It has been over a year since CJD Equipment delivered a fleet of Volvo A45G articulated haulers to an underground gold mine 900 kilometres north east of Perth — and the results are nothing short of outstanding.
Compared to the dedicated underground haulers this site was previously running, the fleet has boosted productivity and slashed fuel consumption by more than 50%.
Maintenance costs have been dramatically reduced, and mean time to repair has seen a huge improvement.
Tyre costs are expected to be well below the previous fleet, with an anticipated life of about 4,500 hours.
Speed on grade has also improved and the tailgates have helped to keep the decline free from debris.
With the on-board weighing system, average payloads are sitting at around 97.5% to maximise productivity.
After more than 16,500 fleet hours over the last 12 months, CJD Equipment has received positive feedback from the client in WA’s Goldfields.
The site maintenance superintendent said the trucks had been a “game changer for our operation”.
“There was some hesitation initially within the group, as we were doing something different from the rest of the industry, but one year on I would have no hesitation in recommending a fleet of Volvo trucks in this application,” he said.
“Operator feedback has been great, the drivers tell us they are much more comfortable than the old trucks we used to have on site.
“They have ticked all of the boxes—reduced capital costs, lower operating costs and increased productivity.”
CJD Equipment Volvo Product Manager Lindsay Daniels said the high torque, low-revving engine results in lower fuel consumption.
“The onboard weighing system also means the machine is always loaded to the optimum amount every cycle,” Daniels said.
“This prevents the machine carrying too much and being overloaded, or conversely carrying half a load and therefore wasting time and money.
‘’It also has a load and dump brake system, which acts as a safety feature during loading and discharge.
“Another good feature is the automatic traction control, including 100% differential locks, all-terrain bogie, hydro mechanical steering, so the machine is always driven at an optimum configuration.’’
Daniels said the A45Gs are more nimble than the dedicated underground haulers that were previously being used at the site.
“They are more agile and can get into hard-to-reach sites while also going up inclines quicker while producing more tonnes per litre of fuel,” he said.
“It is the best size for the access available at that site, given it is an underground mine—you couldn’t fit a 60-tonne hauler down there.
“It matches all the loading equipment better as well, so it is a good fit for the job at hand.
“That’s why Volvo make six models—the A25, A30, A35, A40, A45 and A60—so they can fit any job application.”
The articulated hauler concept provides total versatility to access the entire jobsite and climb steeper gradients.
Daniels said the hauler had also been given the thumbs up from an operator comfort point of view.
The A45G is the number one operator’s choice because of its industry-leading spacious cab and comfortable work environment.
Its superior comfort, control, ease of operation and safety appeals to operators, maintaining productivity all day, every day.
The new dump support system, hill assist, dynamic Volvo Engine Brake control and econometer as well as the load and dump brake system, helps the operator control the machine for extra productivity and safety in all conditions.
The engine produces 347KW at 1800rpm and a max torque of 2500Nm, also at 1050rpm.
50 years strong
Daniels said Volvo had invented the concept of the articulated dump truck in the sixties and had been “designing, developing and refining” the machines ever since.
“They are the world-leading manufacturer of articulated dump trucks,” he said.
“CJD Equipment has been an Australian partner of Volvo since 1992 – we are the national distributor for the Volvo construction equipment product,.
“We have been the dealer for Volvo in WA since 1992 and the national distributor since 2000.
‘’CJD Equipment has been in business for 47 years, since 1974, and it partners with some of the world’s best equipment manufacturers, like Volvo.
‘’It’s a WA-owned company operating on a national basis with 19 branches around the country with a footprint in every state in Australia.’’
CJD Equipment has been involved in the Australian mining industry since the early days and has thrived as a result of the excellent customer service it provides to clients.
‘’We stand out from our competitors because we are very customer focused and our company motto: ‘Big enough to trust, small enough to care’ is very indicative of how we do our business,’’ Daniels said.
‘’We are a strong national company but we still have a really strong focus on customers and how we can support them as much as possible.
‘’We import the products, prepare them for sale and deliver them to the customer but our involvement doesn’t end there; there is no drop and run.
‘’We still have strong product support to continue the relationship with the customer after delivery so the customer has the full benefit of owning a Volvo product.
‘’We develop a close relationship with both the customers and suppliers, this way everyone wins.’’
If your company is ready to think outside of the box and find out if Volvo Articulated Haulers can make a difference to your underground operation, please contact CJD Equipment on 1300 139 804.