Hillhead Quarry, nestling in the heart of the Peak District close to the picturesque spa town of Buxton, will come roaring to life for three days in June when the best of British construction comes roaring in. The Hillhead 2012 exhibition, 19-21 June, plays host to more than 400 exhibitors showing the latest equipment and machinery for all things aggregate, recycling and heavy construction related.
At the last event in 2010, there were more than 15,000 visitors. Could it top 20,000 this year?
What makes Hillhead different is the hands-on demonstrations made possible by the venue. Although Tarmac, the quarry owner, is not carrying out commercial excavations here currently, this is still a real quarry, with an abundance of raw material on hand for the machines to show what they can do. There are three distinct demonstration areas dedicated to different machine types and applications:
A section of the face at the north end of the site will be drilled and blasted to produce a fresh rock-pile for the show. This will be used for demonstrating:
Large wheel loaders (buckets of 4m and above)
Large excavators and face-shovels (40t+)
Rigid and articulated dumptrucks
A rock processing area on the western side of the quarry will host demonstrations of mobile crushing and screening equipment, including:
Tracked and skid mounted crushers
Tracked and wheeled screens
A recycling demonstration area, at the southern end of the showground, has three concrete storage bunkers holding imported supplies of material for processing, by crushing, screening, shredding or washing.
The bunkers hold:
Top 10 things to see at Hillhead
Bell E-Series ADT – Stand V1
Bell Equipment reckons that its new E-Series articulated dump truck offers ‘a glimpse of the future’. The machine does not even go into production until next year but ‘extensive’ improvements, including higher payloads, improved safety features and better durability, are all promised. New features include standard onboard weighing, keyless ignition, Hill Assist, i-Tip with inclinometer, auto park application (APA) and standard turbo spin protection. The 30-tonne B30E will be on show at Hillhead, sharing stand space with current D-Series ADTs. Bell will also be exhibiting four of its wheeled loaders, launched in 2008.
Doosan dash-3 wheel loaders – Stand W10
The Koreans are major players in the construction equipment these days and Hillhead will offer the first UK sighting of the new Doosan wheel loaders. A DL550-3 will be on static display, alongside a DX520LC crawler excavator, while the DL450-3 will be at work in the demonstration area. The two Scania-powered wheel loaders have bucket capacities of 4.5 and 5.5 cubic metres, respectively. Working with the DL450-3 in the demonstration area will be Doosan’s new DA40 articulated dump truck, the largest model in the Doosan ADT family. Other Doosan machines getting appearing at Hillhead for the first time will be the DT160 telehandler, rated at 16t lift capacity, and the Bobcat E26 (2.6t) zero tailswing compact excavator
Liebherr is exhibiting its new R 950 SME hydraulic excavator for the first time in the UK at Hillhead. With a 44t operating weight, it is positioned between the standard version of the R 946 and the R 956, both of which are also newly developed to meet with Stage IIIB/Tier 4i exhaust emission standards. The R 950 SME has been developed specifically to increase productivity in tough stone-quarrying applications; the ‘SME’ acronym stands for super mass excavation. The machine on display is equipped with a reinforced undercarriage and crawler-track components from the larger R 956. In combination with a heavier counterweight, this improves stability and allows the use of a larger bucket.
New Holland E385C excavator – Stand X1
New Holland plans to show a selection of machines from its new C series of wheel loader and crawler excavators, all boasting more power and improved efficiency over previous models. Among the stand-outs will be the 35t class E385C LC crawler excavator showing what it can do in the New Holland demonstration area, while the 21t E215C will be on the stand. Also on the stand will be the W190C and W270C wheel loaders, as will a L225 skid steer loader, while a W300C wheel loader will be at work on the demonstration plot.
JCB JS crawler excavators – Stands D5, Z3
All of JCB’s tracked excavators have had a sprinkling of magic dust. As well as the new cab and styling there are more substantive efficiency improvements under the bonnet as they are brought into line with Stage IIIB (Tier 4 Interim) emissions regulations. JCB’s Hillhead line-up will include the new JS360, JS260 and JS220 models. Advanced hydraulic technology, with optimised pump settings, revised spool configuration and the introduction of a revised electronic control system, has improved fuel efficiency by 11% on the JS220 and by 8% on the JS260 and JS360, JCB says. JCB will also give an outing to its compact kit, including the 2.7t 8026 CTS mini excavator and its new generation skid steer loaders.
OnGrade Site Zone proximity warning system – Stand V15
Moving vehicles remain one of construction’s greatest hazards. To address this, the OnGrade Site Zone uses RFID technology to produce an invisible detection zone around a machine. Site workers are equipped with a transponder. If they go within 10m of the machine, the operator is warned, even if they are round a corner or being a stock pile. An optional external alarm can be fitted to machines to warn pedestrians that they have strayed into a no-go area. Site Zone can be customised to meet individual needs and is available in various configurations including as a permanent installation or as a ‘quick-fit’ installation.
Bomag BF 800 paver – Stand S1
Making its UK debut is Bomag’s BF 800 paver that, with paving widths of 2.5m to 10m, is suitable for medium- to large-scale road construction projects. Available on wheels or with tracks, this 20t class machine is powered by a 139kW six-cylinder Deutz engine with ECOMODE engine-management system. The operator's platform features Bomag’s SideView system. The seat and control console form an adjustable unit. To provide the operator with a perfect view of the site the operator’s station is adjustable laterally, to an overhang of up to 600mm either side. The electrically heated screeds give paving thicknesses of up to 300mm and crown adjustments of -2.5% to +4.5%. Generous smoothing plate depths of 400mm and an overall 4,200kg weight of the S600E basic screed give high-level pre-compaction and smooth surface finish with the tamper and vibration units.
The OilQuick automatic coupler – Stand D15
OilQuick is an automatic coupler system that enables hydraulic work tools to be connected and disconnected directly from the driver’s cab, quickly and easily. The system is suitable for excavators, wheel-loaders, lift trucks, recycling machines and cranes. See it on the Haulmark stand alongside a host of grabs, munchers, grapples, crushers, shears and excavator attachments, including the delightfully named Xcentric Ripper.
Viby buckets – Stand B28
These Danish-made attachments are unashamedly the more expensive option, but with UK sales up 30% in the first quarter, buyers are increasingly realising that you get what you pay for. UK sales manager Andrew Little says: “Cheaper options typically mean a compromise in quality. We’ve always had a reputation for high quality and, as a result, we are now seeing a significant uplift in sales of our products. Viby attachments are, unashamedly, built to last, so in the medium- to- long-term, will provide unrivalled value for money. I think our customers recognise this.” Hillhead visitors will be able to see a selection of Viby’s High-Tip and GP buckets for wheeled loaders. Volvo will be using a three cubic metre Viby High-Tip bucket with Top Grab on an L60G wheeled loader in the demo area, while Bell will be giving a Viby bucket a run-out on one of its demo loaders.
The Case Rodeo – Stand X7
Case will be holding one of the UK rounds of its 2012 Rodeo operator challenge. Operators from all over Europe take part in these competitions, completing a variety of challenges against the clock. Last year’s European final included teams from across Europe and Russia. Prizes included a trip to the US finals in Las Vegas. Case will also be showing some new machines, of course, including a range of F series wheeled loaders, C series excavators and two of its latest skid steers on static display – the radial lift SR175 and vertical lift SV250. Being put through their paces at the quarry face in the demonstration area will be a CX370C crawler excavator and a 1021F wheeled loader.