The Demo Expo sets record as it showcases equipment for the utility industry


The International Construction and Utility Equipment Exposition (ICUEE) drew thousands of attendees wanting to check out the newest equipment available to them and their companies.

“This is where you go if you want to see anything utility related,” says Hank Barnes of Louisville, who was looking to upgrade his company’s excavator fleet. “Anything in this industry that you can think of, they have it here.”

The Demo Expo, held at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Kentucky, Sept. 29 to Oct. 1, set a show record as the largest ever with more than 18,000 registered attendees (13 percent more than the 2013 show).

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The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) says registrants came from all 50 states, nine of the 10 Canadian provinces and more than 60 other countries worldwide. There were more than 950 exhibitors, including more than 250 companies new to the show.

Exhibitors took more than 1.2 million net square feet of space to showcase their latest equipment and product innovations. “This is the biggest I have ever seen this show. You almost need all three days just to go through it,” says Allen Gueths, who was attending the show and looking for new equipment for his directional drilling and trenching company in Louisiana.

There were several options for Gueths to check out as far as new equipment pertaining to directional drilling. Among product releases at the show were:

Related: Ditch Witch Unveils Enhanced, Next Generation Underground Construction Equipment at ICUEE
  • Vermeer unveiled its D60x90 S3, D220x300 S3. The D60x90 received a big boost to 202 hp (up 17 from the previous model), changing from a 6.8-liter John Deere engine to a Tier 4 Final 7.1-liter Cat. The D60x90 has 60,000 pounds of thrust/pullback and 9,000 ft-lbs of rotational torque. The D220x330 S3 sports 242,100-pound thrust/pullback and has a maximum carriage speed of 120 feet per minute with a maximum ground drive of 2.4 mph. A 415 hp Cat C13 Tier 4 Final engine powers the D220x330. The units will be available starting in December.
  • Ditch Witch announced upgrades to its trencher, vacuum excavator and utility tractors. The company unveiled its FX65 vacuum excavator (74 hp turbo charged Deutz diesel, 1,215 cfm airflow, tank capacities available in 500-, 800- or 1,200-gallons and three water tanks in 200-, 300- or 500-gallon options); its RT80 ride-on trencher (load rating of 39,000 pounds, 74.5 hp, color LCD display); its utility tractors (RT105, RT125, RT125 Quad with high-back rotating seats that can rotate 120 degrees, color LCD display, 107 hp or 121 hp Deutz engines).
  • Sonetics Corporation was displaying its two-way Bluetooth headsets (wireless, stereo listen-through, cold weather to -30 Celsius, 24-hour battery life, programmable).
  • The Toro Company was showcasing several pieces of its equipment, including the RT600 riding trencher (Cummins B3.3 diesel engine, 1.4 mph max creep speed, 6.2 mph transport speed, 20-gallon fuel capacity, optional vibratory plow capable of installing pipe, wire or cable up to 30 inches).
  • Tulsa Rig Iron showed off its MCS Series Mud Recycling Systems with the MCS-750 (1,500 gpm max cleaning volume, 600-1,000 normal cleaning volume, two three-panel linear motion scalping shakers, three-panel linear motion desander mud cleaner with three 10-inch desanding cones, three-panel linear motion desilter mud cleaner with 18 5-inch desilting cones and a 9,000-gallon three-compartment tank, all on a 52-foot tandem-axle trailer).

This was just some of the new and updated equipment on display on the 27-acre ICUEE site. The show also allows contractors — or those making the purchasing decisions for companies — to jump on this equipment and try it out firsthand.

“I operated an excavator from Caterpillar, CASE and John Deere, trying to figure out which one fit me the best,” says Barnes. “This show helps me to decide on what I like the best. It’s like taking a rental car out for a test drive.”

The Demo Expo is held every two years and will be held again in Louisville in 2017. The show focuses on the job needs of utilities and utility contractors in the electric, telecommunications/cable, natural gas, water and wastewater sectors. 

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