Two years ago, Karridale Group took a punt on XCMG cranes and brought a range of crawler, all-terrain and rough-terrain cranes for its operations in Western Australia directly from the factory in China. The company hasn’t looked back since.
Starting in 2010 with a focus on construction work and labour hire, the company moved its focus into fixed plant maintenance in late 2018, servicing a range of mine site across WA.
To more fully cater to the fixed plant maintenance market in mining it was essential to invest in machinery suitable for different works at multiple sites.
Karridale Group brought on board two XGC300 crawler cranes at 300 tonne capacity, a XGC180 crawler at 180t, an all-terrain at 220t and a rough terrain at 90t. Operations manager Simon Cox explained the company’s needs for the cranes.
“Our cranes on site are regularly used for crusher rebuilds along with other maintenance works, our crawlers are utilised for their pick and carry capabilities during crusher rebuilds,” Cox said.
“Due to the layout and design of the primary crushers the crawler cranes are used to remove the crusher components then carry the load whilst tracking into a more open area where the component is swapped for a new one,” he said.
The 300 tonne crawlers have impressive abilities, doing most of the heavy lifting of the complete crushers.
The XGC300 has a three in one boom function, allowing the crawler to be operated as a TBM jib, wind power jib and a fixed jib.
The XGC300 uses a Cummins QSM 11 diesel engine producing 298kw or can be bought with a 338kw six-cylinder Weifang engine.
The boom working area for the XGC300 comes in at 85 metres, whilst the light boom has a maximum of 115m and with the jib attached to the boom it finishes at 150m.
“The cranes are fantastic for the work that we do, they never miss a beat. We have had plenty of positive feedback from our operators that are using these cranes” Cox said.
“All I can say is the XCMGs have been fantastic in the work we have done and we could not be happier with them.”
The XGC180 crawler is used in Karridale Groups rebuild yard helping to rebuild crusher components and supporting the team.
The maintenance work needs to be completed quickly and efficiently so the XGC180 must endure rigorous work in the yard to provide the support needed.
The XGC180 comes with a 250kw Cummins engine with 1425nm allowing it plenty of power on site.
The XCA220 all-terrain is used for project works and to assist during demanding times when multiple crusher rebuilds occur at the same time
The 220t capacity crane has a maximum reach of 108.2m with a Mercedes Benz engine producing 361kw allowing the crane to travel at a maximum speed of 84km/h.
The drivers cab has a 12.3 inch colour display with an air-floating seat design for driver comfort.
Axle load monitoring systems are installed on the XCA220 to ensure it travels as safely as possible when on road. With a range of monitoring systems installed for lifting, the operator has an extra pair of eyes with the XCMG at all times.
The XCR90 rough terrain has a 90t capacity with a maximum boom of 48m, with a top speed of 34km/h. So while it is not fast on site, it comes with a 65 per cent gradeability, meaning it can stand up to anything the harsh Western Australia climate can throw its way.
Cox explains the decision to go with XCMG was made after careful consideration by Karridale Group directors.
“We had used Chinese brands previously when we had hired cranes, so it was not something that was off putting to us when we were sourcing our own cranes to purchase,” he said.
“As we looked into the XCMG’s it made a lot of logical sense for us, the value for money was astonishing. Obviously, we had some logistical challenges as at the time XCMG had no dealers in Australia.”
The team at Karridale Group were the first people to have the new model XCMG cranes in Australia, they had to ensure they worked closely with the supplier to confirm the cranes could stand up to the rigours of the harsh WA environment. A challenge was also going to be sourcing parts and servicing the machines.
“XCMG were really understanding of our concerns, they actually sent out two technicians to work with us in the initial stages, so we had a deep understanding of how to run the machines as well as how to repair them.”
“They also sent two shipping containers with spare parts for us to keep on consignment, this gave us added peace of mind when bringing the cranes into the country for the first time,” Cox said.
Since Karridale Group brought the XCMG’s to Australia the support for the brand in Australia has grown, with D&D services in Victoria and Ronco in WA becoming XCMG dealers, along with Matt Mollross becoming the national sales manager.
Ronco particularly will be a strong benefit for Karridale Group to provide support across Western Australia.
“We work with Ronco regularly and now they have become the dealer for XCMG they will be who we will turn to keep our cranes in top condition,” Cox said.