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Cutting at least 30% off the schedule

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DCP Civil is a civil construction company based in Colorado, USA. DCP Civil, which stands for Dirt, Concrete and Pipe, were hired to build two reservoirs in north-western Colorado. The reservoirs are lined and used for storing fresh water for future oil and gas drilling. The project was on a 50-acre site and included extensive grade variations, slopes, and swales. It also required moving almost 305 822 cubic meters of dirt. It was also extremely important that the project was finished on time, as the liners needed to be installed before winter. Fortunately DCP Civil had grade control technology.

They worked with the local Trimble dealer, SITECH Rocky Mountain, to equip more of their heavy equipment for the reservoir project. This included scrapers, excavators, dozers, and articulated dump trucks. John Kuersten, owner of DCP Civil, explains that they use two Cat D6 dozers and two Cat 336F excavators as their primary grading machines. Each of these machines were equipped with GSC900 grade control units − ranging from integrated GPS to systems rented from SITECH. The team also deployed the Trimble SPS985 GNSS Modular Receiver as a base station for correction services.

kuersten-1They also mounted a SPS985 GNSS modular receiver as a rover solution on a utility terrain vehicle. This was used to measure quantities at the job site. The rover and UTV collected volume data to create a baseline, which was then shared with the client’s surveyor to make sure everyone was in agreement on baseline volumes. As the earthworks progressed, the team used the rover data and Business Center-HCE to create quantity reports. They included these with their pay application. This quantity documentation eliminated mistakes in measuring or recording the volume of dirt moved, which helped the company get paid quicker and with less pushback.

“We’re loving the ability to create accurate quantity reports, and our clients appreciate it too,” said John. “So far it’s been a huge benefit. In fact, on this particular project we had their surveyor come out and walk the job, and he couldn’t find anything more than 3/100 of a foot [less than a centimetre] off design. Customers appreciate that level of service from us.”

The Trimble GCS900 Grade Control System maximises the machines’ and operators’ performance. The system uses ruggedised angle sensors, laser receivers, and GNSS technology to position the bucket or blade onsite. Design surfaces and alignments are then displayed on the in-cab control box. The Trimble sensors measure distances and slopes and store measured elements as slope guidance models. Operators can follow the design on the screen and get to grade faster without sacrificing accuracy or quality.

The team uses Business Center-HCE to prepare data for the build and to develop 3D site models. Information is collected from the surveyors and engineers and coordinates with the site to make sure the data matches. Then, the data is loaded into the control boxes and shared with the operators and job foreman. This way all of the machines are reading the correct information. On this build, DCP Civil excavated around 305 822 cubic meters of dirt. They also met design targets without pounding a single stake – all in less than three months.

It was important to finish this project on time as the liners needed to be installed before winter. John explains how the grade control technology made this easy.

“The grade control technology cut 30% or more time off the schedule for us, which is a huge time savings compared to traditional methods of staking and cutting. With steep slopes on the reservoir project, our operators ran the mass excavators and scrapers consistently within a foot or less of grade. We were then able to use a couple of dozers to get to finished grade without stakes or over.

“The owner has had nothing but good things to say, including how smooth the job went and how good it looks. That’s good for us and our customers.”

If you would like to learn more about how Trimble solutions can cut time off your schedule contact us.