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Are Graders Obsolete?

Discussion in 'GPS Systems' started by Steve Frazier, May 22, 2020.

  1. Steve Frazier

    Steve Frazier Founder

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    5,843
    Location:
    LaGrangeville, N.Y.
    My County has been doing a total reconstruction of a two mile stretch of road for the past 8 months, it's nearing completion. They ripped out the old road, did major drainage, softened some curves and put all new base material in. There was never a grader on the job, all of the grading was done with a Deere 750 equipped with GPS pods. I have absolutely no experience with this technology and am curious if it is precise enough to do the work of a grader? Is roadbuilding a job a grader is no longer needed for?

    I worked in roadbuilding in the early 80s and the roads were roughed in by dozer but always finish graded by a grader before paving. I didn't see that on this job.
     
  2. petepilot

    petepilot Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2018
    Messages:
    1,156
    Location:
    central shenandoah valley va,
    graders are becoming scarce around here also except on big road work.the gps controlled dozers are the thing on small roads and private work . I also noticed that there were very few graders used on the reconstruction of I 84 between Scranton pa. & the ny. line that has been going on for years
     
  3. Steve Frazier

    Steve Frazier Founder

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    5,843
    Location:
    LaGrangeville, N.Y.
    When I was growing up every Town Highway department around here had a Cat 12, there were still a number of gravel roads to maintain. Everything is paved now and as those graders aged they were never replaced. I saw the County's grader out last week cutting shoulders fro drainage but that's about all they seem to do now. About the only place I see them anymore is on YouTube.
     
  4. John C.

    John C. Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2007
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    7,628
    Occupation:
    Machinery & Equipment Appraiser
    Location:
    Northwest
    Counties east of the mountains here use them extensively for snow removal and maintaining gravel roads. I haven't seen a contractor in awhile with one on a construction job. There are a few around that do repair work on long driveways and such but I think you are right about the new construction stuff. A grader is an expensive piece of machinery and good operators are about as hard to find as a sasquatch.
     
    petepilot likes this.
  5. Bumpsteer

    Bumpsteer Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2009
    Messages:
    796
    Occupation:
    Mechanical designer
    Location:
    mid Michigan
    IIRC, our county is divided into 6 districts, each has a blade to maintain the gravel roads in the spring/summer/fall and plow them in the winter.
    They aren't used every day, once chloride is applied they'll set unless it's re-graveling time.

    Ed