Kinshofer has developed a quicker, safer way to switch excavator attachments with its new X-LOCK Coupler, the company says.
The coupler allows the operator to switch attachments without exiting the cab. It is designed to prevent accidents on the job, such as those caused by improperly attached or failing buckets.
The operator can control and monitor the attachment exchange in the cab through the X-LOCK Control Unit, which features a separate open and close button. The system features red and green LED lights and a warning buzzer that indicate whether the attachment was properly attached or not.
“Most serious accidents happen within the first 5 seconds of latching attachments, and one loss of life due to equipment or operator error on a jobsite is one too many,” says Francois Martin, Kinshofer North America general manager. “We developed the X-LOCK Coupler to prevent such incidents. The step-by-step control and various commands required for the locking and unlocking function makes the X-LOCK Coupler fail proof, safe and efficient.”
The coupler pairs with buckets, rippers, rakes, mechanical grabs, as well as demolition, recycling and railroad attachments.
It features a wedge lock that connects to the attachment in two places instead of one. The coupler delivers a two-and-a-half fold locking force compared to a pendular jaw quick hitch, the company says. Two pressure relief valves operate the wedge, which locks at 1,730 pounds per square inch and unlocks at 3,455 psi, to keep the hydraulic circuit from becoming overpressurized. The coupler also has a rear lock safety device to prevent the wedge from retracting and disconnecting the attachment if hydraulic failure occurs.
The company describes the coupler’s connection and disconnection process:
“When connecting, the X-LOCK Safety Knuckle immediately and automatically engages onto the front pin, which can only be released by the operator. The self-adjusting wedge locks the second pin as soon as the lock switch is deactivated, safely securing the attachment.
“When disconnecting, the operator unlocks the self-adjusting wedge from the rear pin and unlocks the safety knuckle from the front pin. The coupler is now ready to be removed from the attachment. If the attachment is not fully detached within 5 to 12 seconds, the coupler will automatically reattach for safety. The auto-lock window time period is customizable.
“Once disconnected, the safety knuckle re-engages and is ready to lock the front pin of the next attachment.”
The couplers come in four models: Hydraulic Pin-to-Pin, S-Style Nordic Style, Tilt or Tilt Rotation, and Mechanical Pin-to-Pin.
They are compatible with excavators having operating weights of 2,200 to 220,000 pounds. They require one hydraulic circuit and two hydraulic hoses. All parts are enclosed within the system, reducing damage and lessening parts replacement costs, the company says.