A compactor plate is used to smoothen and flatten certain surfaces such as asphalt, gravel, and other rough landscape at project locations. 

It is majorly used on building sites to prepare the terrain for further work. This compactor plate can also be used to apply proper finishing to some surfaces.

The metal underneath the tamper uses vibrations or pounding motion to compress surfaces. This motion aerates and distributes the terrain’s particles evenly. It eliminates any disparities in the terrain’s texture and topography.

The machinery resembles a push-style lawnmower and has a handle for easy operation. The machine can be either electric or petrol-powered.

Types of Compactors

There are three main types of compactors:

  • Single-plate: They compress in mainly one direction. They are primarily used for asphalt projects.
  • Reversible: They come in both forward and reverse directions. They are used in sub-base compaction. Some even operate in hover mode.
  • Heavy duty: These are more powerful than the other two. They are used majorly for sub-base compaction.

Some people consider hydraulics as a type of tamper, but they technically aren’t. This is because any of the other three can be made hydraulic. This is done by attaching them to excavators or backhoes instead of typical buckets.

Factors To Consider Before Purchase

When buying a compactor plate, there are certain factors you should consider when purchasing one:

  • The plate’s material

The material used for your tamper is essential. They usually come in steel and cast-iron variants. The steel variant is lighter, making it easier to maneuver. 

It, however, has less impact than the cast-iron type, which is more powerful but heavy and tedious to operate. Depending on the project at hand, these features should affect your decision.

  • The plate’s shape

The shape of the compactor plate is another aspect open for consideration. Tampers that are curved slightly at their edges are easier to control and also reduce gouging.

  • The plate’s width

Most compactors come with widths of about 15 to 25 inches. A compactor plate with a wider circumference covers more ground.

  • Centrifugal force

Centrifugal force is what drives the vibrating power of a compactor plate. These values range from 3,000 to 21,000 ft-Ibs depending on the size of the tamper.

  • Eccentric frequency 

This is the measure of the number of times the tamper hits a surface in one minute. It is measured in vpm ( vibrations per minute). Lower frequencies are best used on cohesive soil types, while granular surfaces like asphalt need a higher vpm.

  1. Extra features 

There are some other features that the compactor plate you’re buying should have. These include:

  • A water/coolant tank to prevent it from sticking to surfaces
  • Center-mounted handlebars for easy maneuvering
  • Anti-vibration handles to remove the transfer of vibrations from the base to the operator’s hands

Buying one of these is quite an investment and should be accompanied by proper research. The type of project undertaken should also help you determine the tamper you should buy. 

We believe that with this article, you are very much prepared to go out there and get yourself the best compactor plate for your project.