Business Feature, Earthmoving Industry Insight, Excavators, Machinery News

Wiggins and Batchelor take on Volvo hybrid excavator

Working on a wide range of earthmoving projects in Tasmania poses some exciting challenges. Needing a reliable machine that could rise to any occasion, family business Wiggins and Batchelor turned to CJD Equipment and a Volvo EC300E hybrid excavator

In a recent interview with Earthmovers and Excavators, Warren Batchelor, the fourth generation to work in the family business Wiggins and Batchelor, discusses the recent purchase of a Volvo EC300E hybrid excavator from CJD Equipment.

Wiggins and Batchelor began its journey in 1971 on the west coast of Tasmania. Having now moved to Launceston, the business specialises in road construction and maintenance in quarry and forestry operations and contract work for private landowners. Additionally, Wiggins and Batchelor actively engages in various land conservation and river rehabilitation projects.

“I am the fourth generation in our family business that is Wiggins and Batchelor,” Batchelor says.

“It was started by my great-grandfather Trevor Wiggins and grandfather Darrel Batchelor.”

Since purchasing its first Volvo excavator 18 months ago, Wiggins and Batchelor has recently added a new 30-tonne hybrid excavator to its fleet.

“We purchased an ECR145E from CJD Equipment around 18 months ago and we’ve already done over 2,000 hours with it,” Batchelor says.

“It’s been reliable and is incredibly fuel efficient. The service from CJD Equipment was excellent as well.

“So, when it came to purchasing a new 30-tonne machine, we didn’t look anywhere else. We got a price on the Volvo EC300E hybrid excavator from Kade at CJD Equipment and that’s what we went with.”

Wiggins and Batchelor primarily works around the north-east coast, Central Highlands and regional areas of Tasmania.

“We have recently finished a project revegetating a quarry, building it back to the ground,” Batchelor says.

“It’s been one of the first projects with our new EC300E hybrid, and it’s been really exciting to see its capabilities.

“We have a few river rehabilitation projects coming up in the summer, one involving removing a bridge that was washed away in the floods and installing a crossing. We also have some forestry work building cable landings. The EC300E hybrid has a few projects in front of it for the next six to 12 months; I’m looking forward to putting it to work.”

One of the main features that Batchelor loves about the Volvo products is the fuel efficiency and the quality of the machine. After hanging onto their last 30-tonne excavator for several years, the team wanted to ensure their next 30-tonne was reliable.

“We’ve had nothing but a good run from our ECR145E and we expect the same from our EC300E hybrid,” Batchelor says.

“The added features are one thing we love with our Volvo machines. The operator comfort, heated seats and active control makes working on site a lot easier.”

Warren Batchelor and CJD field technician Richard Nazar

Loading made easy

Doing contract work means a lot of reporting to the end client. For Wiggins and Batchelor, Volvo’s Onboard Weighing system means there’s no guessing involved.

Seamlessly integrated and driven by the 10-inch Volvo Co-Pilot display, Onboard Weighing gives real-time insights into the bucket weight, ensuring operators move the optimal amount of material in every pass. Furthermore, it maintains a comprehensive record of total tonnage per shift or day to provide long-term productivity data.

“With quarry work, we load trucks and provide the drivers with a printed document detailing the contents of their load to ensure compliance with National Heavy Vehicle Regulator regulations and to show that we are within the load limits,” Batchelor says.

“Onboard Weighing is great. It’s a technology that helps us take the guesswork out of it.

“Instead of going to a client and guessing the work we’ve done, we can now show them in real time what has been moved or raised.”

Environmental commitment

“We also do lots of work on government projects. Governments are constantly under pressure to show how they are reducing their environmental footprint on their projects, so they need their contractors to do the same thing,” Batchelor says.

“With the fuel efficiency of the EC300E hybrid and the addition of AdBlue, we are able to lower our emissions and reduce our footprint.

“We just want to show that we are on the front foot with minimising our environmental impact.”

The EC300E hybrid features Volvo’s unique hydraulic hybrid technology, which utilises the boom-down motion to charge the accumulator with the stored energy used to drive the assist monitor, which powers the engine system. This offers greater fuel efficiency and a reduction in CO2 emissions.

The Volvo E-Series excavator models also include the new D8M engine with Advanced Combustion Technology. This D8M engine lowers the rated rpm from 1,800 to 1,600 while delivering a five per cent increase in power.

Just down the road

For Batchelor, a significant factor in purchasing his new 30-tonne excavator was the support system backing it up. The decision was easy with CJD Equipment’s servicing network of technicians, workshops and dealers across the country.

“Fortunately for us, we are just down the road from CJD Launceston, which is incredibly handy,” he says.

“With our line of work, I’m unavailable during business hours most of the week. Calling CJD’s field service technician, Richard, outside of regular hours has never been a problem. We consider ourselves fortunate to have him as our machine service technician. His work ethic and knowledge of the machines have been excellent.”

For more information about Volvo Construction Equipment and CJD Equipment’s extensive network throughout Australia, please visit www.cjd.com.au.

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