Postcards from Las Vegas

Feb. 1, 2011
The busy winter tradeshow season started last month with World of Concrete, the first of three construction equipment and general tool showcases to be held in Las Vegas in early 2011. RER is presenting ongoing coverage of the latest stories and innovation

Attendance Down Amid More Upbeat Attitudes at World of Concrete

World of Concrete 2011 announced show attendance at 48,554 professional registrants, a significant decline compared to its peak of about 92,000 in 2007. Exhibit space also dropped to 515,000 square feet, compared to 900,000 square feet in 2008, with total booths declining from about 1,700 during the peak to fewer than 1,300 last month in Las Vegas.

“Even though the numbers are slightly down from 2010, we have found that a majority of our exhibitors are actually getting quality leads and making more sales at the show,” said show director Jackie James.

Exhibitors gave the show mixed reviews. Some complained about the drop in traffic, while others felt the quality was strong with a high percentage of attendees being decision-makers. Some noted that during the peak years, contractors often rewarded employees with a trip to the show, thus filling booths with “tire-kickers” who lacked decision-making power. As one exhibitor told RER, “I'd rather have 20 visitors to the booth in an hour and have them all be owners and potential buyers than 200 visitors with no decision-making power.”

More than a dozen foreign delegations attended World of Concrete 2011. The show also featured an Export Finance Briefing attended by delegates from Angola, the Dominican Republic, Iraq, Mexico, Nigeria, The Philippines and South Africa.

A wide array of events, competitions and educational seminars were presented at the show. Next year's World of Concrete will be held January 24-27 in Las Vegas.
Michael Roth

Wacker Neuson Names WOC Trowel Challenge Winner

Wacker Neuson last month announced the final results of its third annual Trowel Challenge competition held recently at the World of Concrete in Las Vegas. The winner is Stu Angeli, representing Lindsay Lampasona Concrete Building Partners, Norfolk, Mass., who came in with the winning time. Angeli's company took home the grand prize, Wacker Neuson's customized CRT 48-35VX ride-on trowel powered by a special Vanguard Big Block V-twin engine, and for his operating skills Angeli will receive an all-expense-paid trip for two to the Caribbean.

More than 150 trowel operators took this year's challenge held in Wacker Neuson's outdoor exhibit at World of Concrete. The challenge tested the participants' entire range of skills as they maneuvered around an obstacle course on the 2,400-square-foot slab. Preliminary competitions were held Tuesday through Thursday during the show. The contestants with the top 10 times from the preliminaries advanced to the finals held at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 20. The top 10 finalists each had one run through the course and that time was added to the preliminary time.

Angeli came into the finals in fourth place, but his final run time of 28.091 gave him a combined winning time of 56.426 seconds. Runner up, Jody Knockwood, Power Concrete Finishing, Charlottestown, Prince Edward Island, Canada, finished in 57:356 seconds. This year's competition was extremely fast, with all Top 10 challengers finishing under last year's winning time of 68.16 seconds.

Wacker Neuson's 2011 ride-on Trowel Challenge competition started as a six month, cross-country road show that covered nearly 15,000 miles, dozens of dealer events and contractor jobsite visits. Hundreds of World of Concrete spectators watched the challenge throughout the three days and toured Wacker Neuson's exhibit that showcased a complete line of concrete and construction products.

Wacker Neuson is headquartered in Menomonee Falls, Wis.
Brandey Smith

Trowel Challenge competition during World of Concrete.

Terex Introduces Backhoe and Skid-Steer Lines at World of Concrete

Terex presented its new line of skid-steer loaders and a new backhoe loader at the World of Concrete show in Las Vegas. The eight new skid-steer models — both vertical lift path and radius lift path — range from 50 to 83 horsepower.

“Terex skid-steer loaders are ideal for rental, landscape, construction, and agricultural applications where contractors and owner/operators need reliable, productive machines that get the job done efficiently and cost effectively,” said Jamie Wright, product manager for Terex Construction Americas.

The four radial lift path models, the TSR50, TSR60, TSR70 and TSR80, and vertical lift path models (TSV50, TSV60, TSV70 and TSV80) were designed with enhanced ground clearance and rear angles of departure. Ground clearance is 10.5 inches on the medium-frame loaders, along with a 29-inch rear angle of departure.

Hydraulic joystick controls come standard on all Terex loader models.

Incorporating more than 50 years of engineering expertise into its design, the TLB840 has an 88-hp Perkins engine and is powered by an optional 4-speed servo-power syncro transmission with automatic shifting, delivering enhanced fuel efficiency.

“We surveyed customers about what features and functionality they wanted in a backhoe loader, and we designed this machine around what our operators asked for,” said Tom Reith, product manager, “a spacious, ergonomic cab, extended dig depth and reach capabilities with increased power and maneuverability.”

The unit has a curved boom design that offers operators greater clearance to reach over obstacles and the ability to load closer into trucks for greater productivity. The “deep dig” extendable dipper stick is new on the TLB840, along with an optional thumb attachment that enables operators to clamp objects and materials between the bucket and dipper.

In addition, Terex Roadbuilding presented its new Hydra Platforms HPT 11/38 truck-mounted under-bridge access platform at the show. The unit is the company's first cross model, matching the trailer platform with a truck chassis. The unit weighs less than 26,001 pounds, thus does not require a CDL license to operate.

“An operator needs only a regular state-issued driver's license to drive the HPT 11/38,” said Mark Duckwall, sales manager, under-bridge access platforms for Terex Roadbuilding. “This makes it much more convenient for the contractor to transport and it's an ideal unit for the rental industry.”

The unit features a 38-foot-long and maximum 42-inch-wide telescoping platform. Its weight capabilities of 1,000 pounds total and 500 pounds at the end of the platform are designed to securely accommodate multiple workers with tooling. Offering a maximum 16-foot lowering depth and 180-degree rotation, the platform is designed for applications ranging from bridge inspection and restoration to stripping operations and utility work.

The unit is designed for five-minute deployment and features the patented tower separation system.

“At no time are the workers disconnected from the bridge deck like they are with traditional lifts,” said Christer Bradley, director of sales and marketing, under-access bridge platform for Terex Roadbuilding. “Power failure does not prevent the worker from returning to the deck when using our unit.”

The hydra platform was shown at the World of Concrete and will be on display again at ConExpo in March.
Michael Roth