Advanced technology results in even more flexibility
AUSTIMBER HARVESTING Gippsland is currently working with one of Australia’s largest private plantation companies, HVP Plantations. Situated across areas of Victoria, the plantation extends from Gippsland in the east to the border with South Australia in the west and large plantations in the north east of the state. The total area of land harvested by Austimber and contractors alike equates to over 240,000 hectares. About 165,000 hectares of this land is pine and eucalypt plantation. To meet demand, an extensive fleet of forestry equipment has since been acquired to service this estate. Austimber Harvest over 500,000 tonnes of this volume for HVP in Gippsland.
Established in 2006 and comprised of working professionals with decades of experience in logging. Ian Reid, Director at Austimber Harvesting Gippsland and former Chairman at the Australian Forest Contractors Association (AFCA) says the company started positively, his business interests and desire for new business opportunities has seen the company grow into one of the larger logging contractors operating for HVP Plantations.
Recently, Austimber Harvesting Gippsland has welcomed the all new John Deere 1270E 8WD Harvester to the existing family of frontline machines used to currently service the longterm contract established within the plantation estate. Now with a total of 7 John Deere wheeled Harvesters, 3 Hitachi excavators and 5 John Deere forwarders, more focus can be placed on operating a highly productive logging business whilst maintaining a safe and friendly environment for their employees.
“We strive to keep our operations as simple as we can whilst considering the work satisfaction of our operators, with great machines and experienced workmen, anything is possible,” said Ian.
With that in mind, the new purchase was a no brainer for Ian, “When the machine arrived it was ready to work that day, exceeding not only our expectations of John Deere and Hitachi but the needs of our business were met almost immediately,” said Ian. Taking delivery of the machine in late December, the 1270E is currently fulfilling a steep thinning operation for Austimber Harvesting Gippsland. “Our main reasons for purchasing this machine in particular, attribute to the flexibility in being able to work from first thinning through to clear fall operations. The advanced technology, commonality of parts and operation were also key factors in the decision,” he said.
The optional eight-wheeled version now delivers higher tractive force and more ground clearance to tackle steep slopes and soft soils with more confidence than ever before, which is exactly what Ian needed to fulfil the application. “We knew the 1270E could operate in both flat and steeper first and second thinning and clear fall operations productively within the HVP Gippsland plantations estate. That being said the machine is performing well with high availability rates, meeting productivity targets and receiving good operator feedback,” said Ian.
Since its introduction in 1996, the John Deere 1270 Harvester has dominated harvester sales worldwide while setting the standard for durability and performance. “It’s well designed and good ergonomic features leave operators feeling very comfortable in the machines,” said Ian.
With its large 9.0-litre engine and CH7 Harvester boom, the 1270E performs at a level normally reserved for larger size-class harvesters. “It is plenty powerful to handle the most demanding clear-fell operations, while being manoeuvrable enough to operate in final-thinning applications,” he said.
Comfort, visibility and the overall set-up were major features, according to Ian, when asked why he decided to purchase the John Deere 1270E. “The set-up and finish of the machine is excellent. It was ready to go and all we needed to do was turn the key,” he said.
As the exclusive distributor of John Deere construction and forestry products in the Australian market, Hitachi Construction Machinery Australia (HCA) continues to supply the forestry industry with innovative and cuttingedge products. “We have built a good relationship with Hitachi over the years and we have a history of purchases of John Deere machinery,” said Ian. “We’re very satisfied with the John Deere/Hitachi