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7 Things to Consider When Renting a Rotating Hydraulic Shear

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Set yourself up for success in your next demolition project by knowing what you’re up against up front.

Renting a rotating hydraulic shear can often be more time consuming and complex than renting excavators with basic earthmoving attachments. It requires knowing the answers to a variety of application-specific questions and may require longer setup times than traditional excavator attachments. At ShearForce, we want to make renting mobile demolition shears as easy as possible for our customers across Western Canada. That is why our team of hydraulic attachment specialists has put together a list of things to consider when renting a rotating hydraulic shear to help make the process smoother and to get you the equipment you need faster.

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1. What Kind of Materials Will You be Cutting?

labounty shear excavator demolition processingRotating hydraulic shears are ideal for cutting ferrous metals (materials containing iron), non-ferrous metals like aluminum, and tire processing, especially large OTR/mining tires. It is important to note that excavator mounted mobile demolition shears are not made to cut through cast or specially hardened materials, and that they will have a hard time cutting fibrous materials like cable.

2. How Thick are the Materials Being Cut?

MSD 7R cutting shelf racking @ 180-¦ close upWhile rotating hydraulic shears are available in a variety of different sizes, the largest shears on the market can typically pierce up to 1.61″ thick plates and process 7″ diameter solid rounds; however, generally, the largest shears that you would see available for rent to contractors in Western Canada can pierce 1.38″ plates and process 5.5″ solid rounds.

3. Do You Need 2nd or 3rd Member Shears?

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In order to ensure that you are renting the right type of rotating hydraulic shear, it is important to know the difference between 2nd member shears and 3rd member shears.

  • 2nd member shears are positioned in place of the stick
  • 3rd member shears are mounted in place of the bucket/attachment.

The differences between 2nd and 3rd member shears will affect how large a shear you can run, how high or far the shear can reach, and the transportation of the machine. Generally, scrap yards and secondary demolition use 2nd member shears, while primary demolition is done using 3rd member shears.

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What are the Advantages of Each Option?

The biggest advantage of using shears in the 2nd member position is that you can run a larger shear because the weight and length will be displaced by removing the stick. For 3rd member shears, the biggest advantages are availability (mounts of 2nd member shears are more expensive and dedicated to a specific machine model), increased reach, and the machine will not be dedicated to only running the shear, which means you can still run other attachments.

4. What Hydraulic Plumbing Do You Need for a Rotating Shear?

excavator attachment setup flow meterThe vast majority of hydraulic shear rentals are 3rd member setups. If you are looking to rent 3rd member shears, you will need to know if your excavator has the correct auxiliary hydraulic plumbing— two auxiliary hydraulic circuits (one for the open/close and one for rotation) and, possibly, a case drain line, depending on the brand of shear being used. As always, you will also need a qualified technician to properly set up the flows/pressure of the flow meter, which the team from ShearForce can assist with.

5. Will the Shears be Used for Primary or Secondary Demolition/Processing?

excavator shear demolition racking indoorWhen renting rotating hydraulic shears, it is also important to know the differences between primary and secondary demolition/processing.

  • Primary demolition/processing Decommissioning buildings, bridges, or other structures where they were originally erected.
  • Secondary demolition/processing Processing materials that have been removed during primary demolition at another site.

labounty shear scrap demolition processingUnderstanding the application that the shear will be used for is a critical part of determining the ideal equipment for your project requirements. By providing us with a clear situation and the variables, our team will be able to provide you with accurate recommendations.

How Does this Effect Which Shear You Choose?

Having a clear idea of what the tool will be used for will make it easier for our team to determine which shear will provide you with the right amount of reach or whether or not we should suggest a different tool for the job, if a shear is not the ideal attachment.

6. Do You Have a Qualified Operator on Site?

It is imperative for proper safe operation to ensure that there will be a qualified operator on site with experience using rotating hydraulic attachments, preferably mobile scrap demolition shears or crusher pulverizers. This means that the operator will need to at least know the bare minimum of do’s and don’ts of shear use and have an understanding of basic maintenance. Having an inexperienced operator using the shears can often lead to damage that you would be responsible for paying for. For more information, check out the LaBounty Safety, Operation, and Maintenance Manual for helpful guidelines.

7. What are Your Supply Timeline Expectations?

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While rotating hydraulic shears can often be supplied immediately for popular size models, you should be realistic about your expectations, particularly if the shear will need to be setup on your excavator by a professional technician on-site. On-site setup varies by machine and their plumbing setup and can take anywhere from 2 hours to a few days.

If you would like to learn more things to consider when renting a rotating hydraulic shear, or if you are interested in demolition attachments or Demolition Excavator + Attachment Rental packages, please contact ShearForce at 1-800-255-5211.

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