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2020 / 2021 Edition

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Bobcat skid-steer for ship trimming

Bobcat S550 skid-steer loader

Clydebank Port Services hire S550 loader to help with demanding ship-unloading duties

CLYDEBANK Port Services Ltd of Glasgow have hired a Bobcat S550 skid-steer loader with sweeper and bucket attachments from MTS Group’s newly opened depot at Cumbernauld, in North Lanarkshire.

The skid-steer unit is being used to help unload daily shipments of sand, limestone and cement that Clydebank receive and which are stored on site before delivery to customers.

Douglas Anderson, port manager, said: ‘Bobcat skid-steer loaders are ideal for us. Due to their manoeuvrability, compact size and low weight compared with other machines, they can be lifted on to the ships at the dock and are suitable for collecting any left-over materials, to ensure we remove as much as possible. We are also able to make use of the sweeper to clear the docks both before and after the ships come in.’

When a ship docks at Clydebank, most of the unloading of materials in the hold is carried out by grab systems on the dockside. As the hold on the ship empties, there comes a point where the grab cannot pick up enough of the material, especially in the hard-to-reach sides and corners, and this leaves a significant amount of material remaining in the hold.

The Bobcat S550 skid-steer loader, equipped with an optional front door, is lowered by crane into the hold, where it forms new mounds of material in the centre of the hold for the grab to extract.

For ship-trimming work such as that at Clydebank, one of the key advantages of the Bobcat S550 loader is its superior manoeuvrability in confined spaces. The radius lift pattern and short pattern wheelbase on the compact loader are combined with differential steering for highly efficient manoeuvring and fast cycle times in tight areas. In addition, the machine’s hydrostatic drive gives precise control of the speed and direction of the loader, both forwards and backwards, in any situation.

With an operating weight of 2,841kg, a rated operating capacity of 894kg and a tipping load of 1,788kg, the performance of the Bobcat S550 skid-steer is further enhanced by the use of a Kubota V2607 diesel engine that delivers 45.5kW at 2,700 rev/min.

MTS run one of the largest fleets of Bobcat compact equipment for hire in the UK and their recently opened Cumbernauld branch adds to the existing hire depots at Leigh in Lancashire, Birtley in Tyne and Wear, and the company’s Wakefield headquarters in West Yorkshire. 

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