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Excavator Bucket Design and Durability

Excavator Bucket Durability

The durability of your excavator bucket is a key factor in your excavator buckets design. Different components and manufacturing processes are required for different materials and applications. Using an unsuitable bucket can be massively inefficient as well as detrimental to the bucket and your excavator. Kerfab’s Rhino Excavator Attachments are designed and built according to the application they are expected to work in.

Kerfab are experts in custom designing and building attachments to suit individual needs, but in most instances Kerfab has a standard bucket available. The standard durabilities available are General Duty, Heavy Duty, and Extreme Duty.

Excavator Bucket Durability Chart
Figure 1: Excavator Bucket Durability Chart

General Duty

General Duty Excavator Buckets are designed and built to suit most common usages. These buckets are ideal for digging in low – medium abrasion applications such as top soil, coal, loam, and clay (see figure 1 for more info)

These excavator buckets are designed to be lighter than their tougher counterparts which allows a larger capacity so more material to be handled to decrease cycle times.

Heavy Duty

Heavy Duty Excavator Buckets are designed for machines expected to encounter various material types. These buckets are tougher than a General Duty excavator bucket but can handle the same types of material as well as some harsher materials. The increased armour on a Heavy Duty Excavator Bucket allows it to perform in harsher applications, but the trade-off is in weight.

Side wear plates, rear wear plates, wing shrouds, and other wear parts add weight to the bucket (stay tuned for our guide on GET and wear parts!). This extra weight needs to be accounted for so typically a Heavy Duty Excavator Bucket will have a smaller capacity than its General Duty counterpart.

Heavy Duty Excavator Buckets are designed for the same material as General Duty Buckets but can also handle sand, gravel, shot limestone, basalt, and shale (see figure one for more info).

Extreme Duty

Extreme Duty Excavator Buckets are designed to perform in the harshest applications. Extreme Duty buckets are exceptionally strong, but like Heavy Duty buckets their strength comes at the cost of weight. This increased weight means they are far less efficient with low-medium abrasion applications.

These buckets can come fitted with interior wear liners, exterior wear plates covering the entire side of the bucket, exterior wear plates along the underside of the bucket, heel blocks, lip shrouds, wing shrouds, and secondary wear liners (we will be uploading our next article on GET and Wear Parts so stay tuned).

This protection means an Extreme Duty Excavator Bucket has been designed to handle shot granite, sandstone, broken slag, quartzite, and other heavy and harsh materials.

Dual Radius Excavator Bucket Design

For many excavator bucket styles, a dual radius design is vital for longevity and efficiency. GP Buckets, Mud Buckets, Trenching Buckets, and Tilting Mud Buckets almost always need to have a dual radius bucket shell. A dual radius excavator bucket design means the base of the bucket follows the teeth/edge through the material. This significantly reduces wear on the heel of the bucket.

A dual radius shell is shaped so that the rear of the bucket has very little drag, therefore reducing the pressure on the substructure and underside of the excavator bucket. Reduced drag also means the bucket moves more efficiently through the earth, reducing the amount of fuel required to dig.


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