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Cat scrapers from the archives

We have a strong following on the Digger Man Blog Facebook page of old school muckshifters who recall with much admiration the glory days of the motor scraper in the UK.

With that in mind I thought I would have another rummage back through the archives and dig out some Caterpillar scraper photos for everyone to enjoy. Some of these have graced the pages of the blog before, but it’s always good to take another look back at these old giants from a past earthmoving era.  First up we have a couple of old Cat DW-21’s being ably assisted by a Cat D9 fitted with a rope controlled pusher blade on a CA Blackwell job somewhere in the UK.

Cat DW21’s once again feature in this shot, owned and operated by Highway Contractors Ltd of Ilkeston. The 18 cubic yard DW-21 was Caterpillars first two-wheel tractor unit style motor scraper and was first released in 1951.

This Caterpillar 631A model is seen working on the M1 project near Wakefield in 1966. This machine was essentially a revamped DW-21 at the rear featuring the same old cable control, but with the all new 631A tractor unit at the front. The later 631B would feature full hydraulic control.

This Caterpillar 657 was operated by P Merriman of Syston in Leicestershire. Seen here passing a giant pylon close to the M1/M18 junction in 1966, the Cat 657 was a 44 cubic yard scraper and was one of the biggest scrapers deployed in the UK. In the Caterpillar range it was only surpassed by the massive 666 model with a carrying capacity of 54 cubic yards which remains the largest scraper ever built by Caterpillar some 34 years since it was discontinued in the range.

Finally in this batch a Caterpillar 631D model which was owned by famous muckshifting outfit John Jones Earthmoving. Seen here being picked up on a low loader.

Look out for more archive shots on the Digger Man Blog soon.


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