Various functions of Excavator Undercarriage Parts

While many people can readily envision an image of an excavator, knowing the functions of excavator undercarriage parts is unknown information.

The traditional form of excavators has not evolved since its first inception despite the many changes in its design. While big and mini excavators may not have the same capabilities and features, the excavator undercarriage parts remain basic for all of them.

Giving excavators the ability to move around the work area is the main function of their lowest section known as the undercarriage.

Excavators can move quickly around any work area with the help of their undercarriage. The various models of excavators may look different but they all share the same undercarriage parts which are:


The blade is an optional attachment that may not be available for all excavator models. However, an excavator undercarriage attached with a dozer blade quickly clears the ground by removing any loose material.

Many excavator owners have seen the importance of having dozer blades attached to the undercarriage. This is the reason for some excavator models showing the inclusion of dozer blades in their undercarriage.


The metal caterpillar tracks fashioned showing steel pins connecting a series of steel plates were the traditional equipment of excavators. Considered as the continuous track, track sprockets were used to drive the two-toothed wheels running on rollers. The extremely durable steel was the initial material used for excavator tracks.

However, paved surfaces of worksites become damaged when steel tracks rolled over them. This has made excavator manufacturers come up with another track design; the rubber tracks.

The creation of rubber tracks also placed excavator owners in a quandary. Are the rubber tracks a better option than steel tracks?

Rubber Tracks vs. Steel Tracks

Advantages of Rubber Tracks

While steel tracks remain the irreplaceable choice, the rubber tracks have become increasingly popular for the following benefits:

  • Manoeuvrability
  • Affordability
  • Lesser surface impact
  • Comfort
  • Speed

Advantages of Steel Tracks

  • Less repair and maintenance
  • Easy to clean and upkeep
  • Tough and durable
  • Provides balance and counterweight
  • Provides uniform load transfer and distribution

Final Drives

Connecting the engine above to the gearing system and the hydraulic motor is via the drive shaft. This connection provides tracks to be individually powered to allow them to turn to the left or the right. An excavator is allowed the power to turn on the spot by moving one track and stopping the other track.

Track Frame

The main body of an excavator’s undercarriage is known as the track frame. It is designed as a rectangular-shaped solid steel frame with sides featuring the track bodies. The swing bearing, slew ring, and swing gear are the parts that are found in the track frame. A centre pin connects the track frame to the house of the excavator. An excavator can perform a 360 rotation when a hydraulic swivel is installed at the apex of the track frame. A stationary excavator can still perform left to right movements with the help of the track frame.

Understanding the various excavator undercarriage parts allows an owner the right way to maintain its tip-top condition. A well-maintained machine holds the secret to its longer lifespan.


Using mini excavators

Mini excavators can make a great many tasks easier. The smaller size of these excavators makes thee efficient for a variety of purposes including:

  • Plowing purposes, it easier to plow the snow with the help of mini diggers because it’s easier to maneuver and causes little ground damage.
  • It’s easier to dig trenches or holes
  • Works well for digging bigger trenches as well. Despite its small size it can be used for a variety of purposes and can get the job done in half the time.
  • Demolishing small structures without causing damage to the surrounding areas
  • Landscaping work including digging for pools.

In order to make sure that mini excavators are handled properly, the following things should be kept in mind:

  • It’s always better to hire a trained professional for handling a mini excavator. If you have no prior experience using a mini excavator, it’s better to get professional help. Plus it would cost no damage to the machine and the surrounding structures as well.
  • If you plan to use the excavator on your own and consider yourself fit enough to operate it, make sure you read the user manual carefully. The manual consists of a detailed description of all the parts of the vehicle and its different controls. Each control serves a different purpose.
  • When using the machine for the first time, check out all the warning signs. These are the signs which tell you when the machine shouldn’t be used. Also make sure to find out where the fire extinguisher is placed. The coolant level and the lubricant should be checked as well.
  • It’s necessary to test the mini excavator before use. Always put on the seat belt before you plan on operating the machine. The machine should always be tested on a large open area. It would be easy to go through all the controls and get a feel of the machine.
  • Mini excavators make use of rubber tracks which only allow forward and backward movements. It’s therefore important to be used to this limited range of motion.

Why use mini excavators

The following are a few reasons why contractors would want to make use of mini excavators:

  • When compared to standard excavators, mini excavators are small and lighter. This allows these to be used for residential landscaping projects.
  • These also cause less track marks because of being lightweight. This means there is less damage to the ground as well. In smaller areas where space might be an issue but a project still has to get under way, a mini excavator can come in pretty handy.
  • It’s also easier to get around when compared to standard sized machines. Thus its compactness allows it to be easier to maneuver.
  • Mini excavators are more versatile when compared to standard excavators. There are several attachments which can be used with the mini excavator thus making these suitable for a variety of projects from landscaping to digging reservoirs and digging trenches etc.

Find mini excavators for hire in Melbourne to assist you in the speedy completion of your residential project.