In the spring of 2017, Leica launched a completely new sensor that adds an automatic tilt function to Engcon tiltrotators* – a revolutionary feature that makes excavating easier and more efficient. Stefan Lindgren, who works for Frentab, is one of the excavator operators who took part in the development process.
”Well, it’s been an exciting trip and automatic tilt is a fantastic feature,” says Stefan when we meet him at Koviks Udde, an idyllic spot in the archipelago near Gustavsberg, just south of Stockholm. Stefan drives a Volvo EC250 D with an Engcon EC30 fitted with ePS – engcon Positioning System – linked to an excavator guidance system from Leica. This particular excavator was one of Leica’s test machines involved in the development of the new sensor. ”I have to admit I was a bit doubtful at first, as I wondered if it was really necessary, but I realised pretty quickly that this is an unbeatable tool,” says Stefan.
Stefan’s assignment involves trenching for municipal water and wastewater to the cottages, and because there is such limited space some of the pipes must be placed in the road that wends its way through the area. This also means a lot of restoration work, so to make this easier, the entire area is charted on digital 3D maps that are then uploaded into Stefan’s excavator guidance system. On the big Leica screen, he can see exactly how the roads and terrain looked before he began to dig.
”See how the screen shows how the road looked and what the inclines were before I started ditching,” says Stefan, pointing to the big screen. It makes it easy to understand the strengths and advantages an excavator guidance system brings, and when Stefan starts to dig, everything looks so very easy. He sets down the bucket according to the height shown on the screen, activates the autotilt feature with his right index finger and then pulls the bucket toward him.
”Look how I only have to maintain the right height and rotate the tiltrotator whenever necessary; the incline is taken care of automatically thanks to auto-tilt,” says Stefan just as a truck arrives with gravel for Stefan to spread out on the road that ends at a pumping station down by the water. A body of water that separates a vast scattering of islands and provides fairways for ferry services to and from Russia, Latvia, Finland, Åland, etc. Before I leave Stefan, I watch as he moves his machine forward to create another embankment and road using the 3D map in the Leica System.
Stefan Lindgren, Frentab
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