|D8R with ripper and stumpsplitter|
|Forestry sweeps over engine|
Shown here is a 1996 version of the Cat's latest and greatest D8. The D8 has been around in some form or other for over 60 years, and with every version it has gotten bigger and better. The D8R has recently been replaced with the D8T, the current production model which is to be found on the Cat website. It is fitted out here with what you would call a 'four barrel-single shank ripper--so called because it has but one ripper shank, and is controlled by 4 hydraulic cylinders, two to raise and lower the unit and two to adjust the pitch of the tooth.
In an interesting innovation compared to older dozers, there is a bar that connects the main frame of the dozer below the radiator to the blade (with ball sockets on each end, of course) It runs laterally from the lower left corner of the main frame to the right side of the blade. It incidentally also serves as a conduit for the tilt cylinder hoses. Its true purpose, however is to manage the side stresses of the blade, and transfer them directly to the mainframe of the dozer. This contrasts to the classic design in which the side stresses of the blade where transferred to the swing frames via 'bang pads' on the front of the swing frame.
The horsepower of this model is given to be 305hp and the weight is 72,930 lbs. with the blade but without the ripper. The classic oval tracked D8 was the 46A model (D8H) which was made for many years. It began at 235 HP and eventually became a 'highpower' model at 270 hp. We have come a long way since the 'D8' stood for Diesel with 80 horsepower.
By contrast the D8T shows 347 gross horsepower and 84,000 lbs. or so of weight with 310 hp net horsepower and features a 16 foot blade.