, the operator can ensure that he calls the shots every day.                

Admin Mico

We deal in new and used heavy construction equipment that is reliable and dependable construction equipment. We ensure that our inventory contains machines that are in work-ready condition. We also provide services of heavy equipment dismantling for containerized shipment overseas, nationwide transport, worldwide shipment and Inspection of equipment. Contact us today 281-468-9898.

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