Demolition robots and Echidna rock sawsPublished 27/12, 2021 at 12:13
Hydraulic rock saws for excavators have been around for decades, mainly built for excavation and quarrying. While early models were focused on big blades for deep cuts, continuous improvements and developments by innovative company Echidna, has resulted in high performance, compact demolition saws that excel in concrete cutting and demolition works.
Remote controlled robots, well known in demolition work, make perfect hosts for high performance saws.
Diamond blades are frequently used with hand held demolition saws, walk behind road saws and wall saws. Echidna’s hydraulic saw attachments, hosted by a remote controlled robot, can replace all of these different units, while increasing productivity and safety on site.
Hand held demolition saws are inherently dangerous machines; there is the immediate danger of amputation, or death from accidents involving the blade, and longer term injury from vibration, back and shoulder injuries, and inhalation of dust, which at close quarters can be inhaled even in cooling water spray. In hard to reach locations, human operators of hand held equipment, and even excavator held equipment, may need to expose themselves to the danger of falling or debris falling onto them. Remote operation removes all of these risks. It takes away the heavy work, proximity to the blade, and risk of injury. It gives the operator a comfortable remoteness from which to observe the cutting.
A good, high performance concrete saw attachment, such as Echidna’s HS range, can accommodate a variety of blade diameters to optimise performance and suitability for the application. The profiles of the robots are lower than equivalently sized excavators, so can access tighter spaces with low ceilings, without compromising on power. With their inbuilt stabilising legs, robots can easily be levelled ready for cutting.
Time is Money
Robots fitted with concrete saws can in many cases replace wall saws, which often have long setup times. Wall saws cannot match the power of many remote controlled robots. To make the most of the robots, it is important to choose a high performance saw to maximise the speed of cutting and minimise consumable costs.
Robots can operate larger diameter blades than a human with a hand held demolition saw, without compromising on cutting speeds and giving deeper cuts. The robot held saws are not slowed down by a fatigued operator, nor the arrangement of scaffolding for a person to stand on to access out of reach locations.
Wear and tear and consumables
While labour is arguably a larger cost than consumables, a quality diamond blade is expensive, and long life is desirable. For concrete cutting and demolition work, features such as through-hub water distribution are highly recommended as they keep the whole blade cool and lubricated and keep the cut clean with a minimum of water. Water needs to be supplied and waste water managed, so reducing the volume of water is desirable.
As compared with rock breakers, hydraulic concrete saws are very gentle on the host machine, with no heavy impacts and very little vibration. This reduces wear and tear particularly on the joints of the arm of the robot.
Precision and control
Operating a concrete saw from a demolition robot allows a good view of the cutting, and precision control of speed, depth and position. They can cut vertical and horizontal surfaces and have no trouble with uneven ground which would render a road saw unusable. A hydraulic concrete demolition saw is thus a valuable addition to a remote controlled robot’s toolbox expanding its capabilities by increasing safety and efficiency and opening up new opportunities.