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The Putzmeister 58-Meter -nicknamed Big Dog by Pioneer Concrete Pumping - offers the longest boom reach in North America, making it ideal for the expansion of the Gwinnett Medical Center.

Call in the

When R. J. Griffin requested excessive reach during expansion of the Gwinnett Medical Center, the general contractor called in the Big Dog. Big Dog is the special nickname Pioneer Concrete Pumping of Atlanta heralded their Putzmeister 58-Meter concrete pump because it features both the longest reaching boom in North America and provides the greatest concrete output in the industry.

With a 188-foot vertical and over 174-foot horizontal reach, the Putzmeister 58-Meter was the only logical answer for the construction crew's request for "reach without extra hoses." Although only a three-story structure under construction, excessive reach was needed because of a large rectangular 130- by 250-foot footprint combined with limited access possible only from the two smaller sides. The other longer sides prevented setup because of a 313-bed hospital on one end and a road, which needed to remain open, on the other end.

Using a large boom pump avoided using smaller units and dragging hoses haphazardly over the rebar according to Mark Lang, project superintendent for R. J. Griffin. He said, "Whenever we can avoid dragging hoses, we do it. It's a lot quicker, keeps labor costs down, and avoids disturbing what's already in place such as the several plumbing sleeves found on this medical building addition."

Tom Inglese, regional manager at Pioneer, also noted that, "We get a lot of requests for our 58-Meter from companies that want the extra reach because they don't want to waste time and labor in dragging additional hoses over post-tension cables or rebar and risk messing them up."

Setup and Operation a Breeze
Positioned next to the building's edge amongst on-site congestion, the 58 was able to fully deploy its outriggers — 32 feet 9 inches in the front and only a 34- foot 9-inch footprint in the rear — by far the most compact rear outrigger spread in its class. Plus, by swinging the outrigger out and extending it down without additional shoes to plug into, setup was quick and easy.

Then, with its four-section roll-and-fold boom, the unit had no difficulty pumping the 4,000-psi mix for the slabs. Although the job maintained outputs averaging 120 yards an hour, the powerful .20H pump cell on the 58 is capable of attaining outputs up to 260 yards an hour; however, ready-mix trucks would have been unable to keep up.

Contractors usually question the smoothness of a large pump's output, but this concern was quickly dismissed when they actually saw Putzmeister's exclusive free-flow hydraulic control system prevent boom bounce. Plus, as the operator has full proportional control of all boom sections, a feather touch operation was achieved from start to finish.

58-Meter Applauded
Pioneer's operator, Bob Shillinger, with over 20 years experience operating a boom pump, mentioned that, "Although the 58-meter is a large and powerful piece of iron, it maneuvers like a smaller pump.

"It's definitely a work of engineering ingenuity because it's extremely smooth, convenient to operate and easy to setup," he said. "Plus, like all the other Putzmeister pumps, the open walkways and steps on both sides of the unit makes it simple to move around the unit during pumping or clean up."

Shillinger went on to praise the unit's stability noting that, "It's also solid as a rock on job sites." The manufacturer attributes this to its advanced technology in using the most lightweight yet highest strength materials on the market.

Pat Inglese, owner of Pioneer Concrete Pumping concluded that, "We've had the 58-Meter for about seven months and found that no other boom pump in its class reaches farther, runs smoother or works more efficiently than our Putzmeister."

Mark Lang further commented that "The Putzmeister equipment was quiet enough that we could start pumping at four in the morning without complaints from patients housed next door to the expansion project. Plus, the reliability of the equipment meant Pioneer got the job done in record time."

Other Pumps Do Their Share
Other Putzmeister equipment was involved with this 7,000-yard job. The 32-Meter pump handled the 5,000-psi mix for the footings, and the 52Z-Meter pumped the walls around the elevator shafts using a 6,000-psi mix with super plasticizer. As two pours per floor were needed for the slabs - 550 yards was accomplished from one side using the 58-Meter to reach the longest area, while the remaining 460 yards from the other side was completed using a Putzmeister 55-meter.

The $15 million construction of the 83,840-square-foot Gwinnett Medical Center's Support Services Building in Lawrenceville, Ga., started in March 2001. It will be completed in October 2002. At that time, it will house a new cafeteria and dietary area, additional space for a laboratory, and relocation of the existing 18-bed neurological unit.

A part of Promina, the Gwinnett Health System is a not-for-profit healthcare organization providing high quality medical care to Gwinnett County and surrounding communities. The Gwinnett Medical Center is one of three hospitals within the Gwinnett Health System, providing comprehensive state-of-the-art health services for the entire family.

JOB SPECS

Owners: Promina — Atlanta
Architect: Perkins & Will, Inc. — Atlanta
General contractor: R.J. Griffin & Co — Atlanta
Pumping contractor: Pioneer Concrete Pumping — Smyrna, GA
Ready-mix supplier: Blue Circle - Atlanta
Equipment: Putzmeister 32Z.16H, 52Z.16H, 55.16H and 58.20H truck-mounted boom pumps