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Loaders are very common in heavy construction. They are known to be efficiant multipurpose low cost and low-maintenance machines . Loaders are mainly used in construction to manipulate and move materials in projects that include digging, road construction and planning a site. Some models are dedicated to specific tasks such as waste management. Some of the best makers are Caterpillar, John Deere, Komatsu and Volvo.
In the 1920s small tractors could be equipped with a bucket (similar to the one on loaders) to handle small materials. This was considered to be the first “loader”. In the 1930s, in Manchester, E.Boydell & Co. developed a small loader (tractor and bucket), “Muir-Hill”. It had a power of 28 HP. In 1939, an engineer in Chicago made the first 2 wheel drive loader . The bucket could move 0.25 m3.
In 1953, Caterpillar built the first integrated hydraulic crawler loader, called Traxcavator. It brought a revolutionary piece of equipment: the loader was articulated. After the 2nd World War, They started manufacturing and distributing the first all-hydraulic loader: arm and motor were hydraulic. For security reasons, some brands decided to put the arm and bucket in front of the driver. That was a huge change in heavy construction.
There are different types of loaders: - wheel loader: loaders with wheels - crawler loader: loaders with tracks - skid steer loader: mini loader - compact loader: small articulated loader - backhoe loader: it has 2 buckets, it can be rigid or articulated - skip loader: small loader with a scraper at the back and a bucket at the front.
Loaders mainly have either a diesel or petrol engine. A new ecologic version has come out: the electric loader. It provides the same engine power as a Diesel powered loader.