Sunday | February 18, 2018

Caterpillar Milling Equipment Goes Beyond Iron

The PM622 cold planer from Caterpillar

Along with a new 745 articulated truck, new dozers, a new 986K wheel loader, new work tools and its reinvented cold planers, the team from Caterpillar, Peoria, Illinois, highlighted its technology offerings during CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2017. As Paulo Fellin, vice president of global construction and infrastructure, outlined for the trade press prior to the show, all of the iron updates and launches feature connectivity and customer feedback. Look at the cold planers as an example.

Cat’s A.J. Lee explained that the company launched the PM620 and PM622 cold planers in 2016 after reinventing the cold planer lineup over five years of research and development that included conversations with customers. Regarding the PM622, he said customers wanted to learn how to operate the machine in an hour. Now, the machine features intuitive and easy-to-use controls coupled with integrated technology and functions, according to the manufacturer. The machine has 630 horsepower and an operating weight of 70 tons. When it comes to servicing, mechanics and operators are aided by on-board diagnostics and emergency control measures. Indicators are offered in English and with fault codes.

Consider the technology mentioned in that last paragraph. On-board diagnostics. Integrated technology and functions. What does it mean that the PM600 series has CAT 3D technology built in? The milling crew at Tri-City Blacktop in Bettendorf, Iowa, explained that they use the controls to set beginning and ending depths of cuts, and then let the machine perform the minute adjustments to execute the cuts to the customers’ specifications.

In addition to the PM600 series, CAT has introduced the PM800 series, which features 755 hp, 77 tons operating weight and a new set of rotors to select from. For wide milling applications, customers can choose a 79-inch, 87-inch or 98.5-inch width drum with micro-mill and diamond drum configurations available.

For commercial applications, the PM310, PM312 and PM313 will offer 325 hp and just over 42 tons of operating weight. This series will feature many of the same options as the larger mills, including integrated grade and slope. It captures three milling widths with the same transport dimensions and flush cut clearance, and will be available starting in September this year.

What you might notice here is the availability of options in iron. If you need a wide rotor on a large machine for highway class milling, there’s a machine for that. If you need a smaller drum and lower operating weight for tighter job sites, there’s a machine for that. The team at Caterpillar stressed that they’ve taken customer feedback and built multiple platforms. Check out the discussion of mid-sized wheel loaders in the article OEMs Target What Each Operator Needs on page 32 to learn more about that. For more information on the reinvented cold planers, visit with your local Cat dealer.

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