Stan: You're going to learn how to drive a 60 ton rock truck today. But besides learning what to do in it, you're also going to learn the things to avoid so you don't end up rolling it over like the guys on Gold Rush did on one of their episodes but I owe a big thank you to two people today, the first off is Volvo, I put this idea to them and they're sponsoring this entire series on how to run heavy equipment, but they're not here to try to sell you their equipment so if you're looking for a review on rock truck and excavators and pieces of equipment, you're not going to find any of that there. This is strictly a how to run heavy equipment, just to get new guys in the industry familiar with the in's and out's, the do's and more importantly, the don'ts of running heavy equipment.
Stan: And the second person I owe a big, I mean a giant thank you to is my wife because I brought her with me to Pennsylvania just to be my camera operator so I could put these videos together. And while I was sitting on the plane I'm thinking God I wish I would have brought one of my more inexperienced guys with me because I mean, I've been running this equipment for so long I can't even remember what the beginner mistakes are like and I wanted to put somebody that was fresh and never ran anything into a piece of equipment and show you what they do wrong and then show you how to correct it and I'm sitting next to my wife and I'm like, hey wait a minute, would you be interested in running this equipment?
Eric: When you get about all the way to the top I want you to come to a complete stop using that brake on your right hand side.
Nick: This one? Which one is it?
Eric: The one next to your accelerator. Right now, right now, right now, hit the brake, hit the brake, hit the brake, hit the brake. Stop.
Stan: And she has never ran equipment, she's not mechanically inclined, she's not mechanically inept, she's just kind of the perfect person that's in the middle and so today you're going to see her start out in a 60 ton rock truck. And we take you along on the entire ride. Let's get going.
Stan: Alright guys we are back with Volvo. We are Volvo corporate headquarters and today we're going to take you inside a rock truck and we're going to cover what it's like to actually run a rock truck from the perspective of a person that's never done it before. Now I've had the honor and the ability to actually be in a rock truck but my wife never has. And she's going to, sorry I'm laughing with you honey, not at you. She's going into a million dollar rock truck. This is going to be interesting isn't it?
Stan: And we're also going to be teaching her how to run this payloader, plus a skid loader and teaching you guys all the tricks of the trade as well. So make sure you guys stick around for this heavy equipment series.
Stan: And we've got Eric. Eric is with Volvo. Eric is going to actually be the one teaching my wife how to run it. Eric, what do you do for Volvo.
Eric: I'm a product manager.
Stan: Okay, and so the rock truck, is that kind of your baby.
Eric: Yeah, that was my background. I spent a lot of time articulated hollers.
Stan: Okay, so you're going to teach us what to look for, not just in Volvo, but in rock trucks in general so if guys, or maybe they don't have the chance to be in a Volvo, but they're going to be hopping into a different brand rock truck, what are the things, I mean are they universal over all for the most part?
Eric: Absolutely, the do's and don'ts, they're pretty much the same, it's a six wheel drive on a big swivel. And it can go on any type of terrain so you just want to be careful you don't get in a pinch and turn it over.
Stan: Actually we're going to be talking about that because there's some safety features built into rock trucks that I don't think that most people know about, right?
Eric: That's exactly right. Our truck has a system where it will tell you if you're on a slope that's too great so you don't turn it over as you're dumping. So there're different features built into our truck that actually will help you be safe.
Stan: All right, let's go to the rock truck. Are you ready Nick?
Stan: The level of enthusiasm in her is overwhelming. I can't believe I talked her into this actually. Alright, look at that beauty. I don't know man, maybe it's just me but when I see something like that, that is just awesome. Look at that thing. Sorry I just had to take that in for a minute Eric.
Stan: How do you feel after seeing it?
Nick: It's huge. I think I'm almost as tall as the tires. Yeah.
Eric: The tires are taller than her.
Stan: This is going to be awesome. Okay so you have actually steps built right into the front of the grill.
Eric: Everything is easy to get to.
Stan: So what are you doing there Eric?
Eric: I'm opening the hood. It's on a hydraulic cylinder, it opens the hood. Just showing you how easy everything is to get to. So when a technician has to get into the engine and work on it, it's real easy to get in there, everything's done at ground level. When it's time to change the oil all you do id drop a little door right here. This door comes down, it's a hydraulically lowering belly plate. Get to the oil, change it. D16 Volvo engine. That's your death cap right here, your fuel on the other side. Everything is real easy to get to. Really technician and user friendly.
Stan: So you can basically crawl right ...
Eric: Absolutely, you can crawl all around that engine.
Stan: You crawl into the engine to work on it.
Stan: That's a piece of equipment I like. This is awesome. Wow. All right so your filters, you got filters up front.
Eric: Yeah, so fuel filters here. Engine oil right there, everything is easy to get to.
Stan: How does this differ than a typical 40 ton or smaller rock truck. Once you get into these 60, this is a 60 ton unit.
Eric: And we're the only one who does the 60 ton true six wheel drive articulate hauler. The biggest difference is the payload and horsepower. And then the truck's got to be built to be able to hold the payload. So this is a very heavy duty, it's built like a mining truck. A lot of mining influences went into the design of this truck.
Stan: Okay, let me ask you something. What's the difference between an off-road hauler, because that's what you consider this, right? And a mining truck?
Eric: Okay the difference is you got a six wheel drive platform that's driving the truck. So six wheel drive vs. two wheel drive. So a rigid haul truck is a two wheel drive truck, just the axles in the back are actually running the truck. So, it's great on flat ground, you know really good haul roads. But when you get a nasty dirt, less maintained haul road, really steep grades, six wheel drive is the way, the only way to go.
Stan: Okay, so if I heard you right the difference between this and a mining truck that this is actually built more for off road application whereas a mining truck is typically built to be put on to haul roads, which are pretty much what we're on right now, I mean different pitches and grades, but we're not talking about rough terrain or uneven terrain. This thing is like a giant 4-wheel drive off road pick-up truck vs. a 4-wheel drive city truck that probably hauls paper. Whereas a rigid drives in the front, you got your front tires actually steer. The whole back of this truck is actually steering the truck.
Eric: So you've got a swivel right here. It swivels this way and then you turn this way. So you can go over those different types of terrains that a rigid truck couldn't go over.
Stan: Okay, so this actually steers more like a pay loader then, right?
Eric: Yeah, exactly, so this is a big swivel right here, there's tapered roller bangs in here that are greased for life, there's no maintenance here. And it allows that truck to actually turn like this, back and forth over the terrain. So you're going like this. So if you were in a rigid truck it would be going like this, you wouldn't get the good ride.
Stan: So that's also a safety feature.
Stan: The safety feature is, is you can tip this part of the truck over while the cab stays stationary.
Eric: Yes. If you're not careful what you're doing. How you're loading and unloading these trucks, it can turn over, yes, absolutely.
Stan: So if it turns over what are we damaging?
Eric: Just the side of the truck. So it basically lays over on its side. You bring an excavator back over, pull it over.
Stan: What about the exhaust system?
Eric: That has springs in there, it actually pulls away from each other.
Stan: So do you have to put a new ...
Eric: You'll have to just put it back together.
Stan: You don't need a new exhaust system?
Eric: No, no, typically not.
Stan: What about the hydraulic hoses that are right here.
Eric: Those are meant to flop over, so this is just going to come over this way or come over that way.
Stan: Volvo has designed this thing to let it flop over, the exhaust will pull apart. A guy out in the field, if he's up in Canada and he's not near anywhere near where there's a repair shop, he's got his excavator, he can flip it back over, hook that exhaust back up himself. He doesn't even have to worry about the hoses at that point, right?
Stan: All right guys, we're going to drive a 60 ton rock truck. Now this hill is actually pretty steep but this truck makes it seem really easy, in fact my wife drove this hill a half a dozen times. Feet, hands off, nothing. Feet off, everything's off. And we hit the go pedal and she takes back over. You can't even see over the ... that's how steep this hill is.
Eric: That's actually pretty cool.
Stan: So as we come down, a guy actually tipped one of these over. Probably had what 45 ton on?
Eric: Yeah at least 45 ton on.
Stan: 45 ton, he got picky penned. And he was coming up over here, he was coming down, instead of hitting the brake he accidentally, well I think accidentally, he wouldn't flip a million dollar rock truck over on purpose, right? He accidentally hit the go pedal and throttled it all the way up right here with a full load on and dumped everything over, then continued to panic and instead of hitting the brake, drug the back end of the truck up, did he go straight or did he go up this hill?
Eric: He went straight up this hill right here.
Stan: Straight up this hill. It happens guys, it happens. These things are like a Cadillac. These trucks are so nice to drive.
Eric: Exactly, we have a system that's built into our trucks, it's called dump support system and it actually tells you when you're on a too great a slope when you're trying to dump. So when you go to raise the bed to dump, it will give you an alarm and tell you to stop and it can also be set up with a bed stop where it completely stops and won't let you dump.
Stan: Do a lot of guys opt for that system? Is that an option or is that integrated?
Eric: A lot of operators like having it because it builds that safety feature into the truck. It makes it dummy proof somewhat.
Stan: So if you were an owner operator, you probably, I would see where you may not care. But if you're an owner operator and you're going to put an employee into that and then put him out into the field you're going to have that in there because you're going to want every safety feature, every alarm, bell and whistle that's going to stop somebody that may be as green as my wife at running a truck from wrecking a million, almost a million dollar haul truck.
Eric: That's right, that's exactly right.
Stan: All of that makes sense. I hope that cleared it up. It cleared it up for me Eric. But did it clear it up for you guys? But you know, more important, did it clear it up for you honey?
Nick: Oh yeah.
Stan: So when you're up on the hill over there and you're going to try to dump ...
Nick: What hill?
Stan: There's a giant hill they have in the middle, have you not seen the hill? What's the grade on that hill Eric?
Eric: It's about 30 degrees at the top.
Stan: When you're driving up it, you can't see over the nose of your truck. Don't worry, don't get, don't be afraid. I don't know why she stays married to me.
Stan: Alright, what else should we look for as we do the initial walk around on this thing Eric.
Eric: You know wet disc brakes on all the axles keeps you good and safe while you're driving. Slow down quickly. We have a very, very good suspension system on this truck. We have actually hydraulic suspension on the front that is active. So it's completely feeling the road as you drive. And it's reacting to the road. So it keeps the tires on the ground and gives you a good ride. Less fatigue for the operator over time, so it's a really good ride.
Eric: Very, very robust big axles in the back so you can handle that 60 ton load or better, whatever you're carrying. We have a back-up camera. It is on all the time so you can watch and see what's behind you, what's happening as you back up that load or back up to the actual guy that's loading you.
Eric: We have system that's called ATC. Automatic Traction Control. So basically what's happening is the front axle and the mid axle are the ones that are doing the actual driving, okay? What happens is when it feels a slippage in the system. When you slip on the road, or slip in the dirt, that back axle kicks in automatically. So what happens is it saves tire ware and it saves fuel. Very fuel efficient truck. Good visibility from the cab, glass all the way around. This door is very good to see out of as you look down you can see what's going on behind the truck. Heated mirrors. Mirrors you can adjust electrically however you want to be able to see what's going on around you. Also, you see these LED lights? That is your load weighing system, onboard weighing system so as you're getting loaded the operator can actually see where you are in the loading cycle. So green is perfectly loaded. Yellow is nominally loaded, it means loaded more, and Red is overloaded. So very nice features built into the truck that help that operator and help the operator that's loading see what's going on.
Stan: On both sides of the cab?
Eric: Yeah, it's on both sides, so right above the mirror right there.
Stan: Yup, I see that.
Eric: Warning beacon, you can turn that on and people can see where you're at on the job site.
Stan: All right, can we go inside of it and check it out?
Eric: Let's do it.
Stan: All right, we're going into the cab guys. So there's a seat behind the seat. That's for training. It's actually a really spacious well laid out cab. The thing with these things Eric is they're really simple to drive. There really is not, they're not that difficult that's why I'm taking the mystery out of these things. I would say this truck, this 65 ton rock truck is much easier to drive than that tow truck or that service truck over there. That's way more difficult to drive than this truck. Night and day.
Stan: This truck has what's called a Jake Brake which is an engine brake.
Eric: Volvo engine brake.
Stan: An engine brake, and a Jake brake is the same as an over-the-road semi's. What it basically does, instead of braking the wheels, which it has standard brakes, but also the Jake brake will brake the engine, slow the engine down. So it's definitely a different feel when the Jake brake is engaged. You're going to notice a definite pull it's like almost going against you a little bit.
Nick: Is that this one?
Eric: That is that one over there.
Nick: This one?
Eric: Yes. So your accelerator. Your little pedal is your accelerator, right there and then that's your brake, the big one.
Nick: This one.
Eric: No, that's your service brake, so that works the axle brakes. So the wetness brakes we were talking about? That pedal right there. So push that pedal down right there.
Nick: This one.
Eric: Yeah, push it down. See the green, that means you're braking on the axles.
Stan: Just like in a car.
Eric: Yup. So think about a car, you've got the pads that go in and out, this is an actual hydraulic brake that is compressing and slowing the vehicle down. Okay? And that one works the engine brake.
Nick: This one.
Eric: And you can hit that one and it's not going to show anything on the screen. So the next thing, you are actually going to turn that button on right here.
Nick: What's that do?
Eric: That is your hydraulic suspension. So pull up on that and then push at the same time.
Nick: Oh geesh.
Eric: So you feel the truck moving around? The suspension is getting charged, hydraulics is going into the front suspension, leveling out the truck and this suspension is reactive. So it actually reacts to the road and gives you a better ride.
Nick: So you just leave that alone.
Eric: Just turn it on when you get into the truck and leave it alone and you don't have to do anything.
Nick: Is it on right now?
Eric: See that green arrow pointing down at the spring? That means the suspension is engaged.
Nick: Oh, all right.
Eric: Okay, all right?
Stan: Okay guys, well I hope this video has helped you out it was a ton of fun making it. It was a blast having my wife there, the people at Volvo, I'm going to tell you straight up, the people at Volvo are, they're just awesome folks. I mean down to earth, just awesome good people. I want to give a big thank you to them. I hope you guys have appreciated this video. Make sure you stick around because we're going to be showing you guys how to run a payloader, we're also going to show you how to run a skid steer, we're also going to be talking in depth about compaction, how to run a compactor, but also what does compaction even mean? What are lifts? What is this whole technology and why is that important? And it really literally is one of the most important things.
Stan: And then we're also going to be bringing you one of the latest and greatest innovations in excavators and that's called a tilt rotator, in this case we're going to be talking about one called the steel wrist. We're going to be showing you what that's capable of because this kind of brings excavators up to the next gen level, it's a phenomenal piece of equipment.
Stan: So that's it for today. Make sure you guys stick around because we've got a ton of stuff coming at you. God bless, go get 'em.