Stringline or stringless? Producers of curb and gutter pavers let operators determine

On the subject of curb and gutter concrete slipform pavers, one phrase tends to crop up.

“It’s very uncommon to enter a gross sales name and stroll out with out having spoken about ‘stringless,’” says Wade Bowman, Wirtgen product supervisor for concrete slipform paving. “Even when the contractor doesn’t suppose he’s prepared for it fairly but, he’s fascinated by it.”

Although paving contractors is perhaps fascinated by it, that doesn’t essentially imply they’re prepared to chop the stringline and go to 3D management.

“We’ve gotten extra requests and quotes, however we haven’t actually gotten that many precise orders,” says Tim Messinger, Curb Fox president. “It’s a really costly add-on.”

For bigger paving machines, 3D management accounts for a smaller share of the general machine worth, however not so for curb and gutter pavers. Including stringless management can doubtlessly price as a lot because the machine itself, Bowman says.   

Some smaller producers have steered away from including stringless methods.

“We don’t wish to add the extra price for GPS,” says Joe Angeles, MBW worldwide gross sales supervisor. “We attempt to preserve it reasonably priced.”

However contractors who take the leap and study to make use of the stringless methods effectively can finally get monetary savings and improve productiveness and accuracy, Bowman says.

“They don’t must haul all of the stringline gear round, and that’s an actual trouble,” Bowman says. “And particularly with the tight labor market, it’s robust to search out individuals who wish to exit and pound pins in and yank pins out on the finish of the day.”

Producers say they see no indicators of costs for 3D methods for curb and gutter pavers dropping considerably any time quickly. However fortunately for contractors, producers of curb and gutter pavers supply loads of choices for many who wish to go stringless, those that favor the stringline and people who haven’t made up their minds.

Wirtgen SP15i/SP25i

Wirtgen has built-in its personal 3D stringless management, referred to as AutoPilot 2.zero, for its curb and gutter slipform pavers. The system permits the operator to both import an current 3D mannequin or use the corporate’s Subject Rover survey pole to create a digital stringline for the machine to observe.

“The price per foot can go down as soon as the contractor will get good with this,” Bowman says. “Relying on the job, the system can pay for itself over time so long as they’re environment friendly with it.”

The pavers are additionally outfitted to make use of aftermarket 3D methods. The methods might be plugged into an interface field, permitting contractors who’ve already arrange aftermarket 3D management on their tools to proceed utilizing that supplier. Operators also can proceed utilizing stringline in the event that they select.

The SP 15i is Wirtgen’s smallest slipform paver, with a most paving width of 6 toes, max curb/barrier top of 4 toes 3 inches and a 28,500-pound working weight. Subsequent within the firm lineup is the SP 25i, which may pave as much as 12 toes vast and as much as 6.5 toes excessive. It has a max working weight of 44,000 kilos. It presents each inset and offset paving.

Each pavers can pour on the left or proper aspect and are designed for straightforward mildew attachment and elimination. Bowman says the pavers are outfitted with high-end elements and endure a state-of-the-art manufacturing course of. 

He says he’s usually requested if Wirtgen is new to the slipform enterprise, however he explains that although the corporate’s machines had been launched to North America in 2010, they’ve been in operation for many years internationally.

Curb Fox 5000-T

About eight years in the past, Curb Fox determined to fabricate a monitor curb and gutter paver after listening to issues from its clients.

“Within the U.S., the curb and gutter contractor is predicted to go in there on nearly any kind of grade situation and get his job executed,” Messinger says. “In many of the nation, a curb machine actually needs to be a monitor machine.”

The corporate’s 5000-T, weighing in at eight,000 kilos, is the smallest all-track paver available on the market, permitting it to function in any subgrade situations, in response to Messinger. The corporate nonetheless makes rubber-tire fashions for areas the place the grade is easy and compacted.

The 5000-T has the identical computerized management methods as bigger pavers, Messinger says. The corporate integrates an electronic-over-hydraulic management system that causes the paver to rise and decrease to the correct elevation and regulate for turns. It can be outfitted with aftermarket 3D stringless methods.

The paver can slipform sections as much as 10 toes vast and boundaries as much as 42 inches excessive. It might probably pave a zero-clearance sidewalk of as much as 7 toes vast. Messinger says the zero-clearance means is being requested extra usually, particularly in cities the place sidewalks have to be rebuilt in slender areas with obstructions on each side.

One other perk for the 5000-T is it may be hauled behind a medium-sized pickup with out the necessity for a lowboy trailer.

Messinger says Curb Fox strives to maintain its machines easy. 

“A sure a part of the market desires the expertise and others don’t,” he says. “The easier aspect suits our area of interest higher.”


Simplicity can also be the main target at MBW. Angeles says that at instances over time the corporate has mentioned including options, however these discussions usually find yourself with the query: “Can we wish to preserve including prices?”

“The extra issues and devices you add to it, the harder it turns into,” he says. “We simply wish to make it easy and reasonably priced for the contractor.”

Although its pavers have computerized grade adjustment and steering to observe a stringline, the machines should not outfitted for stringless 3D management. And there are not any intentions so as to add it.

“It’s actually catered to the smaller contractors who don’t wish to do the larger jobs,” Angeles says. “That is extra for purchasing malls, fuel stations and neighborhoods.”

MBW has three fashions which can be based mostly on a modular system during which bigger elements are added to fulfill the contractor’s wants. The C101 is the primary unit with a 12-inch hopper in a position to slipform curbs to 18 inches excessive and 12 inches vast. It may be simply transformed right into a C101-18 mannequin, with an 18-inch hopper for paving as much as 18 inches vast and excessive, and right into a GC200, with hoppers of 24 to 48 inches for paving as much as 4 toes vast and 18 inches excessive. The fashions vary in working weight from 2,590 to 3,395 kilos.

The pavers might be simply transported without having for permits. Their rubber tires are foam-filled to scale back bounce, get rid of flats and supply good traction, he says. 

Energy Curbers 5700-C

Energy Curbers has used Topcon and Leica 3D stringless methods for years on its pavers and lately introduced that its 5700-C curb and gutter machine is now additionally appropriate with Trimble’s PCS900 automated steerage system. 

The corporate has seen a rise in its pavers leaving the manufacturing unit 3D prepared, says Daniel Milam, Energy Curbers advertising and marketing coordinator. “A few of these are anticipated to start stringless pours straight away, however different clients are merely leaving the choice open in case they wish to take that step sooner or later,” he says. 

Contractors utilizing the 3D stringless system have been happy, he says. “Most corporations utilizing the expertise report important time and labor financial savings to the purpose that the expertise will pay for itself quickly.”

The corporate says its aim with 3D is to permit contractors as a lot flexibility as potential. “We didn’t wish to dictate to the shopper that they needed to settle for a singular provider that Energy Curbers has designated,” says Chief Working Officer Stephen Bullock.  

The 5700-C can work in tight spots, together with parking zone corners, islands and cul-de-sacs. It might probably additionally do barrier, sidewalk and irrigation ditch work. 

It has a most paving top of 5 toes and width of seven toes within the offset place and 10 toes vast within the heart pour place. These widths might be prolonged with the corporate’s Max bundle. The paver has an working weight of 24,700 kilos and might be towed with out the necessity for a lowboy trailer.

GOMACO Xtreme GT-3600

GOMACO unveiled its latest curb and gutter paver, the Xtreme GT-3600, at this yr’s World of Concrete. 

GOMACO outfitted the GT-3600 with its G-plus radius software program with slew drives and smart-sensor hydraulics for All-Monitor Steering and All-Monitor Positioning. The system controls every of the three tracks for elevated rotating means – as much as 90 levels – and tight-radius paving when utilizing stringline or a 3D steerage system. The Xtreme can pour a 24-inch radius. 

The operator inputs the dimensions of the radius into the controller, and the paver robotically does the remainder of the work, together with setting monitor angles and particular person variable monitor speeds. Because the paver slipforms across the radius, the person track-speed management delivers easy journey, the corporate says. The G-plus system additionally achieves the identical easy paving whereas interfacing with the foremost 3D steerage methods.

The sensible hydraulics additionally come into play when telescoping and aspect shifting the mildew system throughout offset paving, and the G-plus can ship repeatable mildew offset. The trimmer head and mildew have impartial changes for elevating and decreasing.

The G-plus system can also be built-in into the paver’s new Tier 4 Closing engine, robotically setting the hydraulic fan to the jobsite situations. GOMACO elevated the engine’s gasoline effectivity and added sufficient gasoline capability to run all day with out interruption. 

The operator platform is designed to scale back vibration. A wi-fi remote-control choice is offered so the operator can transfer across the machine throughout operations.

Miller Formless M-1000

Miller Formless says its M-100 can pour a 24-inch radius or a sidewalk as much as 5 toes vast. Its MFS Management System consists of sensors and handheld distant and is 3D prepared.

The compact paver options 4 tracks with impartial steering, giving it the power for fast turnaround and maneuvering. It has three vibrators, a heavy-duty sectional auger and a high-volume washdown system.

The M-1000 might be ordered for left or proper aspect pouring, and it’s designed to present the operator visibility over all the slipform course of. It has a transport width of eight toes 6 inches and an working weight of 21,000 kilos.

Choices embody an umbrella meeting, auxiliary 12-volt work LED lighting package, trimmer with carbide enamel, high-pressure water pump and telematics. 

Curb-Tec CT-3000

Curb-Tec calls the CT-3000 its flagship curb machine. The 1,050-pound paver can slipform an 18-inch paving width and a 16-inch curb top.

It includes a hydraulic system that permits the operator to boost or decrease the jack by means of tough locations and a rear wheel energy system during which the paver runs by itself energy on the push of a button.

The paver has a 1/3-cubic-yard hopper with detachable door for wheelbarrow entry. It runs on a 25-horsepower Kohler fuel engine. Its reverse-auger shortly frees jams, and a lift-off hopper makes it straightforward to entry the auger for cleansing, the corporate says. The bottom machine extrudes curbing as much as 13 by 13 inches, with accessible customized widths of over 18 inches by 30 inches.