Cus­tomer in­put plays ma­jor part in get­ting things right

Eight-wheeled for­est ma­chines al­low har­vest­ing on ever steeper slopes and more un­even ter­rain

Australian Forests and Timber - - HARVESTERS -

THE FOUNDER of Pon­sse com­pany, for­est ma­chine con­trac­tor Ei­nari Vid­grén al­ways says “cus­tomers are the best ex­perts; we have to lis­ten to them”.

It has been Pon­sse’s main phi­los­o­phy in prod­uct de­vel­op­ment all the way from the be­gin­ning of the com­pany in 1970. Close re­la­tion­ships with con­trac­tors and ma­chine op­er­a­tors and deep con­sid­er­a­tion of their needs and ideas en­sure that the R&D ef­forts are tar­geted to the cor­rect goals.

This ben­e­fits both man­u­fac­turer and cus­tomer.

Pon­sse’s prod­uct range has never seen changes as dras­tic as it has in re­cent years. The in­ten­sive de­vel­op­ment phase started in 2009 when Pon­sse launched the first eightwheeled har­vester mod­els. In 2015 Pon­sse re­leased a whole new ma­chine model se­ries, start­ing with the launch of the Pon­sse Scor­pion and Scor­pi­onKing har­vesters in 2013.

The de­vel­op­ment of the new model se­ries was done on the ba­sis of the feed­back col­lected through­out the years. Along with new tech­nolo­gies and con­cepts, it is im­por­tant to keep in mind the con­tin­u­ous im­prove­ment of the base tech­nol­ogy – the things that keep the wheels rolling and trees fall­ing all around the world, every day.

“The new Pon­sse model se­ries fo­cuses on im­prov­ing dura­bil­ity, ser­vice­abil­ity and er­gonomics, pro­duc­ing sig­nif­i­cant results in terms of us­abil­ity and pro­duc­tiv­ity,” said Peter Ran­dalls (Di­rec­tor, Ran­dalls Equip­ment Com­pany, au­tho­rised Aus­tralian dis­trib­u­tor of Pon­sse ma­chines).

The start­ing point for the de­vel­op­ment of the new model se­ries was the idea of a for­est ma­chine that does not com­pro­mise on the us­abil­ity, pro­duc­tiv­ity or ser­vice­abil­ity of the ma­chine. The frame of the ma­chine is even more durable, and mod­i­fi­ca­tions to crane mod­els have im­proved dura­bil­ity and the ease of use.

Com­fort is key

“The de­vel­op­ment of for­est ma­chines is strongly head­ing in a di­rec­tion where the work­ing com­fort of the op­er­a­tor is key, along­side ma­chine pro­duc­tiv­ity,” said Peter.

The op­er­a­tor’s work­ing ca­pac­ity has a di­rect im­pact on the pro­duc­tiv­ity of har­vest­ing. An op­er­a­tor who is alert through­out the shift has an im­pact, not only on ma­chine pro­duc­tion, but also on the af­ter-har­vest track.

The cabin, vis­i­bil­ity, er­gonomic con­trols, ease of main­te­nance and use, to­gether with ma­chine sta­bil­ity and con­trol, are cru­cial fac­tors when it comes to com­fort. Re­gard­less of ma­chine in­tel­li­gence and ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy, qual­ity and pro­duc­tion are al­ways based on the op­er­a­tor.

In re­cent years, ma­chine sta­bil­ity has in­creased its role, as planted forests are lo­cated on steep slopes in many mar­ket ar­eas. Thanks to its sta­bil­ity, eight-wheeled for­est ma­chines al­low har­vest­ing on ever steeper slopes and more un­even ter­rain. On the steep­est slopes, winch so­lu­tions are also used, par­tic­u­larly in South Amer­ica and Cen­tral Europe.

The Pon­sse prod­uct range in­cludes both six and eightwheel har­vesters in all size cat­e­gories from thin­ning to heavy duty re­gen­er­a­tion felling. All Pon­sse ma­chine mod­els are de­signed for a gen­eral size cat­e­gory in terms of their size and per­for­mance, whereby the work is not nar­rowly re­stricted to cer­tain types of work sites due to the equip­ment. Ver­sa­tile prod­uct so­lu­tions al­low har­vest­ing of both en­ergy wood and in­dus­trial wood pro­duc­tively. All Pon­sse har­vester heads have mul­ti­stem­ming as a stan­dard fea­ture.

Pon­sse is known for its rapid prod­uct de­vel­op­ment based on cus­tomer needs. It has al­ways al­lo­cated its re­sources to where it can be the best in the world. In de­vel­op­ing en­vi­ron­men­tally friendly, cut-to-length for­est ma­chines, Pon­sse rep­re­sents state-of-the-art.

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