5 tips for boosting productivity with the right work tools.

5 tips for boosting productivity with the right work tools.

Every incremental improvement in productivity helps you run your business more profitably. So when you purchase attachments, you want to make sure you’re creating the optimal pairing with your machine. Keep these six tips in mind when selecting work tools.

  1. Know before you go.

    Our experts are waiting to help you. Share information with our sales team, which would enable them to provide you with solid recommendations. What type of material will you be working on? What application? What are your Cycle-time requirement? Also share the machine details such as equipment model, configuration, tipping load, lift/weight capacities and any other basic information—for all machines that may work with the attachment. Also make note of each machine’s optional, retrofit or specialized features (e.g., changes to hydraulics, tires, engine, etc.). If your attachment requires hydraulics, know your machine’s hydraulic flow (gpm) and pressure (psi) output capabilities and understand the auxiliary hydraulics. If you have a quick coupler, know the brand and model—and bring the serial number and a photo for reference if available.

  2. Select the best machines for attachment use.

    Visibility to Operator: Chose a machine couple configuration which ensures good visibility to the operator from his position on the machine. The universal coupler interface and low-profile side plates of mechanical quick couplers allow the most tools to match properly while keeping out dirt and debris. Hydraulic quick couplers have a rocker switch in the cab that controls two hydraulic cylinders, allowing the operator to change tools in the cab. The hydraulic cylinders control the vertical wedge pins that lock the tool in place.

  3. Check out the flow specifications for the hydraulic circuit.

    Hydraulics provides power to the ground, enables lifting and tilting and runs the auxiliary circuit, which drives attachments. The criteria for “high-flow” or “standard-flow” may differ from one manufacturer to another, so know what’s required and how your machine is equipped.

  4. Products and brands
  5. Understand the type of attachment you need

    Fabricated attachments are the most universal. A machine from one manufacturer can attach the buckets or forks made by another manufacturer with little trouble, since they don’t require additional hydraulics to operate. Hydromechanical attachments include multi-purpose buckets, mulchers, hammers, augers, grapples, rakes and other tools powered by the machine’s auxiliary hydraulics. Most equipment manufacturers recommend that machines use hydromechanical attachments from the same manufacturer. Why? Hydraulic hose hook-ups and fittings are of the same strength and brand, ensuring a proper match and tight fit to reduce leaks and loss of pressure. Machines and attachments are designed to work as a system, and these pairings help maximize horsepower and hydraulic capabilities.

  6. Match the attachment configuration to the machine.

    Equipment manufacturers may offer a tool in a variety of configurations. Direct drive or planetary drive augers, for example, are available for standard hydraulic flow machines. These configurations help maximize the capabilities of the hydraulic circuit in medium-duty applications. A high-flow planetary-driven auger on a high-flow hydraulic machine is appropriate for extreme-duty applications. The high-flow configuration is designed for maximum torque, and the hydraulic hoses and seals are built to withstand the additional pressure and maintain a leak-free connection.
    Generally, a machine with high-flow hydraulics can operate attachments designed for standard-flow machines, but the reverse (high-flow tools with a standard-flow machine) is not recommended. A standard-flow machine’s hydraulic system can’t supply the flow needed to operate the tool properly.

  7. Not sure what you need? Rent.

    When in doubt, renting is a good way to determine the best attachment option. You can experiment with different tools or tool-machine combinations to see what yields the most efficiency gains. You may also discover that a single machine with multiple tools costs less than two machines on the job.

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