The Corps Group prides itself on embracing innovation, which is why the company has entrusted the Wirtgen group for its milling machinery needs. Roads & Infrastructure learns how the machines and three-dimensional technology are helping Corps Group’s project delivery.
For three generations, the Corps Group has called Western Australia home.
Founded initially as Karratha Earthmoving by Darryl and Kerrye Corps in 1985, the origins of Corps Group are forged out of hard work. Darryl and Kerrye had to balance bringing up four young boys, while also struggling from week to week in the 1980s.
The company’s first major coup was moving sand to be used for the local Woodside Gas Plant in late 1980, before the business, and its family, underwent its most significant change.
All four boys of the Corps boys left home, before returning to operate the business. Kristian, Vaughan, Beau and Dayne Corps now own and operate the company, which has grown from two pieces of machinery to over 200 employees.
The creation of Karratha Environmental Crushing, Karratha Asphalt and the acquisition of Bitumen Sealing Services between 2013 and 2017 also led to further expansion throughout the Pilbara and Kimberley regions.
In 2020, Corps celebrated its 35th year of operation, before the new Corps brand was launched in 2022, consolidating Karratha Earthmoving, Karratha Asphalt and Karratha Environmental Crushing.
The Corps Group is now one of Australia’s leading tech-driven civil construction companies, which aspires to partner and work with fellow minded innovators. Which is why the company has a long-standing professional relationship with the Wirtgen Group.
A staple of the Corps Group over the last 30 years has been embracing new and innovative technologies, as part of a commitment to sustainable and high-quality project outcomes.
As such, the company is always looking to acquire new and innovative machinery. Which is why, for 14 years, Corps Group has engaged Wirtgen for its equipment needs.
Managing Director Dayne Corps says he’s proud of the company’s continued efforts to find new and improved equipment.
“We’re always keen to take a leading edge in the market. We like to make sure that we’ve got – and are using – the best that’s out there,” he says.
Four years ago, Corps Group were looking to replace an outdated Wirtgen profiler. Utilising the existing professional relationship between the two companies, the Corps Group approached Wirtgen before purchasing Wirtgen W210XP and W100CF milling machines.
Brad Jarvis, General Manager ‑ Corps Asphalt explains.
“The demand for profiling around the Kimberley region has gradually increased. We work on projects of all sizes, so we need flexibility,” he says. “We had discussions with Wirtgen, who were showing us how we could incorporate both machines into our existing technology base.”
The Wirtgen W210XP and W100CF profilers form part of Wirtgen’s extended milling machine range.
With a standard milling widths of 1000 millimetres and 2000 millimetres respectfully, the Wirtgen W210XP and W100CF both feature a 24-volt electrical system, which is used to record job data and power an electro-hydraulic power pack.
Both machines, while suited to different project sizes (W100CF for smaller and W210XP for larger projects), include a range of the latest technologies. Multiple reversing and front cameras, low emission engines and quick and precise manoeuvring are just some of the diverse technologies included on both machines as standard.
Jarvis praises the adaptability of both machines, which he says is thanks to the reduced machine frame and compact design of the W210XP and W100CF.
“We’re a multi-layered company, so it’s important that we purchase machinery which can be used throughout the entirety of business,” he says.
“We’re one of the few companies in the region who can service the needs of clients throughout the entirety of a project, from commencement through to surfacing. Whether you’re using these machines for the surfacing division, asphalt division or earthworks, both the W210XP and W100CF are very effective.”
“I think we’ve done over 1000 lineal kilometres of local road shoulders for Main Roads Western Australia using the W100CF milling machine.”
Another feature which is shared across W210XP and W100CF milling machines is ‘LEVEL PRO’. This levelling system has been developed in house by Wirtgen specifically for cold milling machines and consists of a control panel and multiple sensors.
The system speeds up the operating process, while also increasing the accuracy of each pass by precisely maintaining a consistent milling depth.
Both the Wirtgen W210XP and W100CF milling machines also feature a high-performance conveyor for material loading, with adjustable belt speeds and variable discharge ranges.
For more than four years the Corps Group has embraced three-dimensional technology as part of its asphalt operation.
Managing Director Dayne Corps says the technology has now been installed as standard across most of the company’s machinery fleet.
“We practically run every machine with GPS and Universal Total Stations (UTS). So, we have it on our graders, loaders, excavators and dozers. The next logical step was to put the UTS on our profilers,” Corps says.
Using a three-dimensional design model, Corps Group’s Trimble UTS can show an operator which areas are above or below ideal grade. The UTS then automatically guides the drum to cut at the ideal depth without the need for manual inputs.
This not only increases the accuracy of works, but also enables works to be completed in space-restricted areas due to precise machine guidance.
Corps says the system, combined with the versatility of the Wirtgen W210XP and W100CF milling machines, has significantly increased the efficiency of his operation.
“I can view data on the machines and operators’ performance in real time,” he says. “It’s precise, it’s efficient and it’s one guy to one machine. You no longer need a loader, a ‘truck grader’ and an excavator. It’s literally just the profiler doing everything in one hit. So, the process basically replaces three machines.”
Brad Jarvis says the increased efficiencies have also prevented the devaluation of other machinery.
“It also saves wear and tear. Because of its accuracy, the grinders, dozers and excavators aren’t doing as much work as they have previously,” Jarvis says.
The Corps Group conducts its own maintenance in-house, but for spare parts and after sales support, Jarvis says Wirtgen is there every step of the way.
“Wirtgen are always on the front foot when it comes to servicing. Our relationship with Wirtgen is definitely a positive one,” he says.
This article was originally published in the October edition of our magazine. To read the magazine, click here.
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