It is important to select the right bucket cutting edge that wears well and evenly, is reliable, doesn't break, and has plenty of supply. There is a high possibility that your mobile earthmoving equipment is out of service due to broken or prematurely worn cutting edge or blades. In addition to creating machine downtime, not using the correct cutting edge and blades will also undermine productivity and increase fuel consumption.
To ensure you have the right bucket cutting edge and blades, please check the following six-point checklist.
1. Match your cutting edge to the machine and digging conditions
The shape, size and profile of your bucket cutting edge must match that of the machine it is fitted to, as well as the conditions it will be operating in. Having the right cutting edge profile will be easier to touch the ground and help material flow into the bucket.
An improperly sized cutting edge can lead to the failed installation of the machine, placing undue stress on your machine.
Some cutting edges are specifically abrasion, while others are general purpose all-rounders. Some are made for loaders, while others are made for excavators. A cutting edge that works well on a motor grader will have a different profile than one used for loaders.
Having the right cutting edge system for your machine and the appropriate digging environment can help you achieve your goals and save you money.
The cutting edge and grader blade should not break. If they do, you might be using the wrong parts or the blade may be of poor quality.
Every time you change a cutting edge, it will result in downtime and production losses. And if the defective piece ends up passing through the plant, it could cause hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of damage.
If you are certain that you are using the right cutting edge for your machine and the work and are still seeing breakage, then your cutting edge may be too hard.
Having a harder cutting edge is usually better, however, this has to be weighed against impact resistance as harder cutting edges are also more brittle and vulnerable to breaking.
It is a balancing act in matching wear properties with impact strength and if you are seeing cutting edge breakages you may want to talk to your supplier about what mechanical properties they are placing into cutting edge in the casting process.
There is a delicate balance between wear properties and impact strength. If seeing breakages on your cutting edges, talk to your casting supplier about what mechanical properties they are applying.
When the cutting edge and the bolts & nuts are not matched correctly, the wear or breakage can be anticipated.
One set of bolts & nuts can work with up to around eight different cutting edge styles. Make sure these will meet your intended use.
If the bolts & nuts are worn out, you will see breakages even if you are using the right cutting edge for the machine.
Another consideration is matching bolts & nuts to cutting edges that are in supply.
Make sure that the supplier has the necessary cutting edge and also bolts & nuts manufacturing capabilities to meet your long-term demand for products of that type.
In many cases, mining companies have cutting-edges that they cannot obtain matching bolts & nuts, resulting in idle machines waiting for parts.
This is usually occurred with suppliers in a small market with low demand. COVID-19 has exacerbated this issue for these smaller suppliers. However, suppliers in China who are in much bigger market are usually more accessible.
There are two ways to deal with this issue: you can wait for your wear parts to arrive or replace the cutting edge and use new ones. Both approaches will damage productivity and profit, highlighting the importance of choosing the right cutting edge or grader blade.
Being able to ensure you have the correct cutting edge supply is important because it ensures that you do not run out of stock or become overstocked.
To formalise maintenance cycles and identify problem areas, mobile earthmoving site audits are critical.
Some cutting edge manufacturers works with you to complete this process and ensure you have the right cutting edge and other earthmoving spare parts when you need them.
It is inherently dangerous when changing a bucket cutting edge, especially when using a sledgehammer.
Hammerless cutting edges are one of the latest innovations in cutting edge systems. It is safer and simpler to install and replace than a hammer-based system.
"the safest job is the one you don’t have to do". To drive safety, select high-end, longer-lasting cutting edge that have longer change out periods.
Choosing the right bucket cutting edge for your machine and the appropriate digging environment can help you achieve your goals and save you money. The best way to find out about cutting edges is by talking to suppliers who specialize in this field. You should also look at what manufacturers offer in terms of products itself and also their services as a long term partner.