Dennis McShane knew that success was going to take some time when Westrax Machinery took on the LiuGong construction equipment brand in August of 2010. Not only was the Chinese-based manufacturer relatively unknown in North America, but the California economy was in a deep slump making any heavy equipment sale a challenge.
“We had a five-year plan for LiuGong,” said McShane, sales manager of Westrax Machinery. “We really couldn’t have picked a tougher time to take on this new equipment line. We kept hearing ‘Construction equipment? In California? Are you serious?’ People just weren’t buying back in 2010.”
That was then. Today’s story is quite different.
In 2012, McShane reported that his company shattered its sales goals for LiuGong since January 2012. This includes the first LiuGong ever sold in California and 2012 sales surpassed every projection Westrax Machinery had in its third year carrying the brand.
McShane credits the support provided by LiuGong executives like Fred Ridenour, general manager of business operations and Marcus Menough, western regional sales manager.
“We’ve gotten unbelievable support from LiuGong North America on every level from sales to parts and service. They deserve a ton of credit for our success,” he said.
McShane also said a key order was placed in late Spring by W.A. Rasic Construction of Long Beach, Calif. The company ordered two LiuGong excavators and two wheel loaders after winning the bid for work on the Los Osos Wastewater Project (Collection System Areas B and C) in San Luis Obispo County.
W.A. Rasic Construction Vice President David Lee said the LiuGong equipment met his company’s high standards.
“For the Los Osos project, there were very strict emissions requirements written into the RFP — even high by California standards,” Lee said. “LiuGong’s machines could meet those emissions standards, while having the quality and durability we require from every piece of equipment we purchase. The competitive, value-driven price was also enticing and a strong factor in our decision-making process.”
Lee said they initially learned of LiuGong at the ConExpo 2011 tradeshow.
“We were impressed by their quality as well as their determination to penetrate and secure a position in the North American marketplace. We knew LiuGong was serious because they had Dennis McShane on their team. We’ve worked with Dennis for many years and trust him, knowing he only offers quality products, backing them with exemplary service.”
McShane said that once a highly respected construction company like W.A. Rasic chose LiuGong, other Southern California companies took note and started making inquiries.
“When W.A. Rasic Construction bought four LiuGong machines, our phones started ringing off the hook. Construction firms appreciate the high-quality as well as the competitive pricing of LiuGong equipment.
“The biggest challenge in selling LiuGong equipment is getting a company to try it,” continued McShane. “Once they get behind the wheel, they see for themselves the quality of the machine and its overall value.”
For the Los Osos project, W.A. Rasic Construction needed two excavators and two wheel loaders. The firm purchased a 922D 50,500-lb. (22,906 kg) excavator and a 915D 31,460-lb. (14,270 kg) excavator. The company also bought a pair of 842III Z wheel loaders.
For Los Osos, W.A. Rasic Construction is building more than 150,000 linear ft. (45,720 m) of gravity water mains, sewer force mains, recycled effluent water force mains, and laying subservice horizontal perforated pipe. Among this and other work, the company is also laying 27,019 linear ft. (8,235 m) of fiber optic conduit and putting in five monitoring wells. The LiuGong machines handle much of the excavation and loading work for the project.
The 922D has a Cummins QSB6.7, 155 hp (115.5 kW) engine and a travel speed of up to 3 mph (4.8 kmh). The machine has a maximum digging depth of 21 ft. 8 in. (6.6 m) and an operating weight of 50,500 lbs. (22,906 kg)for solid results on the job site. The standard bucket capacity is 1.31 cu. yds. (1 cu m) and the fuel capacity is 108.8 gal. (412 L).
“The 915D can boost work efficiency by up to 10 percent while cutting fuel use by 10 percent versus other excavators,” McShane said. The unit’s smart engineering starts with a Computer Aided Power Control [CAPC] system. The CAPC automatically matches the hydraulic output needs to the user’s workload, delivering the right amount of power with the precise amount of fuel for each load. When extra breakout force is needed, an automatic power boost provides a 10-second shot of up to 10 percent greater force. Plus, the 915D’s “straight-travel” function automatically holds the machine in a true line when moving forward, according to the manufacturer.
The 922D and 915D also have standard features like a closed, climate controlled cab, so crews can work year-round in comfort. The units also offer one of the widest cabs on the market, as well as a large color LCD monitor with a user-friendly interface for simple operation.
The 842III Z loader has a Cummins QSB6.7, 193 gross hp (144 kW) engine with a net horsepower of 186 (139 kW). The Loader has a standard bucket size of 3.5 cu. yds. (2.7 cu m) and an operating weight of 33,601 lbs. (15,241 kg). The standard bucket’s breakout force is 30,574 lbs. (13,868 kg). The standard dump height is 9 ft. 9 in. (3 m).
Some of the features that impressed W.A. Rasic Construction about the 842III Z was its easy engine access, a diagnostic system that gives fast, accurate maintenance support, a wet-disc braking system and a reversible cooling fan for easy cleaning as standard equipment.
“The LiuGong machines will play a big part in the successful completion of the Los Osos project. And as far as the daily costs versus other machines we considered, LiuGong measures up well,” Lee said.
McShane said that the word is spreading in his region about the quality and value of LiuGong equipment.
“With the economy the way it is, my customers are looking for the highest value and return on every dollar they spend. When it comes to LiuGong, they know the purchase works within their budget without sacrificing quality. We’re looking forward to a great 2013.”
For more information on W.A. Rasic Construction, call 562/928-6111 or visit www.warasic.com.
For more information on Westrax Machinery, call 888/537-5458 or visit www.westraxmachinery.net.
For more information about LiuGong call 281/579-8882 or visit www.LiuGongNA.com.