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 Western Engineered Logging Designs


Our Senior Design Project is to

"Optimize a Log Loader Boom Joint"

Sponsored by

Pierce Pacific Manufacturing Inc.


This boom is mounted on a LinkBelt 4300Q log loader, has a maximum lifting capability of 63,000 lb, and a 42 foot reach with a lift capacity of 20,000 lb at that distance. Pierce Pacific Manufacturing currently builds the joint between the main and the stick booms with four ears and two pins. On the main boom, there are 15 pieces associated with the joint that must all be individually set and welded, making it labor intensive and heavy. The problem they presented was to redesign the joint to make it lighter and faster to assemble.

The following are the steps that we took to design a new joint.

Form a team

Define the problem

Solve the problem


The final design of the casting weighs 530 lb, reducing the boom's overall weight by about 150 lb. There is now only one piece, instead of 15, associated with the joint on the main boom, reducing the manufacturing time by an estimated 10 hours. Pierce Pacific manufacturing is currently designing a new series of booms around this casting design.

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