Control system manufacturer Microprop showcased a prototype MIG2 (Microprop Grip 2) joystick at MaskinExpo 2013. engcon is now releasing the joystick in its perfected, series-produced version.
"In response to requirements for enhanced safety and increasing demands for more functions on today’s excavators, we’ve developed joysticks for maximum ergonomic benefit without foregoing any of the functions a driver needs to control," says technician Roberth Jonsson, Project Manager at Microprop AB.
The MIG2 can be fitted with three rollers and 7 buttons – a total of six rollers and 14 buttons on two joysticks. When used with the Microprop DC2 control system, all the rollers can be operated simultaneously. The joysticks were designed in collaboration with a number of construction contractors and a company specializing in industrial design, to keep maximum ergonomic benefit in focus.
“Indeed, we enjoyed a truly great collaboration with the design company and our dedicated test pilots (the contractors), who did a fantastic job on the ergonomics,” says Roberth Jonsson.
In ergonomic terms, the most outstanding feature is the combination of a highly grippable joystick that can be enhanced with a hand rest. The latter is an adjustable brace that fits against the back of the hand to support outward movements, which can be relatively strenuous when more than one joystick function is operated and can lead to repetitive strain injuries.
Microprop has taken out a number of patents on MIG2, but at the time of writing will not say what they refer to.
"Nope. We're right at the final patent approval phase, and we don't want to reveal what the patents cover. When everything is ready we'll make things public," concludes Roberth.
MIG2 will become available for sale at the end of March, and the company expects to achieve full production capacity sometime in June.
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