This is the first time I've missed Conexpo since 1996 but I shall endeavour to bring you tasters from Las Vegas nonetheless.
Of course, all the important stuff for UK and European buyers happens nearer to home. The Bauma fair in Munich is a much bigger deal – more machines, more people, more everything. Except possibly fun. Las Vegas knows how to do that rather well.
Both Bauma and Conexpo take place evey three years. As Bauma was last year, Conexpo is the biggest international event in the construction equipment calendar this year.
It’s not just the UK that has had it bad with storms and flooding. It’s been bad all over Europe. Only this morning I have been reading about the impact of heavy rain on the ruins of Pompeii.
I am grateful, therefore, to New Holland Construction for this series of photographs showing their machines at work on flood response work across the continent.
A wide range of New Holland machines, from large excavators to small compact machines, have been helping to repair and clean-up towns and cities affected by the recent storms and floods.
I just looked at a map and never really realised quite how far off the Scottish coast Shetland Island is. It is almost as close to Norway as it is to the British mainland.
So I can only imagine that anyone buying machinery there will put quite a premium on reliability, because no matter how much your supplier prides itself on customer service, logistics are always going to be a little bit trickier there than for those in Glasgow or Birmingham, for example.
I was interested to hear, therefore, that Lerwick-based Tulloch Developments has been choosing Volvo lately. It has just taken delivery of its fourth Volvo excavator, a new 25-tonne class EC250D. This machine has been put to work as the prime mover at the company’s Staney Hill Quarry on the outskirts of Shetland’s capital.
Over in Galway, local firm Maveric Contractors reports good results with Caterpillar’s machine control and guidance system, Cat AccuGrade.
It has been using the system on the construction of a new research and development building for Hewlett Packard.
Maveric Contractors has two Cat 330DL hydraulic excavators and a Cat D6R XW crawler tractor fitted with the Cat AccuGrade control system. They are preparing the groundwork on the 90,000sq ft site.
Plant dealer Molson loves everything to do with dirt, it seems. Not just big diggers that move it, but also motor bikes that race in it.
That is why it has been involved once again in this year’s Garmin Arenacross tour, a series of indoor dirt bike races taking place at big shed arenas in Belfast, Newcastle, Liverpool, Birmingham, Sheffield and London’s Wembley Arena.
The Molson-sponsored SR75-Molson team are the reigning Arenacross team champions but they are trailing a distant fourth this year, with just the final round to come at Wembley next month, on 1st March.