Italian snow-groomer manufacturer Prinoth and US truck maker McNeilus have introduced a tracked concrete mixer for the off-road construction market.
A tracked mixer allows vehicles to quickly and easily move through soft soils or rugged terrain to get to jobsites almost - or entirely - inaccessible by a standard vehicle. Access to these jobsites sometimes requires a helicopter to haul in, and even pour, concrete. A tracked mixer could make land access possible, saving time and costly helicopter costs.
When Prinoth dealer Multi Machine, based in the northeast US state of New Jersey, received the off-road concrete mixer request from a client, the company approached Prinoth and McNeilus. Engineering teams from both manufacturers collaborated to adapting their respective equipment to suit the application and maximise mixer capacities while maintaining stability for an off-road application.
Prinoth developed a special chassis while McNeilus developed a custom mixer body. The dropped frame chassis of the Prinoth Panther T16 tracked carrier was a key design element to lower the overall height of the off-road rubber tracked mixer. By reducing the height, the centre of gravity is lower, which ensures great levels of stability and off-road performance. These modifications were necessary to allow moving the vehicle from one jobsite to another on a trailer without requiring special transportation permits.
McNeilus designed the mixer body to maximise payload and create an easy mounting process to the chassis. Specifically, hydraulic components and design routings were customised to fit the new chassis. The result is a heavy-duty 9 cubic yard (6.8 tonne) custom McNeilus mixer body that will stand up to the environment in which the vehicle will operate.
"We're now ready to build more of these unique vehicles,” said Bryan Datema, senior director of business development of concrete mixers for McNeilus.
Prinoth and McNeilus had top calculate the litres of water and tonnes of concrete that their co-designed vehicle could safely haul, taking into account the weight of the sub frame and water tank.
Prinoth, an Italian manufacturer of ski resort snow groomers and tracked utility vehicles, designs and refines sprocket-track systems that were introduced by the Canadian manufacturers Bombardier in 1935. The company says that its vehicles can easily be equipped with a multitude of specialised attachments. Its tracked vehicles exert very low pressure on the ground and go places where wheeled vehicles sink. Prinoth is part of HTI Group - High Technology Industries, also an Italian company and with more than 3,000 employees worldwide.
McNeilus Truck and Manufacturing, part of the Oshkosh corporation, makes concrete mixers within North America.