"We have a family of dozers here," says Drescher. "An operator can get on a 700 and jump right over onto an 850, and they basically operate identically. Within our product line, we've pretty well standardized on the way machines operate, and that is a plus to the contractor. They don't have to do a lot of cross-training. Once you get used to one John Deere machine, you're pretty much used to all of them, and it makes it easy to switch machines back and forth.
"There is no industry standardization yet, but at least the way ours run, it's very, very common between tractors."
At Case, the new 144-horsepower 1650L offers the electronic blade control feature introduced two years ago on the 118-horsepower 1150K Series 3 model, providing simultaneous multi-function application. "That gives you precise control of that blade," says Hughes. "If you need to grade within that quarter-inch, you can adjust that blade accordingly with that electronic controller."
When Case undertakes product development, the three primary areas of concentration are productivity, operator comfort and serviceability, says Hughes. The electronic blade control feature, he says, arguably achieves all three: "It gives the operator much more control of that machine and can make him much more productive than, say, a mechanical controller. From an operator-comfort perspective, with an electronic controller you don't have to use as much lever effort, so that doesn't fatigue you. And from a serviceability perspective, because it's electronic, you don't have the adjustments that you typically would have with a mechanical-style control."
At Komatsu, the introduction of the 130-horsepower D51 to its Dash-22 finish dozer product line likewise reflects a muscling up of the fine work traditionally reserved for smaller dozers. The D51-22 models are upgrades from the 110-horsepower D41-6C machines, "and it's a night-and-day difference between the tractors," says Scott. "Our D41 was a direct-drive, clutch-brake-steering-system unit and it was relatively antiquated, whereas the D51 switched over to being totally hydrostatic, with our cab-forward design for unrivaled visibility."
Scott relates the feedback from customers through Komatsu America's internal field days at the Cartersville, Ga., demo site. "Since we introduced the 51, we've probably put 2,500 customers through there," he says, "and everybody who gets off of that machine just shakes their head and says they just can't believe the visibility of the blade, and how easy it is to operate and finish-grade. People who are not dozer operators get off it and say, 'I can cut a pretty good grade now.' It's just amazing."
When it comes to a single designation meaning many different things, Caterpillar's D6 is king. Within the 100- to 200-horsepower range, three different D6 machines are offered, each with undercarriage configuration options. At one end, the 125-horsepower D6K is the first-ever hydrostatic-drive dozer in the D6 offering; at the other end, the D6T offers an earthmoving force at up to 200 horsepower; in between, the 150-horsepower D6N offers production for customers not requiring the horsepower of the D6T.
And, within the D6T product line alone, four configurations are available:
- Standard offers the shortest-length tracks with standard-width shoes for the lowest wear and cost;
- XL offers extended-length track for improved flotation and stability;
- XW offers a longer, wider undercarriage for good flotation and stability, without the accelerated wear associated with low-ground-pressure machines;
- and the low-ground-pressure LGP offers a long, wide undercarriage with very wide track shoes for best flotation and finish-grading capabilities.
The D6N and D6K are available in either XL or LGP configurations.
The industry has choices in the 100- to 200-horsepower crawler dozer range that reflect the coming together of two worlds — precision and power. With such recent product introductions as Deere's 764 High-Speed Dozer and Topcon's 3D-MC2 machine-control system that can increase the smooth grading speed of dozers by 200 percent or more, it's become possible to not only connect but integrate the two worlds.
Look for larger dozers to increasingly do the work formerly dedicated to their smaller brothers.
"I believe so," says Komatsu's Scott, "especially with the innovation of 3D machine control. That will help push that end of the range up, because if the operator couldn't control the machine well enough, certainly the 3D machine control can do a pretty good job."
|The Cost of Ownership|
|Size||List Price||*Hourly Rate|
|* Hourly rate represents the monthly ownership costs divided by 176, plus operating cost. Adjusted operating unit prices used in the calculation are diesel fuel at $3.96 per gallon, mechanic's wage at $44.79 per hour, and money costs at 4.75 percent.|
|Source: EquipmentWatch.com, phone 800/669-3282|
|85 – 104 horsepower||$113,975||$56.86|
|105 – 129 horsepower||$165,757||$71.30|
|130 – 159 horsepower||$235,480||$88.36|
|160 – 189 horsepower||$277,971||$103.84|
|190 – 259 horsepower||$343,426||$124.15|
|Crawler-Dozer Specifications (100 to 200 horsepower)|
|Model||Operating Weight (lb.)||Net Power (HP)||Track Frame||Ground Pressure (psi)||Blade Type||Blade Width||Blade Capacity (cu. yd.)|
|Source: Spec-Check Xpanded Specs (as of June/08)|
|Dressta TD-10M DD STD||19,395||101||Standard||5.6||6-way (PAT)||9′3″||2.66|
|Dressta TD-10M STD||19,395||101||Standard||5.6||6-way (PAT)||9′3″||2.66|
|Dressta TD-10M DD LGP||19,645||101||Low Ground Pressure||4.7||6-way (PAT)||9′3″||2.66|
|Dressta TD-10M LGP||19,645||101||Low Ground Pressure||4.7||6-way (PAT)||9′3″||2.66|
|Komatsu D39EX-22||20,834||105||Standard||6.19||7-way (VPAT)||8′11″||2.89|
|Komatsu D39PX-22||21,804||105||Low Ground Pressure||4.69||7-way (VPAT)||10′8″||3.0|
|Komatsu D41E-6C||24,140||110||Standard||4.98||6-way (PAT)||10′0″||3.4|
|Komatsu D41P-6C||25,400||110||Low Ground Pressure||3.41||6-way (PAT)||10′0″||3.4|
|John Deere 700J LT||26,102||115||Long Track||6.8||6-way (PAT)||10′0″||3.44|
|John Deere 700J XLT||27,125||115||Extra Long Track||5.9||6-way (PAT)||10′0″||3.44|
|John Deere 700J LGP||28,290||115||Low Ground Pressure||4.6||6-way (PAT)||11′0″||3.75|
|Case 1150K XLT||27,858||118||Extra Long Track||5.7||6-way (PAT)||10′0″||3.8|
|Case 1150K WT||28,665||118||Wide Track||5.0||6-way (PAT)||11′0″||4.2|
|Case 1150K LGP||29,365||118||Low Ground Pressure||4.23||6-way (PAT)||11′0″||4.2|
|Caterpillar D6K XL||28,409||125||Extra Long Track||6.16||7-way (VPAT)||10′1″||3.5|
|Caterpillar D6K LGP||29,690||125||Low Ground Pressure||4.74||7-way (VPAT)||11′0″||3.8|
|Komatsu D51EX-22||27,778||130||Standard||6.40||6-way (PAT)||10′0″||3.5|
|Komatsu D51PX-22||28,881||130||Low Ground Pressure||4.78||6-way (PAT)||11′0″||3.8|
|Dressta TD-12C-XP||32,866||142||Standard||6.8||6-way (PAT)||10′4.4″||3.6|
|Dressta TD-12C-XP DD||32,866||142||Standard||6.8||6-way (PAT)||10′4.4″||3.6|
|Dressta TD-12C-XP LGP||33,105||142||Low Ground Pressure||4.4||Straight||11′2″||3.5|
|Dressta TD-12C-XP DD LGP||33,105||142||Low Ground Pressure||4.43||Straight||11′2″||3.5|
|Case 1650L XLT||35,203||144||Extra Long Track||6.2||6-way (PAT)||10′6″||4.12|
|Case 1650L WT||36,691||144||Wide Track||5.62||6-way (PAT)||13′1″||4.12|
|Case 1650L LGP||37,578||144||Low Ground Pressure||4.63||6-way (PAT)||13′1″||4.2|
|John Deere 750J||32,585||145||Standard||7.24||6-way (PAT)||10′10″||4.23|
|John Deere 750J LT||34,395||145||Long Track||6.45||6-way (PAT)||10′10″||4.23|
|John Deere 750J WT||36,425||145||Wide Track||5.24||Semi-U||12′4″||5.9|
|Caterpillar D6N WH Waste Handler||38,224||145||Long Track||7.93||VPAT with Trash Rack||10′9″||8.4|
|Caterpillar D6N XL Tier 3||36,497||150||Extra Long Track||7.48||7-way (VPAT)||10′8.8″||4.16|
|Caterpillar D6N LGP Tier 3||39,112||150||Low Ground Pressure||4.8||7-way (VPAT)||13′4.6″||4.13|
|John Deere 750J LGP||36,725||155||Low Ground Pressure||4.45||6-way (PAT)||13′0″||4.98|
|Liebherr PR 724 L||36,768||160||Long Track||6.83||6-way (PAT)||10′6.1″||4.15|
|Liebherr PR 724 XL||38,003||160||Extra Long Track||6.26||6-way (PAT)||10′6.1″||4.15|
|Liebherr PR 724 LGP||41,230||160||Low Ground Pressure||4.41||6-way (PAT)||12′5.2″||4.43|
|Komatsu D61EX-15||36,839||168||Standard||7.68||6-way (PAT)||10′9″||4.5|
|Komatsu D61EX-15 Long Track||39,242||168||Long Track||6.54||6-way (PAT)||10′9″||4.5|
|Komatsu D61PX-15||41,248||168||Low Ground Pressure||4.83||6-way (PAT)||12′8″||5.0|
|Case 1850K LT Series 3||44,269||184||Long Track||9.46||Semi-U||11′2.6″||7.3|
|Case 1850K XLT Series 3||46,649||184||Extra Long Track||8.4||Semi-U||11′2.6″||7.3|
|John Deere 850J||40,165||185||Standard||7.61||Semi-U||10′8″||7.29|
|John Deere 850J WT||41,285||185||Wide Track||6.26||Semi-U||11′8″||7.62|
|John Deere 850J LT||43,015||185||Long Track||6.87||6-way (PAT)||12′2″||5.15|
|John Deere 850J WLT||44,225||185||Wide, Long Track||5.65||6-way (PAT)||13′2″||5.57|
|John Deere 850J WT Waste Handler||44,665||185||Wide Track||6.83||Semi-U with Trash Rack||11′8″||14.5|
|John Deere 850J WLT Waste Handler||47,432||185||Wide, Long Track||6.11||PAT with Trash Rack||13′2″||12.7|
|Dressta TD-15M Extra||44,335||190||Standard||10.9||Semi-U||11′3″||7.45|
|Dressta TD-15M LT Extra||44,665||190||Long Track||9.5||Semi-U||11′3″||7.45|
|Dressta TD-15M WT Extra||45,779||190||Wide Track||6.5||6-way (PAT)||12′1″||5.0|
|Dressta TD-15M LGP Extra||46,451||190||Low Ground Pressure||5.4||Straight||12′8″||4.7|
|Dressta TD-15M LA Extra||51,764||190||Standard||12.4||Semi-U with Trash Rack||11′3″||14.3|
|Case 1850K LGP Series 3||49,450||199||Low Ground Pressure||5.4||Straight||12′10″||4.8|
|Caterpillar D6T XL||44,420||200||Extra Long Track||8.9||Semi-U||10′8.3″||7.34|
|Caterpillar D6T XW||45,723||200||Wide Track||6.72||Semi-U||11′8″||7.35|
|Caterpillar D6T XL VPAT||46,690||200||Extra Long Track||9.36||7-way (VPAT)||12′8.8″||6.19|
|Caterpillar D6T XW VPAT||47,276||200||Wide Track||7.45||7-way (VPAT)||13′7.8″||6.67|
|Caterpillar D6T LGP||48,024||200||Low Ground Pressure||5.15||Straight||13′4″||4.9|
|Caterpillar D6T LGP VPAT||50,968||200||Low Ground Pressure||6.35||7-way (VPAT)||13′7.8″||5.65|
|Liebherr PR 734 L||45,161||200||Long Track||10.1||Semi-U||11′0.8″||7.27|
|Liebherr PR 734 XL||46,290||200||Extra Long Track||9.1||Semi-U||11′0.8″||7.27|
|Liebherr PR 734 LGP||48,986||200||Low Ground Pressure||5.97||Straight||13′1.3″||5.36|
|John Deere 850J LGP||45,375||200||Low Ground Pressure||4.83||6-way (PAT)||14′0″||5.87|
|John Deere 850J LGP Waste Handler||48,906||200||Low Ground Pressure||5.15||PAT with Trash Rack||14′0″||12.9|