Types and Uses of Rollers

Jan 3, 2019

Types of Rollers 

When it comes to a road roller, you’d be forgiven for thinking that one model was pretty much the same as the next. But come into Addplant, and you’ll soon see that there are several different roller types and roller uses.  

What is a Road Roller?  

It’s a vehicle that can compact the soil, asphalt, gravel, stone, and more. It’s used when you’re creating the sub-base layer during construction. They are most commonly found in the road construction industries and for creating firm foundations, but their uses are more varied than just that.  

You might find them being used on a farm or even at the rubbish dump. They’re useful almost anywhere that a surface needs to be highly compacted.  

Let’s look at the different types on the market today.  

Cylinder Roller 

This is the one you’re most likely to come across when you’re looking into plant rollers hire services. The principle behind them is simple  they have a heavy drum or a pair of heavy drums that are used to apply pressure to the surface.  

These are best for smoothing a surface or adding a crushed material into an even surface. They are reliable, and the cylinders will vary in weight from about two tonnes to eight tones. Many models allow for the drums to be filled to add more weight.  

The most important aspect here is that the drum needs to be kept clean. Some models incorporate a sprinkler system to facilitate this.  

Their effectiveness depends on the terrain and type of work you’re doing, so it’s a good idea to talk to one of our equipment hire or plant hire consultants to check if this is the right match for your project.  

Vibratory Roller 

This is also a cylinder roller in essence, but it takes things to the next level. The difference is that this drum vibrates as well as rolling. This helps to force out potential air pockets and creates a very dense layer of material.  

They are a more expensive option, but they do offer much better results in a shorter period. They are also a good idea if you’re working with a deeper surface.  

The drum here will usually weigh between four tonnes and eight tonnes. The more modern models will also allow you to turn off the vibrating function and use it as a plain cylinder roller instead.    

Rubber Tyre Roller 

This one looks very different. Instead of a single drum or pair of drums, it has rows of tyres spaced evenly along the back and front of the machine. The tyres are pneumatic and are staggered so that the pressure is applied evenly. 

These are better for situations where you’re dealing with sandy soils, but they may also be used when smoothing tarmac.  

This model weighs between six and ten tonnes, but you can increase the weight by adding ballast. The more modern options can inflate the tyres automatically to the exact correct pressure.  

The other advantage is that they can achieve higher speeds than most other models. You won’t be winning Kyalami anytime soon, but they can go faster than your typical cylinder model. 

They’re not great when you’re working with rocks or rough soil, though.  

Tamping Roller   

These also feature a wheel drum, but in this case, it is a studded one. These are best when it comes to heavier, clay soils since not much of the roller is in contact with the ground at any one time. These are lighter in weight and so better when you’re working on a sloping surface.  

You can also get a model that has a vibratory function.  

Padfoot Roller 

This is similar to the previous model but has larger studs. A padfoot roller can weigh as much as forty tonnes but still move with speed.  

Reference Video: Shailesh 360

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