Aggregate Recycling Corporation has accomplished something most don’t often succeed in doing: they do many things well. ARC got its start in 1987 as a soil recycler but smartly positioned themselves to capitalize on the wood and organics recycling boom that began in the late 1990s. Most recently, ARC opened a tipping floor to accept an even wider range of materials, from mixed C&D to concrete, brick, and even MSW. “We now run a transfer station to collect incoming waste streams,” explained John Doherty, CEO of Aggregate Recycling Corporation. “We manage a single stream recycling process, diverting the MSW to landfills and the recyclables to their various relevant processing facilities. But the organic and aggregate materials we receive get processed on site here.”
Much of the organic material that ARC receives is comprised of demolition wood, green waste, and other wood waste products. Their sourcing team has spent years building a broad network of relationships with contractors, waste transporters, landscapers, municipalities and other larger institutions, and regularly has a high-volume supply of these materials to process. With such a wide range of processing needs, ARC requires a full stable of equipment to perform the various reduction and sorting work necessary to add value to these waste materials.
Over the years, Doherty has overseen the purchase of numerous shredders, grinders, screens and other processing systems. And he’s come to have a strong preference for Doppstadt equipment. Ten years ago, ARC took delivery of a DW 3060 slow-speed shredder, the first of many Doppstadt machines that have turned out countless tons of material in their Eliot, Maine facility. The low-speed, high-torque design of the DW series shredders is perfect for processing bulky, contaminated material, generating a 6″ to 10″ primary reduced product. With a hydraulically-actuated comb to allow harmless passage of tramp and other unshreddable material, the reliability of the DW series shredders has been quite beneficial to ARC’s operations.
ARC has also employed Doppstadt AK series high-speed grinders, with the most recent model being an AK 430. The upswing hammermill design of the AK series grinder produces a highly consistent finished product, perfect for mulch, animal bedding or boiler fuel. Because of the high volume of organic material in their incoming streams, the AK grinder is a key component of the added value ARC injects into the final products they can sell back into the market.
“The Kombi provides a huge advantage for us,” shared Doherty. “It’s a single machine that can handle numerous materials. It definitely delivers greater output, processing much more material in less time than we can using our DW shredder and AK grinder together. That directly translates into savings across the board: in fuel, in manpower, in feeding equipment. We clearly just get more bang for the buck.”
Doherty had been aware of the Kombi for quite some time; it has been in production for more than a decade in Germany. But because the processing needs in Europe can differ significantly from the waste materials generated in the United States, it hadn’t yet demonstrated a convincing advantage for ARC’s specific applications. But that changed in 2012 when the Kombi received the BioPower upgrades that Doppstadt has been incorporating into their DW series machines for several years now.
“When the Kombi became available with the BioPower option, that really changed the equation for us,” Doherty continued. “With more teeth on the cutting surface of the shredding segment and a higher horsepower engine, we can now get more shredding capacity right from the get go before [the material] even hits the high-speed grinder.”
With the introduction of the BioPower option, Doppstadt offers slow-speed shredders with higher horsepower, and 42 teeth on the shredding shaft, compared to 26 on a standard model. The additional teeth generate a much more aggressive shredding action, which is very beneficial to wood waste and green waste processing, a common application in the United States. But it’s the performance with a different material that has impressed the team at ARC the most.
“Processing shingles in the Kombi is phenomenal. We don’t even use the high-speed segment, it just makes a great product in one pass, and we’re seeing very high production with minimal overs to regrind. You get a much more aggressive reduction performance in the Kombi than you would through an ordinary [DW series] slow-speed and that works really well in the challenging application of shingles processing.”
ARC also uses their new Kombi regularly to make an alternative daily cover material from the construction and demolition debris that comes into their operation. “The ability to make an ADC in one machine in a single pass is a big deal. In the past, we would need to use a couple of machines and bring in a screen as well. But the Kombi has really changed the economics of that process and it makes much more sense. It’s much easier now than lining up a bunch of pieces of equipment and paying for the fuel and labor to run them all.”
Since the Kombi is still relatively new to their operation, Doherty is still figuring out all the advantages it can bring, and the precise economic benefits it introduces into all their various material processing equations. But right from the start, it is quite clear that the Kombi has made a major impact on their bottom line. As ARC approaches three decades in business, it has been their ability to diversify and truly capitalize on their diversification that has brought them so much success. Strategic application of equipment is just one part of their operation, but they have demonstrated time and again that they can recognize where the right investments can pay off. And the addition of the newly redesigned Doppstadt DZ-750 Kombi is the latest investment that is already paying dividends.