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Excavator facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
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An excavator

An Excavator (sometimes called a backhoe or digger) is a piece of heavy construction equipment. Excavators are used to dig in the ground or to move large objects. At the base of the machine, it usually has two tracks to move it. Above the tracks is a platform that rotates (180° or 360° degrees). The operator sits in a cab and controls the excavator. One set of controls moves the machine forward and backward. Another set of controls operates the arm and the tilting bucket. hydraulic fluid, hydraulic cylinders and hydraulic motors control the machine.

Excavators come in different sizes based on the type of work they do. Some are cable-operated excavators. Some also use wheels instead of tracks.


Excavator operator manual controls IMG 1088
Dashboard and controls of a 3.8 tons excavator

Excavators are used in many ways:

  • Digging of trenches, holes, foundations
  • Material handling
  • Brush cutting with hydraulic attachments
  • Forestry work
  • Forestry mulching
  • Construction
  • General grading/landscaping
  • Mining, especially, but not only open-pit mining
  • River dredging
  • Driving piles, in conjunction with a pile driver
  • Drilling shafts for footings and rock blasting, by use of an auger or hydraulic drill attachment
  • Snow removal with snowplow and snow blower attachments
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Excavator Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.