In the hire and rental business, margins are tight and every dollar counts, so Gary Singleton, founder of Loadex Hire, seeks out equipment that is highly fuel efficient to help manage costs. According to Gary, Kobelco excavators are tougher than nails, but easy on the wallet, and he has recently ordered 18 new machines.
Originally a contractor in Victoria and South Australia, Gary founded the hire and rental company in 1996 in WA and has since grown it into a successful, multi-branch business in two states.
Loadex Hire is a leading supplier in the market, providing late model construction machinery and earthmoving plant equipment throughout Western Australia and Adelaide regions.
With fuel costs rising, fuel efficiency is very important to Gary’s bottom line.
“With margins tight and fuel around $1.70 a litre, it means a lot for Kobelco to have the best fuel economy. It can be the difference between making money and not making money on a job,” Gary said.
He explained the Kobelco SK200-8
excavator gives him savings of up to 20 per cent in fuel compared to previous models. In addition to fuel economy, Kobelco’s ruggedness has been an important feature for Gary.
“Dry hire machines tend to work hard, and the standard of operator can vary, but the quality of the Kobelco machines can withstand tough operation.
“The Kobelco excavators generally only need routine maintenance, which our field service fitters perform. They are easy to service, and we experience very little downtime, therefore our customers feel confident that they will complete their jobs within schedule,” he said.
Another stand-out feature is the cooling system, with Gary noting that even when Adelaide was reaching 45 degrees over the past few weeks, the Kobelco’s were running cooler than other machines.
“They were running the closest to normal temperature, which helps them to maintain performance.”
Gary’s recent order of 18 Kobelco excavators through South Australian dealer Australian Construction Equipment Pty Ltd included models ranging from 13 tonnes up to the newest Kobelco 50 tonne excavator.
While he looks for performance and reliability in a machine, he also looks for features that offer a point of difference compared to most other hire fleets.
For example, the broad Kobelco excavator range includes a number of short rear swing (SR) excavators up to 24 tonnes operating weight, which suit work in confined spaces between structures or on roadways, without compromising operating performance.
Also in the range are offset boom machines for digging against walls and excavators with a telescopic dipper arm, which suit deep excavation applications. All these machine variations are represented in Loadex Hire’s excavator fleet, which ranges from 1.5 to 50 tonnes operating weight.
Gary believes that Kobelco has remained at the forefront of excavator technology by concentrating exclusively on excavator manufacture rather than producing a broad range of equipment.
“I like that Kobelco only makes excavators. It means that excavators get their full attention and each new generation model is more reliable, easier to maintain and performs better than the one before,” he said.
“We have enjoyed a prosperous and harmonious working relationship with Kobelco Construction Machinery for over 18 years now and we are highly impressed with the way Alan Cameron and his team at Australian Construction Equipment has presented the Kobelco brand and products to Loadex Hire,” Gary said,.
“Their product knowledge and prompt customer service quality is second to none, which is extremely important for our business. It is this current, long-term relationship we experience with Kobelco that affords us comfort in planning for our business now and well into the future.”