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Checking the Pin Width for Your Hitch

When you’re looking to hire an excavator, it doesn’t matter whether it’s a quick weekend job or a major project. You need to have all of the right equipment to make the job run smoothly. This particularly applies when you’re using multiple excavator attachments. Not all buckets and other attachments are universal, which means you should pay careful attention to the type of excavator you’re hiring and the attachments you intend to use.

This guide will discuss the importance of checking the pin width for your hitch, and how to ensure you get the most out of your excavator hire.

Why is measuring pin dimensions important?

If you’ve already got an attachment that you want to use for your project, but need to hire an excavator, then the hitch needs to be suited to the attachment. Now, if you hire your excavator and attachments from the same provider, you should have no problem because they’ll give you the right attachments. But we understand that this isn’t always people’s preferred method.

If you’re using your own attachment, you’ll need to measure the pin dimensions of the bucket or it simply won’t fit the machine. Since it wouldn’t be practical to return the excavator and ask for a replacement, your most likely course of action will be to go back to the supplier and hire the correct bucket. Ultimately, it’s a waste of time and money.

Which dimensions need to be measured?

When checking the dimensions of your excavator bucket (or other attachment), there are 3 measurements you’ll need.

·        Pin diameter

·        Dipper gap

·        Pin centres

All of these are relevant when choosing the right excavator to use. Remember that hitches and attachments aren’t all universal and that’s why these measurements are important. Fortunately, getting these measurements is extremely easy when you know what to look for. All you’ll need is a tape measure or thin ruler, and the attachment itself.

Let’s take a look at each one in more detail.

Measuring the pin diameter

The first step is to remove the pins from your attachment. This isn’t essential, and many would argue that you can just measure the diameter of the pin itself. While this is true in most cases, pins are subject to wear and tear, which means if you’re measuring the diameter of an old excavator bucket pin, it may not be precise compared to the actual hole that your pin slides through.

This step is extremely simple if you have a ruler or tape measure. Simply remove the pin, and hold the measuring implement across the hole. The distance from one side to the other is your pin diameter. The parts of the attachment that feature these holes are called the ears or the hands of the bucket. Be sure to always measure the diameter of the whole on the outer side of the hands.

Measuring the dipper gap

The dipper gap is the space between the two bucket hands. Again, it’s a simple process to measure this. If your ruler is small enough, simply insert it through the pinhole on one of the hands. If your ruler is too wide, simply use a smaller tape measure.

By putting the end of your ruler or tape measure against the inside wall of the hand, you can easily measure the distance between the two hands (the dipper gap).

Measuring the pin centres

Finally, you need to get a measurement of the pin centre. This refers to the space between the two pins, however, it’s not as easy as putting the pins back in and just measuring the gap. The actual pin centre measurement goes from the front (or outer side) of one pin to the front of the other pin.

Leaving the pins out, hold your ruler against the front edge of one pin, and measure to the front edge of the other pin. Not that this measurement isn’t just for the ‘gap’ between the pins. It actually takes into account the diameter of one pin, plus the gap between the two.

Once you’ve got all of these measurements, you can safely go and choose your excavator and rest easy knowing that you’ll have the right machine for your attachment.

Looking for excavator hire?

If you need to hire an excavator for your next project, look no further than Solution Plant Hire. Not only can you rent an excavator, but also the attachments you need. We’ll ensure all of the attachments match, so you won’t have to worry about your hitch having the wrong width pins. Plus, we’ve got a huge range of other equipment for hire too, such as loaders, graders, dump trucks and every attachment imaginable.

With the right equipment, your project will run smoothly, so don’t mess around with poor-quality machinery and vehicles. Contact Solution Plant Hire today, and find out just how easy it is to hire the equipment you need.

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