By developing and building complete mobile tyre changing vehicles, Bearcat Tyres believes it is on the road to a better tyre and wheel service for heavy vehicles in metropolitan and urban industries.
?We identified a segment of our customer base, which cried out for a fast efficient tyre and wheel change service,? said Mark Bloxham, managing director, Bearcat Tyres. ?We have aimed this service at container handling, quarry and excavation, building and construction, all industries that can?t afford long stoppages or down-time for tyre and wheel maintenance.?
Mr Bloxham first saw the potential for this service when he visited the ConExpo trade show in the US almost three years ago. ?I saw the specialised crane-arm and tyre-hand in operation and decided to design a mobile service unit in Australia to incorporate the technology,? he said. ?It?s been a long time coming, lots of planning and design to configure the most efficient combination of components. We started assembly just on a year ago, took our time and worked out any little bugs.?
An Isuzu 10 tonne truck was used as the base frame, augmented with:
? An imported crane with tyre-hand able to lift 2100 kilograms.
? A heavy-duty compressor (46cfm at 175psi).
? Hydraulic 50 tonne jacks.
? Air-over hydraulic porta-power and bead breaker.
? A heavy duty steel body with pull-out drawers and safe storage facilities.
? A full compliment of workshop tools and high intensity work lights on the crane and work area, safety beacons and witches cones to secure a safe working zone.
The crane arm and the tyre-hand, operated by remote cable or wireless, can be rotated and lifted with such precision, that the wheel can be slipped over the wheel studs without the operator actually touching the wheel. The operator moves in while the wheel is in place and held by the tyre-hand to secure the nuts hydraulically.
The truck is designed to transport the new tyres to an on-site location, quickly change the tyres and remove the discarded tyres in minimum time. It will handle tyres up to 2.8 metres in diameter. ?This service is aimed at essential machinery that can?t be spared from the workplace. So we offer the on-site service, seriously minimising down time, travelling costs and hassles,? said Mr Bloxham. ?We also have an exchange service for most forklifts and construction machinery – wheels and tyres fitted at the workshop and delivered ready to go on site, saving even more downtime.?
The first of the Bearcat units operates in Sydney, with a second in Perth. There are plans for one in each capital city by the end of the year. For more information and advice contact your Bearcat dealer or visit http://www.bearcat.com.au.