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Page 28 Contractors World - UK & Ireland Vol 1 No 6

materials on site. The trade of is a small tailswing of some 30 cm, but stll making for a compact machine.

The Auto Shif feature enables more comfortable travel and makes it easier to do levelling and backflling work with the dozer blade. With the boom swing and the auxiliary hydraulic controls integrated within the joysticks, Bobcat believe that the new model offers more precise control than other machines in this class that use pedals for these functons.

Operator comfort

As ideal as compact and mini-excavators are, operators have ofen about the lack of space and comfort in the cab - essental for productvity when working all day. Manufacturers have listened to these complaints and more an more are now addressing the issue. Bobcat is no excepton. The E55 ofers 360° visibility from the cab, including full visibility to the right track of the machine as well as to the rear. And litle things, like locatng the wiper motor on the lower front window to provide beter visibility to the front, can make a big diference.

The directonal lug-rubber tracks provide a smooth ride with lower vibraton while sealed foor plates and the routng of the hydraulic hoses below the foor mat isolate the operator from undesired heat in the cab.

When not in use, the travel pedals can fold forward for extra foot room and the travel levers are positoned adjacent to each other, allowing for easy drive control, even with one hand if desired. This increases productvity when backflling as the operator can steer with one hand while adjustng the blade with the other.

Heatng and ventlaton are standard and the cab would appear to ofer plenty of space for the operator’s feet and legs as well as a very comfortable work environment. Air conditoning is available as an opton.

The engine, air intake, cooling and exhaust systems, along with the hydraulic pump and valve, are designed to ofer a low bystander noise (LwA: 96 dB) and operator ear noise level (LpA: 79 dB), both, according to Bobcat, class-leading values.

An ‘auto i d l e ’ feature , enab l ed at the operator ’s di scret ion, reduces fuel consumption and noise, whi le creating a more comfortable environment. The auto idle feature automatically causes the engine to drop to idle if the excavator functons are not used for a period of about four seconds. The engine returns to the pre-set throtle positon when the operator moves a joystck or a travel functon.

The cab has been designed to give the operator more comfort for higher productvity over longer periods. Features such as ‘fold down’ pedals when not required increase footwell area. A large display panel shows at a glance machine status.

In the past, servicing compact machines was no simple task as everything was crammed into the smallest possible space. Today, designers have recognised this and simplifed access to key service areas for easier routne checks and servicing.

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