How a heavy civil contractor took on its first pile driving venture


Profitable completion of the venture would require the contractor to tackle its first pile driving venture and to be taught and obtain sufficient manufacturing with the RTG RG 19 T – some of the refined piling rigs on the earth. Working across the inside and outdoors corners of the close by boardwalk would solely intensify the training curve.

Jason Burke is the quintessential daring younger contractor founder. His firm is understood for heavy civil work all through Northern New Jersey, most lately having demolished the previous Tappan Zee Bridge.

Requested if he had reservations about venturing into pile driving, he says, “Yeah, it was a bit scary. However so was taking over a job to demolish the whole Tappan Zee Bridge and we completed that six months forward of schedule.”

The truth that Burke’s grand entrance into pile driving was the Level Nice Seawall isn’t any coincidence. The contractor had beforehand put in properly factors feeding seawater to Jenkinson’s Aquarium and in addition mobilized its massive fleet of earthmoving tools to scrub up after Hurricane Sandy. The proprietor invited the agency to bid the seawall venture in consequence.

Burke, who admits that model is a crucial issue when he buys and rents tools, was unfamiliar with RTG, however he had performed enterprise with ECA and appreciated that the corporate stood by its merchandise. After being awarded the seawall venture, he got here to ECA Philadelphia’s Account Supervisor Steve Sigmund and requested for a suggestion. He ended up renting the RTG RG 19 T Pile Driver outfitted with an MRV 150 AVM Silent Vibro in September of 2019.

Productive regardless of the training curve

The RG 19 T isn’t any entry-level piling rig. “Now we have a whole lot of expertise with rock, sand, and seaside work, however so far as piles, it has been very minor,” Burke says. “With out that RTG rig, this most likely would have been a two-contractor job as a result of I’d have employed someone.”

The RG 19 T had its work reduce out with 801 two-foot 4 1/2-inch sheet piles provided by Skyline Metal. Burke hauled the piles in from the Broadway entrance on the northern finish and laid them out at their ultimate vacation spot.

On a gentle November morning, the RTG piling rig was beginning manufacturing on a brief line of piles heading towards the ocean. Regardless of the proximity of the adjoining constructing, the operator was capable of safely swivel 180 levels to choose from a rigorously laid out line of piles within the sand.

Burke used the RG 19 T to vibrate every 4-foot-9-inch-wide interlocked sheet pile into the seaside, displacing 12,000 tons of sand within the course of. Heavy tools was used to unfold the fabric evenly throughout the seaside.

Cautious measurement was important, particularly because the sheets have been cold-rolled metal. “Each sheet will get measured,” Burke says. “The additional give makes them slightly simpler to drive and put collectively however it additionally provides them the power to roll a bit so it’s a must to put a tape measure on each single one. We lock a clamp on the falsework beam and drive them so that they keep proper at 4 toes 9 inches.” Burke’s hand measurement was extra about diligence than necessity as a result of the RG 19 T is provided with a set chief that secures the hammer snugly to the mast, permitting it to drive straight piles with excessive crowd forces and torque.

Burke’s crew labored from south to north. “We began on the hardest half and that was positively part of the training curve,” Burke remembers. “We needed to go round three buildings and stepping into the corners was very troublesome as a result of they have been actually tight.”

Beginning the wall in a jagged sample additionally meant much less productiveness momentum up entrance. “We have performed 1,200 toes of wall with inside and outdoors corners and we’re already hitting 100 toes a day,” he says, joking that he plans to bop a jig when the crew hits the straight run. “As soon as we get to this straightaway that (RTG) machine’s going to do not less than 150 toes a day.”

Burke would not assume 200 linear toes a day is out of the query for the RG 19 T, however he would not need to sacrifice high quality both. As a result of these are uncovered sheets, the crew is attaining 150 linear toes a day primarily based on holding the piles completely straight and plumb.

In equity, Burke has no earlier pile driving initiatives to check productiveness charges, however he has performed the homework. He cites a number of contractor associates maxing out at 50 linear toes a day with crane-mounted piling hammers and acknowledges that the RTG is tripling that manufacturing fee.

Though the RG 19 T is a posh piling rig, a normal heavy tools operator can run it effectively with some coaching and follow. ECA supplied three days of onsite coaching to be actual. “He is selecting up velocity as he is getting higher operating it,” says Burke, noting that neither his operator nor floor crew had ever labored with sheet piles.

Decreased vibration retains neighbours blissful

As you stroll up the ramp from the road facet of the boardwalk, it turns into obvious simply how shut the Burke group was working to shops and houses. And but the sound of pile driving is barely audible between the storefronts.

The MRV 150 AVM Silent Vibro was key to avoiding disruption. This hammer achieved a discount of 6 decibels from the earlier mannequin in 2017 with such options as encapsulation of the entrance part together with the hydraulic motor; soundproofing of the spring suspension unit; soundproofing between spring suspension unit and clamping head; sheathing on all chains; and rubber coatings on all chain attachment factors.

A seismologist remained available always conducting vibration monitoring properties close to Burke’s pile driving operation. He additionally documented the unique situation of all houses alongside seaside earlier than work commenced. Retailer house owners elected to conduct their very own vibration monitoring to maintain the venture transferring.

The Burke crew had simply begun driving piles on the intersection of two shops in early November morning with 1,200 toes of wall pushed so far. “The machine (RG 19 T) is just turned as much as about 25 % and it is driving 30-foot-plus sheets with ease with out even triggering any alarm with the seismologist,” says Burke. Though it wasn’t required on this venture, the RTG can ship a most 31,473 foot-pounds of downward crowd pressure. 

Burke will wrap up the Level Nice Seashore Seawall earlier than anticipated due to the RG 19 T’s higher than anticipated manufacturing fee. “Now we have to be performed by March 15 and I do not plan on being right here in February,” he says confidently.

This text initially appeared within the February 2020 difficulty of Heavy Tools Information. Take a look at the digital version here.



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