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Mad skillz with Construction Equipment…

I came across this post on Gizmodo today, with the following video:



Stripped by a Mechanical Shovel! – video powered by Metacafe

Years ago, when I still lived on an acreage, we had a delivery of bricks for the construction of our retaining wall. The delivery truck had a little crane on it, and the guy used the crane to drop the eight or nine pallets of bricks with elegant precision and near-total economy of motion. It was a small thing, but I doubt the worker realized just how impressive his skill was. Likewise, we had a fellow do some Bobcat work on the front half-acre of our yard, and there was nary a missed step as tons of dirt was shifted and ground levels adjusted to control the flow of water across our property. The merger between human and machine was nearly poetic.

I admire the skills of these ballet masters of the mechanical- a testimony to the ability of humans to turn the mundane into something of beauty.

9 comments to Mad skillz with Construction Equipment…

  • At one point, when the bucket started swaying back and forth while it was several feet away from the stunt woman, I was worried. Setting aside the fact that the equipment operator is obviously very skilled, the buckets weigh several thousand pounds. If it started swaying while he was doing the precision work of disrobing the young lady, that could be a bad thing…

  • Oblivion s

    Oh I completely agree, but doing what I do for a living, I can truly appreciate what this man is doing (bizarre as it may be). I’m nixing this, btw. 🙂

  • All I can say is that from my experience using a bobcat, if it were me in the cab the poor model would be a red stain right now.

  • Likewise, Chris. I might possibly, with an hour or so of practice, be able to accurately navigate the bucket to smash elegantly through the wall of the stage (I.E.: hit the broad side of a barn). Having glanced into the cab of one of these shovels, I can reasonably say that the controls appear to be the least intuitive things ever invented: dozens of levers with no fancy waldo glove or the like. I assume each lever controls one hydraulic piston, but the resulting mass of controls does nothing to help me understand how to make economical, elegant motions.

    I must say that the operator does an excellent job playing the stereotypical heavy equipment/construction guy. He kind of looks like Comic Guy from the Simpsons 😉

  • I’m not sure about that model, but most things like Bobcats and picker trucks that I’ve had experience with have one thing that screws up us normal folk: There is no graduated response.

    It’s not like a variable speed electric motor, or even the throttle your car where you can give it a little power, and it moves slowly, or just a little bit. No, the hydraulics are pretty much either all on or all off.

  • The only thing I can say – being a woman in heavy equipment Business – I won´t trust in nobody ripping off my clothes with an excavator…These italian guys are nuts 🙂

  • Welcome, Machine4U 🙂

    One thing that keeps nagging at me… how would the equipment operator practice? I guess you could get a mannequin and use that, but… at some point, you have to put a real, live person in place, and use the real excavator. This is different from, say, knife throwing, where you could use special practice knives or put some armor on the “victim”.

    And you’d have to practice a *lot*: even if you were tremendously skilled at operating the equipment, that doesn’t prepare you for using the same machine to remove clothing 🙂

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