Product feature: Xcentric Ripper

Designed for the mass extraction of rock, we present to you the Xcentric Ripper Mining Series

Precision and precise performance are some of the words used by contractor Greg Keen to describe his Xcentric Ripper being used in the construction of the 54km Lake Dunstan cycle trail.

Greg Keen is using the Xcentric Ripper in the construction of the 54km Lake Dunstan cycle trail

On a project like the one at Lake Dunstan, the XR 15 has also helped reduce the environmental impact by helping to minimise any disturbance of in​ ​situ materials in the steep cut batters outside of the track’s immediate pathway. This will also help to reduce long-term maintenance costs.

XR15 working on Lake Dunstan cycle trail

Lake Dunstan was formed following the construction of the Clutha Dam and the new cycle trail, which is due to open during the summer of 2020–21 at a cost of around $6.6 million, is part of​​ development under the control of the Central Otago Queenstown trail network.

The location for cycle trail build

Winton-based contractors Wilson and Keen have the responsibility for the lengthy section stretching from north of Pizza Moorings and on to Cornish Point South of Cromwell and have utilised the Xcentric Ripper to help offset the challenge delivered by the rugged Otago schist rock that predominates in the region. 

"This material presents its own set of challenges, especially when you’re working in close proximity to a waterway and trying to minimise the environmental impact of the project, so the XR is a real bonus for us," says Greg.

Schist is a medium grade metamorphic rock formed millions of years ago. It has its own unique structure being folded and kneaded during metamorphism. The Xcentric Ripper has the ability to focus the energy exactly where you need it with a great deal of precision.

The XR has the ability to focus the energy exactly where you need it with a great deal of precision

This significantly reduces the usual difficulty associated with the excavation of this material.

"Traditional equipment such as breakers and rippers aren’t really the solution, so we’re using the XR15 on a 17-tonne digger and getting fast, precision performance without excessive shattering.

"As well as ripping the stone, we’re also using it to help carve out the actual track so it has become a real trailblazer for us."

The Xcentric Ripper Mining Series is a hydraulic excavator attachment designed for the mass extraction of rock in mining, quarrying, and civil applications.

Its manufacturer says it’s recognised as the world’s most productive, reliable, and technologically advanced hydraulic ripper and features a patented system of ‘Impact Technology by Accumulation of Energy’ and is in most instances, up to five times more productive than hydraulic breakers.

The Xcentric Ripper can be used in a range of materials without any need to change attachments

"It’s also a very versatile piece of equipment," says Greg. "Being able to use it in a range of materials without any need to change attachments is a major plus and we can see it adding long-term value for us across a wide range of future projects."

Boss Attachments is the Australasian agent for both Xcentric Ripper and its sister attachment, the Xcentric Crusher Bucket.

"We now have a number of Xcentric Rippers operating in the country and the prevailing comments that we’re receiving from clients are in regard to large production gains being achieved and the reductions in cost by as much as 50%," says Boss MD Paul Herbison.   

The Xcentric Ripper has been specially manufactured for high-production applications where continuous work shifts, reliability, and excavator operator comfort are paramount. Designed for quarrying and mining, it’s also widely used in demolition and general contracting. It has also proven to be a positive and environmentally-friendly alternative to dozer ripping or blasting.

The XR has proven to be a positive and environmentally-friendly alternative to dozer ripping or blasting

It also is quieter and has less vibration than most conventional extraction methods and this allows for work to be carried out in close proximity to other infrastructure. As well as increasing overall production and reducing shift downtime, the outstanding design and build qualities of the Xcentric Ripper also deliver a number of other important operational benefits.

These include no daily maintenance or daily lubrications and oil changes only needed at the manufacturer’s prescribed intervals. The XR range is now well proven in New Zealand conditions across both mining and general contracting projects, which have involved a wide range of rock types.

These have included Schist up to 60mpa, greywacke, basalt, and lime rock. In a recent Australian project, an XR82 working in Hawkesbury sandstone produced in excess of 250 cubic metres. Kerry Reilly, manager of Winstone’s Meremere Quarry, describes their XR as a real game changer, while Blair Skevington of Skevington Contracting is full of praise for the XR 20 that they purchased for a Mt Campbell Dam project.

"Because of the proximity to the dam, we couldn’t use explosives and our D8 Cat wasn’t up to the job. It has been a great investment, being both cost-effective and delivering a hassle-free operation."

Full range of XR models suitable for eight- to 150-tonne excavators are available to provide solutions to customers rock excavation needs. Dredging applications can also be tailored for excavators up to 600 tonnes.

For more information, contact Paul Herbison on 027 290 8306 or visit 

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