Earthmoving construction equipment

LiuGong Excavators

Earthmoving construction equipment is heavy machinery, typically heavy-duty vehicles designed for earthwork construction operations. They are used to move significant amounts of earth, dig landscaping foundations, and so on. Examples of earthmoving construction equipment include heavy trucks and machines, construction equipment, engineering equipment, heavy vehicles, and heavy hydraulics. The primary source of motion for most earthmoving equipment is hydraulic drives.

There are numerous types of earthmoving equipment used in construction. Let’s look at some of the most common earthmoving construction equipment.


Excavators are heavy earthmoving construction equipment comprising a boom, dipper, bucket and cab on a rotating platform known as the “house”. The house is supported by an undercarriage consisting of tracks or wheels. They are a natural progression from steam shovels and are frequently mislabelled as power shovels. A hydraulic excavator’s movement and functions are accomplished using hydraulic fluid, hydraulic cylinders, and hydraulic motors. Hydraulic cylinders operate fundamentally differently than cable-operated excavators, which use winches and steel ropes to perform the movements. In addition, attachments like pile drivers, buckets, rakes, grapplers, and many others may be installed on the excavator’s arm.

Dragline excavator

A dragline excavator is a heavy piece of earthmoving construction equipment used in civil engineering and surface mining. Draglines are classified into those based on standard lifting cranes and those that must be built on-site. Most crawler cranes can be converted into draglines by adding a winch drum to the front. Like other cranes, these units are designed to be dismantled and transported on flatbed trailers over the road. Draglines used in civil engineering are usually of the crane variety. These are used for road, port, pond, and canal dredging, as well as pile-driving rigs. Word drag is used because it can drag material from a long distance away from the machine. Dragline excavators consist of a drag rope, a large bucket, a boom, a hoist rope, and driving motors.


A loader is earthmoving construction equipment used in construction to move or load materials like asphalt, dirt, demolition debris, feed, gravel, logs, raw minerals, recycled material, rock, sand, woodchips, etc., to or from a dump truck, conveyor belt, feed-hopper, or railroad car. There are many different types of loaders, each with its own name based on its design and application, such as payloader bucket loader, front loader, front-end loader, scoop, shovel, skip loader, wheel loader, or skid-steer.

Loader attachments

  • Buckets: This is the standard attachment on almost all loaders. It enables operators to scoop up materials and transport them across a construction site.
  • Forks: These tines look like forklift forks and allow a loader to lift objects like pallets off the ground.
  • Couplers: This tool connects two attachments to a loader for efficient use when operators need to switch between them quickly.
  • Lifting jibs: This accessory attaches to the boom and transforms the loader into a crane.
  • Rakes: When a team needs to clean up a job site, this tool allows them to move debris out of the way of a loader.
  • Shovels: Like a bucket, this attachment carries loads but is designed to move materials into another vehicle.
  • Augers: These tools are used to pierce through hard surfaces and drill straight down.
  • Brooms: With this hydraulic-powered tool, operators can scrub the road in front of them.
  • Stump grinders: These attachments reduce tree stumps and roots to small wood chips.

Crawler loaders

Crawler loaders are machines with a tracked chassis and a loader that can dig and move/load materials. They are an adaptable component of any fleet, capable of performing various tasks. Loaders are frequently used on construction sites to move heavy materials. They are ideal for transporting wood chips, sand, rock, and recycled materials. Crawler loaders move on tracks made of different materials and with varying numbers of grousers to allow them to manoeuvre on different surfaces. Hydrostatic drives simplify this earthmoving construction equipment’s operation.

Wheel loaders

A wheel loader is a piece of heavy machinery used to load and transport materials around a construction site. Wheel loaders can transport fine materials like sand and large objects like rock and demolition debris. They are commonly used in construction but also play a role in agriculture and industrial clean-up projects. The size of a wheel loader influences which industries it is best suited for. Wheel loaders provide unparalleled mobility due to their tough buckets and tyres. This type of loader will assist operators whether they need to dig, carry, or place loads.

Skid steer loader

A skid steer loader is a small, engine-powered machine with rigid-frame lift arms that can attach various labour-saving tools or attachments. This earthmoving construction equipment is typically a four-wheel vehicle with the wheels mechanically locked in synchronisation on each side and the ability to drive the left-side drive wheels independently of the right-side drive wheels. The wheels typically lack a separate steering mechanism and maintain a fixed straight alignment on the machine’s body. Differential steering, where the left and right wheel pairs are operated at different speeds, is used to turn the machine, and the machine turns by dragging or skidding its fixed-orientation wheels across the ground. The highly rigid frame and robust wheel bearings protect the machine from the torsional forces caused by the dragging motion. A skid steer has a cab facing forward and dual hydraulic front arms raising and lowering to the ground. They can also be tracked instead of wheeled.

Backhoe loader

A backhoe loader is earthmoving construction equipment comprising a tractor-like unit fitted with a backhoe on the back and a loader-style shovel/bucket on the front. Due to their relatively small size and versatility, these loaders are very common in urban engineering and small construction projects like building a small house, fixing urban roads, etc. This machine is similar to and descended from the tractor-loader-backhoe (TLB), an agricultural tractor outfitted with a front loader and a rear backhoe attachment. Most traditional machines have an adjustable shovel in the front and a small bucket in the back. However, these parts can be replaced by drills, hammers, brooms, rollers, snowploughs, thumbs, and ripper attachments. Backhoe loaders are typically used for medium-sized construction projects and have wheels. They are small enough to fit into small spaces but strong and durable enough to dig trenches and carry heavy loads. This type of earthmoving construction equipment can be used for excavating, digging holes, backfilling trenches, and material handling.

Swing loaders

Instead of a standard bucket, this earthmoving construction equipment has a swinging boom. It can pick up and dump materials from any side because the boom can rotate over 180 degrees.


This earthmoving construction equipment is a tractor equipped with a considerable metal plate or blade, used to push a large amount of soil, sand, rubble, and other such material during construction or conversion work, and typically equipped with a claw-like device known as a ripper at the rear to loosen densely compacted materials. It is usually a crawler tractor with continuous tracks. Bulldozers can be seen at various locations, including mines and quarries, military bases, heavy industry factories, engineering projects, and farms.

Motor grader

A motor grader is earthmoving construction equipment with a long blade that creates a flat surface during the grading process. They are used to maintain unpaved roads and establish the final grades on construction projects. The engine and cab are typically located above the rear axles on one end of the vehicle, and a third axle is located at the front end of the vehicle, with the blade in between. Most motor graders have tandem rear axles, but some have front-wheel drive to improve grading capability. Many graders also come with optional attachments for the back of the machine, such as a ripper, scarifier, blade, or compactor. The rigid frame motor grader has a single axle and cannot turn around a point in both directions, whereas the articulated frame motor grader has a hinge between the two axles. The latter’s feature allows it to turn around in tight quarters.

Contact BurGers Equipment & Spares for details

For more information on earthmoving construction equipment and other heavy-duty equipment in Johannesburg, please contact a representative from BurGers Equipment & Spares today.

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