The four Boltmaster 200s were sold to the Dragados-Judlau joint venture, which won the contract for the construction of the twin-track tunnel. The bolters are capable of installing 16-foot Swellex bolts and are equipped with a screen-handling system to eliminate manual handling of roof screen, said RDH president Rick Lemieux.
An independent oscillating axle provides increased stability, traction and frame integrity, while a heavy-duty articulating midship is designed for reliable operation in the harshest underground environments. The units will also be used by the contractor as a face drill to make the advance cuts required for the tunnel boring machines.
The tunnel will run 200 feet (61 metres) under Palisades Park, New Jersey and continue under the Hudson River at a depth of 100 feet. It will end in a new, multi-level rail station 150 feet (46 metres) under 34th Street, adjacent to Penn Station. Some two million cubic yards of rock, soil and silt will be excavated during construction.
The existing century-old rail tunnels under the Hudson accommodate 23 trains per hour during peak times for a total of 170,000 passenger trips per day. Once the new tunnels are completed, as many as 48 trains per hour will be able to carry commuters into downtown Manhattan.
The Boltmaster 200 was selected for the job because of its versatility, said Lemieux. “At first, they were looking at a bigger machine, but it wasn’t versatile. The Boltmaster is a small machine, but it does the job of a big one.”
The unit is available with diesel hydraulic, electric hydraulic or, combined diesel and electric hydraulic drives and comes standard with a Deutz F6L914 air-cooled engine and a basket boom for tunnel maintenance. A rod handling system, remote control package, on-board pressure washer, a multiple capacity bolting carousel, a fully-enclosed operator’s cab, and a water mist system with self-contained, onboard water tank are available as options.
Lemieux attributes the sale to “knocking on the right doors.”