The Difference Between a Conventional and Zero-Swing Excavator

The Difference Between a Conventional and Zero-Swing Excavator

Selecting the right kind of machine for a job enhances work efficiency and also reduces work hazards and risks. For excavators, three of the common configurations are conventional swing, zero-swing, and reduced swing.

The concept of tail swing is related to the rear counterweight profile for an excavator. In a typical excavator, the housing of the machine extends beyond the steel tracks giving more counterweight to the machine. This allows high performance in digging, loading, and lifting applications.

Each configuration has specific pros and cons and it is crucial to pick the right one for your specific job.

The pros and cons of zero, reduced, and conventional tail swing configurations:

Conventional Swing Excavator

In a conventional swing excavator, the housing extends beyond the tracks as the excavator rotates, relying more on hanging out a counterweight. This excavator has a strong lifting capacity as well as buck and arm breakout force. It offers a longer tail swing radius which can be useful in some operations. This machine is designed for productivity and comfort of the operator. While reduced or zero tail swing models are useful in some situations, the conventional tail swing excavator is overall more efficient for general applications. Conventional mini excavator hire is often preferred for jobs such as drainage and plumbing.

This machine is not fit for confined spaces, so, either the site needs to be modified according to the excavator radius or it will be necessary to hire a reduced or zero-tail swing model.

Zero Swing Excavators

In a reduced tail-swing, the excavator housing extends only a few centimeters beyond the undercarriage. In zero tail-swing, the machine rotates within the undercarriage width. Such machines are ideal for congested areas where maneuverability is a consideration. These models can easily slip through tight spaces with reduced damage to the buildings, fence, and other obstructions close to the worksite. This machine can be used for roadside maintenance with the only disruption to a single-lane of traffic. These machines lift the weight out front and over the side.

Contractors rely on this machine for work in urban areas and congested sites. That’s what they love about the machine – flexibility in confined areas. Zero swing excavator hire is very common with contractors, as they are pay as you go and can do a wide range of jobs on construction sites.

Due to shorter or zero tail radius, this machine has lower operating capacities. By using heavy attachments or loads, the zero tail-swing machines will pitch more than a conventional machine.

Key Takeaways

Zero or reduced tail-swing machines are more useful in confined spaces where there is a need to operate the machine through minimum 90-degree arcs. Experts recommend zero swing excavators in civil construction applications where space is limited due to traffic or pedestrian movement. The correct attachment size/weight must be selected for optimum performance and safety. If you are looking for a higher level of performance and productivity, a conventional tail swing model is the best fit.

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