Equipment Specs

Water Truck

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Mining Equipment
1994 Kenworth T800B 4,000 gallon T/A Water Truck
Water trucks are commonly used in mining applications, primarily for dust control. Water trucks usually consist of a series of spray nozzles equipped with the mechanics to pump and spray water to remove overburden or to hydrate mines when they become dry. The trucks are different from a typical truck in that they must be able to contain a large volume of water, requiring special tank specifications and mounting apparatuses to include spray nozzles and associated equipment.

Today, however water trucks are also used for various other reasons. The construction industry uses them for compaction, dust control and fire-prevention and protection. The entertainment industry also uses water trucks for street wet downs, fire control stand-by and many other reasons. Water trucks are used also used by the fire-fighting industry in battling forest fires.

A special type of water truck called a potable water truck is a water truck or water tank trailer that supplies bulk water for human consumption to people living in areas that don't have access to a public water supply or a water well. They may also be used for filling up swimming pools, fire-camp service and in major sporting events.[1] Potable water trucks are available with 1,000 gallon and 2,600 gallon tank capacities.[2]


[edit] History

[edit] Early Watering Systems

Before the age of modernized mechanics, watering systems were devised in other ways. A hydraulic monitor equipped with large nozzles would spray heavy quantities of water in a constant stream against rocky hillsides in order to remove the overburden covering the sought-after minerals in an open-pit mine.

The monitor, also referred to as a “Little Giant,” consisted of a single nozzle at the end of the line. Water was collected from the mountain and any nearby resources and dumped into the hydraulic monitor. Once contained, it would travel in restricted amounts through small pipes and would be relayed in a steady stream, usually three to eight inches (7.6 to 20.3 cm) in diameter. The hydraulic monitor was hugely successful as the outflow of water exposed small amounts of gold after turning a hillside into a slew of mud. When the dirt from the overburden was removed, a series of sluice boxes were used to collect the gold.

The hydraulic monitor worked best when it was positioned closer to the bedrock to more effectively impact the overburden with the waterpower. Another problem that arose with the hydraulic monitor was the viscous mud it produced as a result of the water stream. The soil and water mixture often polluted waterways and roadways.

The use of hydraulic monitoring became illegal in 1884 in California but continued in other states until the 1940s.[3]

[edit] Evolution into Water Trucks

The advent of a more mechanized society led to modern, multi-functional machinery. Hydraulic monitoring has evolved into today’s water mining truck. The water truck, offered by most mining manufacturers in the industry, is used in conjunction with other machinery. Not quite as effective in removing the overburden of open-pit mines, it is used as an initial method, usually alongside a grader, to level and prepare the area being mined.[4]

Water trucks gained more popularity over the years, particularly as new and improved features were added to the mix, such as off-highway tires, spray nozzle features, and larger tank capacity.

[edit] Features/How it Works

The water truck comes with a variety of features that make it a valuable piece of equipment in mining applications. Truck bodies can exist in both small and large sizes, suited to fit the size of the mine. Some mines may be narrower, restricting the amount of heavy equipment that can be utilized, while others can afford to have a truck that is larger and will quickly finish the job. Some manufacturers have constructed their truck bodies to fit any number of adaptable chassis available on the market.

1995 International 9300 T/A Water Truck
Other features may include off-highway tiring systems to allow the truck to travel on rugged terrain throughout the mine site; structural I-beams for tank stability; and safety ladders.

Spray nozzles may be equipped with an external water pump mounted on the rear of the machine. Spray options range from side, front, hose reels, water cannons, and gravity dumps.[5]

The water truck runs similarly to any other truck, with the exception of the water tank and mounted spray nozzles. The tanks and nozzles are situated in the truck’s rear. Water is released in one of two methods: pressurized nozzles or the gravity dip bar. Using a system of in-cab controls, the spray nozzles are controlled by a hydraulic function that enables the water to eject from the pump in a controlled and specified capacity.

Not only suitable for removing overburden, the water truck is also utilized for clearing the mine site once it has been abandoned and is undergoing reclamation.[6]

[edit] Types

  • Off-highway water trucks
  • Highway water trucks

[edit] Common Manufacturers

[edit] Additional Photos

1995 Oshkosh F233SPCL 4,500 gallon 6x6 Water Truck
1995 International 8200 2,500 gallon S/A Water Truck

[edit] References

  1. RMR Water Trucks. Our Services. RMR Water Trucks Official Corporate website. 05-11-2009.
  2. Potable Water Trucks. A-1 Water. 05-11-2009.
  3. Pearson, David W. and Bommarito, Ron. Antique Mining Equipment and Collectibles. Schiffer Publishing: Atglen, 2002.
  4. Mining Photos. BC Minerals. 2008-09-25.
  5. Water Trucks. Gfmfg. 2008-09-25.
  6. Water Truck. Mining Machinery. 2008-09-25.