A productive day on the jobsite starts with working effectively. We sat down with Caterpillar experts Ryan Neal and Amy Vincent to get their tips for proper truck loading, whether you’re using a large or mini excavator.
Proper Truck Loading Position
Efficient truck loading starts with proper loading position, which really depends on the size of the machine you’re using and how much visibility you have into the truck bed. For example, if you’re loading an articulated truck with a large excavator, you might load front to back since you have a better line of sight into the bed. If loading a tandem with a medium excavator, you don’t have the same visibility when it comes to the truck bed, so it’s easier to start in the center of the bed and load out in either direction.
With with smaller equipment such as mini excavators it's the same story; you would likely be loading something like a dump truck, so visibility into the truck bed is lacking. Because of that, you’d most likely load starting in the middle and work your way out.
Load More Safely
There are a few things you can do to make truck loading a safer process:
- Bench loading: Bench loading is one of the best ways to help make your truck loading more efficient and safe. Depending on your jobsite and the size of your machine, you may either need to build a bench or, if the pile you’re moving is big enough, use the pile you’re moving as your bench. When using a bench, it’s best practice to make the top of the bench reach rail height on the truck you’re loading. This gives you the visibility you need and saves you from wasting time as you would if the bench was too high.
- Make use of in-cab visibility features: All sizes of Cat excavators have a skylight, which improves your visibility, especially on mini excavators. If you’re operating a mini excavator, the skylight can give you greater visibility to your high booms and trucks.