Bulldozers first emerged during the nineteen thirties and since then have proven very popular for use in excavation and clearing sites. The original design for the bulldozer had proven to be a success in its field. Its hard wearing design was soon noted and became the inspiration for the first caterpillar driven tanks used in world war one.
Other heavy engineering vehicles are sometimes referred to as bulldozers. Bulldozers by definition are high powered caterpillar driven tractors with a fixed front dozer blade and ripper blade mounted at the back.Advantages of Bulldozers
Bulldozers are large and heavy vehicles making them a good choice for demolition and clearing sites. Caterpillar tracks give bulldozers a distinct advantage allowing them to be surprisingly maneuverable for their extreme weight. The tracks have strong grips helping them to tackle uneven terrain. The tracks are also quite wide which helps to distribute their heavy weight preventing them from sinking in sandy or muddy ground.
Bulldozers are renowned for holding their ground which gives them phenomenal strength for pushing and dragging obstructions in their path. Some models of tanks can even tow up to 70 tons of weight and are used for moving written off vehicles and military purposes as well as in construction and demolition projects.Components
The bulldozers main strength is clearly its weight. Using this weight and its two fitted blades bulldozers are capable of performing a variety of tasks. The two component blades are the dozer and the ripper.
- The Dozer blade is fitted to the front of the bulldozer and is the main drive for clearing obstacles. The dozer is made from a piece of heavy weight metal plate which is extremely durable. As well as clearing large obstacles from the bulldozers path the dozer is also used for moving mounds of earth, sand and general debris. There are three distinct kinds of dozer blade. The S or straight blade is a short blade without lateral curves, or side wings. Its design makes it particularly useful for agricultural and forestry work such as fine grading. The second blade is the U or universal blade. The U blade is taller than the S blade with defined curves and side wings allowing it to carry loads of earth and debris. The third blade is a combination of the two often referred to as a SU blade. The SU blade is shorter than the universal blade with less emphasised curves and reduced wings. This kind of blade is useful for quarry work such as moving large quantities of rocks.
- The Ripper blade is a long blade attached to the back of the bulldozer and (as the name suggests) is useful for ripping and breaking up obstructions. Rippers resemble a claw and are available in different designs for different purposes. A single ripper blade is called a shank and provides good leverage for heavy ripping jobs. Shanks can be arranged in groups of two or more to provide more grip for spread out or scattered obstructions and debris.