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Highway summer work

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment' started by 04chevy2500, Feb 13, 2010.

  1. 04chevy2500

    04chevy2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 228

    we are looking into doing some highway work this summer. We have spent all winter working on the specs and equipment needed. Most of the work we have done before on a small scale. The one major question that I have is have any of you done guard rail removal? If so, how have you done it? Every time that I have seen it done a flatbed with crane was used. We do not have one of these but we do have a mini excavator, skid steers and a backhoe. The rails that are around here are normally pressure treated wood with a single metal rail. the hardware has to be saved so that cant be cut off. The bolts are the circular smooth head so you cant use a wrench on that end then a regular nut. Would an impact gun take these off even though you cant hold onto the bolt? My other question is does anyone know how hard it is to pull these out? Do you think I would be best off with the mini, skid steer or backhoe? Any and all information on these types of projects would be appreciated. Thank you
     
  2. Bajak

    Bajak Senior Member
    Messages: 999

    You just need one guy to push on the bolt with a 2x4 or sledge while you take the nut off. I would think any of the machines would pull the posts out. I usually a backhoe with a multi-purpose bucket (saves time with chains or straps). If there is room, I would use the backhoe just in case.
     
  3. LoneCowboy

    LoneCowboy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,760

    having said that I"ve never done that type of work
    BUT

    You are definately going to want an impact wrench, just for speed, it would take forever otherwise. (and it is going to spin, where the impact will probably get it off before it spins) If your truck has air brakes, just run it off that, or get a gas powered compressor.

    Those posts get driven in a LONG way, I don't know that a skid would take them out, maybe, but it's going to be slow. I bet you could rent a small crane for less than the work it would take to do it. Ain't no cranes being used in new construction right now anyway, I bet it's cheaper than you think.
     
  4. 04chevy2500

    04chevy2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 228

    thanks for the advice. I thought about the cranes but as like usual we would like to see if its possible with what we have before more $$$ are spent. The spec sheets that i have looked at said that the posts range from 2 ft to 6.5 ft. I am hoping that 6.5 is the longest but you never know. The books have said that most are driven like LoneCowboy said, so I am assuming that they won't have concrete bases. It stated that some of the older posts might have concrete footings. Has anyone run into this before?

    My concern with the SS was that the machine would just tip forward when trying to lift the posts with a choker chain. The mini is a Takeuchi 135 which is not an overly powerful machine. The backhoe would definitely not have a problem with pulling them out. Any thoughts on the mini and whether or not you guys think it could do the job or if I should just stick to using the backhoe and maybe use the mini or SS to load the sections onto our trailers.

    Thank you
     
  5. chevyman51

    chevyman51 Senior Member
    Messages: 537

    i work for the local county in the summer we use a bob cat and we just put them on with a wrench and use the wrench to loosen them up untill it is loose enough to remove it by hand
     
  6. Evanbrendel

    Evanbrendel Senior Member
    Messages: 181

    torch and a chainsaw lol
     
  7. Bajak

    Bajak Senior Member
    Messages: 999

    Just use the backhoe and forget about the skid and mini if you have your doubts.

    You could try the small machines, but if it doesn't work, you've already lost money. Why mess around?

    The truck air is a great idea..
     
  8. 04chevy2500

    04chevy2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 228

    the problem with that is we need to save all hardware. so that rules out torching the bolts.

    i definitely like the truck air idea because we will most likely be putting the beams in our dump and trailer.

    it sounds like we will have to go with the backhoe. i agree with Bajak and thats why i posted here. i didnt want to get all set up at a job and then have to go trailer the backhoe after we had already invested time and money bringing the other machines down.
     
  9. snow game

    snow game Senior Member
    from RI
    Messages: 255

    Its not as easy as it sounds. The crane you are refering to is on the "gaurd rail" trucks. They have a big claw like an ice tong to pull them STRAIGHT UP. We hired a company with one of these rigs to install a new wood rail for us. We had to remove all the old steel ones first. There were about 50 on this job. we got about half out with out even bending them. slid out like butter. there were about twenty that we had to really work at (410G Deere) and about 5 that we had to take the torch to. Not as easy as it seems. The sub that we hired had to pull up one of the wooden ones he had just driven and it wasn't easy, the bottom had mushroomed after being driven in, took him half hour to get it out. The trick is going straight up, just difficult, because the choke doesn't pull straight up.
     
  10. 04chevy2500

    04chevy2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 228

    Could you explain the claw that you are referring in a little more detail please? Would something like a granite claw with picked pads work better than a choker chain?
     
  11. DGODGR

    DGODGR Senior Member
    from s/w co
    Messages: 639

    The granite clamp works on the same principal but won't open wide enough to clamp both sides of the treated post. The clamp he is talking about is sort of a scissor design. When lifting force is applied the clamps try to grip the post harder. I'm sure that you could rent a clamp for this. If not you could put something through the bolt hole (if it allows a large enough diameter) and attach a chain to both sides (of whatever you put through the hole) so that he post is lifted straight up. I'd stick with the backhoe for the hoisting. If you use the back end you could put each post in the truck instead of loading it with another machine. Ultimately this will save time because you won't have to rig up the post twice.
     
  12. DGODGR

    DGODGR Senior Member
    from s/w co
    Messages: 639

    Actually a cable will perform better (and much safer) than a chain in this application.
     
  13. 04chevy2500

    04chevy2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 228

    i noticed that most of the pressure treated posts have a large diameter hole, maybe 3 inches just above ground level. Is this the state actually thinking ahead to removal? I though that this would be a good place to slip a bar through then use a cable or chain to pull straight up.
     
  14. DGODGR

    DGODGR Senior Member
    from s/w co
    Messages: 639

    I think that will work if you don't bend the bar. Yes they were thinking ahead, but no those are not for removal. Those holes are designed to weaken the post enough to shear off in the event of an impact. Safety first.
     
  15. 04chevy2500

    04chevy2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 228

    o ok that makes sense now. Do you know if the same concept can be used for the metal posts or if I should try and find one of those clamps?
     
  16. DGODGR

    DGODGR Senior Member
    from s/w co
    Messages: 639

    I can't say for sure. I have not seen holes in the metal type. Maybe they are an early version and are not made to break like the type now being employed. There are a lot of different types of barriers and posts out there. I think you should go look at each location and see for yourself what method may work the best.
     
  17. 04chevy2500

    04chevy2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 228

    thank you very much for all of the info.

    one last question, does anyone know the exact name of the grapple attachment discussed here? or possibly a picture of one?

    thank you
     
  18. snow game

    snow game Senior Member
    from RI
    Messages: 255

    Don't know the actual name, but the next if you stop by a local shop near you I think every one of their pile driving trucks would have one on it. They use it to lift each wooden gaurdrail (they drive) into place. I never saw how they pull out the metal ones.
     
  19. chris694205

    chris694205 Senior Member
    Messages: 175

    where do they actually use wood for guide rails??? here in NY we use a demo saw to cut the bolts and then we use an excavator or backhoe to pull them (in some cases where hardware has to be saved we use a generator with an electric impact).. some need a chain and some you can just hook the bucket on the tab and pull them.. NY actually takes them down in places where they are "not worthy" of being on the road and takes them somewhere else to put up which i dont get
     
  20. snow game

    snow game Senior Member
    from RI
    Messages: 255

    IN RI they tend to use them on roads with speed limits under 55mph in the nicer neighborhoods. I think they charge more for them and they dont last as long. (only in RI does this make sense)