Backhoe Loader or Excavator, is commonly called a JCB (like Hoover for vacuum cleaners) in the UK. (article from wikipedia, this require history enhancing and links correction for UK relevance, and info of relevance to Collectable machine types adding to tie in with Tractor and Construction Plant Wikia)
Backhoe loader, also called a backhoe excavator or in some countries a loader backhoe, and commonly shortened to just backhoe, is an engineering vehicle, which consists of a tractor, fitted with a shovel/bucket on the front and a small backhoe on the back. Due to its (relatively) small size and versatility, backhoe loaders are very common in urban engineering and small construction projects (such as building a small house, fixing city roads etc).
The backhoe loader was invented in the UK in 1953 by Joseph Cyril Bamford, founder of J. C. Bamford (JCB), by equipping a farm tractor with both a backhoe and a front-mounted loading bucket. Although based on a tractor, when both the loader and the backhoe are permanently attached the vehicle is almost never called a tractor, is not generally used for towing and usually does not have a PTO. When the backhoe is permanently attached, the machine usually has a seat that can swivel to the rear to face the hoe controls. Removable backhoe attachments almost always have a separate seat on the attachment itself.
Backhoe loaders are very common and can be used for a wide variety of tasks: construction, small demolitions, light transportation of building materials, powering building equipment, digging holes/excavating, landscaping, breaking asphalt, and paving roads. The backhoe bucket can also be replaced with powered attachments such as a breaker, grapple, auger, or a stump grinder. Enhanced articulation of attachments can be achieved with intermediate attachments such as the tiltrotator. Many backhoes feature quick-attach mounting systems and auxiliary hydraulic circuits for simplified attachment mounting, dramatically increasing the machine's utilization on the job site. Some loader buckets have a retractable bottom or "clamshell", enabling it to empty its load more quickly and efficiently. Retractable-bottom loader buckets are also often used for grading and scraping. The front assembly may be a removable attachment or permanently mounted. Often the bucket can be replaced with other devices or tools. The backhoe loader must be equipped with a tool coupler in order to mount different attachments to the loader. A tool coupler consists of two hydraulic cylinders on the end of the loader arm assembly which can expand and retract allowing different tools to be attached to the unit. Advanced couplers like the tiltrotator allow for greater articulation of attachments and makes the backhoe an effective tool carrier.
Because the design is intrinsically top-heavy and the swinging weight of the backhoe could cause the vehicle to tip, most backhoe loaders use hydraulic outriggers when digging and lower the loader bucket for additional stability. This means that the bucket must be raised and the outriggers retracted when the vehicle needs to change positions, reducing efficiency. For this reason many companies offer miniature tracked excavators, which sacrifice the loader function for increased digging efficiency.
Their relatively small frame and precise control make backhoe-loaders very useful and common in urban engineering projects such as construction and repairs in areas too small for larger equipment. Their versatility and compact size makes them one of the most popular urban construction vehicles. For larger projects, a tracked excavator is generally used.
In recent years, small compact tractors from manufacturers such as Kubota have become very popular with private homeowners. Subcompact tractors, the size between a compact tractor and lawn tractor, are also often sold in backhoe loader setup, sometimes with a belly-mounted mowing deck also included. These tractors offer private homeowners the ability to perform minor excavation projects.
- The cutting of network cables during road repairs is now so common, that network engineers often refer to "backhoe fade" as an inevitable cause of communications problems.
- Case Corporation
- Caterpillar Inc.
- J. C. Bamford (JCB)
- John Deere
- Volvo Construction Equipment
- Hitachi, Ltd.
- SANKO Makina
- National Association of Heavy Equipment Training Schools – US educational organisation
- Backhoe loader Evaluations, Specs and Suppliers
- Backhoe loader Specifications and Comparisons
- How a backhoe-loader works
- NIOSH Publication: Preventing Injuries When Working With Hydraulic Excavators and Backhoe Loaders
- Safety Instructions For Operating Backhoe Loaders
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