Liebherr crawler excavators proving their worth in South Africa chromium mine

After more than 1,000 operating hours, three Liebherr R 920 crawler excavators are still exhibiting the fuel efficiency, manoeuvrability and hydraulic performance that convinced mining company KEDASE to buy the equipment, the original equipment manufacturer said.

KEDASE, based in Boshoek, South Africa, purchased three R 920 crawler excavators from Liebherr in 2016. They are used for trenching, pipe laying and the feeding of a screen in a chromium mine in the country.

With an operating weight of 21 t and equipped with a Stage IIIA/Tier 3/CHINA III engine with an output of 110 kW/150 hp, the R 920 crawler excavator was developed specifically for these types of applications, according to Liebherr. For KEDASE, the machines have been configured with a 5.7 m boom, a 2 m stick and a 1.15 m³ bucket.

“The R 920 concept is based on the standard European models with high levels of reliability and increased productivity combined with low fuel consumption,” Liebherr said. “Launched onto the market at Bauma 2016, the R 920 is accompanied by a revamp of the range of 20-25 t crawler excavators.”

In addition to the R 920 are the R 922 and R 924. The R 922 weighs 22 t and has an output of 110 kW/150 hp and the R 924 weighs 24 t with an output of 125 kW/170 hp. “These machines are aimed at less regulated markets like South Africa, South East Asia, Russia, China and India,” Liebherr said.

Since their arrival in 2016, the R 920 crawler excavators have met all expectations, according to the OEM.

“After more than 1,000 operating hours, these machines are currently used for nine to 12 hours every day with an average fuel consumption of only 15 l/h. The manoeuvrability and hydraulic performance, in particular, make the machines efficient on site. From the operator’s point of view, the R 920 is characterised by its speed, comfort, stability and performance: “I feel like I’m in a pickup”, one operator said.

Liebherr said the expectation is that these machines will keep performing over time and reach 15,000 operating hours.