The road ahead

Wirtgen has high hopes for the Vision series Vogele pavers and says the machines’ Ergo-Plus ergonomic design has been well received during demonstrations. The pavers will be available in Australia with Carlson screeds, which seem to have become the screed of choice for the Australian market.The company has recently taken an order for a Wirtgen WR2400 stabiliser and Streumaster SW 16TC tandem axle dry powder spreader trailer from the Richmond Shire in North Queensland for use on a 23km road project in early 2009, and reports that Queensland is an active market for stabilisation at present. Streumaster has worked with Wirtgen Germany over the past three years to develop the spreaders for the WR series stabilisers for very accurate spreading of powder-type binding agents prior to the milling/mixing action of the stabiliser drums. There are nine Streumaster spreaders covering truck-mounted, trailer-type and self-propelled (articulated) types with capacities of 3, 10, 12 and 16cu.m and spreading widths up to 2.5m.Wirtgen national operations manager Geoff Southwell says that with more than 40 Wirtgen WR series machines operating in Australia, there is a potential market for 8-10 Streumaster spreaders.Clark Equipment has become a strong force in the road equipment market, having recently taken on the agency for Terex roadbuilding equipment and complementing it at the lower end with LeeBoy compact pavers and other road equipment.The Terex range includes Cedarapids asphalt pavers, which will be sold with Carlson screeds in Australia. The pavers have a three-point suspension system that allows independent vertical movement of the rear wheels. The fume recovery system ducts the captured fumes from the screed to an insulated muffler, where the high exhaust temperature removes most of the hazard.An optional anti-segregation mixing system can be fitted in the hopper, with the counter-rotating augers producing an even mix. The system suits applications where there is a long-haul distance from an asphalt plant but the volume of material does not justify a dedicated transfer vehicle.Cedarapids also has a dedicated track-mounted transfer vehicle that can be converted into a conventional paver.Although Volvo sees its Blaw Knox pavers as having the most potential for Australia, it has made a number of sales of the ABG-derived pavers including the largest model, the ABG9820, in Australia. These are popular for placing roadbase and compacting it with its tamping screed, reducing the amount of compaction required by vibratory rollers. Volvo and its dealer CJD have geared up for this new product line, and for its compactors (all now badged as Volvo) by appointing specialist staff to handle road equipment.Manufacturer Astec bought its Australian distributor Q-Pave in late 2008. The Roadtec profiling and stabilisation products could possibly make some inroads, with the Roadtec pavers and shuttle buggies already well established.

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