Family-owned Conners Crushed Stone is using a fleet of Volvo Construction equipment to help quarry and crush high quality limestone at five quarries in Texas, USA.
Although the days of the Wild West and frontier cowboys are long gone, the state of Texas, USA, remains proud of its pioneering history. It is the second largest US state in terms of both geographical area and population – home to over 26 million people and, of course, the Dallas Cowboys American football team. But beneath the bustle of today’s Lone Star State lies a wealth of natural resources that include crude oil and limestone deposits.
Veins of limestone run throughout the state, from the heights of the state’s Big Bend mountains all the way down to the Rio Grande on the border of Mexico. It is this stone that Conners Crushed Stone transforms into high quality aggregate. The family-owned, multi-quarry company is located near the small town of Lott, 25 miles south of Waco. Growing from humble beginnings, the company has been quarrying and crushing limestone for over 25 years. The company’s five quarries rely on a range of Volvo Construction Equipment (Volvo CE) machines to keep operations running smoothly.
“Conners Crushed Stone purchased our first Volvo machine 16 years ago,” explains Gary Conners, founder and patriarch of the family business. “A Volvo L150C was the first piece of brand new equipment we ever bought. Now our fleet includes 18 Volvo wheel loaders and two Volvo excavators, working hard at our five quarries.”
The Conners quarry in Oglesby produces a limestone mix from a rare deposit that is high in calcium carbonate and low in iron and magnesium. The 350 acre quarry produces five types of limestone in a range of sizes – a hefty burden easily handled by a fleet of four Volvo CE wheel loaders. A Volvo L250G, L180G and two L180Es work together to keep up with the high demand for Conners’s product, transporting quarried limestone to a crusher that is working at maximum capacity.
“The L250G, equipped with a 9.0 yd3 (8.23 meters) rehandling bucket, is the newest addition to the fleet,” says Scott Conners, vice president at Conners Crushed Stone. “With the extra six inches of dump height you can see the cutting edge, so you can squarely draw off the top when loading a truck. And, the torque parallel linkage on the L180G allows you to ease into the pile of rock so you don’t have to overwork the loader. Our operators have commented on the smoothness of the ride and the great productivity of the machines.”
Further down the road, at Conners’s 440 acre quarry in Reagan, four more Volvo CE machines are being put to work – not far from a field that is home to Scott’s herd of over 300 cattle. Provoking little response from the bovine onlookers, an L220E, L220D, L180D and a new L220G are moving rock from the face to the jaw crusher and loading quietly going about their business loading the finished product onto waiting trucks.
The aggregate produced by Conners is sold mainly as hauling stone for oil pad bases. The company also works closely with the Texas Department of Transportation, providing stone for a $4.8 million multi-phase highway improvement project in the state. The company has come a long way from its modest beginnings as a small family business and the Conners are still going strong. They expect the limestone deposits at the Oglesby site to last for over two decades, and they are always looking for new opportunities in the limestone faults throughout the Central Texas region.
“Conners Crushed Stone is a business based on a tradition of hard work and an excellent product – the Volvo equipment fit right in,” concludes Conners. “These loaders are quality machines that can withstand the rigors of what can often be non-stop quarrying. They require minimum maintenance and they keep us up and running – we even have an L180D that has worked over 36,000 hours on its original engine. These Volvo machines are helping us to grow as an independent, competitive business.”
Picture 1: The Volvo L180E is busy shifting earth