The story of the mechanised excavator goes back to the 1830s when the American William S Otis invented his Otis Steam Shovel and ended total dependence on hard labour for all work involving earth removal. The shovel facilitated the great construction projects of the 19th century like the railroads and canals as well as gravel pits, housing estates, waterway navigations and roads.
In this book an exceptional collection ofcaptioned illustrations recalls the varied work of the rope shovel. These show machinery in action and feature a wide range of models built by Ruston, Priestman, Ransomes & Rapier, Blaw-Knox, Insley and Ruston-Bucyrus, among others. The story takes us up to the 1950s and concludes with the growing popularity of the hydraulic excavator.
Michael D. J. Irwin is a well-known authority on plant and construction machinery.