Benefitting from machine information
MODERN HARVESTING EQUIPMENT CAN PROVIDE HIGHLY useful information that contractors should be using to improve their business.
The information is not difficult to retrieve from a machine’s computer, according to Ian Wilson, Harvesting Services Manager for Interpine.
And it’s been around for a while. In fact, machines first started to use the technology back in 1986, when STANFORDD, which is the Standard for Forest Machine Data and Communication, was introduced. DRF (Discreet Render Format) files, which are also used across most machines, have been around since 2002.
Ian told the Harvest TECH 2017 conference in Rotorua last month that the data collected by machines can provide a wealth of information about how a machine is operating, from fuel use on a daily and average basis, downtime, how long it spent processing/loading or whatever task it is employed to do, how much time was spent on maintenance and so on.
Contractors can use that information to spot any anomalies, such as unusual fuel burn or lengthy periods of downtime, to identify issues promptly and act on them. It can also point to differences between operators, identifying whether someone may need more training to get up to speed.
The conference also heard from Australian contractor, Ian Reid, who has employed the information available from his machines to help manage his crews working in the Gippsland region in Victoria.
He says the information has been vital in helping him to manage his business, because “if you don’t have accurate information, how do you know where you are going and how do you make informed decisions?”