C&L, Features, New South Wales

Coopers Heavy Industries flies the coop

Coopers Heavy Industries recently invested in a 70t Liebherr mobile crane catering to the demand for “space restrictive” lifts across Sydney.

Coopers Heavy Industries recently invested in a 70t Liebherr mobile crane catering to the demand for “space restrictive” lifts across Sydney.

Coopers Heavy Industries began life in Canberra in 2009. Founder and owner, Dylan Cooper was already working in the crane industry when he started the business with the purchase of the first of many mini mobile cranes.

“Purchasing the first crane was the push I needed to start working in the business fulltime and we haven’t really looked back,” said Cooper. “We’re constantly adding to the fleet, which now includes 2 Liebherr mobile cranes, six Maeda mini cranes, 1.25 Jekko mini cranes, one tilt tray, two crane trucks, 22 vacuum lifters from 300kg to 2t and radio remote-controlled spreader bars from 600kg to 5t. and 2 Sennebogen telescopic crawler cranes, as well as one Kato city crane.

“Five years ago, we delved into the mobile market and bought a used 40t Liebherr from Anthony Davis at Crane Connection. We sold that and bought a 50t Liebherr city crane and then, most recently, a Liebherr LTM 1070-4.2.

The Liebherr four-axle LTM 1070-4.2 features a number of innovative technologies including VarioBase. With many city construction sites providing limited operating space, it is frequently impossible to extend all the outriggers of the mobile crane evenly. The Liebherr VarioBase system enables each individual crane support to be extended to an arbitrary length without having to pin the outriggers. The load moment limiter in the LICCON controls ensures the crane can perform safely and the increased safety features take the strain off the crane driver who can concentrate fully on the hoist.

“We pride ourselves on doing the small stuff properly and trying to execute every job to the best of our ability,” said Cooper. “We take a professional attitude to every job and ensure we use the right crane and not push a crane that we might have sitting in the yard.

“We’ve built our business and reputation by solving a customer’s problem. That’s why we’ve always had the ‘odd’-sized Liebherrs, like the 50t city crane. At the time, we purchased the machine there would have only been three or four. We found a niche in the market and now there would be close to 20 Liebherr city cranes getting around Sydney,” he said.

Coopers conduct all sorts of lifts in different industry sectors including demolition, rail work, civil, glass installation, façade works, general construction and pre-cast installation, telecommunications and port work.

“The new Liebherr is a really handy crane around the city because of its manoeuvrability and ability to access tight areas,” said Cooper.

New features of the LTM 1070-4.2 also include speed-dependent, rear-axle steering, disc brakes, new LICCON2 controller, new crane cabins, new one-piece steel wheel rims, 50m hydraulic boom and the latest generation of disc brakes.

“It’s the best machine I’ve ever owned and there are a number of reasons for that statement. The long boom, hydraulic luffing fly, really good roadability, good line pull, it’s just a really good all rounder,” said Cooper.

According to Cooper, the business is successful because it puts the customer first.

“We take the approach of working with the customer and coming up with a lift that might involve two smaller machines,” he said. “We can be a bit of a last resort for some customers and that’s what we’ve built the business on, finding the easiest and quickest way to manage the lift.”

The back up and support received from Liebherr is a major reason the relationship works.

“Our relationship with Liebherr has also been amazing,” said Cooper. “If you need parts, they’re there and if you need service it’s there. In today’s business world, it’s hard to find suppliers who are prepared to really work with you.

“There are some dealers who only want to take your money and we’ve had a couple of really bad experiences with poorly made products and dealers that wouldn’t and couldn’t support them. Never again,” he said.

“I think the key word in all of this is accountability. People lose sight of what being accountable means.

“We have long-term relationships with our customers and we pride ourselves in that,” he said.

“Relationships are important for the business as it lets us forward plan, so we know what’s in the pipeline for the next two to three years in terms of work flow. We are working on jobs today that we looked at four years ago.”

When Coopers first looked at buying the 70t machine, it already had a years’ worth of work for it. Cooper said Liebherr made the purchase very easy.

“Liebherr is very flexible to deal with, and for a company our size that is paramount. The purchase of the new crane was made a lot easier for us than other brands would have made it,” he said.

“Liebherr impress with the small detail it goes to. When you pick your crane up, drive off their driveway you are ready to work. All the work to cover registration has been completed, the rego and permit is done, the GPS tracking unit is in the crane, the attention to detail really adds up. 

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