Different Types of Motor Graders
Motor graders are usually referred to as graders. These are heavy construction machines used to create smooth wide and levelled surfaces. The most traditional use of this particular construction machine is in construction and maintenance of roads with its main function being preparing the topmost layer for laying asphalt on top of it. In addition to its use in the road construction industry, internationally it is also used in removal of snow, debris and earthmoving based on the location and requirement. Motor graders come in after the heavy machines like the bulldozers are done with their job to give a finer finishing to the job.
The motor grader is usually a self propelled machine which comes with an adjustable blade. The blade is usually positioned between the front and rear axle and can be used for cutting, spreading and levelling jobs on a wide range of terrains. Some motor graders come with a scarify option to scarify a layer and then remove it with the help of the blade. Then a new layer is spread before scarifying the top layer again to put in place.
Motor graders are generally classified based on the structure an arrangement of the frame. While history has seen motor graders of various sizes through the past few decades, a few set standard sizes have become set standard in the past few years. Based of frame arrangements the motor graders are classified into two categories
Rigid Frame motor grader
Articulated frame motor grader
Rigid frame motor grader: These usually have a single axle and are incapable of moving either left or right amount a point on the axle. This type of graders were popular in the 1980’s and 90’s.
Articulated frame motor graders: These usually have both a front and rear axle. The blade is usually located somewhere between the two axles. The articulated frame graders are usually in small places where there is very less space to move and turn about in. Most machines manufactured and used these days are articulated frame graders.
When it comes to articulated motor graders there are basically two types of graders base on the joints. One with the articulation joint in the front of the cab and the other with the articulation joint behind the cab. The grader with the articulation joint behind the cabs provides much better visibility and a clearer view of the mouldboard.
Another factor that differentiates motor graders are the drive systems with some of them using all wheel drive, four wheel drive and front wheel drive systems. For rural areas with unpaved roads, an all wheel drive system is necessary while it is redundant for smooth clear areas.
A small motor grader within a range of 80-150 horsepower are usually enough for most jobs. The smaller graders are perfect for landscaping jobs, road maintenance and other jobs that need to be completed in a tight spacing environment. Larger motor graders can be used to do the same things but n a much larger scale for relatively larger broader roads like the sate and national highways. Larger machines are known to use a direct drive or a torque converter drive transmission system while the smaller ones are hydrostatically driven.