Click here to download a PDF of this article
Tech Update FORWARDERS
By Tony Kryzanowski
Komatsu Forest has upgraded its Valmet 840 and 860 forwarders with many new “dot 4” features representing significant developments for what the company says are two of the most productive forwarders on the market.
They feature Valmet’s new “comfort bogie” design, providing better maneuverability and faster transport to enhance profitability. The design increases climbing ability in steep terrain and on side slopes, and retains good maneuverability on soft ground. It also provides consistent ground pressure, a smoother ride, and increased stability, the company says.
Other improvements include the new and more powerful integrated software suite, MaxiForwarder 4.7. The optional LoadFlex bunk allows the operator to hydraulically adjust bunk height and width to make work faster and safer. A new optimized crane valve improves lift capacity and handling. The axle spacing has been adjusted to make more room for tire chains.
The company’s 20-ton capacity, Valmet 890.3 remains one of Canada’s most popular machines, says Komatsu Forest. www.komatsuforest.com
Caterpillar forwarders feature new engines that bring additional torque to an already proven powerhouse. The line includes the six-wheel Cat 564, the eight-wheel Cat 574 and two new smaller forwarders, the four-wheel Cat 534 and six-wheel 544.
The engine in the 564 and 574 models is the 173 hp Cat C6.6 with ACERT technology; the 534 and 544 models are equipped with the 125 hp C4.4 engine. Both engines meet Tier III emissions regulations.
The C6.6 engine generates eight per cent more torque and the C4.4 generates 18 per cent more torque over previous engines in the 1,400 to 1,800 rpm working range. This additional torque provides more power at lower rpms for increased fuel efficiency and more power to the torque converted power shift transmission for increased tractive effort. It also maintains higher hydraulic flow for faster loader speeds.
The forwarders are constructed with heavy frames, purposebuilt blades with wear-resistant front cutting edge, large engine side covers for excellent service access and adjustable log bunks with floating cam stakes. Full 40-degree articulation and 250- degree loader rotation provide high maneuverability and work range. www.cat.com/forestry
Tigercat’s extreme duty forwarder line has been redesigned with the operator in mind. The first B-series model to hit the market is the 1075B, Tigercat’s extreme duty 20-tonne capacity machine.
Most of the B-series changes have taken place in the cab, and operators will immediately notice increased comfort levels and reduced fatigue over long shifts, the company says. The cabin interior finish has been significantly upgraded with improved ergonomics and an automotive style finish. The joystick pods are easier to operate with only one function per control. The potentiometer (controlling maximum speed) is helpful in tough terrain. Visibility has been enhanced by reducing the width and moving the structural door post forward.
In-cab sound levels have been reduced by approximately five to 10 decibels (depending on engine rpm) with initial testing producing levels under 66 decibels at full 2,200 rpm engine speed.
Unlike any other forwarder, the company says, the stability of the 1075B allows the operator to comfortably reach the boom over the side of the machine to pick logs while traveling for improved productivity. www.tigercat.com
TimberPro manufactures an extremely versatile forwarder. With its continuous swing and ability to work over the front, the machine can be used as a harvester with a 10-minute attachment changeover, has boom strength to handle tree-length logs, can be converted to a clambunk or grapple tree-length skidder, and has capacity to haul bigger loads.
Maintenance is made easier with gullwing access to all major engine and hydraulic components. Fuel consumption is low considering the capacity of the machine, and the company says operator comfort is excellent with low sound level, AC/heater, XM radio, filtered/pressurized cab and operator friendly IQAN controls. www.timberpro.com
John Deere’s D series forwarders are a fuel-efficient solution to moving the big loads day after day, regardless of distance. The 810D is said to be the ideal choice for logging in dense thinning areas, is available in an eight-wheel configuration and has a tight turning radius.
Lower initial cost makes the 1010D John Deere forwarder a practical solution for many mechanized and hand-felling cutto- length loggers, according to the company. The loader control system (LCS) can be set to operator preferences for fast and accurate loading.
If loggers want the highest level of automation and on-board diagnostics offered by the total machine control (TMC) system, they’ll be fired-up by the 1110D. Easy-to-operate, low maintenance, and available in either six- or eight-wheel versions, the 1110D includes three boom configurations and two wood bunk lengths.
The 1410D forwarder rides smoothly on balanced bogies, making it a choice for average to long distance hauls of random length or two tiers of 10’ (3 m) wood.
The largest John Deere forwarder, the 1710D, is made for large-scale fully mechanized operations and is a perfect choice for high-volume, long-haul, round-the-clock operations, says the company. www.deere.com
With load capacities ranging from 16,000 to 32,000 lbs, Prentice forwarders feature electric power shift transmissions, full load, high reach booms and 40-degree turning articulation. The line includes four-, six- and eight-wheel drive units. Fully proportional loader controls provide precision and speed for quick loading and unloading. The robust rack and pinion four-cylinder swing system delivers high torque and swing speed. Boom geometry is designed for easy reach and placement of logs.
Prentice forwarders feature large, high visibility cabs. The new ergonomically designed interior provides a comfortable environment for long, productive days. Designed to be low maintenance, the cab tilts hydraulically for complete system access. A heavy-duty front grill and canopy design protects the engine and cooling system.
Various load deck lengths are available to meet loggers’ operational styles. An optional clam bunk attachment provides increased functionality for the larger models. www.prenticeforestry.com
The K2 940 forwarder is powered by a fuel efficient Cummins 130 hp diesel engine. The extra rugged centre section oscillates 40 degrees side to side. The Dana axles and powershift transmission provide dependable power and traction where operators need it. The K2 940 uses the Parker IQAN control system to tune in the Kesla F500 crane and other hydraulic functions.
The 940 has an overall height of 134”, a width of 102” and ground clearance of 23”. Its dimensions were engineered to offer optimum maneuverability, mobility, and transportability. The K2 940 is equipped with an extra roomy ergonomic cab, electronic controls and is said to be easy to service. The loading is handled by the Kesla 500 crane with an F29 bypass grapple.
K2 Manufacturing currently designs and manufactures cut-tolength harvesters, utilizing the Kesla parallel cranes and harvesting heads, and a 12- to 14-ton class, six-wheel drive forwarder. email@example.com
The new Ponsse Elephant 18-ton forwarder offers size, speed and transport efficiency. The tractive force and torque of this powerful forwarder have been designed for extreme demands and conditions. It demonstrates superior performance on steep slopes, deep snow, and soft terrain, says the company. The forwarder’s moveable 6.25 cubic metre bunk, efficient drive transmission and powerful crane ensure loads will be transported to roadside quickly and safely, regardless of the site conditions. The efficient hydraulic system operates the Ponsse Elephant’s fast and flexible crane.
One of the superior features of the Elephant forwarder is its unique engine efficiency. It operates up to 200-250 rpm’s lower than most competitive forwarders in the same size category, and it still achieves needed engine power and greater hydraulic power, according to the company. This means, among other things, cost savings through reduced fuel consumption, less noise and more comfortable operating conditions. www.lako.fi