Here at Moreton Bay Recycling, we’re proudest of our incredible team. But our next biggest source of pride is all the equipment and processes we use onsite.
So we thought we’d share a bit of a behind-the-scenes look in case you’re interested in how concrete recycling works and our concrete recycling systems and machinery.
From humble beginnings…
We’ve come a long way in the last few years from where we started, with one Caterpillar loader and a screening plant. As we’ve grown our team, we’ve also grown our fleet of equipment.
When we were looking to grow, we were pretty fortunate to get some solid advice from the local Lincom team. These guys have been working with recycling equipment for a long time, and we’re actually their neighbours here on Potassium Street, Narangba!
Our founder, Paul Van Der Meer said, “Because I’ve mainly worked with civil construction machinery – diggers, trucks, rollers – I hadn’t had a lot of experience with crushing until recently. So they gave us a lot of advice on what was needed for what purpose.”
According to Paul, our most critical upgrade was the crushing gear – a jaw crusher and impact crusher.
“Once we got those upgrades in, we didn’t have to hire in subcontractors to crush the concrete for us. Now that we’ve got the gear, we can crush all day, every day, which means we always have the material ready to go for our customers.”
Our concrete recycling equipment
Curious about what goes into setting up a concrete recycling plant? Here are all the key pieces of equipment we use everyday…
Front end loader
We have two CAT 950G front end loaders that we mainly use to move materials around. If you visit our yard to purchase aggregates, we’ll use these to load up your truck. We’ve got another two front end loaders (CAT 950Ms) coming in the next couple of weeks, so we’re pretty excited for that! Especially our Sales Loader Operator, Michael Cooper (known as Cooper).
Cooper says, “The front end loader is my favourite piece of equipment to drive because it’s often a bit of a challenge. I’m looking forward to the new loaders because they’ll be even more comfortable and smooth to operate.”
The crushing plant is probably our most important piece of equipment because it’s what transforms all the raw waste concrete into aggregates and dust, ready for our customers to use on their worksites. We feed these raw materials into the first crusher (the jaw crusher). This is our primary crusher that starts to break down the materials. Next, they’re fed through a secondary crusher to break the concrete down further into usable formats. Finally, we have two screens that sort the materials out into different sizes.
We have two CAT 319D L Hydraulic Excavators. Tom Sweeney (Tommy), who runs the plant and machinery, explains how these are used in the concrete recycling process.
“We mostly use one to feed the crusher with raw concrete waste materials. And the other one is used with a hammer and pulveriser to break up the concrete before it goes into the crusher.”
We also have two road trucks that we use for deliveries.
1. A body truck (capacity of 12T) which can pull our quad trailer (bringing the total capacity to 32T)
2. A small tipper (capacity of 5T) for the tighter jobs or home deliveries
So if you need to order some of our concrete products but don’t have time to pick it up yourself (or the right vehicle), we can deliver a load straight to you.
Wheel washer and water truck
Our wheel washer or tyre wash is used by every customer before they leave the yard. It’s a simple process – you drive in, it senses your vehicle, and then it uses recycled water to hose down your tires as you go through. This is a really important piece of equipment to ensure dirt and concrete doesn’t make its way out of the yard onto the road and surrounding areas.
Another thing we use all the time is our water truck – this keeps the dust down in our yard, which is important with a lot of trucks moving through. All our water comes from bores we installed when we built.
The concrete recycling process
Put it all together, and here’s what you get…
- Customers arrive onsite with concrete waste in trucks or mixers, ready to be recycled
- They dump the waste in the designated spot then head to our wheel washer to ensure they don’t leave the site with anything stuck to their wheels
- The MBR team processes this waste using excavators
- We push the waste up to the stockfeed with our loaders
- The excavator then feeds the crush train, which crushes then screens the waste into different recycled concrete products – 75mm, 40mm, 20mm, 7mm, and 10mm aggregates, plus crusher dust and a couple of CBR materials
- We use our front end loaders to load our customers’ trucks with our recycled concrete aggregates, ready to use in their projects, and to load our own trucks to cart product to our customers’ worksites
The future of concrete recycling
So, where to from here? Aside from the two additional front end loaders coming our way, we’ve got our sights set on another piece of equipment for the near future.
“We’ve purchased a 30-tonne excavator and a large pulveriser attachment. This means we’ll be able to take all types of concrete with all types of steel in it and process that at a fairly fast rate,” says our founder, Paul.
This is an important piece of equipment for us because at the moment we can’t put some concrete waste (particularly from large demolition sites) through our machines if there’s a large amount of steel in it. With a more powerful pulveriser, we’ll be able to process anything.
Come and see it all in action
We hope you’ve enjoyed this insider look at our yard and some of the processes we use to recycle concrete and produce the recycled concrete aggregate products. Plus, getting to hear from some of our team.
But it’s no substitute for saying hi in person, so please don’t be a stranger. Give us a call, come and check out the yard, drop off your concrete bits and pieces, and come meet our team.
I look forward to showing you around the place,
– Hilary Dold, General Manager