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we can’t wait to teach you all
about the huge machines that
build, fix, clear, and bulldoze.
Love, Mom and Dad[/Dedication]
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Copyright © 2012 by Caterpillar.
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form without
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herein, are trademarks of Caterpillar and may not be used without permission.
Book design by Annie Tsou.
Typeset in Eurostile and Helvetica Neue.
Manufactured in the United States of America.
Chronicle Books LLC
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San Francisco, California 94107
TRUCKS AND DIGGERS
Written by Erin Golden
BIG. . . BIGGER. . .
BI GG EST
Do you like trucks and diggers? Big ones? Powerful ones?
Well, here you’ll find all sorts—trucks that help build houses,
fix roads, sweep snow, clear away messes . . . and more!
In this book, you’ll explore trucks and diggers in order of size,
from the smallest on up to a truck so mighty that it can carry
the weight of 46 elephants! Check out the parade of trucks
In case you were wondering . . .
The vehicles in this book are called
“Caterpillar” machines because
one of the Caterpillar company
founders, Benjamin Holt, came up
with the idea to replace wheels
These are early Caterpillar tractors.
with tracks. When a photographer
was asked to take pictures of these
tracked machines crawling all over
the ground, he remarked that they
looked like gigantic caterpillars.
and diggers below—it shows the trucks and diggers you’re about
to meet, so you can see how the smallest compares to the
Each of the machines you’ll find in this book has special strengths.
• The SOIL COMPACTOR’S
tough steel wheels are
perfect for packing dirt
so that new pavement
can be laid down.
• This TELEHANDLER
can lift a load to the
top of a three-story
• The MINING TRUCK is so
big it can’t be driven on regular
highways, because it would
damage them. It has to be
shipped to a mine in parts on a
train and then assembled on-site.
• This HYDRAULIC
dig a hole 31 feet
• The MOTOR GRADER
makes the ground flat for a
new road—but it can also be
• The SKID STEER
LOADER can be a street
sweeper, a snowblower,
and a jackhammer, too!
• The BULLDOZER
can use the teeth
on its multi-shank
ripper to bite into
concrete and tear
• This MATERIAL HANDLER
has an arm so long it can stretch
across a basketball court!
• The BACKHOE LOADER can
do twice the work of most machines
because it has attachments on
• This WHEEL LOADER is so big
that its wheels alone are 12 feet
(3.7 meters) tall!
• This ARTICULATED
TRUCK is strong
enough to carry around
31 tons (28 tonnes),
which is about the
weight of 52 polar
• This MINI-
sure looks small,
but it’s so strong,
it could lift the
weight of three
SKID STEER LOADER
The SKID STEER LOADER may be the smallest of the
trucks in this book, but it’s a very useful machine. This nearly
6,000-pound (2,722 kg) vehicle moves quickly and easily, and it can
do lots of different jobs, like digging, dumping, hammering, raking,
and even snow blowing!
The operator sits
in the CAB in an
Skid steer loaders use an
attachment called a cold
planer to repair concrete,
remove bumps in pavement,
and smooth surfaces so new
pavement can be laid down.
This loader is using a
grapple fork to handle
these bulky, loose, and
oddly shaped objects.
This skid steer
loader is using its
angle broom to
sweep the street
The BUCKET is
designed to dig, load,
and carry all sorts of
materials, like rocks,
dirt, plants, and more.
The joystick on the right side
of the cab is used to control
the loader that holds the
attachments. The left joystick
moves the vehicle forward
The TIRES have extra
large treads for traction
on all sorts of surfaces
from dirt to rock to snow
M I N I - E X C AV A T O R
It may be called a MINI-EXCAVATOR, but this small machine
is mighty. It can dig, lift, carry, and dump. In fact, it can lift over
3,000 pounds (1,364 kg) and dig a hole 15 feet (4.6 meters) deep.
These machines are useful for digging in areas where a larger
excavator would be just too big to fit.
The hydraulic hammer
works like a jackhammer
to smash rocks into tiny
The end of the
arm is called
and it holds the
bucket or other
like hammers or
This miniexcavator is
using its auger
(a large drill) to
dig a hole so a
shrub can be
The CAB contains all
the levers, pedals, and
joysticks the operator
needs to control the
This wide bucket is used to clear out ditches.
digs into the ground
and scoops dirt and
The miniexcavator can
lift over 3,000
kg). That’s more
than the weight
of three cows!
The TELEHANDLER is used to lift things high into the air.
It has a long arm called a telescopic boom that slides out like a
telescope. This arm can have many different attachments at the
end—like a bucket or a forklift, to name just two.
Farmers use telehandlers to transport
bales of hay. Since telehandlers can
carry up to 5,000 pounds (2,268 kg),
this 1,500 pound (680-kg) hay bale is an
This telehandler can stretch
out its boom to lift anything—
even people—as high as 55
feet (16.8 meters) in the air.
That’s as tall as three giraffes!
The CAB is
This telehandler is using its block fork tines
(large metal prongs like those on a dinner
fork) to lift a stack of concrete slabs to the
very top of a new building.
Telehandlers use a special attachment called a
grapple bucket to move and lift bulky objects like
this pile of hay.
The BACKHOE LOADER does twice the work of most
machines. That’s because on one end it has a loader that holds
buckets, forks, and brooms. On the other end, it has a backhoe
that holds buckets or hammers. This machine is a specialist at
road building because it can dig, lift, and carry dirt and rocks to
clear the way for new streets.
The huge teeth on this bucket
help to break up the dirt as the
machine digs into the ground.
The bucket can carry
up to 9,500 pounds
(4,309 kg). That’s
the weight of four