John Deere adds SmartGrade tech to 750K crawler dozer

john deere dozer topcon smartgrade
John Deere has equipped its 950K Power-Angle-Tilt (PAT) crawler dozer, the largest of its kind in North American, with SmartGrade tech.

John Deere has equipped its 950K Power-Angle-Tilt (PAT) crawler dozer with SmartGrade technology.

John Deere’s SmartGrade technology improves the quality of work and jobsite accuracy through the complete integration of the Topcon 3D-MC2 Grade-Control System.

The 3D-MC2 system is fully incorporated into the machine cabin, structures and software — delivering precise grading performance while eliminating vulnerable external masts and cables.

“The 950K PAT dozer and our entire SmartGrade lineup have been very successful since their respective launches,” said Nathan Horstman, crawler dozers product marketing manager for John Deere Construction & Forestry. “It only made sense to put these two innovations together and provide customers with a game-changer in terms of dozer productivity and efficiency on the job site.”

Integrating SmartGrade into the machine eliminates external cables to the masts, which reduces breakage, and the removal of the masts from the blades helps decrease vulnerability to theft and damage. SmartGrade technology removes the need to install blade-mounted sensors and components daily, reducing setup time, and allows operators to get more work done.

A key feature of the integrated machine control is Auto SmartGrade. This allows the operator to easily adjust the system when moving the machine from one soil type to another, unlike an after-market system, which often requires the GPS manager to make a trip to the machine to recalibrate the system. As well, Auto SmartGrade automatically lifts the blade over heavy loads before track slippage occurs, then returns the blade to grade. SmartGrade also limits the number of passes required, reducing the pace of wear on the undercarriage. The John Deere SmartGrade dozer is nearly 7 per cent more accurate across the entire speed range of the dozer when compared to conventional masted systems.

Another benefit of the technology is that machine dimensions are preloaded into the grade control monitor, reducing the time required to calibrate the dozer to about 30 minutes.

The 950K PAT SmartGrade dozer incorporates an EPA Final Tier 4/EU Stage IV John Deere 9 litre engine with 280 hp. Furthermore, the hydrostatic powertrain will get about 15 per cent more power to the ground versus a conventional torque-converter powertrain.

The John Deere dual-path hydrostatic transmission allows an operator to push a full load through turns without losing material, unlike conventional torque-converter transmissions on competitor machines.

The 6.6 cubic metre, six-way PAT blade gives the operators the flexibility to place material where they want it on every pass using the blade angle feature.