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Hitachi’s Zaxis 50U-3 Keeps Its Tail Close to the Tracks

Fri October 09, 2009 - National Edition
Construction Equipment Guide

The Hitachi Zaxis 50U-3 is one of three compact models to be upgraded to the Dash-3 series. The ZX50U-3 has always been popular with contractors as it is nimble, powerful, and designed to keep its tail close to its tracks rather than bashing into fences or walls. Now as a Dash-3, the ZX50U-3 meets EPA Interim Tier-IV emissions requirements, improving its already fuel-thrifty nature, according to the manufacturer.

Although small in size and footprint, the ZX50U-3 has long life, smooth hydraulics, multifunction operations, steel cover, reinforced D-channel frame, lubricant-impregnated HN bushings and a box-section frame. The counterweight is large while the undercarriage is weighted to lower the center of gravity and increase stability. The auto-idle feature reduces fuel consumption.


The manual quick-coupler makes fast work of bucket and attachment switchovers. Boom-mounted auxiliary hydraulic lines and an auxiliary return-flow selector valve accommodate both one- and two-way hydraulically driven attachments. Operators can use buckets, clamps, hydraulic wrists, breakers, augers, compactors and more. Auxiliary hydraulics are now operated with a switch conveniently positioned atop the right-hand pilot lever.

A new option is a hydraulic, adjustable-angle backfill blade. It features 25 degrees of adjustment to both the left and right for more efficient trench backfilling. The blade angle changes easily with buttons on top of the blade control lever.

Automatic shifting between high and low travel speeds allows the machine to shift into low when more power is needed without operator intervention. A long arm and heavy counterweight option provides an additional foot of dig depth and reach while maintaining stability.

The Hitachi-designed rubber shoes feature a steel-cored structure and a special high-hardness rubber to help divert forces that crack shoe edges. For tougher applications, optional steel grouser shoes can be ordered.

The ZX50U-3 comes standard with a ROPS/FOPS canopy, adjustable seat, and generously sized entryways. The optional enclosed cab comes with heat and air conditioning as well as a cloth suspension seat.

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