The application requires a stout chassis to provide a solid base for the pump’s boom, outriggers and the concrete pump itself. Mack’s MP® engine powers the pump through a PTO. The truck must be on the job for long periods of time, with the engine running at load, and there is no place for downtime when a string of mixers is lined up to deliver concrete. This is where Mack proves its worth to demanding customers.
Doug says they have been successful in part because of his companies’ relationships with suppliers, such as Mack Trucks and its dealers. “I always like to align myself with vendors that can support us,” says Doug, adding that this minimizes the complexity of maintaining the equipment in-house. Mack’s dealers are very responsive, he says. CMP works with its Charlotte-area dealer, McMahon Truck Centers, for service and parts. “McMahon in Charlotte has incredible service. Really from that point, it set our expectations.”
Mack Trucks also provides deep technical support to concrete customers through a dedicated concrete pump support group based in the Greensboro, North Carolina, Uptime Center.
“All that support behind the scenes is critical. That’s what I look at in the decision-making process,” Doug says.
Stone Shooters presents another aspect of the integrated business. While concrete pumps are mainly stationary while on a jobsite, the Stone Shooters trucks come to a site, quickly deliver their load and return to the quarry for more, making multiple trips per day.
“It’s an oversized dump truck with a conveyor belt in the bed,” says Zach Watts, Stone Shooters’ operations manager, about his Mack Granites. “We shoot rock, dirt, screenings—anything that’s not over 2-3 inches in size. We can haul 20 tons at a time and offload it in 10-20 minutes.”
The conveyor boom on the back of the truck can swing in a 240-degree arc and shoot materials as far as 70 feet through the air with precision. This makes the trucks very useful on tight jobsites that would otherwise require emptying a load of material with a skid steer loader over several trips, followed by laborers manually raking out the material. Time is money, after all, and with Stone Shooters, one operator can take the place of a small team.
“Places where it’s a little bit harder to get a piece of equipment into, it’s a lot easier for us just to pull up and shoot. Those are our bread-and-butter jobs,” Watts says.
Dependability is key for Watts. “We have very few problems with the trucks. When we do have issues, we use the Mack dealer in Rock Hill, South Carolina [a McMahon location]. They get them fixed pretty quick.”
One recent development that is a big plus for both companies the Mack mDRIVE™ automated manual transmission.mDRIVE has demonstrated its robustness and reliability even for the demanding material placement applications of concrete pumping and stone shooting.
“We continue to look for opportunities to be at the forefront of technology,” Doug says.
Also, drivers like them. “The team likes these new automatic trucks,” Watts says. “It’s a lot easier to get them around these tight areas in Charlotte. Our trucks drive 40,000 to 50,000 miles a year, from the quarry to the jobsite multiple times a day. It’s a lot of starts and stops, and the mDRIVE is a benefit in traffic.”