Excavating Materials & Equipment Inc. (EME) was facing a big decision: it needed to update its wheel loaders in order to keep its material blending facility running efficiently. There was no shortage of brands to choose from, but the company ultimately turned to JESCO and the John Deere K-Series loaders, as it felt these products were the best fit for the facility.
Established in 1978 by owner and President Fred Vahlsing, EME began as a construction company focusing on site work and heavy highway projects. After a number of years in the construction business it saw the industry changing and decided to transform its business from a construction company into a material production company specializing in the blending of materials for construction projects, as well as providing natural materials such as topsoil, sand and stone.
“About 15 years ago we saw the industry shifting and we knew we needed to make a change ourselves,” said Keith Prince, vice president of EME. “We found a niche with producing blended soils that are not found in nature. The blended soils are formulated by engineers based on their specific needs for various construction projects such as landfill construction and roadbuilding.”
Non-blended materials are delivered to its 115 acre facility daily. In addition to the material production completed at the site, it also mines for sand. The company blends and screens material to meet the specifications provided by engineers. Geotechnical testing is conducted on the blended materials throughout the process to ensure they are to spec.
From the beginning, wheel loaders have played a tremendous roll in EME’s material blending operations, handling the majority of heavy lifting from feeding the plants and screens to loading trucks. Choosing the next generation wheel loaders for its facility was not a decision to be taken lightly.
“With today’s economy and limited construction projects, EME strives to be as efficient and productive as possible when it comes to plant operations. Choosing the equipment that is so critical to keeping our blending operations running smoothly is an important one and a very large investment for us, so we certainly did our homework,” said Prince.
EME was looking for production wheel loaders that would not only move a large amount of material fast, but that would also be fuel-efficient.
“We heard some good things about the new Deere loaders but never owned or operated them,” said Prince.
EME turned to its JESCO salesman, Gregg Swartz, for a wheel loader solution.
“Gregg walked us through a few models, specifically the 824K and 844K loaders,” said Prince. “We were pleasantly surprised to find that the John Deere Tier III engines were not only more powerful, but much more fuel-efficient than our current loaders.”
EME purchased one 824K and two 844K John Deere wheel loaders from JESCO.
“The price was very competitive and the loaders came with more standard features than the other brands we were looking at,” said Prince.
The 824K wheel loader boasts an operating weight of 58,425 lbs. (26,501 kg), a tipping load of 38,538 lbs. (17,480 kg) and a breakout force of 41,266 lbs. The 844K, John Deere’s largest wheel loader, weighs in at 75,292 lbs. (34,152 kg) and offers a tipping load of 48,708 lbs. (22,093 kg) and a breakout force of 47,782 lbs.
Both loaders are powered by a John Deere Tier III PowerTech Plus 6135H 13.5 L, air cooled diesel engine that provides 333 hp (248 kw) to the 824K and 380 hp (283 kw) to the 844K.
EME is currently moving 2,400 tons (2,177 t) of material and loading 125 trucks on a daily basis with the new loaders.
“The loaders are proving their power and performance by keeping up with our facilities demands,” said Prince.
As for the fuel consumption, EME is seeing on average a 12 gal. (45 L) fuel savings a day per loader.
“The K-Series are much better on fuel than our past wheel loaders. With the average price of off-road diesel at $4.00 per gallon, we’re seeing some significant savings.”
Brian Johnson, an equipment operator of EME who also assists with the daily equipment maintenance, is enjoying the easy-to-access service points on the K-Series.
“All of the service points that I need to check each day are located at ground level on the left side of the machine,” said Johnson. “They have fluid-level sight gauges located here as well. Having both in one place makes it easy to stay on top of preventive maintenance.”
The K-Series loaders also offer the NeverGrease option, which includes a pin-joint system for the linkage and boom joints that eliminates greasing and extends pin-joint life.
Prince said his operators love the cab of the K-Series loaders, especially the roominess, large windows and comfortable air-suspension seat. They’re also enjoying the smooth, quick response controls.
The Deere K-Series loaders come with large front glass, low-profile console and sizable side and rear windows for 360-degree visibility. The operator station includes joystick steering and easy-to-reach hydraulic levelers for the ultimate in operator comfort.
“Our JESCO salesman, Gregg Swartz, gave us the assistance we needed, right when we needed it. He was there every step of the way throughout the purchasing process. We are really pleased with JESCO’s customer service, as well as our decision to purchase the Deere loaders.”
Since 1972, JESCO has been supplying contractors and municipalities with a wide range of construction equipment including John Deere, Hitachi, Bomag, Hypac, INDECO, Genesis, Hydrema, Cleaire, LeeBoy, ROSCO and most recently Ditch Witch. JESCO has three New Jersey branch offices located in South Plainfield, Fairfield and Lumberton, Beacon and Holbrook, N.Y. locations, as well as locations in Delaware, Maryland and Shrewsbury, Mass.
For more information, visit www.jesco.us.