Signalling changing times, the construction and agricultural machinery maker JCB has begun producing the world’s first fully electric mini excavator.
But wait... more productive and needing much less maintenance – though deserving the same nickname– is the JCB 516-40 telehandler.
It's compact – only 1.56m wide and 1.8m tall – but big of heart, lifting 1.6 tonnes to 4m and 1000kg at 2m forward reach. Especially this will suit poultry farms and growing and farming applications where access is limited and massive lift capacities are not required.
It has a one-piece fully welded chassis for durability and reliability; this and other key components such as the boom and cabin are dipped in an electrophoretic alloy solution for superior protection against corrosion, then are powder coated for chip resistance and long life.
Motive power is delivered by a 2.2L Tier 3 emission-spec Kohler engine developing 47hp at 800rpm and 130Nm torque at 1600rpm.
A two-stage hydrostatic transmission allows a maximum speed of 26km/h; its transmission dump system on the brake pedal allows multi-functioning during loading and rehandling without sapping engine power.
The main boom is heavy duty: a minimum of 0.5m overlap between sections and hydraulic pipework routed through the boom section for protection and superior load visibility.
Control is by single lever joystick for all functions, including forward and reverse, as well as flow rates for the auxiliary circuit, which has a maximum output of 56L/min. An adaptive load control system also prevents overloading, and check valves ensure all main hydraulic cylinders are locked out in the event of catastrophic hose failure.
The cabin is mounted low and access is easy through a 'stable door' leading to an air suspended seat in an area 0.9m wide. The upper door can be pinned back for ventilation or the machine can be specified with air conditioning.
Ergonomically laid out controls make for easy working during long hours, and the back-lit instruments are good for late nights or early winter mornings.
A large forward windscreen and side windows, and an oversize roof screen, promote visibility during loading, and the cabin is fully certified for ROPS and FOPS, protecting the operator at all times; bystanders are protected by a reversing alarm
In maintenance, the 500-hour service interval for engine oils and boom wear pads is double that of competitors, the maker says, all daily checks and grease points can be accessed from ground level, and radiator cleaning is by an optional hydraulically driven reversible cooling fan.
A wide range of options can be specified, including road and work lights, front screen guards and sun blinds, safety beacons, battery isolation and fire extinguisher.