Equipment

Epoke Spreaders Simplify Anti-Icing Efforts

November 2015, Government Fleet - Feature

by Staff

Pictured is a bulk spreader used by the City of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. Photo courtesy of Epoke
Pictured is a bulk spreader used by the City of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. Photo courtesy of Epoke

Compared with conventional bulk salt and brine spreaders, Epoke Sirius Combi AST spreaders allow winter road maintenance fleets to dramatically cut both salt costs and labor time, according to Epoke North America.

An Epoke unit can be used to distribute seven different kinds of materials: salt, sand, split-stone, pre-wetted dry material, liquid, liquid combined with dry material, and pre-wetted dry material and liquid.

Unlike standard spreaders, Epoke Sirius Combi AST models can apply de-icing material over three lanes in a single pass. Additionally, operators can use the model’s in-cab EpoMaster controller to precisely vary the amount of material being spread. The controller also permits the operator to manage the width and direction of the spreading, said Ryan Gillies, marketing and sales coordinator for Epoke North America.

When the Epoke Sirius Combi AST is coupled with the optional EpoSat, which has GPS capabilities, operators can easily record routes and the specific spreader controls on those routes. As a result, winter road maintenance crews are free to focus more on plowing needs.

How They Work

Epoke spreaders take advantage of the “Epoke Principle,” in which a pre-­wetting mechanism uses an agitator, feed roller, and rubber conveyor belt to deliver a precise amount of material to the spreader disk. The salt is crushed at the roller and dropped onto the un-laden conveyor belt, where the material is metered and fed into the spreading disk.

Each Epoke spreader also has a specially designed tank for storing liquids. The company’s largest spreader can carry up to 12 cubic yards of dry material with 2,930 gallons of liquid.

Spreading the right mixture of crushed salt and liquid reduces both the volume of dry salt needed and the incidence of salt bounce and scatter on the roadway. The Epoke spreaders have variable pre-wetting of 5-30%, meaning that up to 30% of dry material can be replaced by liquid. That ultimately saves money and is less harmful to the environment, Gillies said.

Epoke spreaders are ground-speed related, which allows material to be consistently spread at all speeds. Also, no material is spread when the truck comes to a stop, another feature that prevents waste.

Operators can use the Epoke spreader’s in-cab EpoMaster controller to precisely vary the amount of material spread on roads. Photo courtesy of Epoke
Operators can use the Epoke spreader’s in-cab EpoMaster controller to precisely vary the amount of material spread on roads. Photo courtesy of Epoke

Reducing Salt Use

Installation of Epoke spreaders is safe and fast, according to the manufacturer. Chuck Novak, street and sanitation commissioner for the City of Cuyahoga Falls in Ohio, echoed that claim.

“It only takes a few minutes for us to change our dump trucks into spreaders and vice versa,” Novak said. “And it doesn’t matter if the spreader is loaded with wet or dry material either.”

Cuyahoga Falls’ move to Epokes has resulted in a 50% salt savings each winter season compared to when the city relied on large hoppers that dispensed dry salt, Novak said.

“The Epoke bulk spreaders are real game-changers,” Novak said. “For overall performance, safety and material control, nothing we’ve ever used or heard about can match them for combating snow and ice.”

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