The history of earth working tools
The history of earth working tools is a potted history of the evolution of human culture and the inventive genius of mankind
1/ In the beginning: Brain and brawn
The muscular strength of men and animals: cattle, horses, donkeys; and the use of the elements, water, wind and gravity.
The creation of tools: hoe, spade, basket, couffin, ramp, wheel, hoist, lever, plough share
The barrow, developed by Blaise Pascal, was first used on a construction site in 1610 by Johann Clauser Koth.
The first animal drawn scraper appeared at the start of the 17th century.
- Barrow in the mid 18th century (all rights reserved )
2/ The first excavating machinery was water-based
In 1718, de la Balme, a Frenchman, designed a floating excavator. 12 men were needed to move it.
In 1726, Dubois, also French, designed a bucket shovel on a chassis moved by wooden wheels. This idea of this forerunner was not to reappear until 100 years later.
- Poclain TY45 shovel (all rights reserved)
3/ From the 19th century on: methods become more and more mechanised
The excavator and steam shovel on rails appeared in 1850. They loaded wagons on railway lines.
In 1913, the Holt 75 was a caterpillar tractor with a front steering axle.
The towed grader appeared in 1931. It became the spearhead of highway construction.
The towed scraper appeared in 1946
The wheeled tractor appeared in 1947 in the form of the DW 10 Caterpillar.
In 1960 came the first Poclain hydraulic shovel.
- Liebherr T282 dump truck (all rights reserved)
Currently in 2004 , the largest dump truck in the world is the T282 from Liebherr with a 363 t payload. Its 3,650 HP engine supplies the electric motors fitted in its wheels. It travels at 65 km/h... and can brake as well!