CJD Equipment’s commitment to customer service, along with Volvo’s L90F proven economy, efficiency and reliability, delivers increased productivity to a Tasmanian sand quarry.
TasMulch is Tasmania’s leading producer of high-quality mulching services, aggregates, decorative rock product, sand, soil, stone and specialty composed products for the landscaping industry. A statewide operation with a history dating back more than a decade, the business prides itself on its unparalleled professionalism and productivity level.
Very few companies in the state can lay claim to TasMulch’s depth of experience in the industry. The proud values and professionalism of the business are exemplified in director Michael George. His guidance, passion and vision for the company are what makes TasMulch the leader in their field. But there is more to their success story. He and his management team have all worked in the business. And even today, Michael still climbs behind the wheel of a loader or truck when required.
It’s fair to say there isn’t an operational situation they haven’t experienced. It’s this level of expertise that has gained them respect all over the state. Since TasMulch’s inception, Michael has strived to ensure that TasMulch is a great company to do business with. That goes for suppliers as well as their customers.
Michael’s philosophy is disarmingly simple. “Our business model is based on hard work, integrity and just plain getting the job done,” Michael explained. “Essentially, we do what we say we’re going to do when we said we’d do it.” However, Michael is quick to add that it’s critical to maintain great relationships, which he and CJD Equipment in Launceston have. After all, his immaculate fleet of Kenworth trucks were all purchased through the dealership.
Of course, reliable equipment underpins efficient and uninterrupted operations. When Michael went looking for a new wheel loader to add efficiency and productivity to his sand quarry at Bakers Beach in the North of the state, his first call was to Kade Chapple at CJD Equipment Launceston.
“There were a few things that drove us towards the Volvo loader,” Michael explained. “Fuel economy, along with driver comfort and safety were some of the factors that really swayed us towards the Volvo loader. Our Baker’s Creek quarry is only a small-scale operation, and we felt that the L90 wheel loader ideally suited this task.
Volvo’s D6E powers the L90F with Volvo Advanced Combustion Technology (V-ACT) Tier 3 /Stage IIIA-approved, 5.7-litre, six-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine with Common-Rail fuel injection system and switchable internal Exhaust Gas Recirculation (I-EGR). The engine’s low speed plays a substantial part in dropping noise levels by 2dBA less, both inside and outside the cab, which meets EU2006 regulations.
The D6E engine delivers high torque from 1000RPM through 1600RPM, giving the L90F excellent rimpull and low fuel consumption.
Engine power is transformed into work via a new smooth-shifting electric-hydraulic Volvo HTE125 transmission. Gear selection is merely a matter of selecting Forward or Reverse. The Volvo Automatic Power Shift (APS) then takes over and determines which of the four forward or four reverse gears is required and the perfect moment to change ratio. The transmission’s electronic smarts contain four different gear-shifting programs independent of both machine and engine speed.
One feature that Michael likes is the ECU’s ability to adapt to the operators’ driving style, optimizing gear changing parameters and saving fuel by always selecting the right gear for the situation. For added operator comfort, the clutches are oil-filled, and a Pulse-Width Modulation Valve in the transmission prompt smoother shifting and minimize jolting when changing between gears.
“This transmission is also significantly quieter than any transmission I’ve come across in other loaders,” Michael said. “One thing that instils confidence in this machine is the fact that all major components in the driveline (engine, transmission, axles) are engineered and built by Volvo. That means that they will work in harmony in terms of performance, reliability and also fuel efficiency. And it’s also makes maintaining and servicing the machine more economical.”
The Volvo L90F loader is equipped with Volvo’s wet, circulation-cooled disc brakes and features a front axle differential lock and ‘lubricated for life’ rear axle bearings.
“It certainly is a flexible machine in every way,” Michael added. “The TP-linkage system from Volvo combined with a range of Volvo attachments turns this wheel loader into a real all-rounder, which is a terrific asset for a small quarry like our Bakers Beach operation.
“Michael agrees that the viscous cab mount on his L90F Volvo wheel loader greatly reduces unwanted vibrations and noise, making for a far more comfortable machine to operate.
The interior of the cab has several practical storage compartments. Other cabin features include the laminated front windshield, a sliding side window, an adjustable steering wheel and halogen work lights for the front and rear. Visibility of the dash layout is first class, and the operator is treated to panoramic vision through large windows.
“Our L90F is in charge of a whole range of duties at Bakers Beach from loading raw material into the primary crusher, separating commodities, rehandling and stockpiling processed materials from the screenings plant, and finally loading material out onto trucks. The machine will normally work a ten-hour daily shift and is certainly doing its part to improve productivity at the quarry,” Michael adds.
Operator safety, of course, is always a top priority for Volvo, and these loaders take it to another level entirely. Michael is incredibly impressed with features like the interior grab handle and the ladder’s inclination angle.”
“Arguably, the best thing about this loader is the fantastic relationship we have with CJD,” Michael volunteered. “Don’t get me wrong, the machine is first class, but all the team at CJD are always helpful to us. They (CJD) offer a field maintenance truck that will come to our quarry to perform a full service on the loader. This is a terrific advantage for us not having to transport the loader back to Launceston.”
“A little over twelve months ago we also purchased two Volvo mini excavators for our retail yard at Longford, and they are also proving to be of great benefit to our business,” Michael added. “But I can’t fault this L90F loader; we’ve had no issues with it at all, it’s been nothing but a terrific asset, and it certainly has increased our production level beyond expectations. In fact, we are actually talking to CJD about getting another one to do the screening and quarry operation.