Tracked Harvesters & Processors
With the introduction of the purpose-built C-Series of tracked forestry carriers, Volvo Construction Equipment has raised their core values of quality, safety and environmental care even higher. The Volvo FC2421C, Volvo FC2924C and Volvo FC3329C are designed to minimize service requirements and fuel consumption while maximizing day-to-day production. Built to the exacting standards that Volvo customers around the globe have come to expect, these tracked forestry carriers are rugged, comfortable and most importantly safe. All are suitable for harvesting, processing, felling, shovel logging, loading, stump harvesting, trenching, scarifying, silviculture and forest road building applications.
By Cheryl Quinn
Key features included on all models are: A Volvo Tier 3 compliant engine with V-ACT (Volvo Advanced Combustion Technology) providing high torque at low revs and resulting in ultra-efficient fuel consumption; a purpose-built, high-walker undercarriage with bottom rollers on top, full length track guards, idler reinforcement and heavy-duty track-motor covers; optimization for forestry hydraulics; a heavy-duty, forestry specific boom package; heavy-duty guards and covers to protect both the upper and lower structure; and an ergonomically designed, Volvo Custom Care Cab with heavy-duty forestry guarding that meets global safety standards. Popular options include a Zenon lighting package and a LevelMax module. www.volvo.com/constructionequipment/na/en-us/products/introduction.htm
TimberPro for Tight Spaces
TimberPro manufactures two different track feller bunchers – both leveling and non-leveling D6 & D7 size machines designed with little or no tail swing for cutting in tight selective cut conditions. The leveling extremes are 28° to the front, 7° to the back and 24° to both sides. The machines can be set to a width of 9′ 5″ or 10′ 5″ with 24″ track shoes. Track shoe widths up to 35″ are available. There are two different boom sets available. The extendable boom measured from center of rotation to attachment pin location is 31′ 2″ and the feller buncher boom is 23′ 6″. The capacity of the extendable boom is 5500 lbs with a dangle attachment and the feller buncher boom is 7000 lbs with a control fall attachment.
All TimberPro machines have a 300 HP tier 3 Cummins engine. With different gear ratios in the pump drive and horsepower control through the CAN buss interface with the IQAN MDL digital control system, these machines can provide at least a 20 per cent savings in fuel consumption. www.timberpro.com
Caterpillar Harvesters and Heads
Caterpillar Forest Products manufactures a line of purpose-built track harvesters and harvesting heads for cut-to-length logging.
The Cat® 501 and 501HD track harvesters include 157 HP Caterpillar® C6.6 ACERT® Tier 3 engines rated at 2200 rpm, which reduce emissions at the point of combustion to meet clean air regulations. The Tier 3 C6.6 engine generates 11 per cent more torque than Tier 2 engines in the lower rpm ranges. This additional torque provides more power at reduced rpms for increased fuel efficiency and maintains higher hydraulic flow under load for faster processor speeds.
Caterpillar harvesters feature forward mounted cab and rear engine placement, providing excellent visibility for enhanced selection capabilities. Standard and extendable booms are available to allow for fixed or dangle harvesting heads.
Caterpillar Forest Products manufactures a complete line of harvesting heads matched to the 501 and 501HD. These harvesting heads, including the recently updated PF-48 model, are built for rugged harvesting applications and are easy to maintain. Field proven components and systems are incorporated for maximum reliability and dependability. A full line of models is available in fixed and dangle styles and in a variety of cutting capacities and weights to meet your specific application needs. www.cat.com/forestry
New John Deere Swing Machine
John Deere Forestry introduced the John Deere 3754D to its lineup of robust D-Series Swing Machines in February 2009. With its durable redesigned structure and a Tier 3-compliant engine, the 3754D boasts increased power yet promotes fuel efficiency.
“The John Deere 3754D Swing Machine is specifically designed to prolong uptime, with a new 9.0L 271-hp engine boosting fuel efficiency and a standard 277-gallon fuel tank extending run-time between fill ups,” says Dave McFarlane, John Deere swing machine product marketing manager.
“Other product features to boost the efficiency of the 3754D include an updated hydraulic system that advances attachment performance and machine smoothness and facilitates faster cycle times. Other improvements, such as external debris management screens, hydraulically driven on demand cooling fan with reversing option, newly designed heavy duty structures, hardened pins and tighter tolerances in critical joints, and better component protection, all help to reduce downtime,” McFarlane said.
The 3754D incorporates many of the hydraulic upgrades of John Deere D-Series construction excavators — maintaining its reputation for best-in-class hydraulic control and multifunction ability and advancing hydraulic performance. By using the 450D undercarriage and drive system, the swing machine has superior strength as well as enough track power to get it where it needs to go.
Tanguay Track Harvesters
Tanguay’s line-up of versatile forestry equipment includes three models of purpose built track harvesters.
The TG300 series is a compact limited tail swing harvester with a 275hp, M906 Mercedes engine and features Rexroth pumps, Parker valves and an IQAN control system with open loop hydraulics for excellent traction.
TG400 series with up to a 35 ft. reach features a 330hp, QSL9 Cummins engine. The TG400 also has the Rexroth pumps, Parker Valves and an IQAN control system but has closed loop hydraulics for the traction.
The TG700 is also a large and long tail swing feller buncher with a long reach boom design. It is powered by a 300 hp, QSC Cummins engine, and features simple Linde hydraulics with hydraulic pilot lines for the joysticks and open loop hydraulics for the traction.
All three models share the same D7 Tanguay traction with flexible hydraulics to suit your choice of harvester head. The harvesters are designed with an oversized cooling package featuring a thermostatic, hydraulically driven, variable speed suction fan. An optional tropical cooling package is also available to suit warmer logging conditions. The comfortable cabs on Tanguay machines provides great visibility to the operators while gull wing enclosures and access panels ensure safe and easy access for maintenance and service. www.tanguay.cc
Fuel Efficient Tigercat
Tigercat’s H855C is a purpose built carrier designed specifically for harvesting, in-woods processing and roadside
processing applications. Based on Tigercat’s flagship 860C series carriers, the H855C uses the same upper frame
structure, cab and boom systems as the H860C.
The engine and hydraulic system are specifically designed to achieve maximum performance and minimum fuel consumption in harvesting and processing applications. Essentially, the H855C is a machine perfectly matched to the vast majority of the world’s harvesting and processing applications at a purchase price that is competitive with much less capable excavator conversions.
The H855C is powered by a 6.4 L turbocharged and aftercooled Tier 3 Mercedes 906, delivering 205 kW (275 hp) at 2,200 rpm. The same engine is used in the Tigercat forwarder line and the new 845C feller buncher. High horsepower allows the H855C to maintain hydraulic flow as the pressure increases, keeping roll speed up and significantly boosting productivity.
Because the H855C hydraulic system is designed specifically to power harvesting attachments, it is far more efficient and productive than modified excavators. Field reports indicate that H855C fuel usage can be as low as 15 L/hr (4 US gph) and recent independent studies have shown that Tigercat purpose built track harvesters are 20-25% more productive than similarly sized excavator conversions equipped with the same attachment. www.tigercat.com
Full Line-up From Valmet
Valmet offers several purpose-built track machines for harvesting and processing that are designed to improve stability, extend component life and increase production across the entire line up. Starting with the 415FX, it has a small footprint and continuous rotation to allow it to maneuver in tight spaces. It features a new Komatsu undercarriage and an efficient 220hp Cummins QSB Tier 3, 6.7 liter engine. It also has pilot-line controls and has a new larger cooling package that greatly outperforms the previous system.
The larger class Valmet machines feature outstanding multifunction performance with closed-loop independent hydraulic track drive. The Valmet 430FX and the FXL (leveling) carrier are equipped with a powerful Cummins 300hp Tier 3 engine. They have electronic controls that provide smooth operating performance with built-in machine protection and troubleshooting capability. The cab is roomy and comfortable with controls that are positioned to minimize operator fatigue.
The 445FXL features a redesigned carboy, longer Komatsu tracks and dependable Komatsu final drives. Its 300 hp multifunction performance allows the operator to travel, reach, cut and swing with ample power for the track and implement systems. The 450FXL is engineered for rugged work conditions. It features a large Komatsu undercarriage with a massive leveling system and a double row swing bearing.
The Valmet line up includes new, stronger boom designs for each model and cooling systems that improve operating performance, extend machine service and deliver greater production and value.
TOP TIPS FOR EFFICIENCY & SPEED
We asked Tigercat’s Prince George, B.C.-based product support rep Gary MacDonald to share his list of top tips for operators. The veteran operator and trainer tells you how the best operators get the most from their purpose-built machines, regardless of brand.
- Work close to the source – Going in close to standing wood will speed up your cycle time and will have the added bonus of reducing your fuel costs.
- Make a good mat – Deposit tops evenly in front of the harvester to give a good brush mat to travel on.
- Multi-task – If possible start to feed the processor while the tree is falling.
- Pile by swinging – Place the largest log the farthest back then swing to separate the next sort, swinging until the tree is processed. The different sorts should have the tops of the logs spaced one to two feet apart. After cutting the first log, the arc of the boom, while swinging, will give spacing between the sorts to pile more logs while setting the tops far enough apart for the forwarder operator to tell the difference.
- Species Sorts – When possible, cut the dominant species in the stand first. Pile other species on the opposite side from the main species you are cutting. This works well when the forwarder is close behind the harvester.
- Play pick-up – When cutting, let go of large/oversize trees, allowing them to fall to the ground and then pick them up again. Large trees put a lot of stress on all parts of the machine when they hit the ground so dropping them will reduce that stress and help increase the overall life of the machine.
- Consistency – You can’t make up for lost time so work steady and at the end of the day you will have produced more with less downtime.
- Open the bottom arm – When the bar is pinched when falling the tree, open the bottom arm/arms (if equipped with them) and the bar will sometimes release. If not, then you may be able to swing with the bottom arm open, when the tree is leaning, and tear the tree from the stump. This will leave a barber chair but won’t ruin the bar. This technique is not easy but will work when done right.
- Proper chain maintenance – Using a sharp chain reduces barber chairs when falling and log splitting when cross cutting.
- Sharp knives – Keeping your knives sharp will allow for better delimbing, which can assist in measuring both diameter and length.