Cover Story: Tandem, smooth-drum vibratory compactors, 2.5 to 3 metric tons

Compact rollers are essential for residential and urban asphalt and soil compaction jobs. Machines in the 2.5-to-3-metric-ton class are also large enough to tackle jobs beyond parking lots, street and driveway work. They can be used effectively in light highway applications such as grade work or ramp compaction.

In recent years, compact rollers, once basic machines, have started to evolve. They now share many features commonly found on larger rollers, such as liquid-cooled engines, ergonomic operator platforms and operator-enhancing systems, including automatic vibration controls and watering systems.

Protected electrical system ensures reliable service life
According to Caterpillar’s Robert Ringwelski, product manager, compactors, the CB-224D roller appeared two years ago in North America and marked a transition among Cat compact rollers from air-cooled to liquid-cooled diesel engines. “The standard Cat 3013 is a more reliable and durable engine that allows this machine to operate effectively under more difficult jobsite conditions,” Ringwelski says.

One of the CB-224D’s key features is its overall reliability, he says. “These aren’t big production machines,” Ringwelski says. “But when you need them, they have to be able to go to work right away. Our rollers come standard with sealed connectors, waterproof switches and Kevlar-wrapped wiring harnesses.” These combine to keep the electrical system protected from abrasion and the elements. “This system is so effective, you can pressure wash our rollers’ internal areas and expect them to start immediately every time,” Ringwelski says.

The CB-224D’s hydraulic system also features standard O-ring face seal fittings to make sure there are no leaks or contamination in the system.

“The CB-224D features a tight turning radius, easy maneuverability and excellent operator comfort,” Ringwelski adds. “Visibility is good, too. You can easily see objects a half meter high and less than 1 meter in front of the machine from the operator’s seat.”

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Lower power setting allows reduced noise, better fuel economy
Compaction America has two machines in this month’s roller roundup – the Bomag BW120AD3 and the Hypac C747B. “They’re different branded versions of the same machine,” says Steve Wilson, marketing services manager/product manager. “We used to have a smaller roller on the Hypac side, but it was becoming dated. So we brought in the BW120AD-3/C747B to fill that gap in the Hypac line and it has worked well for us.”

At the end of 2000, Compaction America introduced a new standard FOPS/ROPS assembly for these rollers. This upper structure was further refined when a new foldable ROPS appeared at Bauma last year. “This foldable ROPS offers full safety and protection for the operator,” Wilson says, “but will accommodate the contractor who transports his roller with a small tag-a-long trailer or the guy who often does small driveway patchwork and needs a lower overall machine height to clear low overhang areas.”

The BW120AD-2 and the C747B feature an operating system with two power settings. “The first setting can be used as an economy setting to reduce the engine’s horsepower and the output energy of the drum,” Wilson says. “Lower horsepower means reduced noise and emissions and better fuel economy.”

Wilson says the second throttle setting results in higher vibration when compacting. “As a result,” he says, “more dynamic force or output energy from the drums is available when working with deeper lifts or extremely tough material. The second setting is also preferable if you need more performance for gradeability requirements or higher tractive effort demands.”

CC122 available with air- or liquid-cooled engine
The Dynapac CC122 roller has been upgraded this year with the addition of spring-loaded scrapers (two per drum) as standard equipment. “Previously we offered them as optional equipment,” says Brian Bieller, regional manager. “But they were a consistently high-demand item, so it was logical for us to spec it for this roller.”

Thanks to the CC122’s proprietary system of rubber mounts, the operator’s platform is well isolated from vibration shocks. “The seat slides both forward and reverse as well as back to front,” Bieller says, “so you can get where you need to be to see what your drums are doing.” Dual controls simplify consistent operation, regardless of paving conditions.

Although the CC122 comes standard with a 40-horsepower Deutz F2L 1011F air-cooled diesel engine, Bieller notes an Isuzu liquid-cooled diesel is available for contractors who need a quieter machine.

Compactors feature offsettable front, rear drums
Hamm, a division of Wirtgen America, offers two rollers in the 2.5-to-3-metric-ton class: the HD10 and HD12 compactors. “Both these rollers feature hydrostatic drive to both drums with infinitely variable speed up to 9 mph, manual or automatic vibration mode and choice of single- or double-drum vibration,” says Bruce Monical, marketing manager. “We also offer ergonomic operator stations with a wide open, easily accessible platform and deluxe, adjustable operator seat mounted on rubber isolators.” The rollers also feature two multi-functional drive levers to control speed, direction and vibration.

The Model HD12 has an operating weight of 5,955 pounds and drum width of 47 inches. “Like all of Hamm’s small compactors, it features an offset articulating joint of 2 inches,” Monical notes. “This articulating joint allows the front or rear drum to be offset for increased rolling width, better maneuverability and joint pinching capability. The offset capability is teamed with three independent braking systems with an emergency stop button.”

Monical says Hamm engineers worked to provide these small rollers with many features found on the company’s larger models. “Both the HD10 and HD12 have a 53-gallon water capacity. The pressurized water system features time-pulse mode to ensure effective water use throughout a working day.

Smart hydraulic system ensures footing on grades
Ingersoll-Rand’s Durapac series includes two models in the 2.5-to-3-metric-ton class: the DD24 and DD30. “The DD24 is designed to be a premium contractor model,” says Matt Gavin, business unit manager. “It has a high horsepower rating, extra thick drums and a smart hydraulic system to control machine gradeability and tractability in both directions and at all speeds.”
Gavin compares this tractive feature to all-wheel-drive systems found on cars and small trucks. “It gives you total control of the machine, even in steeper applications,” he says. “And having more sure footing, it allows the operator to worry less about the machine’s orientation. If you’re doing shoulder work or on/off ramp work, you now have a system that allows you to stop midway through the job and lets you start up again and maintain job quality.”

According to Gavin, both the DD24 and DD30 recently received wider and thicker drums. “We also went to 49-inch drums on the DD24, which is two inches wider than the industry norm right now,” he says. “On the DD30, we increased drum width to 54 inches. These wider drums allow you to work in fewer passes and achieve productivity. Thicker drums not only give us extra durability, but allow these rollers to work effectively with Superpave and other modern asphalt mixes.”

Engine options highlight 400 Series
LeeBoy’s 400 Series roller is available in two versions. The 400S is the company’s standard machine. The 400T is nearly identical to the 400S, but is a towable roller for contractors who need additional mobility between jobsites.

Both models are available with two engine choices. A three-cylinder, 35-horsepower Lombardi diesel is standard. You can also opt for a higher output 40-horsepower Hatz diesel. Both engines are linked to the 400 Series’ direct drive hydrostatic drive transmission. The transmission is servo controlled for a high-torque, low-speed power curve with a top speed of 6 mph.

The split front drum has adjustable taper bearings and features a standard locking device for transport. Vibration is to the rear drum only via an internal shaft vibrating system. It produces at least 2,600 vibrations per minute, creating dynamic forces 2.75 times the roller’s static weight.

Two working speeds for application flexibility
Multiquip’s Rammax T26 roller has a minor change this year, according to Steve Spence, production manager. “We’ve gone to polyurethane water storage tanks instead of our old fiberglass ones,” he says. “These new, extra large tanks are more durable and better withstand vibration forces.”

Spence says the T26 features two working speeds — 2,400 rpm and 2,700 rpm. “These settings allow us to set two different frequencies and centrifugal forces and let the T26 adapt to meet a variety of specific compaction requirements,” he says. “Added to this is our extremely tight turning radius and our offset drum feature. This allows the T26 minimal clearance when working against walls or curbs.”

According to Spence, the T26 is an easy machine to maintain. “The maintenance-free articulating joint has sealed, permanently lubricated bearings,” he says. “And the hood opens up to give complete access to all engine and hydraulic components.”

Higher horsepower and amplitude increase productivity for Sakai’s new SW320-1
Sakai’s SW350-1 roller has been replaced by the company’s new SW320-1 machine. “We consolidated three models by using the same prime mover for a platform,” says Dick Draper, product manager. “This allowed us to upgrade our performance in this class.”

To that end, Draper notes the SW320-1 now has 4,000 vibrations per minute (up from 3,200 vpm) and a new higher output Kubota diesel engine (with 34 horsepower, up from 28 horsepower on the SW350-1). “Thanks to improved radiator designs and our effective drum isolation system, we’ve been able to neutralize the vibration forces that used to cause problems and give our customer the quiet, reliable power of a liquid-cooled engine.”

The machine still features Sakai’s counter-rotating vibration system. “This system allows the front and rear drum eccentrics to turn in opposite directions from each other,” Draper says. “This gives a Sakai roller extremely smooth operational characteristics and eliminates the shoving effect.”

Sakai’s exclusive Water Saver sprinkler system is also standard on the SW320-1. This allows you to set the water system to a timer or to a continuous spray setting.

Dual- or rear-drum vibration at the flip of a switch
The Wolfpac 6400 is Stone’s largest asphalt roller. “We try to stress areas that will improve the operator’s performance and lower the cost of ownership for the owner,” says Frank Wenzel, vice president, engineering. “The Wolfpac 6400’s operator platform is a prime example of that. There is now plenty of leg room, and the controls are properly positioned for minimum effort movements.”
Wenzel notes the Wolfpac 6400 has an operating weight of 6,383 pounds. “It has 30 degrees of articulation, right or left, and oscillates 15 degrees,” he says. “Its pressurized water system features a standard variable flow control system for optimal use of the unit’s 47.6-gallon water supply.”

This roller has variable vibration in both drums. The operator can select rear drum vibration only when necessary by a single, dash-mounted switch. The unit delivers 6,518 pounds of centrifugal force at 3,060 vibrations per minute at speeds up to 6.2 mph.

Terex V1200-1 features Deutz diesel power and 6,776 pounds of centrifugal force

Benford, a subsidiary of Terex, manufacturers two rollers in this month’s Selection Guide class: the TV1000-1 and TV1200-1. Both machines feature a six-in-one joystick control, freewheel facility, low noise levels and optimized engine and component accessibility.

The ergonomically laid out operator’s platform is isolated from vibration forces to reduce operator fatigue. All fuel, water and hydraulic tanks are easily removable for easy repair, and an anti-vandal protection package is standard. For additional protection from impact damage, all TV series rollers feature a plastic water tank enclosed in steel.

65-inch turn radius offers tight handling
Vibromax’s 255 and 265 rollers are second-generation machines, according to Tom Meyer, manager, marketing and sales support. “Both of these models have high centrifugal forces for their class,” he notes. “The 265, for example, has 8,100 pounds of force, which is a significant amount of pounding for a compact roller.”

Vibromax uses a 29-horsepower Kubota water-cooled, three-cylinder diesel engine that Meyer says runs cooler and helps prolong the life of the machine.

Meyer says Vibromax’s ergonomic operator platform is configured to give outstanding visibility to all four corners of the machine. “We don’t want the operator to have to hang off the edge of the machine so he can see what’s going on at the edge of the drum,” he says. “We do this by centrally mounting our operator platforms. We have our platform right in the middle of the machine for good all-around views.”

Volvo suspends Superpac asphalt compactor production, temporarily produces only soil rollers

Volvo Construction Equipment acquired the Superpac line of compaction equipment in March. As a result, the two companies are currently working on integrating Superpac rollers into the Volvo machine family. “Production continues now under the Superpac brand name,” says Ray Gallant, product manager, “but we will eventually transition the line over to the Volvo name.”

Volvo and Superpac have elected to limit compactor production to soil machines only. That means Superpac’s A421 and A471 rollers are no longer available, although Gallant says they will likely reappear in some variation in the near future.