100% Volvo DemolitionPublished 27/12, 2018 at 10:48
Volvo Construction Equipment has during the last four years made a radical change to the offering from its demolition machinery segment. It began in 2014 when its E-series high reach excavator models were launched beginning with the EC380EHR and EC480EHR. Now this autumn the manufacturer has launched its latest flagship development, the multi-purpose EC750E HR demolition excavator. Jan Hermansson reports.
Volvo gathered a small group of trade press journalists particularly focused on demolition equipment at the Volvo EU depot in Groot-Ammers, some 45min from Rotterdam at the end of October. Besides Volvo staff, representatives from two Volvo clients, Veidekke from Norway and Aanemingsbedrijf Princen from the Netherlands, participated. The event at Grot-Ammers was actually the first time that Volvo has organised a special press event for its demolition equipment.
100% Volvo demolition technique
Peter Lam, excavator product manager for demolition and special application solutions within Volvo sales region EMEA, began the meeting informing the audience that Volvo has fulfilled its dream to create a full line up of 100% Volvo built high reach demolition excavators. Today, with no involvement from independent specialised demolition excavator design firms, Volvo’s new fleet of multi purpose and high reach demolition excavators have all been developed and built by Volvo.
In early 2000, when Volvo built its first high reach demolition excavator, it was in cooperation with local specialised design firms. However, this approach was not what its customers wanted; they wanted one partner to provide the complete solution. In 2007 Volvo released its first in house model, EC700BHR, which have evolved step by step from the B-series, C-series and then the D-series. In 2014 with the launch of the E-series sales really started to take off. At this point the machines were equipped with a completely new and improved cabin specifically for demolition purposes.
At bauma in 2016 Volvo released its new extension boom for the EC480EHR, and this year at Intermat, it was also released for the EC380EHR. By 2017 the Volvo demolition series had been sold in to over 20 different countries. During this journey of development Volvo has carved out a path in the demolition industry by carefully studying the market. The company has talked to numerous demolition contractors around the world about how they want optimal demolition excavators to look like, and what features they should possess. From this base information, Volvo has built up its new and completely independent strategy for the100% Volvo built multi-purpose demolition excavators.
“We used to cooperate with design companies specialised in building high reach and heavy duty demolition excavators, but we have realised that it is much more important for our end users that we are providing all the knowledge and design ourselves. Since some time we have all that knowledge in house, and together with our clients we build the machines with no external involvement,” explains Peter Lam.
Three dedicated high reach and heavy duty models
Today Volvo has three purpose built demolition excavators consisting of the EC380E HR and EC480E HR, as well as the new EC750E HR. The new EC750EHR is, according to Volvo demolition segment manager David Arnoldsson, a unique machine for both high reach and heavy duty demolition purposes. “The machine is based on the E-series generation which we know is a very safe and a solid series to build such a machine on. It has been sold all over the world and in various conditions and it is also equipped with our new Stage 4 final engine,” says Daniel Arnoldsson.
David continues and explains that the EC750EHR boom reach has been extended to 36m being able to carry a demolition tool of up to 3.6t. The high reach boom in itself has a unique design being very sturdy, with all sensitive parts being well protected, equipped with a dust suppression system and with plenty of LED lights for good visibility. Additionally, the boom has a strong linkage making it perfect for carrying very heavy attachments for short rig heavy duty demolition within, for instance, the process industry. The return lines have also been increased in order to make the closing of the attachment faster.
The EC750EHR’s counterweight has been improved so the complete weight of the additional- and standard- counterweight can be hydraulically lowered and removed for transport. The machine has a new extension boom for mid reach (18m and below grade ,10m demolition) and can carry attachments up to 8t in this setup. The extension boom can be used both in a straight and bent configuration. The new cab is uniquely built for demolition purposes, and can be tilted up to 30°. It is well protected with a frame mounted falling object guard (FOG) with steel grids on the roof and the front screen. The front grid can be easily opened for simple cleaning. The cabin provides excellent visibility, and is further enhanced thanks to two cameras located on the side and rear of the machine, and a further two cameras on the high reach boom. The cabin also has two large monitors that are easy manoeuvrable, with the operator being able to choose to use all cameras at the same time or just a couple of them. The lower protection plate for the boom, under the machine, has a pattern of holes so the operator can see through it.
The EC750EHR possesses a very steady undercarriage designed for demolition. It is built on an X shape frame, being the biggest ever built by Volvo, providing a very low centre of gravity. The track width is in the extended position 5.05m (with 750mm track shoes). The base machine weight is 83.5t, with the 36m high reach boom without attachment being 19.5t; when a 3,6t attachment is added the complete machine weight is 106.6t. To comply with transportation regulations, the machine can be stripped down to a maximum weight of 29t, which means that the track frames can be removed, and has quick couplings for this to be accomplished easily.
Peter Lam is very clear when pointing out that EC750EHR is not only an optimal high reach demolition machine. “This is a multi purpose demolition machine that can carry out advanced demolition with a heavy tool on a high level, and even heavier tools with a short boom. With the 18m mid reach boom it can carry demolition attachments for heavy duty demolition up to 8t, and it has also a digging boom for low level demolition.” Boom exchange takes about 40min, with Volvo choosing not to use a quick connection coupling for the high pressure hoses for durability and reliability.
At the press event in Groot-Ammers two of Volvo’s clients that have purchased the new EC750EHR participated. The client from the Netherlands was Wesley Princen, owner of the demolition contractor Aanemingsbedrijf Princen. The company is a specialist in the demolition of electrical substations and nuclear fuel plants, with the company having just purchased the EC750EHR that was used during demonstrations at the press event. It was stated that the excavator will be mostly used with a 26m high reach boom for heavier tools up to 5t. The other client participating was Erik Nielsen, who is the demolition manager for the Norwegian Veidekke Group. Its machine has already been delivered, and is working at a large demolition project in Norway, ‘House of Oslo’ (PDi hopes to report on that job in the next issue), with Veidekke mostly using the 36m high reach boom in its work.
Some facts about Volvo Construction Equipment
Johan Theofron Munktell along with brothers Jean and Carl Gerhard Bolinder founded Volvo (which is Greek for ‘I roll’) in 1832. Volvo began manufacturing excavators at the end of 1990s, and before that, the company was involved with the well-known Swedish excavator manufacturer Åkerman. When Volvo decided to begin excavator manufacturing, one important step for world-wide recognition was the acquisition of the Korean manufacturer Samsung in 1998. Samsung has a very good reputation in Korea, and has over the years attracted some of the best of designers and engineers in the field. Its main factory is located in Changwon in the south of Korea, where excavators from 6t - 95t are developed and manufactured. Today some +10,000 machines are made annually. The excavator cabins are manufactured in Hallsberg in Sweden, with manufacturing of 15t-26t excavators also being undertaken in Konz, Germany. Today, Volvo manufactures excavators ranging from 1.5 to 100t, and now has 110,000 employees with production facilities in 18 countries, selling globally to 190 markets, with turnover during 2017 reaching €37B.