Moving old robodrill on a rollback towtruck
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  1. #1
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    Default Moving old robodrill on a rollback towtruck

    Found a smoking deal on a 98 Robodrill. Its about 60 miles from my shop and it needs to be moved out of the sellers shop ASAP. Its a 2 week wait for a rigger to be able to move it. Am I crazy to try moving it on a rollback tow truck? The machine weighs in at about 4k lbs.

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    How would an electric pallet jack and a rollback truck or a drop deck trailer work?

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    I will look into the drop deck trailers. Last time I saw them at the rental place they seemed a bit shoddy though, I couldn't imagine a Robodrill in one. I was thinking of using a pallet jack to get it onto a rented stakebed truck or hiring a rollback to get it to my shop. I have a loading dock so I could get it off in similar fashion. I just don't know if that's plausible for the average machinist to do safely

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    If you aren't 100% sure of yourself when moving machinery, you would be far ahead to hire someone.

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    Im positive I could do it, but I've been positive about other things that turned out to be really stupid. Maybe I should leave it to the riggers if I can find a way to get them out sooner. Idunno

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    I REALLY like the drop deck trailers, they keep everything low to the ground! For me it would be a drop deck trailer and pipe rollers to move the machine on. 4k is light, just go slow, watch the bumps and make sure the trailer tires are aired up, of course on top of prepping the machine and tieing it down real well.

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    Will it fit in the drop deck trailer? Can you get it in with the pallet jack? If so that is a no brainer.

  8. #8
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    Possible? Not being familiar with the machine in question I'd say it probably is possible. It would be real good if your hired driver was sharp enough to see potential problems/solutions. It would also be good if you had an assortment of skates, straps, toe-jacks, and pipes to facilitate movement in smooth/controlled manner. Diamond plate beds sometimes hang-up one roller, causing direction to change. Skates, rollers, pipes sometimes have to be corrected/substituted and that's easier done when the machine weight isn't on it. The bed can move around a bit as the machine approaches that last 18" to the lip. Until part of the machine is sitting on skates that are on firm concrete constant attention/correction is required, especially for excessive lean-over to one side. Center of gravity will not be ignored. I was running out of time when I used a roll back, wouldn't want to do it again unless I had a good driver. Several pairs of eyes on progress is also mighty helpful. It's a slow game of inches but it can go bad real quick and it can't be stopped once it starts. I've also rented a drop deck to move a BP alone and would use one again if it was rated for the weight. Do pay more attention than I did entering curves on the highway (breath-less moment) I hope this was of some help, good luck.

  9. #9
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    I used a Penske truck. Needed the higher of the two they offered, but my machine has a higher z-axis than normal for the 5-axis.

    It only needed a few straps down, the rest were to keep it from sliding forward or backward. I screwed 2x4s right to the deck to keep it in place. I do wish I’d loaded it backwards though. We used a couple of 1” rods through the casting holes to pick it up with forks. I don’t have a fork lift either, so I called a friend who runs a lumber yard.


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