BOSTON AREA RAIL RENEWAL PROJECT BENEFITS FROM TRACKSTAR VERSATILITY
A major track renewal project launched by the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority posed a major test for the multi-task capability of Gradall TrackStar railway maintenance machines working on the Green Line D Track between the Beaconsfield and Riverside stations near Brookline, Mass.
The work performed by contractor Barletta-Fischbach involved replacing 25,000 feet of track and 6.5 miles of signal infrastructure using existing catenary poles. The result would allow the MBTA to remove speed restrictions so it could reduce trip times, increase passenger capacity and minimize future service disruptions.
In an effort to avoid inconveniences to passengers during the project, Barletta-Fischbach agreed to work overnight and on weekends – creating a need for equipment that could work quickly and reliably on a wide range of tasks.
Gradall Versatility Advantages
The Line D project relied heavily on the versatility and stable reach capability of two XL 4330 V Gradall TrackStar machines. Designed specifically for railway maintenance projects, each of the sure-footed machines was able to reach, dig and lift as well as travel up to 20 mph on dirt, pavement or rails.
The Diversified 1650 high rail gear front and rear guide wheel assemblies attach directly to the XL 4330 V frames. Operated from the operator cab, the system uses the carrier’s wheels for mobility and extra stability while digging and moving material.
The TrackStar machines also were equipped with Kinshofer NOX Tiltrotators. Complementing Gradall’s telescoping, full-boom tilt, the Kinshofer attachment has additional rotating capabilities as it uses its bucket for ballast management, its grapple to remove and replace rail ties and its ballast tamper for finishing work.
Working on a nearly non-stop basis, TrackStar operators used a choice of joystick boom control configurations to efficiently remove old jointed track and rail ties and then dig out old ballast. New rail ties and 40-foot sections of continuous welded rail were carefully placed into position before ballast was evenly distributed and the entire assembly was tamped to achieve the right elevation.
The unique Gradall boom design enables all models to work on low-overhead jobs. This was particularly useful for TrackStar machines working under catenary lines and other aerial cables. While all of the lines were de-energized during the job construction, only Gradalls were able to work beneath them. Conventional excavators with knuckle booms were used to move material within reach of the Gradall, but could not work beneath the catenary lines because the knuckle booms would not fit.
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It starts with the unique telescoping Gradall boom that handles more jobs efficiently, thanks to its movements and superior strength. Gradall offers a unique range of excavator undercarriages that have reshaped the industry idea of equipment mobility, both on and off highways.