JCB has unveiled what it describes as a ‘new concept’ Hi-Viz dumpers, with 10 planned models to be manufactured at Rocester.
The initial seven-tonne machine is designed to address site safety concerns, with improved visibility, operator protection, stability, comfort and serviceability.
Production will begin at JCB’s World Headquarters in Rocester, Staffordshire at the end of 2017 in a move that will create more than 50 new jobs.
It will be manufactured alongside nine other site dumper models for the one to nine tonne market. The biggest market for the machines is the UK and Ireland followed by France.
The move will be a blow to Mecalac, which took over Terex GB at the start of the year with the JCB supply deal assumed to continue for a while longer. JCB's OEM supply deal with Terex GB began in February 2015.
JCB CEO Graeme Macdonald said: “JCB has offered a range of site dumpers under a supply agreement with a third party manufacturer since 2015. In deciding to begin manufacturing our own range, we have taken the opportunity to innovate and we have developed a solution that directly addresses safety concerns. This is good news for everyone in the industry and it’s good news for manufacturing in the UK and Staffordshire.
“We believe that the JCB Hi-Viz site dumper concept will provide a much safer solution in terms of visibility, operator protection and stability. It is a clear demonstration of JCB’s innovative approach to machine design, delivering improved safety and productivity for rental customers and operators.”
Features of the new seven-tonner include: reduced skip height to aid visibility; longer wheelbase and lower centre of gravity to boost stability; a ROPS/FOPS Level II cab for operator protection.
As well as providing additional protection from a rollover or a falling object, the JCB cab also has an integral secondary impact protection system (SIPS) built into the cab’s structure. This supplementary safety measure, in combination with guards on the rear edge of the skip and a front screen guard or hammer glass, could potentially allow the dumper driver to remain in the cab while the dumper is being loaded. This would completely remove the need for the operator to continually climb on to and off the dumper, improving efficiency and keeping the operator in a safe working environment.
The big difference with the Hi-Viz site dumper concept is in the front chassis, JCB says. The front axle has been moved forwards to make room for the skip to sit behind the axle line. Increased steering lock allows the longer wheelbase machine to maintain the same turning circle as a six tonne dumper. The front chassis is lowered behind the front axle, to allow the skip to sit lower in the frame. Despite this, ground clearance has been maintained, as the chassis sits at the same height as the four-wheel drive system’s transfer box and driveshafts.
The skip of the seven-tonne machine offers a 3.4m3 heaped capacity, with overall width within 2.5 metres. The forward edge of the dumper’s skip has been extended beyond the load carrying area. This provides improved dump clearance for the front wheels. JCB will build both forward tip and swivel-tip versions of the Hi-Viz site dumper when it goes into production.