Marion 6360

Marion 6360, also known as The Captain, was a giant power shovel built by the Marion Power Shovel company. Completed in 1965, it was one of the largest land vehicles ever built,[1] exceeded only by some dragline and bucket-wheel excavators. The shovel originally started work with Southwestern Illinois Coal Corporation, but the owners were soon bought out by Arch Coal. Everything remained the same at the mine except for the colors which were changed to red, white, and blue.

Marion 6360 "The Captain"
TypeElectric power shovel
ManufacturerMarion Power Shovel
Length97 m (319 ft)
Width27 m (88 ft)
Height64 m (210 ft)
Weight12,700 t (28,000,000 lb)
Propulsion8 x caterpillar tracks
Gross power22.37 megawatts of electricity from twenty main-drive motors powered from four 14,000 volt AC power motor generator sets
Speed0.25 mph or 0.4 km/h
Blade capacity180 cubic yards (137.6 m3) or 151.2 short tons (137.2 t)

The shovel worked well for Arch Coal until September 9, 1991, when a fire broke out in the lower works of the shovel. It was caused by a burst hydraulic line that was spraying the hot fluids on an electrical relay panel. This fire caused a great deal of damage to both the lower works and machine house. Afterwards, engineers from both Arch and Marion Power Shovel surveyed the damage and deemed it too great to repair, and the machine was scrapped one year later in the last pit it dug.

The only Marion shovel that compared (in size and scope) to "The Captain" was the Marion 5960-M Power Shovel that worked at Peabody Coal Company's (Peabody Energy) River Queen Surface Mine in Central City, Kentucky. It was named the "Big Digger" and carried a 125-cubic-yard (96 m3) bucket on a 215-foot-long (66 m) boom. It was Marion Power Shovel's second largest machine ever built and the third largest shovel in the world. This "sister shovel" was scrapped in early 1990 in Muhlenberg County, Kentucky.


  • Boom Length: 215 feet (66 m)
  • Bucket Capacity: 180 cubic yards (140 m3) (double doors)
  • Dipper Stick Length: 133 feet (41 m)
  • Overall Weight: 12,700 tons
  • Total Height: 210 feet (64 m)
  • Crawler Height: 16 feet (4.9 m)
  • Crawler Unit Length: 45 feet (14 m)
  • Individual Crawler Width: 10 feet (3.0 m)
  • Individual Track weight: 3.5 tons apiece (42 pads per track total)
  • Clearance Under Shovel: 16 feet (4.9 m) to the first level of the Lower Works
  • Largest Shovel In The World & Largest Ever Built By Marion--
  • Started Service: 1965
  • Dismantled: 1992
  • Power 15,000 hp
  • Build time (site erection) 18 months & 150,000 man hours

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Bucyrus page on Marion". Archived from the original on 2008-05-31. Retrieved 2008-09-30.

External linksEdit