On The Cover

Turning waste into treasure with Cat K Series wheel loaders

qIt’s been said; “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” and if ever there was a company that could attest to that, it’s EnviroWaste.

 In keeping abreast with industry leading innovations, EnviroWaste is now using Caterpillar purpose-built waste handling wheel loaders in its more sizeable operations in the North Island.

As part of the new Cat K Series redesign, Caterpillar can manufacture the new wheel loaders with a dedicated waste handling package specifically for the waste management industry. Powered by the Cat C7.1 ACERT engine, the Cat 924K wheel loader is able to work efficiently and deliver fuel savings up to 25 percent, compared with the previous H-Series model.

Rhys Pryde, EnviroWaste’s RTS manager, is very impressed with the fuel efficiency of his new machine being used at the Patiki Road Transfer Station, confirming Caterpillar’s claim he says; “My fuel bill has come down by $1500 per month.”

The C7.1 ACERT rated speed setting of 1800rpm, compared with 2415rpm for the H-Series, contributes significantly to the reduced fuel consumption, as does the engine-idle shutdown system present in this new K Series wheel loader.

Pryde goes on to say; “The machine has got a lot of pushing power and less wheel spin than the loader we had before. I’ve had this machine for about eight months and the tyres are not even half worn; and they are solid rubber.

“Our fuel consumption has dropped quite a bit, it’s remarkable. They are great machines with excellent fuel efficiency.”
“Our fuel consumption has dropped quite a bit, it’s remarkable. They are great machines with excellent fuel efficiency.”

“Before I was buying a new set of tyres for my loaders every eight to 10 months, so with less wheel spinning on the Cat machine, I’ll be making a saving of $25,000 a year, at least.”

Gough Cat’s building and construction product manager, Paul Janovec explains; “The rim pull function allows the adjustment of the wheel torque on the go for specific application conditions that vary from day to day. This minimises the wheel slippage which in turn minimises the tyre wear.”

The bucket strike angle improvements from Cat enable increased material retention through the lift range.

Pryde says they have replaced two machines and no longer need to use a ramp now that they have this Cat 924K on site.

“I’ve effectively got this wheel loader doing two machines’ jobs, saving fuel and staff costs.”

Another improvement to the Cat K Series is easier serviceability. All service points are accessible from ground level, with three large service doors giving full access to filters and service points. Extended service intervals reduce service time and maximise uptime.

“For servicing on the Cat machines, everything is so much easier for the staff, it’s great.” says Pryde.

He goes on to say; “The operators check the machines every morning and evening. Each night we blow all the radiators out because we work in a very dusty environment.”

The Cat 924K is equipped with Reversing Fan Control. This gives the operator a way to clean dust and debris from the radiator using the cooling fan.

“Every 20 minutes the fan will reverse and blow out from the radiator,” explains Pryde.

“In previous years, before we started using Cat loaders, we would end up having to pull the radiators out of the machine every 12 months and get them acid dipped, because all those machines did was suck the air in from the outside.”

EnviroWaste has five new Cat 924K wheel loaders operating at its larger transfer stations around Auckland. Their capacity is perfect for the big volumes they move and manage on a daily basis according to Phil Ellis, the national transfer station manager for EnviroWaste.

The 924K is part of what is considered the range of Cat small wheel loaders. When it first arrived on site Ellis was surprised at how big it looked.

“The big bucket and big radius wheels make it look bigger than it actually is.”

The heavy and robust nature of these “little” machines is welcomed and has dramatically decreased running costs.

Ellis iterates; “Our fuel consumption has dropped quite a bit, it’s remarkable. They are great machines with excellent fuel efficiency.”

With the improvements to the K Series, there is a greater load retention at all heights, better rack back angles for larger fill factors and curved bucket sides from improved material retention, according to Goughs.

“The visibility is fantastic;” says Poovan Naidoo, the Auckland territory sales manager for Goughs.

“Along with the standard rear view camera, there is also a secondary one increasing visibility as well as the safety aspect of the machine.”

After talking to the operators of these machines Naidoo says; “They don’t want to sit in other machines after being in the 924K.

“The Cat 924K is definitely operator friendly and very comfortable with the air ride seat and it is so quiet.”

Along with the five new Cat wheel loaders, EnviroWaste also use a Cat M318DL waste handler and has a number of Cat excavators spread around the country as well.

“Cat has a very good name in the market and I’ve also operated a lot of Cat gear myself and have never had any issues,” says Pryde.

In any industry, there is no time for break downs. EnviroWaste is open seven days a week and only shuts down for three days a year, so it is imperative to have good back up support and service.

“Having a Gough’s branch here in Auckland has made a big difference,” says the national transfer station manager.

“If something breaks down on a Saturday or Sunday, you need to get it fixed because you can’t move rubbish otherwise.

“The machine has got to be reliable and you have got to have good service back up. Goughs have always been responsive and their back up support is impressive.”

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