Many people throughout the world have made hobbies and even careers out of repairing and restoring antique cars and trucks, but what about antique construction equipment? Due to the sheer size and weight of the machines of the past, it places of major limitations on their collect-ability to be sure. At least one man has taken it upon himself to collect them before we lose them all.
Jim Carter of Zionsville, Indianapolis finds, collects, preserves, and rescues old construction equipment that he has found throughout the country. He mostly prefers excavators, whether they’re of cranes, drag lines, or clam shells, but he does also have a few dozers and tractors. The videos below show a 4 part series of Dick Wolfsie’s interview of Carter, which aired on WISH in Indianapolis. In the videos, Carter shows off a 1968 Koehring 305 crane, which weighs 25 tons and still operates. While sitting inside the cab, Carter walks Wolfsie through the differences of today’s machines versus the older versions. The early machines, he says, is stone age technology, operating mostly with gears, brakes, and clutches, as opposed to the hydraulics and electronics of today’s equipment. Unsurprisingly and just like older cars, the more simply the machine is built, the easier it is to fix.
Cramer also explains in the interview that he’s a member of the Historical Construction Equipment Association, which is headquartered in Bowling Green, OH. The organization, which has roughly 4,000 members worldwide, also owns the National Construction Equipment Museum, also in Bowling Green. They also put on a yearly convention for antique equipment; this year’s will be near the headquarters from September 16-18.
Most of these antique machines are not useful on a modern job site, Carter explains, so many of them are scrapped, never to be seen again. We can only hope that we don’t lose the historical machines that built many of the buildings and infrastructure throughout the World.
Falls on the jobsite is the leading cause of injuries and fatalities in construction. Keeping up with housekeeping on your site is a great way to reduce risks of falls, but other protections, like rebar caps should be installed when rebar is exposed. A young construction worker recently found out the hard way what happens when rebar is left exposed.
Completed in 1976, the CN Tower in Toronto, Canada held the record for the tallest freestanding structure in the world from 1975-2007, until it was supplanted by Dubai’s Burj Khalifa. At its highest point, the CN Tower, which is mainly used as a communications and observation tower, reaches 1,815.4 feet (533.33m). Last year, the tower underwent a $16 million renovation and Priestly Demolition shared a fascinating, in-depth video for how they took care of the demolition of the interior space and walls.
Cranes collapsing on-site are serious business, especially since many of them resulted in the loss of life. A recent crane collapse on a construction site in Alpharetta, GA was caught on camera after it caught fire, but luckily no one was injured.
There are a lot of different specialty construction contracting sectors within the industry and cruise ships are definitely one of them. There are plenty of unique challenges when dealing with a moving ship versus a static building. A recent accident highlighted the challenges when a crane collapsed on a cruise ship under renovations, injuring 8 people.
Almost 7 years ago, construction began on the west side of Manhattan’s $20 billion mixed-use development. On March 15, 2019, Hudson Yards, as the development is known, has officially opened.
Demolitions by implosion can be fun to watch when they go right – or wrong – but nearby residents can be greatly affected by the high powered blasts and huge clouds of debris that follow. A few years ago, a botched demolition in England left dozens of nearby residents unable to return to their homes for several days. Last week, an obsolete Steel Basic Oxygen Plant in Weirton, West Virginia is leaving residents in a similar situation.
Traditional safety training for construction workers includes OSHA 10-hour or 30-hour courses, toolbox talks, and safety inspections. Those training techniques are all important and necessary, but construction workers are an extremely hands-on group of individuals and putting them in real life situations can be much more beneficial to them instead of classroom training.
Over the years, Liebherr, the German Crane Manufacturer, has given us some absolutely amazing videos. For example, they put on a show for their best customers one year and lifted one crane with another crane, which was lifted by a third crane, which was then lifted by a fourth crane. Another video highlighted the 58 cranes that were on site at the same time at the world’s largest airport build in Istanbul. Well, the company is back at it again, this time on top of Europe’s new tallest building.
When we think about historic buildings of ancient times that are still standing, we can stand in awe of the level of detail that was incorporated into designs without modern tools and technology. For a few decades, it seemed like we would never see that type of character in buildings again, but sports stadiums are becoming new modern wonders, pushing the limits of not only what’s capable from a construction standpoint, but also the budgets.