Replace timber excavator load pads with polyurethane

Collaboration Case Study: Excavator Load Pads

March 31, 2023

National Plastics & Rubber continuously works with clients to address new and emerging challenges across heavy industry. We specialise in creating a safe work environment, improving ergonomics, and providing engineered responses to critical incidents. Our problem-solving ingenuity along with commercially viable solutions have been utilised by a range of industries including aviation, manufacturing, construction, hydraulic and automotive.

We recently worked with a large Mining Client in Western Australia to develop Polyurethane Excavator Load Pads in response to a critical safety hazard.

The Problem

The client had been using timber slabs on their Excavator Lift Platforms which, when the machine is in place, tensions and raises the top of track to enable easier access to perform underbody maintenance.

The timber product on the platforms posed significant safety risks to employees. The weight of the machine and tracks chewed into the timber creating splinters, cracks, and extreme wear rather quickly. Maintenance crews were also faced with the cumbersome task of manually handling the timber into position, prior to performing maintenance tasks on the Excavator while relying on the slabs to support the machine.  Despite timber being a common ‘easy choice’ for cribbing, machine support, and chocks, its composition is unknown, is not load-rated, or undergone extensive testing.

Timber excavator load pad platform     Damaged timber cribbing load support

The Solution

Through our existing relationship with the client, we were approached for an innovative solution to replace these timber slabs. Our product design team proudly took on the challenge to develop safer, durable alternative. The solution involved four load-rated Polyurethane pads specifically manufactured to suit the client’s platform. The pads are stable enough to support an excavator, while being portable enough for two persons to move into position. The design features our patented High Traction surface and lifting eyes with polyurethane handles to improve ergonomic handling.

Polyurethane excavator load pad platform    Lightweight excavator load platform pads

NPR has developed a range of products aimed at replacing the use of timber in workshop environments, including for example, our Stacko™ Block System. This is another example of NPR’s commitment to our client’s continuous improvement and is a testament to our refined product design process. If you have a safety, reliability or productivity concern on site and believe an innovative polyurethane, rubber, or industrial plastic product is the solution – contact us today and work with the industry innovators!

Contact NPR to discuss collaboration opportunities.

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