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British one-two packs a punch for Akela

Digger Blogger | 10:00, Thu August 10 2023

A Scottish ground engineering specialist is using a specially modified tracked excavator for its piling and foundations work on new housing developments.

Akela Ground Engineering – part of the Glasgow-based Akela Group – is using a JCB 220X base machine fitted with BSP-TEX JX25-8 piling rig.

The all-British-built combination delivers a mobile, self-erecting, 28-tonne piling rig capable of driving in steel, wood or concrete piles up to eight metres in length.

Supported by dealer Scot JCB, Akela currently has the machine on a new-build development on the former Ruchill Hospital site near the centre of Glasgow, laying the foundations for the construction of 10 blocks of flats and 160 houses.

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Akela Ground Engineering contracts engineer Dave Warley said: “All the piles driven on the site so far have been with the JCB-powered JX25-8 rig. The key benefits for us are a lightweight rig that reduces the thickness required for piling platforms and the high manoeuvrability for accessing and working on busy house building sites.”

Piling rig operator Scott Brownlie added: “It's a good machine for this type of application, as it's just the right size and weight, and packs a powerful, productive punch. The cab on the JCB 220X is very quiet and comfortable, just what you need on a piling rig, as the piling rig creates a lot of exterior noise. We need the door and windows shut so the quiet cab, comfortable seat and good heating and ventilation system create a nice operating environment.”

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