A face shovel crawler excavator for loading vessels with wood chippings

Think big – the SANY SY500H as a high-performance loader

Bedburg, July 2021 – Holzkontor Preussen GmbH is the biggest wood recycling plant in Berlin. Based on the small Sophienwerder peninsula in western Berlin, this processing facility for reclaimed wood has one of the highest capacities across Germany, treating 315,000 tonnes of wood annually. Among its many customers, the site supplies an EON thermal power station with wood chippings. To do this, the customer has been using a converted SANY SY500H crawler excavator for quick and efficient loading since the middle of the year.

Both the Holzkontor Preussen GmbH processing plant and the EON thermal power station are located right on navigable waterways, enabling large volumes of wood to be transported on pushed barges in a shuttle service. This meant that the new machine’s task was relatively clear-cut. It needed to quickly load as large a volume of wood chippings as possible on to vessels standing by and compact this load using the lightweight bucket.

Providing the right answers to all questions
The wheel loaders previously used were not optimally suited to loading vessels. Holzkontor Preussen was therefore looking for another option to safely and efficient load large volumes of materials. Ultimately, the solution was found in SANY’s wide range of excavators. In collaboration with its partner BSS heavy machinery GmbH, SANY developed a concept based on the 50-tonne SANY SY500H excavator which impressively met all of the user’s technical requirements and requests. BSS Managing Director Dirk Schönbohm explains «we completely immersed ourselves in the situation on-site. This quickly gave us an idea of what the machine needed to look like and what changes were needed compared to a standard machine. The fact that we could offer the customer a considerable economic advantage over other manufacturer concepts despite all of the modifications demonstrates the strength of SANY machines and our flexibility as a commercial agent.»

A tailor-made concept right down to the details
The first changes made to the machine were to protect the working environment. For instance, the track shoes were re-welded and chamfered to prevent damage to the hall floor. In addition, protection was required at the top of the excavator, with hydraulic height limitation installed since the machine needed to work in a hall structure with a maximum specified height of six metres. There were also a number of supports fitted towards the water side which limit the excavator’s room for movement. Moreover, a 2.4 metre elevating cab was added, allowing the machine operator to work safely and always providing optimal visibility of the work area, the attachment and the current load state. Above all, this meant that loading vessels beyond the loading edge did not need to be done blind.
Finally, a central lubrication system was installed to better protect the mechanical components which are placed under great strain. This removed the need for manual greasing, reducing the amount of daily maintenance required and extending the service life thanks to precise automatic dosing.

High performance in a nutshell
Two of the most important requirements when loading vessels with bulk goods are the high volumes to be moved and the large width of the surface to be loaded. In addition, not only do the wood chippings need to be distributed quickly and evenly, the entire loading area must also be compacted. In order to achieve this, the SY500H was converted to face shovel operation and a lightweight bucket with a capacity of 17.5 cbm was fitted. Moreover, the boom and arm were extended to the required reach of 12 metres. Finally, in order to ensure that the machine was stable at this reach and with such a load, the counterweight was also increased. This resulted in the machine weight increasing to around 60 tonnes in total.

A solution which excited customers from the start

Even during the handover and initial testing, the operators were impressed by the machine and the excavator was able to meet all expectations. A team from the BSS workshop was on-site the entire time, responding to any unanswered questions and helping the operating personnel to familiarise themselves with the machine. Not only these members of staff, but also the executive board and management team at Holzkontor Preussen were amazed by the excavator’s phenomenal power, its stability and the boom’s reach right down into the basin.

SANY remains on track for success in Europe
This project with the Berlin-based recycling plant once again demonstrates the strength of SANY Europe. Its machinery primarily impresses customers because of its high quality, the use of excellent branded components and its outstanding price-performance ratio. What’s more, SANY offers practically oriented service to support all of its customers from the very first consultation meeting onwards. Both of these factors were crucial to the successful implementation of the Holzkontor Preussen’s brief. Moreover, these two factors provide key impetus for SANY Europe to grow increasingly important in the European construction machinery sector.


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