• VIDEO: Episode 11: The Journey BackWichita preps Project Minotaur as it leaves for its journey back to CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2020.
  • VIDEO: Episode 10: LearningsFrom the first focus groups at CONEXPO 2017 to customer clinics and jobsites throughout North America, Project Minotaur has evolved through extensive voice of customer feedback and traditional field testing.746
  • VIDEO: Episode 9: The First BuildersCASE builds a new line for Project Minotaur and implements World Class Manufacturing (WCM) principles as the company looks to retain the specially crafted design of the machine while also optimizing worker engagement with the machine and the workspace. 727
  • VIDEO: Episode 8: The First JobsChad Eaton of Grapes & Sons Excavating was one of the first operators at our customer clinic in Arizona earlier this year, and became one of the first contractors to put Project Minotaur to the test on real jobsites in the mountains of Colorado.712
  • VIDEO: Episode 7: Just Add FeedbackJosh Zimmerman discusses his role in dialing in the performance of Project Minotaur, and the important role that feedback plays in how the controls of the machine are refined. 685
  • VIDEO: Episode 6: Customer Clinic DocumentaryContractors from around the country come to a customer clinic in Arizona to be the very first to operate Project Minotaur.661
  • VIDEO: Episode 5: Lift the CurtainProject Minotaur team members discuss the work and planning that goes into developing a customer clinic for a new piece of construction equipment, and what they have in store for the first wave of contractors to operate the machine. 642
  • VIDEO: Episode 4: Break ThingsDan Seacat discusses the hours of testing put on equipment at the Wichita proving grounds, and what operators and testers are looking for as Project Minotaur comes closer to reality. 615
  • VIDEO: Episode 3: Heat, Data, Dozers, LoadersAir-to-boil testing puts equipment through extreme environmental and workload conditions before a new machine is ever seen by contractors.592
  • VIDEO: Episode 2: ConnectionsEngineers at the CASE manufacturing plant in Wichita, Kansas, discuss the first seeds of the idea that grew into Minotaur, and the core principle behind the frame design and blade/attachment interface. 568
  • VIDEO: Episode 1: Spare PartsCASE unveiled Project Minotaur at CONEXPO 2017 — a new machine category that brought together the performance attributes of a compact track loader and a dozer to create the industry's first ever Compact Dozer Loader, the DL450. CASE has since evolved the concept and is taking it into the next stages of development. This series will follow along the development process — Episode One details the steps taken since initial tests and focus groups after CONEXPO, the pieces of the original design left behind, and hints at the directions it is taking moving forward.511

The Origin Story

Making the Monster

In the Dirt

Dec 20, 2018

The Heart of a Dozer

“We started out with a CTL on steel tracks,” said Dan Seacat, a Design Engineer in Wichita, KS, referencing the early days of CASE’s Project Minotaur, the world’s first hybrid dozer/loader, which relied on the decades of experience the company has with designing and building dozers.

Heart of a Dozer

It also has expertise spread across its facilities: One of Seacat’s partners on the project was Ryan Ogg, who works 8 hours away at the company’s facility in Burlington, IA, where it makes its 650M Crawler Dozer, among other products. He’s a Design Engineer with deep experience in dozer undercarriage track design.

Seacat and Ogg are part of a much larger team of engineers working on Project Minotaur. These engineers combined the ripper attachment designs of a grader and dozer to create a new one for Project Minotaur. They also did some best-in-class research on rear doors and came up with a new, improved design for Minotaur.

“Instead of beefing up at CTL, we started over with a heavy duty dozer undercarriage and adapted the design to the Minotaur’s smaller platform,” Ogg explained, noting that it involved using different, heavier, and more roller mountings than would be normally found on an CTL, and a more robust cross-shaft design to withstand the increased loads from the dozer application across the chassis and undercarriage.

“Steel tracks had been a part of the plan from Day One,” said Seacat. “But for Minotaur, we wanted the entire track system to be more dozer-like in durability and capability, even if it wouldn’t be operated in a full-time dozer duty cycle.”

“We pulled proven design elements from both platforms, and built Minotaur based on proven technologies,” Ogg said. “But we’re using thicker materials and larger sections to stiffen it up.”

The result, according to Ogg, is a robust combination that will give operators more traction — “it bites in better” — and will let Minotaur work in more severe ground conditions. Steel might not move as fast as rubber, but it’s far more durable and more traction means increased push forces for dozing applications, plus rubber tracks may be an option for Minotaur customers who see its duty cycle primarily for lifting and loading.