Just after the first of the year, Link-Belt Construction Equipment Co. and Tadano Ltd. announced the termination of their supply agreement for all-terrain cranes. In a related development, American Cranes & Transport exclusively reveals that Link-Belt will unveil an all-new, Link-Belt-designed and built 275-ton (250-t) ATC-3275 all terrain crane at ConExpo, March 22-26, 2011, in Las Vegas, USA.
Manufactured by Link-Belt at its Lexington, Kentucky plant, the ATC-3275 is the first all-terrain crane engineered with a focus on the North American market, according to Rick Curnutte, product manager for telescopic cranes. "The ATC-3275 marks the first time a modern AT crane has been designed and manufactured with an emphasis on North America," he said.
Link-Belt's goal was not to alter an existing all-terrain crane. Link-Belt's team wanted to take what they knew about trucks and the AT market and give it a Link-Belt orientation. "This new machine, the ATC-3275, takes what we know and what we have learned about ATs and our experience in the market," Curnutte says. "In Europe, there is a different perspective. We have a design that we think will give us the leg up. We designed the load-outs to be transportable throughout North America because it is one of the toughest markets to move cranes in. If you can move here, you can probably move it anywhere."
A huge focus was put on the crane's wheel base. "We wanted a more North American-friendly wheel base," Curnutte says. "You will never have to raise the third axle. This crane will be able to run on the West Coast with all the tires touching the ground."
Designed with extensive customer input, Curnutte said the ATC-3275 will meet the toughest transport laws in North America while also meeting Tier IV Interim and EPA 2010 on-highway requirements.
Among the attributes of the crane, the 3275 breaks new ground with its modular counterweight system. None of the weights is more than 22,000 pounds (9.9 tonnes) and can be grouped together or with other components on transport trucks to maximize the loads. The ATC-3275 with maximum counterweight, rigging, matting, and fly extensions can move with just four truck loads.
A Cummins EPA 2010-compliant engine provides power to give the crane good highway speeds. It has anti-lock (ABS) disc brakes, intarder, and true engine compression braking. Link-Belt said it is the only AT that meets SAE braking codes. Emergency steering, cruise control and traction control are standard, as are extra steering cylinders for maneuvering in difficult terrain.
The traction control has a mud and snow setting. Also available is inter-axle and cross-axle differential locking. The crane was designed with military-grade, two-piece aluminum wheels that require no special tools to service in the field, as well as Link-Belt's Hydrogas suspension system.
The crane's seven-section boom is fabricated from ultra-high-strength steel in Link-Belt's own facility. The two-plate design of each section has multiple longitudinal bends for superior strength. Teflon (PTFE) inserts keep the boom lubed and are universal for all boom sections. Eight boom modes maximize capacities by varying the extension of the sections.
Unlike other ATs, the 3275's upper engine mounts transversely to allow maximum space for the stowable fly. A 12-ft (3.7 metre) heavy-lift fly has lift procedures for two load lines. An optional three-piece bi-fold fly hydraulically offsets from 2 to 45 degrees. A manual, four-position offset is also available. Managing lifting functions (rated capacity limiter, boom telescope, etc.) will be a newly developed Link-Belt control system that will be unveiled at ConExpo.
The lower cab is single occupancy and has integral heating and air conditioning, multiple grab handles, heated and remote control mirrors and a six-way adjustable, air suspended seat. The upper cab tilts up to 20 degrees to keep the operator comfortable at high boom angles. A swing-up roof window with windshield wiper and washer, engine-dependent warm water cab heating, a sun screen, cup holder, and a five-way-adjustable seat with headrest ensure a comfortable work environment
Link-Belt also paid particular attention to the serviceability of the crane making all connections and service points centralized. The pressure for every hydraulic system in the upper can be checked at a single location. Large doors give room to service both upper and lower engines.
For more information see the February issue of American Cranes & Transport Magazine.