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Buying an Excavator

TuffWerx has a large selection of excavators to tackle all your heavy construction needs. You can browse our pages looking for options or type in the make, model, year and price of the piece of heavy equipment you need. We have many photos and detailed condition reports with all the specs to help you make your decision. And if you want you can use our premier service and have the excavator inspected before you buy it.  TuffWerx takes the hard work out of buying used heavy equipment.

Benefits of Different Kinds of Excavators

Excavators are powerful digging machines with a cab, or house, on top of a rotating platform. The excavation is done with a long boom, connected to a “stick” which has a bucket at the end of it that can reach various depths. Operators drive the machine from the cab which can swing 360 degrees so that the operator can dig in any direction. The machine moves via tracks that help keep the excavator stable when the operator has a heavy load of soil, rock or other material in the bucket.

The stability of the machine is also aided by the weight of the engine, hydraulic oil tanks and the counterweight.

The main boom can be one of different types. Mono booms only move straight up and down, raising and lowering the stick and the bucket. Knuckle booms also move left and right in line with the machine.  Triple articulated booms have three points where they can move.

Excavators use different types of buckets. Where the ground is hard or rocky, a general purpose bucket is used. These are small, strong and have side cutters and teeth to break through ground and rocks.  A mud bucket is wide, has a large capacity and a straight cutting edge for cutting clean edges and leveling ground. These can only be used where the ground is soft and easily cut into.

Other attachments, like breakers, augers and grapples are used for ripping out tree roots and stumps, crushing rocks and lifting rocks and other obstacles from the ground. Some excavators have quick couplers to make it easy for operators to attach to and release various attachments for easier, faster switching between tasks.

There are larger excavators and smaller ones. Some compact excavators have a hinge at the base of the boom that lets it pivot up to 180 degrees, independent of the cab.  Some of these also have a horizontal dozer blade for moving material that’s been excavated.

Tips for Buying an Excavator

  • Make sure you purchase an excavator with an adequate reach to do your project. Digging depths range from 12 feet to more than 21 feet.
  • Decide whether the jobs you have to do can be done with a mono boom—the most common kind—or one of the other varieties that has more flexibility.
  • Figure out what size excavator will work best in the area where your project is. If you don’t have much room to operate, you might want to get a compact or mid-sized excavator rather than the larger ones.

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