Where less is more

Where less is more

Last month I took a look at the Finnish designed and Manufactured Sleipner DB120 trailer, an innovative trailer system designed to move large tracked equipment such as dozers and drills. Delving deeper, this month I explore Sleipner's core product range, their E-Series system.

As a vanguard in onsite machine transportation, this is where Sleipner made their name, with a design so simple, that it fundamentally challenged the traditional concept of excavator logistics.

Used to transport tracked excavators (backhoe or front shovel) over large distances, this unique system has expanded to cater to a range of operating weights from 22t, all the way through to 565t, including the Hitachi EX5600 and Caterpillar 6060. When embedded in daily use, owners have reliably doubled, sometimes tripled, their machines undercarriage life.

With up to 15% of an excavator's life spent 'walking', moving machines from A to B can be incredibly costly. The slowest form of all transportation, this method of moving an excavator, results in an inefficient use of qualified staff, decreased utilisation as well as accelerated wear and tear of a machine's undercarriage.

Intro the Sleipner E-Series System, with two operators, an excavator and dump truck. Working as a pair, with the truck as a tow unit, the operator of the excavator manoeuvres (aka drives) their machine into the two cradles. Taking no more than 2 – 3 minutes to automatically lock the excavator into the cradles, the operator lowers the boom of the excavator, placing the bucket of the machine into the rear tray of the dump truck and raising the front tracks of the excavator 50cm above the ground. Simple as that, ready to go.

Matched up with a Caterpillar 797 or Komatsu 960E Dump Truck, a 550t excavator can be towed safely at 10km/h and stop with immediate and effective force, by simply raising the boom, in turn lowering the tracks of the excavator into the dirt.

With loading the critical part of an operating mine's process, Sleipner's value proposition is simple, 'load where you need, not where you can'. Uphill, downhill or around tight corners, the E-Series units allow operators the flexibility to quickly and efficiently manage their excavator fleets.

Albeit, not cheap, the upfront costs of a unit are quickly recovered in the savings achieved with increased machine utilisation, improved operational efficiencies and decreased maintenance costs, with pay back typically taking less than one year. Funny thing however (and please excuse my cynicism), with a world fixated on making 'quick' money, who really cares about long-term savings, when the person incentivised for his decisions today, won't be there tomorrow...

Like to know more, contact the team at Equipment Placement on email sleipner@equipmentplacement.com.au.

This article was originally published by the Components Only team in the May - June 2018 issue of "@ The Coal Face" magazine.

Published 6 May, 2018
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