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New ABI HVR-100: The Right Machine for the Job

hammer steel abi hvr 100 bowen engineering corp north indiana floor prevention projectWhen Bowen Engineering Corp. began working on the North Indianapolis Flood Prevention project, designed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, it was clear that using a crane for their piling operation was out of the question. "It was a tight work area. We were on top of a narrow levee with the White River on one side and a road on the other," said Dave Collier, a general superintendent with the Fishers, Indiana-based company.

An excavator-mounted driver seemed to be the solution, but the first rental unit Bowen used only drove about 75 wall feet a day of SZ-22 sheeting, far short of the goal of 100 wall feet a day. After about a week, the company decided to try a new excavator-mounted driver/extractor and settled on an ABI model HVR-100, which it rented from Hammer & Steel.

The new HVR-100 - the largest excavator-mounted vibratory driver/extractor in the ABI product line - turned out to be the right machine for the Indianapolis project. With the ABI, Collier found that Bowen's crew more than doubled production, installing 200 wall feet on most days, working in compacted soils. On days when they were working in softer soil conditions, the crew was able to drive up to 400 wall feet.

"We had the ABI mounted on the same Cat 330 excavator the other one was mounted on, but the ABI is a bigger hammer with a lot more power," Collier explained. "Bowen Engineering is very impressed with the ABI HVR-100." In fact, the company was so impressed with its rental experience, it decided to purchase an HVR-100 and has already used it on some other projects.

Along with the tight work area, another challenge was a lack of places to store the sheeting. "In the whole 7,000 feet length of the project, there were just two spots we could use as lay down areas," Collier noted, "so we had to be creative about how to feed the sheeting to the driver. A loader turned out to be the ticket." The crew used a loader to move the sheeting to the levee where the hammer was stationed. "The loader operator set the sheeting down and the hammer would pick it up, set it and drive it," Collier explained.

The North Indianapolis Flood Prevention project was a $3.9 million contract that involves building a 7,000-foot-long floodwall along the White River in the Broad Ripple area of north Indianapolis. In some places, the project involved extending the height of an existing levee. Sixteen-foot long steel sheet piling, supplied by Shoreline Steel, was driven in pairs to a depth of 10 to 12 feet, leaving the rest exposed. A concrete wall was then formed around the exposed sheet pile, extending the height of the existing levee. The concrete was finished with a faux stone surface. Bowen Engineering, which was the general contractor as well as the piling contractor, completed the project in November 2003.

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