When the pipe yard for a project in McKeesport, PA, presented specific challenges, Pe Ben USA, an industry leader in all aspects of pipeline transportation, found the solution in a SENNEBOGEN 825 M material handler.
“We typically use excavators with a vacuum attachment to move pipe to and from our trucks,” explained Jimmy Gregory, operations manager. “For this job, the owner of the pipe yard required us to use a wheeled machine. We checked the dealers for a couple of different OEMs. The SENNEBOGEN dealer had this machine available. We tested it out, liked it, so we put it to work.”
Pipe handling differs from most material handling applications, requiring an extra-long reach with the load capacity to safely maneuver the lengths of heavy steel pipe. Each joint can weigh from 6,000 to 9,000 pounds, in lengths from 20 to 60 feet.
“The pipe in this yard is stacked on wooden stakes,” said Tommy Haynes, the project superintendent onsite, “so that extends the reach that the machine needs to pick a load.”
Gregory was surprised by the capability of the 825 M. “I would have planned to have a 130,000-pound excavator to do this job; the
SENNEBOGEN machine is less than half that size- under 62,000 pounds. But, as a purpose-built machine, it’s engineered to lift instead of dig. The SENNEBOGEN’s geometry allows a much smaller machine to lift like a heavyweight. Its compact size allows easier maneuvering within the yard, and achieves a significant fuel saving.”
The 825 M is also able to keep up with the cycle times for the Pe Ben trucks that service the job site. The fleet runs 7 trucks in the cycle to and from the site of the pipeline, with each truck carrying 11 lengths of pipe. Haynes’ target is to complete the loading for each pipe length in one minute, and the elevating cab on the 825 M provides an excellent vantage point for seeing into the stack when picking the load.
From this experience, Gregory said that Pe Ben will consider material handlers more closely for future projects. He acknowledged that a tracked SENNEBOGEN model would also be helpful for offloading trucks at the construction site. The greater flotation and stability of the tracked undercarriage is better suited to ground conditions there, but the SENNEBOGEN’s long reach and high-load capacity would allow operators to set up conveniently at the end of the truck, where they can pick and place the pipe efficiently and safely.
Based in Stanley, NC, SENNEBOGEN LLC offers a complete range of purpose-built machines to suit virtually any material handling application. (704) 347-4910, sennebogen-na.com