In an industry first, John Deere’s SmartGrade Motor Grader and Dozer have a fully integrated mastless 3-D grade control. With no external masts, cables or GNSS receivers to install and remove, operators can focus on the grading job at hand instead of tedious daily maintenance requirements. The daily chore of mounting and calibrating equipment has been eliminated, resulting in less downtime, improved performance and eliminating potential damage or theft.
What sets the SmartGrade Motor Grader and Dozer apart from its competitors is their accuracy, which is the result of their in-cylinder position sensing technology. Inside each of the hydraulic blade cylinders is another rod with a magnet on the end. When the cylinder extends out, a sensor inside sends a pulse down the rod that bounces off the magnet and comes back.
In the time that it takes for that signal to return, the system can sense how far the cylinder is extended, which allows the system to determine the position of the blade to within a millimetre. As a result, the machine can be put into any position the operator wants, while continuing to maintain ultra tight tolerances. The SmartGrade products give operators unparalleled freedom to run the grader and dozer without limitations – the same machine can be utilised earlier in jobsites from initial site development to the final grade.
Saving operators time and money
There are a number of features that significantly lower the owning and operating (O&O) costs associated with SmartGrade Motor Grader and Dozer. The anti-track slip, for example, improves fuel economy, especially in sandy conditions. The daily operating costs are also significantly reduced because operators are able to achieve better grades with fewer passes.
Additionally, the SmartGrade system’s intuitive automation suite improves functionality, streamlines the number of controls needed to perform common tasks and boosts productivity: for instance, auto-articulation combines front and rear steering; Blade Flip allows operators to automatically mirror the circle to a preset angle and the Machine Presets allow operators to activate multiple machine functions, features and positions with the press of a single button. All this greatly improves operator efficiency – less experienced operators can follow the site design in all phases of the project.
John Deere knows that no customer or job is alike, so each machine’s controls can be adapted to the customer’s specific requirement. All SmartGrade Motor Graders allow the use of 2D components – like laser receivers and sonic trackers – that can either be utilised independently or as control on either side of the blade in tandem with the SmartGrade 3D GPS system.
The SmartGrade system can also be retrofitted to any of the late model graders sold by RDO. In addition, the three components of the automation suite – Auto-Articulation, Blade Flip and Presets – can be easily installed on the late model machines.
The SmartGrade product is John Deere / RDO Equipment supported.