July 2015

Cost-effective forestry platforms

Loggers working the high-yield plantations of Mpumalanga are getting their first glimpse of the ultra-efficient logging capabilities of the new purpose-built Sumitomo forestry platforms from ELB Equipment.

Based on the underpinnings of the Japanese manufacturer’s legendary SH210 excavator, the forestry specification machine has significantly lower running costs compared with dedicated forestry machines and costs are competitive with similar sized equivalents.

With full back up and support of ELB Equipment, one of the country’s largest suppliers of industrial equipment, users can count on the around the clock service and support that is in keeping with the company’s 30-year track record of supplying and maintaining Sumitomo excavators in the mining, construction and industrial sectors  

Acclaimed equipment

Launch customer, Cassie Greyling of Can Do Timbers, purchased one new Sumitomo SH210F-5 Macan platform to improve the overall efficiency of his 47-strong fleet. Having done in-depth research on similar logging operations across the globe his attention was drawn to the Sumitomo as a result of its frugal fuel usage as well as the durability and dependability of the machine in even the toughest terrain.

“It is a big advantage that the machine is purpose built for forestry and is already equipped with the necessary guards and safety equipment, strengthened undercarriage, reinforced arm, as well as adapted track, hydraulic and other design details that make it perfectly suited to forestry conditions. The SH210F-5 Macan is based on the SH210-5 which has proven itself in the South African market to be one of the most fuel efficient and productive excavators in its class “boasting more than 15% better fuel consumption then some of its rivals.

“In the field its performance is proving to be highly impressive with fuel savings at least 3 litres less than equivalent sized machines in our fleet. When one considers that the machine is required to run 24-hours per day, every day of the week for the entire year then it is easy to see why the Sumitomo makes sense.

“According to our calculations the savings from diesel alone will amount to the price of a complete new Sumitomo platform within the space of just over three years. This is exactly what is required for low-profit high-volume forestry operations such as ours,” says Cassie.

Higher availability

Another advantage of the machine is the cleverly engineered simplicity with all service and maintenance points within easy reach of servicemen. This enables it to be deployed for longer periods of time and contributes to higher availability compared with non-purpose-built machines.

It also contributes to a more reliable factory-outfitted platform that is warranted to perform in forestry conditions without the risk of affecting the manufacturers warranty conditions. In addition, the shipped-ready-to-use Sumitomo machines have a short lead time as only limited additional fitting needs to be carried out once landed in South Africa.

ELB Equipment director, Desmond van Heerden, points out that logging contractors are being severely hampered by rising diesel prices and as a result the Sumitomo offers a viable alternative to traditional machines.