Optimised efficiency in a mineral haulage operation is being realised by Kalgoorlie-based MLG Oz with its new B-quin combination manufactured by Bruce Rock Engineering.
The combination comprises five 20’ skel trailers roll-coupled via Fuwa K-Hitch turntables fitted to the rear of each of the four forward trailers and towed by a tri-drive Mack Titan.
It carries Nickel concentrate in powder form in Bulka Bags that are loaded into 20’ containers which are then lifted onto the skels.
Bruce Rock Engineering Managing Director, Damion Verhoogt, said to the best of his knowledge this is the first B-quin operating in Australia, and certainly the first one produced by his company.
“We’ve built plenty of Performance-Based Standards (PBS) skel trailer combinations, but this is the first B-quin,” said Verhoogt.
The combination, according to Verhoogt, was specifically engineered for low tare weight to maximise payload capacity.
“With a Gross Combination Mass (GCM) of 148 tonnes, we had a payload target gross mass of 23 tonnes for each container which we were able to achieve through various weight saving measures without compromising on the structural integrity of the trailers,” he said.
That adds up to an impressively low tare weight of just 34 tonnes for the entire combination including the beefy tri-drive Titan.
The unit runs on a PBS Level 3B road network, operating around the clock on a set run between Esperance on the southern WA coast and Ravensthorpe around 190km to the west.
According to Verhoogt, achieving the regulation swept path and weight distribution goals proved a difficult task but the engineers at Bruce Rock Engineering rose to the challenge and found innovative solutions.
“Trying to get swept path and weight distribution to play together is not easy,” he said. “It took a lot of work and some very creative twist-lock mounting designs and locations, but it all came together nicely.”
The project took about six months to complete.
The combination rides on Fuwa K-Hitch mechanical spring suspension and disc brake axles along with a full complement of no less than 60 polished aluminium wheels.
Earlier this year, Bruce Rock Engineering built and delivered pre-fab service pits.