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Track Hoe Failure

A metallurgical failure analysis was requested on a track hoe used to offload debris from barges. Reportedly, the track hoe bucket had several reinforcements added at the behest of the manufacturer, and subsequently the track hoe boom failed. The boom failure occurred in a fillet weld where the bucket hydraulic cylinder support plate attached to the track hoe boom.

Based on visual examination and photographic documentation, failure of both the bucket and boom were the result of operational stresses attributable to the equipment usage. The subject braced track hoe bucket is shown in Photograph A.

Braced track hoe bucket
Photograph A Dog bone brace (marked #3), which had cracked and had been replaced.
Overall view of track hoe bucket
Photograph B  Bucket of track hoe.
Overall view of failed track hoe boom
Photograph C Track hoe boom failure. Topography, texture and color gradation of the fracture surface
indicate that the failure was progressive and the result of metal fatigue.

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J.E.I. Metallurgical, Inc.

5514 Harbor Town
Dallas, Texas 75287

Phone: (972) 934-0493
Fax: (469) 737-3938
Email: r.c.jerner@metallurgist.com

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