Pallet Proliferation


By Don Marsh

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Eric (left) and Albert Hoogendoorn have run Triple H Concrete since 2000, buying out the business from their parents, who founded the operation 40 years ago.

Ten years after deploying the first Kalkman Machinebouw hardscape unit machine in North America, Triple H Concrete Products Ltd. has added a second model from the Netherlands-based manufacturer—an Alpha 2/5-600, with 1450 x 3080 pallet size—bringing significant new standard and custom patio stone capacity.

“After starting in 1975 with a small hand operated machine, good for about 20 square meters a day, we are now producing thousands of square meters of slabs and pavers a day,” says Triple H President Albert Hoogendoorn, who runs the landscape dealer-driven Putnam, Ont., business with his brother Eric. “Our growth over 40 years has come from old-school customer service and offering quality products at a great price.”

The Alpha 2/5-600 is based on a turntable principle, around which a number of processing stations are grouped. Kalkman Machinebouw tools different versions, each suited to molding concrete slabs with various colored or exposed aggregate face mixes. Triple H Concrete’s new machine is housed in a 25,000-sq.-ft. plant enclosure and outfitted with a complete wash line for the exposed aggregate product, plus a packaging robot that flat stacks pavers for treatment in a RotaCage tumbling machine. The latter is the only such model running in North America, and garnered manufacturer JKB most innovative product recognition at the 2004 Bauma trade fair in Munich.

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With robust perimeter safety features, the turntable-style Kalkman Alpha 2/5-600 affords Triple H Concrete expanded capabilities in its core patio stone and slab product offerings, including increasingly larger units.

Kalkman Machinebouw-programmed software runs the product machinery, upgraded Advanced Concrete Technologies batch plant and Hydronix aggregate moisture controls. All of Triple H Concrete’s production equipment bears a European Class 4 safety rating, exceeding Canadian and U.S. standards. Motion detection and machine or power shutdown devices at working area perimeters or worker exposure points add up to one of the safest concrete masonry plants in North America.


Ramping up for the second machine, Triple H Concrete looked to current equipment supplier ACT for face and base mix production solutions, choosing 375L and 750L Wiggert mixers, respectively. The planetary models discharge into a two-compartment face/base mix transport flying bucket system serving the Alpha 2/5-600. The objective was to deliver the most value for the money by utilizing existing aggregate batching and cement silo infrastructure, while staying within the building and site elevation constraints.

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The HPGM 750 (0.65 yd., base mixes) and HPFM 375 (0.33 yd., face mixes) high shear mixers are mounted on a robust mixer platform with spacious work area, and receive aggregate from two independent skip hoists. The mixers charge a flying bucket for efficient mix transport to the Alpha 2/5-600 machine.

Material handling and storage equipment accompanying the second Kalkman machine’s arrival includes two new skip hoists, cement screws and weighers, and two new Hydronix moisture probes. Pigments for each mixer are delivered by Würschum dosing equipment ACT delivered in 2005—part of a batch plant upgrade timed with the charter Kalkman machine.

“With a dedicated face mix mixer, we are able to produce special colours and textures, and in the future add to our paver and slab lines,” says Eric Hoogendoorn. Underscoring the solid timing of the late-2014 second machine delivery and batch plant upgrade, he adds, “We are having our busiest year ever, which leaves us little time to celebrate a 40th anniversary.”

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Advanced Concrete Technologies delivered a new cement screw distribution system, conveying powder from two existing silos to two independent scales, one for each mixer. ACT previously installed a Würschum COM 70-2 precision granule pigment metering system, now integrated with the new equipment. With four primary colors (two reds plus one yellow, one black), it enables producers to offer virtually any earth tone color concrete on demand.