Cat mega-loader coming down under in 2016

By: Brad Lockyer

Presented by
  • Earthmovers & Exacavators

The 239-tonne Caterpillar 994K wheel loader The 239-tonne Caterpillar 994K wheel loader The 239-tonne Caterpillar 994K wheel loader
The Cat 994K can load 150, 200 and 250 short ton mining trucks in one full pass less than the previous model. The Cat 994K can load 150, 200 and 250 short ton mining trucks in one full pass less than the previous model. The Cat 994K can load 150, 200 and 250 short ton mining trucks in one full pass less than the previous model.
The Caterpillar 994K wheel loader can carry 40.9 tonnes per pass. The Caterpillar 994K wheel loader can carry 40.9 tonnes per pass. The Caterpillar 994K wheel loader can carry 40.9 tonnes per pass.

Caterpillar has announced that its largest wheel loader ever, the 239-tonne 994K, will be available in Australia from the first quarter of 2016. Available in standard or high lift models, the Cat 994K boasts the ability to handle a significantly greater payload than its predecessor the 994H.

The standard model carries 40.9 tonnes per pass, while the high lift version can handle 38.1 tonnes per pass. This represents an 18 and 20 per cent increase respectively on the 994H. The result is that the 994K can now load mining trucks in the 150, 200 and 250 short ton classes in one full pass less than the previous model. With fewer passes required, efficiency is increased and the cost per unit of material moved is lowered.

Operating costs are further reduced by a number of efficiency improvements. The new engine air filtration system delivers three times the life of the previous model and the cooling system fan is electronically controlled and hydraulically driven. The 994K has also been designed to keep service times to a minimum with all routine service points located on the left side of the loader and engine oil change intervals kept to a minimum of 500 hours.

The loader is powered by the Cat 3561E engine, seen before in previous 994 loaders as well as large mining trucks. The engine produces net power of 1,739 horsepower (1297kW) and the transmission is a mining-specific Cat planetary powershift transmission. The standard lift model has an approximate operating weight of 237,200kg, while its high lift sibling comes in at around 239,000kg.

A range of safety features on the 994K have also been included. Stairs on a reduced angle allow for easier access to the cabin, while inside a Cat Deluxe seat and four-point seatbelt help the operator stay safe in comfort, Cat says. Operator visibility has been increased, with mining mirrors, optimised LED lighting and an improved camera all standard. The loader also delivers reduced sound inside the cab.

The 994K offers a number of optional extras to increase its range and versatility. An optional fuel tank can hold enough fuel to operate the loader for 24 hours and the new high ambient package is available to equip the loader for operation in temperatures as high as 50 degrees. New buckets available for the loader have been designed to work seamlessly with the 994K. The new buckets have an extended floor, larger radius and angled side bars for faster loading.

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