After a year in the development process the new TigerCat Harvester has fired up its MTU Detroit Diesel 906 series engine. The six cylinder engine that develops 275 horsepower at 2,200 rpm will begin rigorous testing in March.
“The smaller displacement, fuel efficiency and our previous experience with the 906 in the TigerCat line of forwarders made this the perfect engine for this application” said TigerCat’s Product Manager Track Machines, Andy Hoshel.
The H850C is designed specifically to replace converted excavators. All TigerCat harvesters offer a number of advantages over excavator conversions including a high capacity cooling system, the highest quality steel construction throughout, a spacious, well finished operator’s station and the TigerCat-built, forest-duty under carriage that can boast a more robust construction and a heavy frame plate that easily handles demanding forest conditions. “Dust, debris and pine needles and the like are always a clogging issue that need to be addressed” says Hoshel. “Making routine maintenance easy is essential.” The design of the H850C allows excellent access to pumps, valves and coolers that is far superior to converted excavators.
When considering a major equipment purchase, costs are always a consideration and while the upfront investment in a harvester may seem significantly more than in a converted excavator there are several things to be considered. If you want to take the excavator into the woods there are all sorts of improvements needed: Additional cab safety for the operator, greater cooling capacity and increased armor to stand up to rigorous challenges of forest operations. By the time all this is accomplished the costs aren’t so different and basically you still have an excavator that was designed with a hydraulic package to dig dirt.
Hoshel quipped “if you put big tires on a pickup, made a few adjustments and found the right attachments you could probably plow a field. But if you invested in a tractor designed for the job you’d plow better, quicker and more safely which all add up to improved profit.”
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