• July 18, 2022
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Cat® Ground Engaging Tools for Motor Graders

Cat® Ground Engaging Tools for Motor Graders

Presented by Caterpillar of Australia Pty Ltd

As one of the most recognisable brands in the construction and mining machinery space, Caterpillar sets themselves apart through performance, productivity and innovations—and their Ground Engaging Tools (GET) are no different. 

Ground engaging tools are metal components that come in direct contact with the ground during construction and excavation. Cat® GET not only benefit and support the performance and productivity of the machine, but they also serve as sacrificial wear material to protect the work tool and machine. This helps safeguard customers’ most costly assets. 

Caterpillar has a wide range of GET options including grader cutting edges, cutting bit systems and ripper-scarifier systems, which are made to help reduce machine stress and achieve maximum output. 

And the best part? Ground engaging tools can influence machine performance by up to 20% and cost up to 180% of the machine acquisition price over the life cycle. Here’s a closer look at the Cat Motor Grader GET range and how you can choose the right one for your needs.

Motor Grader Cutting Edges

 

Grader Cutting Edges. Source: Supplied.

Motor Grader cutting edges are used to scrape, level and smooth uneven surfaces in soil and gravel. They’re specifically developed with individual benefits depending on the application, and there are three main factors to consider when finding the right one for your needs. 

These three main factors are:

  • Shape
  • Width
  • Thickness

Edge Shape

There are two main edge shapes—flat and curved. Flat edges are usually wider and thicker than the curved varieties and are designed for specific applications like road maintenance and pioneering. For better abrasion and impact resistance, choose a flat edged blade.

Curved edges, on the other hand, are generally quite narrow and thin. These provide a superior rolling action and penetration suitable for fine grading or finishing work. 

Although flat and curved varieties are the most common, there are also serrated edges available. A serrated edge is used to loosen hard-packed materials, like gravel, and exerts a higher amount of down pressure improving tooth breakage resistance in high impact conditions.

Edge Width & Thickness

The edge width determines the wear life of your equipment. Generally, a thicker edge width means a longer life, depending on use.

With this in mind, an 8” (203mm) edge has twice as much wear material as a 6” (152mm) edge, meaning it could last twice as long for only 35% more cost. This is certainly something to keep in mind when determining the right cutting edge for your needs.

The edge thickness really depends on the penetration requirements of your project. For example, it may be better to use a thicker edge when working with easy-to-penetrate materials as this will help extend the life of your edge. 

DH-2 and DH-3 Steel 

DH-2 and DH-3 Steel. Source: Supplied.

Regardless of the edge shape, width and thickness you choose, Caterpillar uses a through-hardened medium carbon DH-2 steel for most of their motor grader cutting edges. This type of steel was developed for wear and breakage resistance, making for a long-wearing edge with quality hardness. 

Some grader cutting edges are also made with DH-3 steel. DH-3 steel has an extra heat treatment with increased resistance to high temperatures and heavy duty tasks. This type of steel often makes up the end bits to help maximise wear life.

Tungsten Carbide Cutting Edges GraderBits

Tungsten carbide cutting edges are another Cat GET option available. These edges combine the toughness of DH-2 steel with the wear resistance that tungsten carbide is known for. 

With up to 20 times the life of a standard DH-2 steel edge, you can expect less downtime for edge changes and lower hardware costs with the tungsten carbide grader edge. It was designed for applications with high-abrasion and low-to-medium impact, such as sand and gravel roads, mining or logging roads.

Cat GraderBit2™ System

The Cat GraderBit™ System is another high-production road maintenance edge system that aims to help save time and money. The innovative system has adapters bolted onto the moldboard in place of a traditional cutting edge. GraderBits are inserted into the adapter and are individually replaceable.

One thing setting GraderBits apart from regular cutting edges is their ability to penetrate the desired surface immediately. Fine gravel flows through the gaps in the bits, while subgravel is brought back to the surface for reuse. This means smoothing out the toughest roadways can be accomplished in a single pass.

Cat Moldboard Components

Cat® Grader working on hard gravel. Source: Supplied.

When it comes to reducing moldboard wear, the components and end bits available from Cat are second to none. Made using DH-2 hardened steel, these end bits, overlays, repair plates and hardware work to help protect, maintain and repair moldboards.

Recommended Use & Benefits of Cat End Bit Systems

  • Moldboard End Bits—recommended for all applications and are made using through-hardened DH-2 steel for added strength and service life.
  • Overlay End Bits—recommended for ditching applications. These fit over existing end bits and can be rotated for a second wear life once one side has worn out.
  • Moldboard Repair Plates—when unexpected damage occurs, repair plates are a cost-effective way to help extend moldboard life.
  • Hardware—Grade 8 hardware is performance-matched to Cat GET durability and strength. Recommended to replace ground engaging tools with Cat hardware.

Once you’ve chosen the right cutting edge, moldboard or components for your grader it’s important to ensure routine maintenance and timely servicing is performed. Always check for any bent or cracked areas, as well as severe wear, when you’re looking at replacing your grader edge.

For more information on Cat ground engaging tools for motor graders, visit cat.com/cuttingedge-au

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