Speed, ability, vision all add up to better production.
The John Deere M-Series tracked feller bunchers and L-Series wheeled feller bunchers are proving to be high-productivity machines for logging contractors in a number of applications. Clients have lauded the unsurpassed power-to-weight ratio, tractive effort, and comfortable cabs.
And, if you ask West Australian-based contractors Brian and Daphne Wilson (Wilson Transport) it's the speed, the ability and the vision that were some of the key factors in them opting for the John Deere tracked M-Series feller buncher with FR24B Hot Saw.
It was purchased to harvest poor form trees because of its ability and speed to harvest the trees in a timely manner. They said the machine had been chosen for its smooth speed and ability and ease of maintenance due to the newly designed cab. The vision was also a big benefit with the newly designed cab making it easier to harvest the poor form trees and that makes the operation more productive.
Brian and Daphne started Wilson Transport in 1957 and the operation is based and run from Yornup WA. The harvesting operation is spread out over the lower South West region of WA.
Today, the operation consists of 125 employees and 70 harvesting machines and 50 trucks. The operation has diversified over several years from logging to chipping and just recently to biomass.
The main tree species in the South West are Jarrah (native) and Pine (softwood) and Blue Gum (hard wood) and Bio Mass (mixed Pine and Blue Gum).
The M-Series tracked feller buncher features a longer, wider undercarriage for increased stability and traction, and tilt and leveling cabs maximize operator comfort and productivity, even in challenging terrain. The 859M, 909M and 959M models incorporate a patented leveling control system that uses sensor technology to maximize the forward tilt angle (26 degrees forward), while electronically preventing any possible mechanical interference when also tilting to the side. The leveling envelope boundaries are set automatically and the patented system provides a smooth transition when approaching the leveling limits.
The M-Series machines are equipped with a powerful engine, delivering premium performance, fluid efficiency and reliability. Optional Rapid Cycle System (RCS) combines automated felling-head arm cycling with simple boom control, dramatically reducing operator fatigue while increasing efficiency and productivity. RCS can be tailored to individual skill levels and specific harvesting conditions.
One of the most popular features in the M-Series is the redesigned operator station. Fully adjustable armrests provide fingertip control of all machine functions, and the air-conditioned seats offers daylong comfort in the climate-controlled cab.
The cab also offers better visibility, with floor-to-ceiling front and side windows plus an overhead skylight, expanding the view of the cutting area by 22%.
Best-in-class power-to-weight ratio ensures steady multifunction performance in wet or hilly conditions, and optimal weight distribution and a longer wheelbase improves balance for better stability. The increased head tilt provides operators with the ability to put the weight of the trees over the top of the machine, keeping the rear wheels on the ground for better traction when backing up on hills.
The large best-in-class cab features a larger front window and is quieter than previous models, keeping loggers comfortable and in control. It also boasts a more efficient HVAC system, operator-configurable controls and ample storage space.
The M-Series feller bunchers incorporate the John Deere ForestSight™ suite of technology solutions, with JDLink™ enabling unsurpassed levels of connectivity. Now standard in the base price for five years, JDLink enables remote machine monitoring and sends alerts to the office, mobile device or dealer to inform them of immediate machine issues. If downtime does occur, exclusive remote diagnostics and programming enable the John Deere dealer to quickly identify the issue at hand. The newest ForestSight offering is TimberNavi™, a jobsite mapping solution that increases the operator’s spatial understanding of the jobsite. Key features include the integration of internet-enabled wireless data transfer, remote display access capabilities, and location history viewing of other JDLink-enabled machines.