Getting the most from your Excavator using Augers & Bucket tool attachments

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Excavators are essential to construction projects and are in essence big ‘power tools’ that are found at most construction sites due to not just their power, but also their versatility. As varied as construction projects are so are excavators and the attachments that they are able to accommodate to manage these various tasks. Be it a landscaping project, trenching project, building or demolition the excavator is usually utilized to perform these tasks, provided they are affixed with the right type of attachments. Rental excavators have become more useful than ever due to technological advances associated with heave industrial machines/ vehicles. Excavators, just like bulldozers evolved from tractors and traditionally were used to dig and move debris and materials about. However, as technology advanced, and the excavator was enabled further via attachments such as jackhammers, clamps, mower and much more. These attachments allow a single excavator to perform multiple tasks which reduces project time turnarounds and cost for buying entire new machines for a single task. In this installment we will examine two basic attachments that are most common, augers and buckets.

The Spectrum of Augers

Augers are basically attachments that allow the standard excavator to dig. It is a tool that renders ground penetration easy. The auger is easily recognizable due to the spiral design that it sports and this design is critical towards penetrating deep into the earth. The spiral design is actually essential for transporting the earth out of the hole that it is going into. Generally, augers are commonly used for residential projects and that often require holes to be dug for installing pillars or for planting trees and other elements that require to be placed into the ground. There are various types of augers with regards to its width, length and spiral circumference apart from features such as single or double pin hitch, or a double pin cradle hitch. These pin hitches allow the excavator operator to change attachments without much hassle and rather quickly. Augers also come with a number of power options, which include direct-drive or gear driven augers whereby direct drive augers are more stable keeps the excavator on better balance, whereas the gear driven auger is used when power is a necessity.

The Spectrum of Buckets

The standard excavator bucket is made from robust and solid steel and generally has jagged teeth on the edge of the bucket as it is necessary for penetrating the ground surface. However, it is worth to note that light buckets may have lesser teeth as lightweight buckets are usually used for moving loose soil. Heavy duty buckets on the other hand are sometimes fitted with tungsten-based teeth in order to penetrate tough materials. Similar to augers, there are various types of buckets which include standard buckets which in essence is an ‘all-purpose’ bucket that normally comes with the excavator at purchase point, often these are supplied included with an excavator hire purchase. Heavy buckets are used for grading and leveling among other things whereas ‘severe’ buckets are used for tough materials such as granite rock or hardened clay. Narrow buckets come in handy when maneuverability at the project site is a critical aspect of the task at hand and trenching buckets for trenches naturally and skeleton buckets are used for spading and sieving tasks.