Document Sample
					Wheel       I    Loaders

                                                              Wheel Loaders Get
Electronic advancements improve
   every aspect of performance.

          By Curt Bennink
T    he availability and reduced cost
     of electronics technology is driv-
ing rapid advancements in wheel
loader capabilities.
   “The cost of off-highway elec-
tronics has come down over the
last decade as the capability has
increased,” says Jahmy Hindman,
wheel loader product marketing
manager, Deere & Company. “These
advances have allowed companies to
adopt technologies like onboard pay-
load weighing, automatic ride con-
trol, keyless start, auto-idle and auto-                                                                                                 The Contronic system
shutdown, tire pressure monitoring                                                                                                      on Volvo wheel loaders
and programmable return to dig.”                                                                                                          monitors functions in
   For instance, auto-idle allows the                                                                                                 real time and allows the
engine to idle at ultra-low speeds                                                                                                      operator to check fluid
                                                                                                                                       levels and service needs
when the wheel loader is not being
                                                                                                                                           from inside the cab.
used. “This is controlled electroni-
cally in Deere wheel loaders and
reduces idle fuel consumption by as           Productivity is further enhanced      up or slow down the controls with a     onboard payload scale improves pro-
much as 25%,” says Hindman. “In            by giving the operator more control.     simple V-Cads programming tool.”        ductivity by making sure the truck is
addition, we have implemented an           “The operator can set parameters,            Liebherr recently integrated a      loaded to the correct weight the first
electronically controlled auto-shut-       adjust settings, recognize any oper-     touch screen multi-use display in       time,” says Hindman. “This avoids
down feature. It turns the engine off      ating issues and easily operate the      its L550 to L586 large-sized wheel      having the truck come back from the
after an operator-specified amount         multi-function joystick, which is        loaders. According to Rogers, this      weigh bridge if it is loaded too heavy
of low-idle time has elapsed... Of         electronic-over-hydraulic controlled,”   electronic touch screen display         per state DOT regulations. This can
course, for those colder climates that     says Rogers.                             allows the operator to set or change    improve operational load-out effi-
require the engine to run for heat                                                  machine operation settings, check       ciency by 5% to 10%, depending upon
generation, this option can be turned      Control at your                          temperatures, levels and pressures      the operation.”
off, as well.”                             fingertips                               during operation and control the cli-      Steering has also seen dramatic
   The integration of cutting edge            Electronics often actuate and         mate in the operator’s station, along   improvements via electronics tech-
electronics into wheel loaders has         monitor return-to-dig, return-to-        with many other features.               nology. “Liebherr offers a 2-in-1
always been a top priority, asserts        carry, slip control and automatic            Kawasaki’s onboard monitor          steering system that creates a smaller
Nick Rogers, product specialist,           gear kickdown options. “The boom         allows the operator to custom tailor    ratio of rotations on the steering
Liebherr Construction Equipment            suspension (or ride control) is the      machine operation, as well. “The        wheel for better operator control and
Co. “We recognize that through             option that has yielded the most         operator or technician can make         comfort. When equipped on a loader,
multiple types of hardware and             production gains in many applica-        adjustments to the ride control sys-    the 2-in-1 steering can be engaged
software, we are able to produce a         tions,” says Mike Dayton, Volvo          tem, the stick steering system or the   via the electronic keypad panel or
machine that will be more efficient,       Construction. “It reduces spillage on    brake de-clutch system through the      the touch screen display in the cab,”
easier to diagnose, faster to set or       load and carry operations, and allows    monitor,” says Gary Bell, vice presi-   Rogers points out.
change parameters, and exceptional         the operator to travel at high speeds    dent, general manager, Kawasaki            On smaller wheel loaders, electro-
to operate,” he states. “Liebherr has      while remaining in control and oper-     Construction Machinery. “You can        hydraulics enable the use of both a
been able to produce a machine with        ating safely.”                           modify the machine’s characteristics    steering wheel and joystick steering.
features that are either electronic or        Some electronic systems also          to suit the operator.”                  “You retain the steering wheel along
electronically actuated to enhance         allow the operator to customize            
Description: On smaller wheel loaders, electrohydraulics enable the use of both a steering wheel and joystick steering. "You retain the steering wheel along with the stick steer," says [Gary Bell]. "It reduces operator fatigue and increases productivity considerably. We have measured as much as 20% higher productivity with a joystick and stick steering over a steering wheel. If you are V loading or doing a lot of maneuvering, the stick steer is by far the best way to go."
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