AB Equipment

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First 610C with Turnaround Seat Arrives

Published: March 23rd, 2013

610C skidderThe first Tigercat 610C mid-size grapple skidder equipped with the new Turnaround seat has arrived in New Zealand and AB Equipment says there is good interest in this machine.

Mark Hill, Product Manager for Tigercat at AB Equipment says the new machine drew large crowds during a demonstration day near Nelson at the end of last month, where its new capabilities were put to test. The 605C cable skidder also gets the new Turnaround seat, but Mr Hill says there are no plans to bring in one of these models unless there is demand.

The 2-position, 100-degree rotating Turnaround seat is unique to Tigercat skidders. The seat swivels effortlessly, locking in either the forward or rear-facing position. Once facing rear, the operator has full control of all machine functions including driver controls. The steering wheel has been replaced with an armrest-mounted joystick for improved ergonomics in either seating position.

The operator has one drive pedal at the front of the cab and one pedal at the rear of the cab. A direction selection switch on the joystick determines if the machine will travel blade-first or grapple-first. The computer system automatically adjusts the controls based on which direction the seat is facing; when the operator is facing rear, and selects ‘forward’ direction, he will travel grapple first. The joystick steering operates the same way.

In analysing skidder duty cycles and cab ergonomics, Tigercat expects a significant reduction in operator fatigue, neck and upper back strain, especially in applications where the operator is required to drive for extended distances into the cut block in reverse, when picking up multiple bunches to build a sufficiently large drag or when performing decking duties at the landing. With better neck and spine alignment, the operator is less vulnerable to the jarring effect that is typical of skidder operating conditions.

Other advantages of Turnaround include fuel savings and the ability to work on smaller decking areas due to reduced machine travel (no need for looped or three-point turns) and improved visibility when travelling in reverse.