1. Thank you for visiting HeavyEquipmentForums.com! Our objective is to provide industry professionals a place to gather to exchange questions, answers and ideas. We welcome you to register using the "Register" icon at the top of the page. We'd appreciate any help you can offer in spreading the word of our new site. The more members that join, the bigger resource for all to enjoy. Thank you!

The Ultimate Medium Dozer?

Discussion in 'Dozers' started by Steve Frazier, Jul 8, 2008.

  1. Steve Frazier

    Steve Frazier Founder

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    5,556
    Location:
    LaGrangeville, N.Y.
    We're aware that we have several major equipment manufacturers watching our board, I thought it might be interesting to hear from the members what they feel the ultimate dozer would be.

    Let's consider a D5-7 sized machine, they are what I see most often around my area. If you were designing a dozer, what features would you add? It could be as simple as a seating position change or as crazy as some new electronic gizmo that would automatically perform some function. Put all your ideas here, who knows, maybe you'll see some of them incorporated in a future dozer.

    After this thread has run its course, we'll move on to another type of machine.
     
  2. RollOver Pete

    RollOver Pete Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2007
    Messages:
    1,122
    Occupation:
    Operating Engineer/mechanic
    Location:
    Indio, Ca
    I'd add weight.
    Not by making a dozer bigger,
    just making them heavier.
    The way I'd do this its by removing anything plastic.
    Sure they look nice with all of the hoses and wires neatly tucked away behind an aesthetically pleasing plastic panel...
    Kind of like in a car or motor home or a Freightliner that is driven every day off road.
    Everything plastic starts falling apart.

    But since everybody knows that will never happen,
    How about an option of a seat that can be positioned or moved off to the side in larger dozers.
    Rip Cats for example.
    Instead of having to turn your body in the seat to see your work area which is BEHIND you,
    how about a seat that swings around just enough to make ripping easier on your neck?
    :cool:
     
  3. Dozer575

    Dozer575 Banned

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2007
    Messages:
    274
    Occupation:
    Machinist and occasional pt Dozer oper
    Location:
    Seattle, wa
    I'm with Pete, make it heavier by increasing all the material thickness, so it isn't so easy to bend if a branch hits it. If it were a D7 it would weigh about 80,000 lbs, and have the 4bbl ripper option with about 280 hp. I would retain the torque converter and powershift combo, with a manually operated clutch switch to apply the TCC for distance dozing. The only electronics would be engine control to meet the Tier3 or 4 or what ever the latest emission standards are. It would be offered in either differential steer like the big cats or older clutch brake set up. I have run all the different steering systems and still preffer the non linked cluctch brake system. Its faster, for what I do when clearing. Though it is alot more work and wears ya out more than the newer stuff. Its just one of those deals that is handy when you need it.
     
  4. landrvrnut22

    landrvrnut22 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2007
    Messages:
    201
    Occupation:
    Field Superintendent
    Location:
    Akron, Ohio, USA.
    For me, the ultimate is: http://www.heavyequipmentforums.com/Forum/showpost.php?p=81392&postcount=29

    Only thing I would change is maybe to an H series, and a little bit more horsepower. For me, LPG tracks. It has the best of both worlds. We often bury equipment, and need a winch to drag it out. We will get some tough soils, and need a ripper. With that setup, you get both. Great for land clearing. Needs to be setup for GPS so it's capable of doing double duty as a finish dozer. I want one machine to do the job of 4.
     
  5. euclid

    euclid Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2008
    Messages:
    284
    Occupation:
    Engineering
    Location:
    Maryland
    This is a great thread idea; the last dozer I operated was an old D-5 with the clutch on the left side near the arm rest, so I am showing my age and the age of the equipment. But like Pete said removing the cheap components would be a start but in doing so the cost would rise so that ain't gonna happen. Now if the R&D group would look at the vibration effects of these lighter parts and work toward better reliability per operating hour instead of engineering failures for profit that would make a lot of operator and companies really happy. In our world not the best business sense but I can assure you that CAT would get a lot of business due to reliability and up time on the job. And about ergonomics with regards to the operator I believe they have come around close to full circle since I ran that old D-5. But seat position would be a huge plus when ripping and doing rear looking on a site. Doing R&D on crash load analysis it might not be safe and thus the reason for not doing more in that area? I would really be interested in hearing from the engineering groups from different manufactures in plain English about the different analysis done on equipment.
     
  6. Deas Plant

    Deas Plant Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2006
    Messages:
    1,533
    Location:
    Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
    Dozer575's ultimate dozer

    Hello, Dozer575.
    Did you bother to check the specs of existing Cat models before you posted the above post?

    If you want an 80,000# machine, why not buy a D8R or D8T, both around that weight or slightly above and with around 25 more horsepower than you specified.

    The current D7R series 2 is a roughly 60,000# machine with around 240 horsepower. You want to add another 20,000# and only another 40 horsepower. That's the power of ONE D2 and the weight of about 3 1/2 D2's. Or, to put it another way, you want a D7 with the weight of a D8R and 20 less hp. That doesn't quite make sense to this little black duck.

    OOOOPPPSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sorry!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I forgot - you don't like hi-sprocket drives, do you?

    The current D7G series 2 is around 45,000# and about 200 hp. Would you REALLY want to add 35,000# and only another 80 hp?

    Quote: "I'm with Pete, make it heavier by increasing all the material thickness, so it isn't so easy to bend if a branch hits it." Unquote.

    Firstly, ROP didn't say, "Increase all the metal thicknesses." He said that he'd like to do away with all the plastic and replace it with metal to increase weight. And if anything gets bent by a tree branch, what was the operator doing at the time, catching 40 winks, or 'fiddling' while the tree attacked?

    It is very difficult to design a dozer, or indeed any machine, so that it is all things to all users. For heavy bulk pushing, a dozer needs more weight up front than does one used mainly for trimmimg. Ditto with a dozer used mainly for ripping as the weight transfer that occurs as the load comes on the tracks greatly increases the machine's ability to put its grunt on the ground.

    I have run the D7G series 1 and found it a good machine to run, a good pusher, stable and manoeverable, easy to control and dependable. I have not run the D7H or R so am unable to comment.

    I spent 2 1/2 years on a wide Cat D5B with straight blade and ripper and found it to be a VERY good all-round machine, good at bulk pushing and great for trimming. That particular machine did have a somewhat heavier than standard ripper fitted which I have no doubt added to its performance. Maybe putting a Tier 3 or 4 engine into that machine would come close to the ultimate for me, at least in that size/weight range and for the work that I was doing with that machine, a mix of bulk pushing and fine trimming.

    ROP's swivelling seat wouldn't go astray either and possibly hydrostatic drive as well. More replaceable bushes in blade push arms, etc., wouldn't be a bad idea either 'cos they DO wear out and get slack.

    If the manufacturers are going to stay with inter-connected steering clutches and brakes, at least get them up to the sensitivity and controllability of the older separated clutch and brake systems. The inter-connected systems are easier on the operator over a day's work but I have yet to run one that was as easy to control or as accurate as the earlier separated systems. (Hey Bob, how about that? We agree twice in 24 hours.)

    I'd probably think up some more if I didn't need to go to bed. Yes, Angela, even I need to sleep at least a little occasionally.
     
  7. euclid

    euclid Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2008
    Messages:
    284
    Occupation:
    Engineering
    Location:
    Maryland
    ole catskinner can give some discriptive things to ponder.
    Cheers.
     
  8. tonka

    tonka Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    Messages:
    1,555
    Occupation:
    Equipment Operator
    Location:
    Longview WA
    Rotating seat for ripping would be nice! Yea remove the plastic, make the windows open easyer, bigger fuel tanks... thats all i got for now
     
  9. stumpjumper83

    stumpjumper83 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Messages:
    1,958
    Occupation:
    Movin dirt
    Location:
    Port Allegany, pa
    Rotating seat would be nice. So would an instructor's seat. I tend to forget that i even have windows if I have ac / heat, with the exception of diggin with a deere 310sg. How about better sound reduction in the cabs, they have come a long way, but since this is the ultimate dozer...

    Finish dozers - we can always use a bigger and better view of the blade. Sometime I have to get soem seat time on the new komatsu finish machine as well as a deere high speed deal.

    Big dozers - lets remove the nasty bumps that you find when on rock jobs, without loosing the ability to feel the dozer. -- After all this is the ultimate dozer.
     
  10. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Canada
    Yay, first post.

    Why not the smaller dozer sizes? My biggest gripe is not enough weight on the front end of the D3/D4, I'd like to see an equalizer bar option like the big boys have and a hydraulic cylinder on top of the blade to adjust the angle rather than that rotten turn buckle, sometimes, it's nice just to tweak that angle while your dozing to carry or get better penetration. Another option is bogie rollers, or a system similar to Bobcat's roller set up.
    I'd also like to see some extra sets of hydraulic lines in the rear so us little guys can hook up to the local farmer's discs after a major land leveling project.
     
  11. CM1995

    CM1995 Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    Messages:
    7,993
    Occupation:
    Running what I brung and taking what I win
    Location:
    Alabama
    Welcome to the Forums Leadfoot!:drinkup
     
  12. Burnout

    Burnout Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2008
    Messages:
    1,442
    Occupation:
    Operator at Sureway Construction
    Location:
    Edmonton AB
    I say start making cabs a little more user friendly especially Caterpillar. Their cabs have come a long way, but I still find the cabs cheap in our new machines. Also windows that are functional, especially in track loaders (mines used as a dozer). I don't know how it is in some other dozers, but moving the stereo would be a nice touch as well. Why is it still above the operators head in most machines? Put it in the side console where its easy to get to. But please for pete's sake don't do it like they do in an excavator and put it under an armrest :bash

    I have also noticed companies getting awful cheap on the paintjobs their putting on our 200 000$ and up machines. We have a brand new 8T and the paint doesn't look as good as the 8N we got at Ritchie Brothers 2 years ago. And as others have said, more visibility, better feel of the blade and here is a shocker of an idea once again... operator comfort... Isolate the cabs from the chassis.

    And once again if anyone from Cat is reading... I have a plea from every mechanic on earth who's ever worked on a C series track loader.... make the cab tilt again. No tilt really sucks,
     
  13. stumpjumper83

    stumpjumper83 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Messages:
    1,958
    Occupation:
    Movin dirt
    Location:
    Port Allegany, pa
    In response to leadfoot, back 30 -50 years ago dozers with rear outlets, p.t.o.'s and drawbars were common. But that was when they were more common in agriculture. Also the sizes were alot smaller like 35 - 60 hp. One that grandpa had in the shed was a j.d. 40. Later model was a 420, two way blade, and a three speed trans. When I ran it, mind you it had 40 years of work in a stone quarry and it was about the right size for grading anthills...
     
  14. Vantage_TeS

    Vantage_TeS Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    Messages:
    495
    Occupation:
    HE Operator. Surprise?
    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta
    Well most of the asthetic stuff you guys mentioned is coming in the new dozers already. We had an 8T on a golf course which had the sideways seat (easily look to your right for ripping) and the computer console on your right as well.

    I also ran a new 6R with a sideways seat and a sixway. I have to say with the sixway blade you can see the majority of your cutting edge the whole time (and I'm a tall guy so I'm up higher than normal too).

    I'll agree with burnout, the quality of plastic in the 6R was shameful. I stuck my lunchpail behind the seat on the plastic and by the end of the day there were scratches all over it (the plastic not the pail). The 8T seemed to look really good inside but I was only in it for about 15 minutes showing the guy how to use the computer to change his default starting gear etc.
     
  15. biggixxerjim

    biggixxerjim Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2007
    Messages:
    446
    Location:
    New Jerz
    I cant think of many ways to improve the dozer category. Some real great machines out there right now. But excavators...
     
  16. 95zIV

    95zIV Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2006
    Messages:
    787
    Occupation:
    RR Track Test Truck Mobile Maintainer
    Location:
    Cincinnati, OH

    Those are probably next Steve said we would beat this one to death then start on something else.
     
  17. John C.

    John C. Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2007
    Messages:
    3,579
    Occupation:
    Equipment Mechanic
    Location:
    Northwest
    I don't think there will ever be an ultimate dozer but from a mechanics perspective I can think of some things I'd like to see in the current production units.

    I think there needs to be some kind of winching mechanism that works from inside the cab for the belly pans. I don't know how many hundreds of hours I've put in pulling a pan to change a hose and then jacking or stringing come alongs and chains underneath to get the thing back up. And on that vein why isn't there some kind of adapter that I can use on the machine for dragging tracks on with. Something on the blade maybe or can be mounted on the hard nose so I don't have to use another machine and a 150 feet of chain or cable.

    I'd like to see equalizer bars with a center pin mechanism that doesn't have to be jacked in and out with a forty ton hollow ram. I'd also like to see a lot more useful life out of the bushings and pins. I do like the cannon style track frames on the big machines. I hate the suspended undercarriages because they add tons of cost and complexity and I haven't yet figured out yet how they make the dozer more productive.

    I want to see a hard nose that bolts on. That stupid pin setup they use now is guaranteed to work loose between 5,000 and 10,000 hours. Usually I don't hear that there is problem until the fan catches the guard and tries to stuff it through the radiator cores. The fix requires pulling the front of the machine apart, welding the bores, machining them and installing all new pins and bushings. I never had probems with the old D8 and D9 dozer hard noses coming loose. This issue I feel is one of those engineering for failure things previously mentioned.

    I have seen swivel seats in dozers and found that they get broken with about twice the frequency of standard seat suspensions. I would like to see seats designed for really big people. I really like the air suspended seats.

    I do like the new electronic diagnostics in the Cat dozers because they tell you what is wrong and I don't necessarily have to buy a $1,000 service manual or hook up to the internet to figure it out. On the other hand I really don't like that I can't make the engine perform to my specifications or that I have to call out a dealer wrench at a $1,000 a day and still don't get the thing running and still have to pay or they shut off my parts supply.

    That's all I can think of for now but I'm sure there are better minds out there that can improve on my list.
     
  18. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Canada
    Why not hace a CCTV on the rear of the big boys with rippers? The Volvo ADT's I drive all have them, they are great for the greenies, and having a CCTV on a ripper would eliminate the need for a swivel "Captain Kirk" chair.
     
  19. Temu

    Temu Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2008
    Messages:
    116
    Location:
    California
    Does a guy with a mere 56 hours in a D6N get to chime in (howdy fellas!)? If I remember correctly, Deas called it a "chicken switch" when I was seeking some guidance here before. Does that chicken switch need to be so touchy? I swear, have any of you fellas had your teeth rattle like mine the first time you tapped the skids? I know, all you guys don't use brakes...but the first time?
    The sliding windows (only 3000 hrs.) rattled so hard I had to use empty water bottles squeezed in to quiet them down. Now I ain't no peach, but for you long hour fellas the isolated cab mentioned before in a previous thread would sure be a nice feature if I made my money like you folks.
     
  20. d6peg

    d6peg Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2007
    Messages:
    272
    Occupation:
    owner, operator
    Location:
    texas
    I am with stump jumper. The ultimate dozer needs a buddy seat. That way when I come home after being in rock all day and tell the wife how tired I am and she just laughs, with the buddy seat and a lockable seatbelt she could know how I feel sometimes. Lol. Also do something with the platforms, it is just a place for dust to collect and every time you shut the door it just pushes more dust in the cab. A full suspension operator station (seat, controls and armrest)like they have in the new ag tractors would also be nice.