The friendly giant, Logset’s 12H GTE Hybrid, heading for Australia The friendly giant, Logset’s 12H GTE Hybrid, heading for Australia
THE 12H GTE Hybrid harvester manufactured by Logset Oy in Finland, represents the newest technology in forest harvesting machinery. It is the world’s first hybrid harvester and is nicknamed “the friendly giant” because it is environmentally friendly and powerful like a giant. The harvest er has a hybrid system with an electrical motor that offers torque and power boost to the AGCO Power 7.4 l engine. To date this machine model has been delivered into Europe, but this year the first hybrid harvester will arrive in Australia.
“We went over to Sweden to look at a 12H GTE Hybrid working with a Logset TH75 head which was a great starting point for my trip. The owner and operator Gerhard Sjölander was very open about his experience with his machine. Gerhard has over 35 years’ experience of harvesting. It was a great chance to get some solid infield information. The main points I got from Gerhard were impressive production increases with lower fuel consumption and a higher level of operator comfort,” says Hugh Gordon, owner of LICO Pty Ltd.
During 2016 LICO became a Logset dealer and the company bought its first Logset machine, a Logset 12F GT forwarder in late 2015.
“We’ve been very happy with the 12F GT which has now clocked over 2 000 hours. We haven’t really needed any help with it. When we bought the forwarder, it was a new product for both us and for Logset. I’m a person who needs to see and feel the machine before I buy it, so that was my first trip to Finland. Getting to see machines at the production level is a big bonus for me. Now it’s a similar story with the 12H GTE Hybrid with a second trip to the Logset factory,” Gordon said.
New harvesting head TH85
The first hybrid harvester being shipped to Australia will be equipped with a new Logset harvester head TH85 which was designed to complement the capacity of the 12H GTE Hybrid. Logset has just launched the product and both the head and the Hybrid are optimized for large size clear cut harvesting. The TH85 has three steel feeding rollers and synchronized feed circuit to ensure that the grip of the tree is optimal.
“Our business is based in Mount Gambier in South Australia, which is one of the biggest forest regions in the country. I believe that the TH85 is going to work well on the radiata pine, the most common tree species we have,” said Gordon.
“We are also happy to take a new harvester head with Logset because of our earlier smooth experiences. If we don’t try something new, we’ll just never know.”
As a Logset dealer Gordon is planning on selling the Logset 12H GTE Hybrid and 8H GTE harvesters, and the Logset 12F GT and 8F GT forwarders.
“I think that these products will best suit the Australian market. If we are going to sell the products, we also need to know them well. That is also a reason why we wanted to get a Hybrid for our business. We need to be able to give fast and effective service to our customers, so firsthand experience and factory support is, in my opinion, the best way to achieve this,” he said.
LICO has built a service trailer to reduce service times on machines and they are also building up a stock of Logset spare parts.
Test driving the 12 H Hybrid & TH85 combo
Already on the way to the forest for a test drive, Gordon is taking several pictures of his Hybrid harvester with the TH85 head. He even attaches a GoPro camera on the cabin before he jumps in himself.
“This is like seeing your baby for the first time,” he quips.
Gordon has three children of his own, of which the youngest, Harry, is only 10 months old. A fresh father of three must know the baby feeling he is talking about.
When Gordon starts driving the hybrid he keeps
looking out for the rocks in the forest. Because of that he thinks he can’t get the most out of the experience until he is back home. The hybrid weighs from 24,500 kg and its wheels are 780/50-28,5. The machine is designed to go on several different types of land.
“In Australia, the logging is different, since our trees are grown in straight lines.”
What surprises Gordon is the quietness of the friendly giant.
“You really can’t hear the engine working or getting strained at any time. It’s consistent. I’m looking forward to May when the Hybrid will arrive. It’s going to the front line in clear fall and thinning’s so it won’t take long to gather some solid Australian infield numbers to pass on,” he said.
Birthday celebrations for Logset
It all depends on how you say it ... a quarter of a century, two and a half decades, 25 years, 300 months or 9125 days (give or take a leap year or two). That longevity factor has come into play for forest machine manufacturer Logset which this year notches up the 25-year milestone.
Logset was founded in 1992 by Gustav Frantzén, Seppo Koskinen and Kristian Stén, who acquired the forest machine business assets from Oy Norcar Ab. Today Logset is a mid-sized machine manufacturer and the company has always had a clear policy to invest in research and development. Last year (2016) Logset launched the world’s first hybrid harvester, the Logset 12H GTE.
Although the company’s birthday is officially in August, Logset will be starting to celebrate from June at Elmia Wood in Sweden. A special anniversary logo has also been launched.
Hugh Gordon is taking the world’s first hybrid harvester, the Logset 12H GTE Hybrid, from Finland to Australia.
Hugh Gordon and Tapio Nikkanen, Chairman of the Board for Logset, shaking hands on Australia’s first hybrid harvester deal.
Logset’s dealer in Australia, Hugh Gordon, with the newly-launched harvester head Logset TH85.