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engcon Big Dig Days hit the capital

The engcon UK team recently kicked off their 2024 show season with a two-day event at the Pearson Training Centre in Swanley, Kent.

Supported by KickAsset finance, our engcon partner, Nasco iDig, S-Type-X and Leica Geosystems, the event showed just how popular the tiltrotator world is becoming in the UK. The team braved some inclement weather on the first day but still reported a very good turnout of interested parties keen to learn more about the tiltrotator revolution which engcon is leading.

“We were very pleased with the first day’s turnout despite the bad weather and the poor ground conditions we encountered.” Key Account Manager Andrew Badham commented. “Thankfully, the second day was free from rain and with the ground drying out, visitors were able to take full advantage of the machines we had on site.”

With half a dozen machines ranging from 1.5 tonnes up to 15 tonnes, there was a wide choice for visitors to try out, obviously, all equipped with engcon technology. The smallest machine available was brought to the event by iDig and featured a whole host of additional productivity and safety features designed to make the operators life easier and safer. The iDig system is available in both 2D and 3D versions. They kindly brought along their Kato 1.5 tonne excavator set up with their 3D system, Xwatch height and slew restrictor and the smallest tiltrotator in the range, the engcon EC02 showing a complete set up for small builders and hire companies who want to be self-sufficient and increase their productivity.

At the opposite end of the scale, we had leading machine control specialists Leica Geosystems bring their Hitachi ZX130LCN-7 with full MC1 Machine control and engcon EC219 tiltrotator with EC-Oil. Leica’s Steve Claybrook had designed a model of the engcon ‘e’ measuring over 10m across and allowed visitors to dig the ‘e’ out using the machine control system which is integrated with the tilt and rotate function of the EC219 “You don’t really understand what can be achieved with this combination until you actually put it to use.” Jas Metson of Broxted Plant Hire commented, following a spell in the cab of the Hitachi. “I run a tiltrotator equipped Volvo EC140, but have been very impressed with the engcon set up on the Leica machine, especially as it comes with a 2-year warranty.” These comments were similarly echoed by other experienced operators who spent time on both the Leica equipped Hitachi and the smaller Kato with iDig.

As material costs, fuel costs and labour costs are all increasing on a seemingly daily basis, having a comprehensive excavator set up to allow one-man, productive operation can only be a good thing. At the smaller end of the market, engcon were able to show Weaver Plant Hire’s latest addition to their fleet, a Kubota KX060-5 excavator and EC206. The smallest tiltrotator currently in the range compatible with EC-Oil, Weaver’s excavator took full advantage of this system and is said to be a very popular machine within their growing hire fleet.

Further up the weight scale, long time engcon customer Owen Mays brought along his Takeuchi TB290 and TB2150R excavators with a range of attachments for visitors to try out. Owen runs a busy contracting company in undertaking a variety of civil engineering, landscaping and utility works and has been an engcon user for many years. “We couldn’t do without them!” he commented. “You don’t realise just how much more you can get done in a day with one, until you are forced into using an excavator without one. Not only do they allow you to become more productive, but they also allow you to be more cost effective with a reduction of men required on the ground.”

Owen kindly supplied his machines with a range of buckets and grading beams to allow visitors the opportunity to try out a variety of tasks and gain an insight into what is capable with a tiltrotator.

The final machine on the event was again belonging to another long time engcon user, Ken Pink. Fitted to his Volvo EC140 excavator, the EC219 was yet another machine taken with EC-Oil. Such is the popularity of this hitch, the majority of engcon tiltrotators sold are now being delivered with EC-Oil. “We are finding that people are now realising the benefits of specifying a tiltrotator and understand the benefits they can achieve by using one. engcon UK’s Mark Clare explained. “This then gives customers an insight into the huge range of tasks which can be undertaken with almost any attachment, hence the sway towards EC-Oil. There is also the huge benefit with using the hitch that, should the tiltrotator need to be removed to undertake narrow trenching for instance, it can be done in seconds without the operator having to leave the safety of the cab.”

Pat and Claire from S-Type-X were at the show to show off their latest customisation products including lights from Lazer Lamps, light bars from MittX, and the latest additions to the range, cab steps and interior mats. Pat is well knoiwn throughout the tiltrotator community and it was great to see him supporting the engcon brand at the dig day. Many in the industry still believe the tiltrotator is an expensive addition to an excavator and it was great to see Laura from KickAsset Finance on hand to talk through the range of financing options available to potential customers to get them started on their road to excavating excellence.

Despite the weather on the first day, the visitors enjoyed the opportunity to try out the various encgon equipped machines in a reallife environment. Whilst some were already tiltrotator users, including engcon, they all went away with excellent opinions on the brand’s latest innovations, their push towards integration with machine control systems, and the potential of the new DC3 operating system.

« You don’t realise just how much more you can get done in a day with one, until you are forced into using an excavator without one. »

Owen Mays

Equipment on this machine

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