What is a Road Grader

What is a road grader?

road grader

Early road graders were horse drawn, sometimes with a team of 4-horses, and with a 2-men team to operate the grader, one to drive the team and the other to operate the grader. These early graders date back to the mid to late 1800’s and most were used to maintain city streets and county roads. This would allow the horse drawn wagons with freight and supplies passage with fewer pot holes or ruts.

The horse drawn road grader was improved upon and built larger as the steam traction tractors were introduced in the early 1900’s. They began to replace the horse drawn teams when pulling the road graders, some pull-type graders were pulled with crawler tractors after they were introduced into service.

The development of the self-propelled road grader began to replace the need for a pull-type grader, [from around 1920 to 1930 Gallion Iron Works Co. developed one of the first self-propelled, hydraulic operated road graders] these graders had their own power and hydraulic systems to operate the blade while others developed the gear type controls to operate the blade.

The road grader also known as grader—motor grader is most commonly referred to as a road grader.

All new graders today are hydraulic operated with a motor, they are driven with 4-rear rubber tires and two steering front tires. Most graders are rear wheel [4] drive; some are all wheel [6] drive.

The grader blade is between the front tires and the rear tires. This allows the machine a longer leveling plane; this keeps the blade level to create a flat finish grade as the machine moves forward.

The engine and operators cab generally at the rear of the grader; this allows the operator a clear vision of the work area.

Most cabs are equipped with large front windshields—large cab exit doors— a/c and heat—am/fm radio—hydraulic steering—easy operating hydraulic controls.

The road grader blade can rotate under the grader from right to left and the end of the blade can move up and down. Many graders are equipped with front mounted rippers for losing hard surface soils before the blade can grade and level the work area.

Road graders are used generally to finish grade or fine grade the surface for road base to prepare for asphalt—building sites—street base—gravel roads—dirt roads—ditching or any other surface as needed to prepare for final fine grading or finish grading.

Today many road graders are equipped with a GPS system; this allows the operator to “precision grade control” grade to a precise level on many work projects.

There are many types of road graders and there are many uses for a road grader. The pull-type grader is available and can still be used for smaller jobs around the farm or driveway grading and can be pulled behind an ATV—farm tractor—utility tractor depending on the size of the grader unit.

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