Building the Base

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For Haupt Construction, time is of the essence for their latest 765,000 square-foot crushing project located just outside of Kansas City. With a hurried and rigorous deadline, the crew at Haupt is wasting no time with their production.

The multi-generational company, established in 1963 by Robert Haupt, started out with much smaller projects. Robby Haupt, an operator for the company, says, “We were founded by my grandpa and started out as a small dozing company just to supplement his farming, and it’s really taken off from there.”

Since the company’s expansion and growth, it has taken on several large-scale projects including a variety of commercial infrastructure jobs, highway developments and residential work. When asked about their projects, Billy Winegar, foreman for Haupt Construction described their wide range of work as “Pretty much anything that has to do with dirt work in the industry.”

With their current project, and its stringent timeline, the crew at Haupt knew they needed machines with the extra power and capacity to help them finish the project as quickly as possible. Rob Franklin, an aggregate specialist at Van Keppel, set Haupt up with three track-mounted FT4250 horizontal shaft impactor plants. Winegar explains, “We have three 4250 plants, two are open-circuit and being fed by one excavator and the other is closed-circuit and being fed by another excavator.” Their operation begins with blasting the material from the ground, creating a ledge where the excavators add material into the crushing units to be laid back down as a base. Franklin describes the process, “After the daily blast, they are using the FT4250s to make a base product. They’re shooting every day around four o’clock to make the seven- to nine-foot ledge.” Winegar adds, “We blast the rock down to size and we usually run in behind the blast and basically just use progressive crushing. We just keep stepping back through crushing along making about 600 to 800 tons per hour of the three inch minus base.”


Through phase one of their current project, Haupt Construction has faced one major operational challenge: the weather. The majority of the Kansas City area, and many other parts of the Midwest, have experienced historical levels of flooding. Franklin says, “The rain has really set folks back. We have gotten twice as much rain in the last few months than we get annually in our area. It’s been a fight; a huge struggle. Right now, thankfully, things are drying up. They are trying to make the most out of each dry day they have.” Haupt adds, “The entire site was completely saturated. It was to the point where it didn’t matter if it rained anymore because it was so wet they couldn’t handle any more water, everything was just running off.”

Through the difficult weather, the crew’s three machines held strong and persevered past other units. When asked about how the equipment handles saturated material, Franklin says, “Much better than the competition. They had two other competitive units out here and they lasted one week during the wet weather. They both plugged up, so we sent them back home.” Haupt added, “The biggest thing that I will say about the FT4250s, is that they have managed to handle wet material and mud much better than anything else would have.” Aside from handling soaked material, the crew appreciated many other aspects of the machines. “What they like about the units it the 18-foot feeder. They’re able to load the feeder and the crusher up and the opening is allowing the shot rock to go in and get them the production they need, especially running three crushers at a time, to get through as much of this project as they can every day. Time is valuable,” says Franklin. Winnegar also mentions the mobility of the FT4250s, “Mobility is obviously important to our “crush and run” philosophy. Typically our cuts are not as deep as something you would see in a quarry, so we are constantly moving. Being able to adjust quickly cuts down on our downtime and lets us produce more.” Haupt mentions the ease-of-use, as well as the easy set-up and operation, as some of the units’ top features. Overall, the group is most impressed with the capacity and production of the equipment. Winegar says, “We’ve tried some other crushers in the past and for the multitude of material in our area, the FT4250 seems to be the only one that will pull through.”


Haupt Construction has had a relationship with both Astec and their dealer Van Keppel, for many years. When asked why the group chooses Astec over and over again, Winegar says, “I’ve used other machines before, but we tend to go back to Astec for the customer support,” he adds, “It’s been nice to be able to rely on American-made equipment because the support’s all here and if there is a problem, it’s always a quick fix.”

Along with Astec, the Van Keppel team has been working with the Haupt crew for several decades. Haupt says, “We have been working with Van Keppel longer than I can remember. We’ve rented and bought equipment from them for a long time.” When asked about the support Van Keppel has provided, Winegar says, “The support has been excellent. Any time there has ever been an issue or service requirement, it’s solved within a day.” Franklin adds, “At Van Keppel, we have three excellent mechanics who are able to get on the project if they need us out there, and we always show up. We bend over backwards, not only for Haupt Construction, but for all of our customers. They deserve that kind of support.”

With a well-supported operation and dedicated crew, the future of Haupt Construction is bright. Franklin says, “What do I see for the future of Haupt? Well they are a three-generation operation and I expect to see a lot of growth out of this company. The boys are young, they’re eager and they’re getting more and more experience with every job they get. They have a handle on how to move and build these paths quickly. They were indoctrinated with a huge project of over 800,000 yards of material for their first venture, and I think it will all be smooth from here.” Haupt adds, “We hope to see a lot more growth in both projects and our team. There is a lot of work in this area right now, and we’re doing our best to take on as much as we can.”

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