New loading shovel replaces L180G model as aggregates business looks to increase production
THE first recently introduced Volvo L260H loading shovel to be sold in Great Britain has been delivered to Lightwater Quarries Ltd, based at North Stainley, near Ripon.
With the aggregates business looking to increase production to around 600,000 tonnes per annum, the new 35-tonne L260H complete with a 5.7 cubic metre bucket was seen as the ideal replacement for an existing L180G model, according to general manager Kevin Parker.
‘We needed a loading shovel capable of loading our recently acquired 40-tonne rigid truck in four clean passes, as well as stockpiling, keeping the belts clear of material and, on occasions, extracting material from the face,’ he explained.
‘Having owned and operated Volvo products for many years, we were quite confident in the L260’s credentials, and so far we are very pleased with the machine’s productivity and fuel efficiency.’
The L260H replaces the L250H model and has been designed for productivity. It is equipped with a powerful Stage-4 final engine that delivers 6% more power and 5% more torque than its predecessor, whilst its next-generation load-sensing hydraulics have been designed to enhance the responsiveness of attachments and improve the lifting and lowering speed of the boom.
For faster cycle times, the new HTL310 transmission works in harmony with the powerful engine and axles, and the new converter delivers increased torque output, resulting in better performance. Moreover, steps between gears have been reduced, for faster acceleration.
Fuel efficiency has been increased by up to 10%, thanks to a host of improved features. For example, the next-generation hydraulic system saves hydraulic pump power for other functions by reducing fluid flow when lowering and dumping.
In addition, the new, dry P-Brake eliminates drag losses caused by the internal wet multi-disc brake. In addition, the upgraded OptiShift technology integrates the reverse-by-braking (RBB) function – patented by Volvo – and new torque converter with lock-up, creating a direct drive between the engine and transmission, reducing fuel consumption significantly.
Also contributing to fuel efficiency is Fully Automatic Power Shift (FAPS), which shifts the gears to match the engine and travel speed to the best gear ratio. The L260H is also equipped with an Eco-pedal – a feature unique to Volvo – that encourages economical operation by applying a mechanical push-back force in response to excess use of the accelerator.
The new L260H joins existing Volvo equipment owned and operated by Lightwater Quarries Ltd, including two smaller L180H shovels and a 30-tonne EC300EL. With its 5.7 cubic metre bucket, the new loading shovel is easily shifting in excess of 2,000 tonnes of crushed limestone material with an average density of 1.8 tonnes per cubic metre in each daily shift.