Crushtec Chronicle – TwisterTrac VS350 is king in Queensland
When one of our machines is seen as the product of choice for a specific application it’s quite a compliment. When the application takes place 12,000 kilometres from Jet Park – that’s an accolade!
The TwisterTrac VS350 tracked VSI crusher has carved out an impressive niche for itself among the roadbuilders of Australia. Close to 20 of these are now in operation following the sale of some 10 previous version AC210s exported to Australia over the past decade.
“Based on the success of the AC210 and following a need for a bigger capacity crusher, our project team was convinced that there was considerable potential for a high capacity, simplified VSI crusher in countries like South Africa and Australia, where road transport is not only an economic essential but involves highways extending over many hundreds of kilometres,” says Sandro Scherf.
While mobile jaw and cone crushers were available to handle high volumes, there was an obvious need for a tertiary tracked crusher that would keep pace with the tonnages they produce.
We invited our Australian distributors to participate in the design process by highlighting the features they needed to meet the exacting conditions encountered when building roads in the outback.
They explained that simplicity was key. Plant hire plays a major role in the business of building roads in Australia and ease of service and free access to key components were top of the list of priorities, closely followed by clearly identifiable electrical control systems. A short phone call that can identify and fix a minor problem is also a massive plus when you’re a few hundred kilometres from base.
Design Office Manager, Dawie Scholtz, explains the reasons behind the VS350 establishing a market for itself on the Australasian continent.
“Rock in Australia and South Africa is much harder than European equivalents, so it’s much more difficult to form the cube-shaped product essential for road building aggregate and at the same time delivering sufficient quantities of fines for backfill. A higher capacity machine was required and whilst we were reviewing the design, we used the opportunity to revisit many aspects that caused challenges in the field.
A bigger engine, a CAT C15 was used, the hydraulic pumps were moved to an exterior position to allow simpler access, the engine was moved to make servicing easier and to reduce the potential for dust ingress, the crusher vibration damping system was completely redesigned and is now 100% effective with a zero failure rate, the crusher electrics and control methodology was completely revised and simplified and the crusher housing opening system was redesigned.
“ A ‘cascade ‘system was introduced which can direct a portion of the feed material to bypass the rotor and this has an effect that allows the user to control the feed material through the rotor which yields increased capacity with a varying amount of fines while achieving savings in diesel consumption and wear on the rotor.”
Dawie adds that the model name VS350 refers to the product’s prodigious output with throughput volumes exceeding 350 tonnes per hour.
An initial batch of TwisterTrac VS350s was supplied to our Queensland distributors and put to good use in road repair projects following the calamitous floods of 2011. The latest pair of machines shipped in December and January will initially be used in the Warrego Highway project –an upgrade of the 796-kilometre corridor linking the Gold Coast to the interior.