Hitachi Zaxis-5 machines in demand for demolition
According to the official UK Hitachi dealer, HM Plant (a Hitachi group company), demand for the ZX250LC-5 to the ZX470LCH-5 models during 2012 was significant among members of the UK’s National Federation of Demolition Contractors (NFDC).
David Hearne, operations director, commented: 'A high proportion of the Zaxis-5 machines we have supplied so far have gone to NFDC members, including: three ZX350LC-5s to Balicrest Ltd and Gilpin Demolition Ltd respectively; two ZX290LC-5s to Syd Bishop & Sons (Demolition) Ltd; and a further ZX290LC-5 to Bromley Demolition Co Ltd.'
The first company to take delivery of a ZX470LCH-5 – along with two ZX250LC-5s – was Hampshire-based Hughes & Salvidge Ltd. Both models were used on a challenging site in Havant, shortly after delivery in October. The larger model, equipped with a pulverizer attachment, was used to crush reinforced concrete, and a ZX250LC-5 fitted with a grapple attachment, handled and processed materials, and loaded them into skips.
The benefits of the Hitachi Zaxis-5 range include high levels of productivity, thanks to the new three-pump TRIAS hydraulic system (ZX250LC-5 to ZX350LC-5) and the HIOS IIIB hydraulic system for the ZX470LCH-5. They are all equipped with a powerful, yet fuel-efficient engine, which complies with Stage IIIB emission regulations and helps customers to reduce running costs. Operator comfort and safety have also been enhanced with more space, user-friendly controls and a colour LCD monitor in the ROPS-compliant cab.
Hughes & Salvidge managing director Martyn Burnett explained the reasons behind his decision to invest in the new Hitachi Zaxis-5 models: 'I bought my first Hitachi excavator in 2002 and it was extremely reliable. That’s the number one reason why I buy Hitachi. The product itself is fantastic, the people employed by Hitachi and HM Plant are easy to get along with, and the support they provide if something goes wrong is second to none.'
Mr Burnett has plans to invest in a further four ZX470LCH-5 models in 2013. “The most important advantage of the new Zaxis-5 models for my business is the reduced running costs. The new Stage IIIB engine of the ZX470LCH-5 uses less fuel than the previous model and results in a saving of tens of thousands of pounds.'
The engine was also an important consideration when tendering for work, he explained: 'It will allow us to work on projects in central London and to comply with emission regulations that come into effect in the near future. By investing now, we will be ahead of the competition.'
Operators at the company have also been impressed by the performance of the new Hitachi Zaxis-5 machines. Nick Winter, who has worked with Hitachi excavators for 30 years, said: 'I’ve operated the ZX460LCH, the ZX470LCH-3 and now the ZX470LCH-5. Every model is better than the last. The technology has been enhanced on the latest model, it’s also comfortable, and the fuel-efficient Stage IIIB engine is another improvement.
'Demolition is a hard life for machines, working 12h days, but Hitachi excavators just keep going. I’d choose Hitachi over other brands because they are smooth and responsive, and easy to operate.'
Another Hitachi enthusiast is operator Philip Marsh, who prefers working with the smaller ZX250LC-5 to the ZX470LCH-5. 'It’s versatile, I can work on smaller jobs for houses and bungalows, as well as larger projects like this one,' he explained. 'It’s a good, all-round machine and easier to use than other brands. The new three-pump TRIAS hydraulic system is really good. I like the fact that Hitachi excavators are easy to control and comfortable.'
NB: all modifications were made by the dealer to comply with site safety regulations.