In keeping with a long established tradition the official portion of the show opened with an official ribbon cutting ceremony at 8:30 AM. Unfortunately, I missed the event because I was at the first media event of the day, a John Deere press conference. Deere introduced its new D-Series skid steer loaders and compact track loaders (CTLs).
The new skid steer models, joining the existing small-frame, radial lift 313 and 315 include The 318D, 320D, 326D, 328D and 332D. For the compact track loader line, the new 319D, 323D, 329D and a 90-hp 333D join the recently introduced small-frame, radial lift CT315. The D-Series keeps many of the productivity features popular from the 300 Series, including planetary gear drives on the CTLs for increased pushing power and reliability, and industry-leading bucket roll-back and dump angles â€“ retained even while increasing boom and bucket breakout forces.
D-Series skid steers and CTLs have electronically controlled Tier 3/interim Tier 4 engines coupled with a new auto idle feature, providing quieter operation and fuel savings. The optional reversing hydraulic fan is a variable speed unit working with a computer program that monitors engine and hydraulic fluid temperatures to ramp fan speed up or down as needed.
The company also discussed its position on emissions and tier 4 requirementsand the technology path it is using to help fleet owners meet iT4 standards.
John Deere will use cooled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) engines with exhaust filters consisting of a diesel oxidation catalyst/diesel particulate filter in its construction equipment to meet the 2011 iT4/Stage III B emissions regulations mandated by the EPA and EU for diesel engines 174 hp and above.
Deere believes cooled EGR with exhaust filters is the right technology right now. Technologies such as cooled EGR, variable geometry turbochargers and exhaust filters will likely be the foundation technologies for meeting fT4 regulations. Deere engineers are constantly evaluating emerging technologies for their effectiveness and durability in off-highway applications.
Deereâ€™s approach to the iT4 solution builds upon the current clean burning and fuel-efficient Tier 3/Stage III A PowerTechâ„˘ Plus engine platform manufactured by John Deere Power Systems.
The John Deere cooled EGR engine platform for iT4 compliance is more operator friendly and less complex to maintain compared to SCR (selective catalytic reduction) systems.
Unlike SCR, this iT4 EGR solution doesnâ€™t require liquid urea to achieve emissions compliance, so there are no additional fluids to worry about obtaining, filling or storing on remote jobsites at proper temperatures.Â Diesel fuel is the only fluid involved in the EGR solution.
Details on these and other products will be reviewed in Products & Equipment in the next couple of days.
Freightliner was the next press conference. Freightliner Trucks introduced the new CoronadÂ® Severe Duty (SD) Developed specifically for severe duty vocational applications. Â The Coronado SD features rugged, traditional styling with performance-enhancing new features.
Available in both set-back and set-forward axle configurations, the Coronado SD improves upon the durability and dependability of Freightlinerâ€™s already FLD SD trucks, while adding new elements specifically engineered for the vocational market.
The Coronado SDâ€™s fiberglass hood has been designed for maximum durability. The fenders come standard with impact absorbing material the helps eliminate damage and cracks common with vocational applications. The one-piece stainless steel grille surround is accented with chrome steel horizontal bars.
The Coronado SDâ€™s cab is also equipped with updated doors. The outer door frame and belt rail are made from aluminum, and combined with a steel inner reinforcement resulting in a lightweight, sturdy design that provides excellent door sealing and less mirror vibration. A standard courtesy light illuminates the entry steps, and the 70 degree door opening makes it easier for customers who get in and out of the truck often.
Dual chrome steel intakes come standard on the Coronado SD. Air enters the system through two chromed steel grilles on either side of the hood, combining a stylish aerodynamic design with improved functionality. The air intakeâ€™s unique air plenum is designed to minimize the infiltration of water, snow, road debris or dust.
The Coronado SD is also equipped with a new single air filter with improved filtration capability. Also available are optional pre-cleaners that create a vortex effect to spin dust and heavy water particles out of the air and away from the engine. As a system, these components have the dust holding capacity equal to or better than traditional external dual cleaners â€“ which not only lasts longer between changes, but also saves money because only one filter is replaced instead of two.
With its lightweight, high-strength construction, customers can increase revenue by hauling more aggregate or pulling larger payloads. And, an up-to 50 degree wheel cut helps the Coronado SD easily maneuver in tight situations. But, itâ€™s the Coronado SDâ€™s interior that really shines.
The Coronado SD has a large, cab complete with double-sealed doors and well-sealed windows, keeping out noise, dust and other contaminants.
Additional details on this vehicle will be reviewed in Products & Equipment in the next couple of days.
Iowa Mold Tooling, Inc. (IMT) was next on the schedule. The company known for its utility and maintenance bodies has developed a new program for customers, which they call 360 degree Solutions. The program is focused on helping customers –dealers, distributors, contractors or the like â€“ find solutions to fleet management problems or situations.
IMT has developed software packages that help the customer monitor and manage a fleet of service vehicles, no matter what brand or age so that the customer can optimize its use of the fleet. Details regarding the various elements in this comprehensive package will be reviewed in Products & Equipment in the next cople of days
The morning activities ended with a Caterpillar lunch pres conference. Caterpillar introduced three new engines, the C3.4; the C4.4 ACERT And the C6.6 ACERT. These are all tier 4 Interim engines and are durable, reliable, fuel efficient and provide the owner lower ownership costs.
The C4.4 ACERT was described as a high power density engine delivering up to 174 hp. According to the presenter, there are many applications that are using a six-cylinder engine that could be easily replaced by this four-cylinder unit without sacrificing performance.
Another booth visit, this time with Paladin Construction Group. Paladin Brands announced the joining of its Paladin Light Construction and Paladin Heavy Construction companies to form Dexter, MI-based Paladin Construction Group. The new company can better address the attachment trends today that are being driven by contractors and farmers serving a wide variety of construction, agriculture and related market segments in North America and globally. Paladin Construction Group provides customers with eight leading brands of couplers and attachmentsâ€”many with histories dating back 30 to 50 years. These brands are: Bradco, JRB, Sweepster, C&P, CustomWorks, FFC, Harley and McMillen. Paladin Brands also includes Genesis, Jewell and Pengo.
The combined company brings together many strengths for its employees, OEM partners, sales channels, and especially contractors and farmers. Hundreds of innovative and performance-driven couplers and attachments for all makes and models of skid steers, wheel loaders, excavators, tractor-loader backhoes and tractors are now available through one company with more than 2,000 dealer and rental locations. Manufacturing and warehousing facilities include: Dexter, Michigan; Akron, Ohio; Delhi, Iowa; and Ooltewah, Tennessee. Additional inventories for prompt delivery are strategically placed throughout North America.
As part of the effort to announce the new Paladin Construction Group, the company has implemented a long-term, contractor-focused support program named Back 2 WorkÂ With Paladin. The Programâ€™s goal is to help contractors capitalize and profit from the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and its $143.4 billion infrastructure investment during a time when thousands of contractors and dealer/rental companies are struggling to find enough business to ride out the recession.
The two-year Program helps contractors and dealer/rental companies identify and locate projects that are or will be released in the near future related to where the ARRA funds are most targetedâ€”at the county level and specific market segments such as roads and bridges, aviation, national parks, energy, water and others. In addition, Paladin Construction Group is offering contractors a break on new attachment costs with a Contractor Rebate worth up to US$500.00 when they purchase one or more Paladin brand attachments. The Back 2 Work With Paladin Program was officially launched at the ICUEE 2009 Show in Louisville, Kentucky, in October and will extend through the CONEXPO-CON/AGG Show in March 2011. A special ARRA-focused by market Web site, www.back2work.com, has been created as well for contractors that explain the Program and how they can benefit.
It had rained all day. At various time the downpour was unreal. We stopped in and visited Allied. We got a chance to see the new HH-46b Hole Hog underground piercing tool that was being introduced at this show. We also had an opportunity to look at the companyâ€™s new product line of breaker bits that have been designed and engineered to fit any breakers on the market.
Well, tomorrowâ€™s another day that will be starting in a couple of hours with press conferences by JCB, Dueco, Astec Underground/AmericanAugers and booth visits with A.R.E. Trucks, McLaughlin, Vermeer and Stellar.