JBA Multi-Coupler

Published: 11th August 2010
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Date: 05/01/2009

In 1985 Jack Balemi's Coupler revolutionised the way buckets could be changed and other attachments fitted to excavators. The manual removal and replacement of numerous pins and hydraulic lines to change attachments gave way to a simple coupler mechanism - permanently connected to the manipulating mechanisms and hydraulics on the excavator arm - enabling the operator to change attachments by operating the simple lock and release actions of the coupler.

Through licensing arrangements with international manufacturers such as Millers in the UK the use of the JB Coupler quickly spread throughout the world, to the point that, years on, the Quick Hitch Coupler - as it came to be known - is an essential item of excavator equipment.

As the use of the Quick Hitch Coupler became wide spread with various manufacturers and OEM's promoting copies and their own iterations of the original JB Coupler, issues as to the bulk, size, ease of use and safety have come to the fore. Indeed, in relation to the safety aspect, the accidental release of attachments resulting in serious injury has become a cause of major concern with the Quick Hitch Coupler.

Jack passed his passion and intimate knowledge of his coupler onto his son Tim who inherited his fathers' inventive intuition and technical capability. Tim leads the JBA design team's search to address the design issues that have arisen so as to improve the operation, performance and safety of the Quick Hitch Coupler.

Having worked over the years on making improvements to the original Jack Balemi Coupler, five years ago Tim and his team embarked on developing a whole new style of coupler. This arose from a growing awareness that today's standard coupler no longer matches the increased capabilities of modern excavators and nor do they meet the growing safety expectations that the contracting industry is entitled to have. The result of the research and trialling is the JBA Multi-Coupler, formally released in 2008.

The patented JBA Multi-Coupler is state of the art in a number of key areas -

* A world first - it has a positive mechanical locking system ensuring that at all times attachments are held by more than one pin. The positive mechanical locking mechanism is a built in secondary safety system - which meets the new Australian Safety Standard: CL 2.1.4 / Draft Standard DR 06580. It was also designed to meet anticipated new European safety standards, which are expected to be promulgated from 2010.

* The double lock system eliminates the need to manually insert a safety pin - which has required the operator to leave the cab. To reduce the risk of operator error, a unique three step engaging and disengaging system compels the operator to follow a strict locking and unlocking safety procedure. Experience has shown that operators quickly adapt to the three-step procedure.

* Made out of cast steel, the JBA Multi-Coupler weighs 30 percent less than standard couplers currently on the market.

* With a profile 40 per cent less than standard couplers, operators note a considerable reduction in the loss of breakout force.

* The lower profile and weight reduction has lead to increased productivity and a reduction in fuel consumption.

* The multi-pin centre operating jaw allows the JBA Multi-Coupler to adjust to meet most pin centres of attachments in the same weight class. As a result the JBA Multi-Coupler can pick up nearly all attachments from other makes and models of comparable weight range.

* As standard quick hitch couplers have become bulkier and more complex, the new generation JBA Multi-Coupler has the beauty of simplicity. With only two moving parts, maintenance is easy and enabled JBA to extend its carcase warranty to two years (hydraulic warranty remains at one).

Already, Komatsu in New Zealand and Australia have seen the advantages of the JBA Multi-Coupler and have adopted the coupler for their machines, as other OEMs and end users are being attracted to technology. It is fitting that 24 years on it is Jack Balemi's son, Tim that has taken the next revolutionary step on the Coupler technology invented by Jack.

View JBA Multi-Coupler Product Details


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