Naturally occurring asphalt, also known as bitumen, is a black, sticky substance with a viscosity similar to that of cold molasses. This material is refined by boiling at a temperature of nearly 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit to produce refined asphalt, which is then combined with aggregate particles to form the asphalt concrete that is used to surface roads. Outside the United States, asphalt is often called, ‘bitumen.’ In the United Kingdom, ‘asphalt’ is synonymous with ‘tarmac.’
Here is an up-close look at the varied different types of asphalt equipment and backhoe equipment for sale that most of us see as a quick blur on the highway.
To the untrained eye, the 1997 Etnyre K chip spreader looks like a combine harvester. It has a Cummins diesel engine, 13-foot, 6-inch spread hopper and a hydrostatic drive. The 2008 Rosco SPRH, on the other hand, has a 10-foot spread hopper, dual operator stations and dual rear wheels. Chip spreaders may be mounted onto a standard truck chassis.
Another type of asphalt equipment is the drum mixer. These vary in size from small, tractor-sized steamrollers to those that could easily occupy an entire baseball field. The 2008 Ingersoll Rand DD22 has a Cummins 5.9 liter engine and a 39-inch tandem vibratory smooth drum. These sell for between $25,000 and $30,000. A brand new Cedarapids 175 TPH drum mix plant has a six by 30-foot drum mixer, 80-ton silo and slat conveyor, 20,000-gallon asphalt tank and a control house.
In addition to drum mixers, Cedarapids also make asphalt pavers. Their 1978 BSF520 has an AC 115 volt generator, electronic slope control and a hydraulic hopper. It also has a 10-foot non-adjustable screed. The 1984 model has a self-propelled paver, 471 Detroit engine and a 10-15 foot wide adjustable screed.
If there is one feature that unifies these diverse pieces of heavy equipment, it is their durability. The 1978 and 1984 Cedarapids BSF520 are both around 30 years old and they are still going strong. These machines were built to last!