Australian mining industry – 2015 Coal demand could be lower than 2014

australian-coal-mining-2015The coal mining industry across the world has seen its up and downs throughout 2014 and there isn’t much evidence showing that next year will be much different. Australia is home to some of the world’s largest coal deposits and stands to be drastically affected by these market changes. According to a recent article from Australian Mining “The 2015 Energy Outlook Series: Coal” Coal prices have been on a steady decline for much of 2014 and could keep sliding in 2015.

The coal market has several factors including lower demand and increased market share from other countries that are pushing prices lower. The elevated production level of rival countries has flooded the global coal market. Also the sluggish market growth in areas such as China has led to lower demand. These factors have led to massive coal industry job cuts throughout the year of 2014 in Australia. Australian coal mining firms have been taking these drastic steps to try and stay competitive, financially stable and survive this tough period.

In the next year some types of coal such as metallurgical coal could stay steady whereas thermal coal will likely drop in price and demand. Mines with higher operational costs could start to be affected in 2015 which could mean even more job losses and less coal production. This will however start to tighten the market as fewer producers are online and exporting coal. Industry experts don’t see the lower prices lasting long and expect the prices and demand for most types of coal to rebound by 2016. This is good news for the Australian mining industry and workers as employment rates have been steadily dropping for months.

If you need OTR tires for your mining equipment in Australia, please contact us.  We routinely ship new and used OTR tires to Australian mining operations.

 

Image credit: Australian Mining

Mexican Mining Industry Taking Steps Toward Gender Equality

euridice-gonzalez-minera-pangea

Around the world, women in mining often get a raw deal. Although many of them work long hours in jobs requiring grueling physicality, they’re often disrespected, passed over for promotion, and underpaid.

Take the Australian mining sector, for example, which currently faces reports from the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM) that women typically earn wages that are 27% lower than those of the men. Or worse, in Zimbabwe, where women — even women who own their own claims — are barred from operating their own mines due to cultural norms and superstitions, meaning that they must employ and rely on male supervisors to accomplish anything.

Fortunately, mining sectors in several other countries are stepping up to the plate to ensure that women in mining get a fair deal. In Canada, where women in mining constitute roughly 14% of the workforce, it’s been reported that the group Women in Mining (WIM) has received funding from the Status of Women Canada (SWC) to implement a national action plan to increase the number of women working in the mining sector.

Also, the Mexican mining industry has risen to the challenge, with the Cia Minera Pangea mine appointing Euridice Gonzalez as general manager in 2007, making her the first female mining CEO in Mexico’s history.

For Gonzalez, this appointment made ​​it clear that women have no limits. As a high-level executive in a position that requires major responsibility, she has shown that individuals should not be cloistered or limited to certain activities based on their gender. “When I started working in here as Operations Assistant, the manager told me I was going to grow in the company. Now I know we have to change our focus and think that everything is possible,” she adds. (Mining Global)

We applaud any steps being taken to ensure that both equality and respect are being afforded to all people investing their time and talents to the global mining sector, and we look forward to seeing more positive change in the future.  Because we all know that mining is hard work, no matter if you are a man or a woman.  And that work is very important to keeping our modern way of life supplied with the minerals and materials that it needs.

Remember that we carry a full stock of OTR tires for all of your mining equipment needs. Feel free to contact us for the best deals.

New Life for Old Gravel Pits: Introducing ORV Adventure Parks

According to reports early in December, a recent partnership between local Michigan officials and ORV enthusiasts could soon lead to one of the Midwest’s newest and exciting recreational adventure area.

The county hopes an ORV park would attract noisy off-road buffs and dirt-bike motorcyclists that campers and hikers seemingly hate dealing with at other parks in the Midwest. Eventually cable-powered water skiing and zip-line wake boarding would come to the park. In addition, there would be a possibility of scuba diving in the artificial lakes left by sand and gravel miners next to Dixie Highway (Aggman.com)

RockcrawlingWith nothing else quite like it available in the state, this would mean not only that Michigan residents could pursue their hobbies a bit closer to home, but that it would also be a draw for ORV fans of surrounding states. This means the possibility of more tourist revenue coming into the state under the auspices of the parks system.

Even better, it’s always good to see people thinking along the lines of re-purposing.

As purveyors of OTR tires, we’re of course attuned to related issues, such as recent exciting developments in the world of ORV. (For those who may be unaware: ORV stands for off-roading vehicle.) We were excited to hear that people have started turning old gravel pits into ORV adventure parks, although we can’t say that we were surprised. After all, we already reported on something similar back in July of 2014.  In that case, creative people were using old heavy equipment tires to create obstacles and ramps for a motocross course.

But since this is a trend we’d like to see develop, we decided to dedicate this entire post to sharing it with you.

And let’s be honest: who doesn’t like the sound of an ORV adventure park?

rockcrawling2

Remember that we carry a full supply of OTR tires for all of your heavy equipment needs. Feel free to contact us for the best deals.

 

Image credits (top to bottom): Wikipedia & Oakland County Parks

Spotlight: The New Cat 994K Wheel Loader

Cat 994k wheel loader

In case you have not heard about the new Cat 994K wheel loader, an impressive installment in the series and Cat’s largest up to this point, let us fill you in. This new machine is bigger and badder than anything else they’ve done — and we mean that in the best possible way.

According to a glowing review from the folks at Mining Global, the new 944k wheel loader has much to recommend it:

The wheel loader… features increased payload, versatility, power and productivity and a number of efficiency improvements… The giant machine offers an improved cooling package, added fuel tanks and new high performance buckets in a wide range of capacities for faster loading, high fill factors and increased material retention. (Mining Global)

Especially impressive seem to be the increased power, with these new machines lifting 18-20% more per pass than previous models and boasting an engine power of of 1,739 horsepower (1297kW).

The Caterpillar 994K Wheel Loader will be commercially available in the first quarter of 2016.

According to the specs at Cat.com, this machine looks to be an impressive addition. You can see the full specs here, but for now, allow us to highlight some of our favorites.

 

The New Cat 994K Wheel Loader Specs:

WEIGHT

Operating Weight: 527218.0 lb

Rated Payload: Standard 45.0 tons

Rated Payload: High Lift 42.0 tons

Bucket Capacity Range: 19.1-24.5 m3 (25-32 yd3)

Transmission Type: Cat Planetary Power Shift

HYDRAULIC CYCLE TIME

Rack Back: 4.1 seconds

Raise: 12.1 seconds

Dump: 3.1 seconds

Lower Float Down: 4.2 seconds

Total Hydraulic Cycle Time (empty bucket): 23.5 seconds

BUCKETS

Bucket Capacities 19.1-24.5 m3 (25-32 yd3)

AXLES

Front Fixed Rear Trunnion Oscillation Angle 9°

BRAKES

ISO 3450:2011

SOUND PERFORMANCE

STANDARD: Operator Sound Level (ISO 6396) 72.0 dB(A) Machine Sound Level (ISO 6395) 119.0 dB(A)

SUPPRESSION: Operator Sound Level (ISO 6396) 71.0 dB(A) Machine Sound Level (ISO 6395) 117.0 dB(A)

 

Cat 994K Wheel Loader OTR Tires

The Cat 994K wheel loader runs on the 58/85×57 tire on the 47 inch rim and the 53.5/85×57 Firestone SDT LD 76 ply L5 tire goes on the 44 inch rim.

 

Remember that we stock a full selection of OTR tires for all of your wheel loader needs. Feel free to contact us for the best deals.

Front End Loader Follies: The Madness Continues

ATM smash and grab with front end loader

ATM smash and grab with front end loader

As long-time followers of our blog, you’re no doubt aware that front end loaders seem to be involved in an inordinate amount of crime. Recent news items just add more fuel to the fire, but whether this is coincidence or whether front end loaders really are the problem children of the industry is for you to decide. ;)

The Madness Continues

In addition to the examples of front end loader madness that we’ve compiled in the past, please consider the following headlines as evidence:

  • “Minnesota Driver Arrested for Driving a Front End Loader while Drunk and Mistakenly Thinking It Was Snowing” – While this one certainly isn’t the front end loader’s fault, exactly, one has to wonder what it was doing loitering around in an area where it was likely to be picked up by a drunk. Suspicious. Very, very suspicious. (Mail Online)
  • “Front End Loader Used in Attempt to Steal ATM, Police Say” – First involvement in drunk driving and now robbery? Of course, the Caterpillar in question could claim to be an innocent party – since the heist was ultimately unsuccessful and the operator took off on foot after failing to work the ATM onto the lift – but still… suspicious behavior. (Deseret News)
  • “Woman Killed in Route 128 Crash with Front-End Loader” – At first glace, the headline may beg the question, “What was the front end loader doing in the middle of the highway?” Upon closer investigation, however, the truth is revealed: in point of fact, it was sitting quietly beside the road minding its own business when the driver of the truck veered off course and struck it.  And the tragic result of the careless driving was the death of a woman. (WCVB)

So there you have it: three cases in which front end loaders were used to cause damage, incite mayhem, or otherwise wreak havoc. The question of whether this is coincidence or an organized revolt on their part remains up for debate.

Do you need new tires for your well behaved front end loader? Feel free to contact us for the best deals.

 

Image credit: NewsNet5

Don’t Let Bad Loader Tires Hold Up Your Operation

Wheel loader tires that are in good working order.

In the mining industry, loader tires are at the front lines of taking the brunt of the worst of what mother nature has to offer.  Once the blasting is done and the overburden has to be hauled out, loaders are some of the first vehicles on the job, pulling out rocks and dirt that have been sheltered from the elements for millions of years.

Compared to geological time, your loader tires aren’t even going to last an instant compared to that rock, but in man-hours, your operation is depending on a quality tire that is going to get the job done and resist a lot of that punishment.  There is nothing more irritating to a mechanic of a mining, demolition, or road-building operation than having to stop everything to fix a blown tire.  Mechanics will curse the day an owner was born if they have to continually deal with cheap tires that have to be constantly patched or replaced.  In the long run, at thousands of dollars per replacement, you are better off going for quality instead of volume.

That way your mechanic can get to more pressing matters, like fixing worn hydraulics, or even equipment that is keeping your workers safe on the job.

Whatever the environment, the operation, or the amount of punishment your site is dishing out, one this remains constant: your fleet is only as good as the tires they are riding on.  And your investors will have the confidence they need in an owner/operator when they see that you know the difference between quality tires and cheap garbage.

Contact us today to see what works best for your needs, and the needs of your operation.  Your investors will thank you, your workers will be happy to push that rock around, and your mechanic will have nothing to grumble about.

Thanksgiving OTR Tire Deals!

Bridgestone VSDT

Bridgestone VSDT

Hope everyone has had a great start to the week. We have the following tires specially priced for our Thanksgiving OTR Tire Sale:

  • 4pc – 29.5R25 Michelin XLDD2 – $7,500.00
  • 4pc – 29.5R25 Michelin XLDD1 – $6,300.00
  • 2pc – 29.5R25 Bridgestone VSNT – $6,200.00
  • 4pc – 29.5R29 Bridgestone VSDT – $4,800.00
  • 4pc – 33.5×33 Firestone SRG 32ply – $3,200.00
  • 6pc – 2400R35 Michelin X-Quarry – $7,500.00
  • 3pc – 45-65R45 Michelin XLDD2 – $19,000.00

Price is per tire in USD plus freight. If you have any questions please let us know.

We will be closed this Thursday, and Friday to celebrate Thanksgiving.

We hope those of you in the USA have a great time with your family, and safe travels for you, and your family.

The World’s Biggest OTR Tires Create Their Own Secondary Markets

titan-63-otr-tiresWhen it comes to listing the world’s biggest OTR tires, the first one that springs to mind is naturally the monstrous 63-inch Titan, which stands nearly fourteen feet tall. That’s twice the size of two NBA basketball players standing on one another’s shoulders! Anybody fortunate enough to come into close proximity with one would be a fool not to snap a picture of himself standing in its shadow. They’re just that impressive.

But with all that impressive size come some complications. Nobody who’s ever had to deal with giant tires has ever said that size doesn’t matter. These babies don’t store, ship, and install themselves, and anything weighing six tons isn’t going to be any joke to maneuver into position.

Hence the need for secondary equipment necessary to deal with big tires, such as large truck-mounted tire manipulators. Stellar Industry’s TM20165, which can handle weights of up to 20,000 pounds, is just one of the machines created to help the owners and operators of rigid haul trucks deal with moving and installing these massive tires.

stellar-industries-TM20165-otr-service-truck

Stellar Industries TM20165 OTR service truck in action

This tire-manipulating machine has over 24-feet of reach capability, and at this capacity also allows it to mount and dismount outside as well as inside duals without repositioning the tire manipulator truck. This feature is first of its kind. The TM20165 has a clamping span of 44” up to 165”, with continuous manipulator pad rotation and 315-degree body rotation (Equipment World).

Along with machines such as these, OTR tires also require professionals who can handle proper distribution. That’s where we come in.

Remember that we carry a full stock of tires ready to meet your rigid haul truck and mining equipment needs. Please feel free to contact us for the best deals.

 

Image credits: Gizmag (top) and Stellar Industries (bottom)

Latest Brazilian Mining Industry News Roundup: Top Four Stories

Keeping up with the ever-shifting sands of the Brazilian mining industry can be somewhat of a challenge, but don’t worry. We’re right here to gather up the news and put it in one place for you.

Vale’s CEO Murilo Ferreria is bullish on iron ore and in the running to be the next finance minister of Brazil.

Vale’s CEO Murilo Ferreria is bullish on iron ore and in the running to be the next finance minister of Brazil.

Top Four Recent Stories from the Brazilian Mining Industry:

  1. Reports of precious metals reserves make for promising futures. Based on recent findings, the 2020 forecasts of gold and silver coming out of Brazil look promising. Based on these findings, new mining projects have been slated to start as early as 2016. For a peek at the full report, consult the full article at PR Newswire.
  2. Latin America’s largest steelmaker cuts budget and reviews iron ore expansion plans. Due to falling prices, Gerdau reduced its 2014 investment plan and put its iron ore program into review. According to Bloomberg Business Week, shares rose immediately after public announcement of the decision, signaling shareholder approval.
  3. Vale to persevere with iron ore. Despite historic lows in prices that have driven other mining firms to abandon iron ore, industry giant Vale has decided to expand. According to reports from the Sydney Morning Herald, mining executives seem confident that large amounts of Chinese iron ore production would soon be forced out of the market, providing support for the price. It will be interesting to watch and see how this plays out.
  4. Next Brazilian finance minister could be former Vale exec. Shortlisted for an open government post, Vale’s CEO Murilo Ferreria could become the country’s next finance minister. With other strong candidates in the running, however, it’s far from a foregone conclusion. If he takes the position, it will be interesting to see how this change impacts mining, if at all.

Questions? Comments? See something we missed? Feel free to sound off in the comments below.

Remember that we carry a fully stock of OTR tires for all types of heavy equipment.  We routinely ship tires to Brazilian mines.  Please feel free to contact us for the best deals shipped directly to your Brazilian mining operation.

 

Image credit: Sydney Morning Herald

Canadian Mining Industry in Hot Water Over International Holdings

Canadian_FlagWith one of the largest overseas mining operations in the world, the Canadian mining industry has been facing some fairly severe criticism in the press regarding how they have been handling their share of the load.

First, Canada has been accused of failing to prevent abuses in their overseas mines. According to the InterPress Service, in a large majority of their holdings in Latin America, Canadian companies have been failing to investigate and hold mines accountable for abuses. With some 1,500 projects in Latin America, comprising more than 40% of the region’s mining operations, the refusal of the Canadian companies to comply with voluntary measures has had quite an impact.

“Despite Canada’s assurances that there is good policy, we continue at the commission to see a number of very, very serious human rights violations occurring in the region,” said Commissioner Rose-Marie Antoine for the Inter American Human Rights Commission (IACHR) in Washington this week (Rabble).

Concerned individuals within at least one specific Latin American country, Guatemala, have spoken out with specifics. Referring to a collusion between leaders within the Canadian mining industry and officials within the Guatemalan government, some are claiming that they both “are responsible for violent conflicts and repression against predominantly indigenous communities in Guatemala, a country just 18 years removed from a 36-year internal conflict that resulted in genocide” (TruthOut). Although some changes have been made — changes lauded by Amnesty International — there still seems to be much room for improvement.

It’s our hope that between the governments of these countries and the Canadian mining corporations, reforms can be made which will lead to more fair and honest dealings across the board. Profits are a concern, but remembering that there are lives affected by the rise and fall of numbers must take precedence over the bottom line.  Continued abuse and neglect by the Canadian mining firms could even lead to such a hostile environment that they may not even be able to operate in Latin America.  That would really affect the bottom line.  A modest profit is still much better than no profit or business activity at all.

Remember that we carry a full complement of mining equipment tires.  We routinely ship OTR tires to mines through out Central and South America Feel free to contact us for the best deals.