Specifications for a Caterpillar Motor Grader


Motor graders, often used in construction and mining to grade and contour land for roadways, come in many variations. They can weigh from 15 tons to more than 60 tons, with the length of the blade used for shaping earth ranging from 12 feet to 24 feet. Caterpillar, known worldwide for its lines of heavy construction equipment, offers a variety of motor graders.


  • Caterpillar motor graders come in two main classifications: standard and mining use. Standard graders are geared toward construction jobs such as fine tuning the final grade for road paving. Mining motor graders are made for harsher conditions but perform the same function of creating roadways, although with less precision because the roadways will not be paved.


  • The power available in Caterpillar motor graders ranges from 128 to 533 horsepower. More horsepower allows for the grader to move larger amounts of material, climb steeper inclines and increase top speed.

Blade Width

  • Blade width refers to the dimension of the blade, also called the moldboard, that comes in contact with the roadway. The wider the blade, the greater the amount of material that may be graded in one pass, thus reducing the number of passes needed to grade a surface. Blade widths range from a minimum of 12 feet for standard graders to 24 feet for mining graders.

Gross Vehicle Weight

  • The weight of Caterpillar motor graders ranges from 31,891 to 137,694 pounds. Higher gross-vehicle weights provide more resistance to slip, allowing operators to tackle steeper inclines. Heavier graders also work better for moving heavy materials and perform well in harsh working conditions.


  • Caterpillar motor graders come with several transmission options. Among them are automatic with electronic power shift and direct drive, power shift, and counter shaft.


  • Because of the large forces involved, strong braking systems are required in motor graders. Available options include both oil-actuated and oil-disc brakes.

Height of Front Axle Center

  • The distance from the ground to the center of the axle determines how large an object motor graders may traverse. The distance ranges from about 23 inches on the smallest graders to 34 inches on the largest.

Blade Tip Range

  • The angle of blade tip changes the contact angle between the grader and the material that is graded, giving the operator options in shaping the material. Blade tip ranges vary from 5 degrees backward to 40 degrees forward.

Maximum Depth of Cut

  • The maximum depth of cut refers to how far beneath the tires the blade may reach into any given material. The greater the maximum depth of cut, the fewer passes that are needed to remove material.

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  • Photo Credit grader road construction image by Francois du Plessis from Fotolia.com
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