The forested Canterbury high country of New Zealand is no place for the faint-hearted, especially during the winter months of June, July and August when frost and snow can force a drop in temperature to -20˚C. This rugged landscape, with the mountain range of the Southern Alps that extends along much of the length of New Zealand’s South Island as a backdrop, grows pine trees for export. Key to harvesting this crop is the right equipment, and Volvo CE is now meeting customer demand by supplying forestry carriers that are specifically designed for the tough conditions in this area,
Working hundreds of hectares in Canterbury’s Malvern Hills on the east coast of the South Island, Button Logging’s Rory Button operates one of the new EC300DL forestry carriers, which landed ready to go and was put to work immediately on arrival.
The machines have been brought to market by Volvo CE’s Special Application Solutions team, led by commercial projects manager Peter Lam. TransDiesel was instrumental in lobbying for the purpose-built excavator for the NZ market.
The Volvo team visited a variety of logging operations to be able to develop the purpose-built forestry machine designed for New Zealand’s demanding conditions.
The forestry carriers feature a high and wide undercarriage with a special heavy-duty underbelly guard and full-length track guards. Among the machine’s plus points are stronger engine hood and side panels and reinforced fuel and hydraulic tanks. A specially designed and reinforced cabin plus three emergency exits from the cab – the rear window, the side door, and the roof hatch – are among a number of features that enhance operator safety.
The machines are fitted with a Volvo quick hitch, so they can work with a range of attachments, such as buckets or grapples depending on the task on hand. “It can harvest, process, load, stump harvest, trench, plant, and build roads.
With Thanks to Button Logging.
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