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Bass Bids Goodbye to Old Friend, Says Hello to TMS 540

Wed May 17, 2000 - Southeast Edition
Kristen Caldwell

Bass Crane Service said goodbye to an old friend last spring. In April 1999, the Richmond, VA, crane rental company replaced its 14-year-old Grove TMS 300B with a brand new Grove TMS 540 purchased from J.W. Burress Inc., a Roanoke-VA-based distributor of heavy construction equipment.

With 100,000 miles on the odometer and 19,000 hours of use, the Grove TMS 300B was retired. And, while it’s a simple case of needing a 36-metric-ton (40 ton) crane to replace it, the new model offers more advanced features, including 51 meters (169 ft.) of boom, 84 meters (279 ft.) of tip height, automatic transmission and three axles for easier highway travel.

“The new crane has more portability, it’s faster and it has more on-board boom,” explained Bruce Bass, general manager of Bass Crane Service of the decision to purchase the TMS 540.

Supporting a diverse customer base of 700, Bass Crane Service rents its equipment for use in a variety of settings. In the Richmond-Metropolitan area, the Grove TMS 540 would most likely be used in rock quarries, in residential truss setting and in HVAC unit delivery and installation. In addition to the Grove TMS 540, the company owns 11 other cranes ranging in capacity from 12.6 to 99 metric tons (14 to 110 tons), including two 25.2 metric tons (28 tons), four 36 metric tons (40 tons), two 54 metric tons (60 tons) and two boom trucks.

“[Bruce] has bought two 40-ton cranes from us in the last several years, including a TMS 640, which is more of a heavy lift crane,” said Tom Cunningham, a sales representative for J.W. Burress’ central division in Richmond, VA.

Because J.W. Burress representatives visit the Grove manufacturing plant periodically, Cunningham was aware that the TMS 540 was getting ready to roll off the production line into the market.

“We knew what he was looking for and [the Grove TMS 540] happened to be one of the new products Grove was coming out with that fit his needs,” Cunningham said.

After 11 months on the job, Bass said the Grove TMS 540 is working out well, although the memory of an old friend never dies.

“The new machine is 15 percent weaker in a basic chart of the old machine, but it has a full power boom that telescopes out [35 meters] 115 ft. ... so that’s the offset,” he said.

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