“Bigfoot”, with the big ‘feet', is an all-terrain excavator. The Atlas 140 W is equipped with huge 710/45-26.5 20 PR tyres and a specially designed undercarriage developed for working on these enormous tyres, making for 14 tons of pure efficiency.
Stable and surefooted on marshy, wet ground and with a speed of 30 km/h on roads and pathways, Bigfoot always works fast and precisely. This, among others, characterizes the Atlas “Bigfoot” wheeled excavator. “We can use it for all types of jobs in our maintenance association, on both difficult wet terrain and on the road”, says Frank König, employee of the maintenance association ‘Untere Oste' with headquarters Hemmoor, a small town in northern Germany. The vast majority of the association's territory is located in the Cuxhaven area where the Oste flows into the Elbe. The association maintains 573 km of second-level waters, 5.5 km of third-level waters, 41 estuary pumping stations, 108 polder and barrage pumping stations, 32 sluices, 2 culverts, and various earthslides and bed pitches. In the pumping stations, 260 pumps with a power of 30 thru 5.000 l/s are installed. The estuary pumping stations can transfer up to 100,000 l/s into the Oste.
In order to generate extremely low ground pressure, ATLAS chose these ultra-wide tyres with dimensions of 710/45-26,5 20 PR. To achieve this, they designed a very special undercarriage which does not restrict any operating movements. Bigfoot features enormous ground clearance and a low ground contact pressure without, however, exceeding an overall height of 4m. In order to travel over the ground as gently as possible, the axles are equipped with a limited slip differential of 35%, which prevents the wheels from spinning and the excavator from getting bogged down in muddy or marshy ground. All this is combined with enormous power, with an optional second jib, it features a reach of 11m at which it still lifts loads of 1.3 tons without the requirement for any stabilizers. A 4-cylinder Deutz engine with 80 kW/109 hp and Diesel particle filter supplies the necessary power.
This Bigfoot is equipped with a load sensing high-performance piston pump which controls various work movements simultaneously and independent of each other. This feature set is enhanced by an attachment kit for up to ten different hydraulic tools, like hydraulic hammer, vibration pile driver, etc., which can all be controlled from the ergonomic controls in the cab. The hydraulic system was adapted to ensure consistent pressure and oil supply for powered units like mowers or mulchers, and to keep the wear of the tools at a minimum. During mowing operations with an oil flow of 26 litres per minute and a constant pressure of 180 bar, none of the tools' movements will cause a loss of performance with Bigfoot. It has no rivals when it comes to efficiency. The average engine speed is 1,480 rpm, which means that it consumes less than 6.3 liters of fuel per hour.
The cab of the Atlas Bigfoot offers a grand panoramic view and magnificent operator comfort. It features numerous ergonomic features, which make the driver's work easier and more enjoyable. For example the steering column, seat and operating panels can each be adjusted independently, to the each operators individual requirements. Retractable front screen, automatic climate control, and heat-absorbing glass maintain a comfortable environment in the cab. A rear-view camera ensures safety on the road and at work. And, for fast travel on the road, this Bigfoot has a speed of 30 km/h; the optional “sprinter version” has an even higher top speed of 36 km/h.
Here at the maintenance association in Hemmoor, the Atlas Bigfoot is indeed used for any and all jobs. “The Bigfoot performs mowing work, water purification, demolition of foundations, earthworks, lifting jobs, and much, much more. This is how it was intended, and it works very well indeed,” reports Kai Winkler, who is the sales manager supporting the association on behalf of the regional dealer Atlas von der Wehl.Bigfoot combines the benefits of a crawler excavator, i.e. stability and low ground pressure, with those of the wheeled excavator, namely, fast transfers from one site to the next on its own axles.