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Bulgarian quarry adds more Hitachi construction machinery

First publishedin Aggregates Business Europe
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Crushed materials are moved by a Hitachi ZW310-6 wheeled loader

A Bulgarian quarry has added new Hitachi excavators and wheeled loaders to its fleet of equipment to help marble processing operations.

A Bulgarian quarry has added two Hitachi Zaxis-6 excavators and ZW-6 wheeled loaders to an expanding fleet of construction machinery. Georgi and Ivan Georgiev, the father and son team at the Plovdiv-based Persenk Invest, bought the ZX350LC-6s and ZW310-6s after the confirmation of a three-year contract with the national government’s power station, starting in September 2017.

The latest Hitachi medium crawler excavators replaced a pair of ZX350LC-3s.

The first ZX350LC-6, and the first Zaxis-6 machine in Bulgaria, arrived at the Kurtovo Konare quarry in April 2017, with the second delivered a year later.

The more recent acquisition moves blasted marble rock from the upper levels of the 100-hectare site on to the quarry floor, where 3,500tonnes of materials/day are loaded on to the primary crusher by the other ZX350LC-6. The crushed materials are moved by a ZW310-6 into two piles.

They are then loaded periodically on to trucks that dump them into the feeding station for the secondary crushing and screening equipment.

Finally, the other ZW310-6 loads trucks in the stockyard with the finished products for onward transportation to the power plant 160km away, or other customer sites within a radius of 30km of the quarry.

Between 45 and 70 trucks leave the quarry fully loaded twice every day, with 3,000tonnes being sent to the power station alone.

Having established the company in 2009, Georgi Georgiev decided to buy a Hitachi wheeled loader (ZW220), which the company still owns, and an ZX280LC-3 excavator in quick succession in 2011.

Today, Persenk Invest also retains the services of a ZW310 wheeled loader and ZX210LC-3 excavator, which in addition to the new machines help to produce 700,000tonnes of material/year.

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The Hitachi ZX350LC-6, and the first Zaxis-6 machine in Bulgaria, at the Kurtovo Konare quarry

The company has a 35-year permit for the site, with an option to extend for a further 15 years, and a team of 32 employees who work in two shifts from 6am to 2pm and 2pm to 11pm.

“Prior to purchasing our machines, we rented three different brands and tested them rigorously, which helped us to decide on Hitachi as the best option,” says Georgi.

“We have dealt with the Bulgarian Hitachi dealer Z&M ever since. There is a strong bond between our companies, through trust, and they provide us with an excellent after-sales service.

“It’s about the whole package, and Z&M is a reliable partner for our business. This relationship is important to us, and gave us the confidence to invest in new machinery after securing our contract with the power station.”

His son Ivan confirms the importance of fuel economy to Persenk Invest.

He says: “The fuel consumption of our new Hitachi machinery is excellent and helps us to significantly reduce our running costs. Both models are the optimum size for us, as they offer complete flexibility for our operations and can therefore deal with any fluctuations in demand, without the need to change the number of employees.”

“The ZX350LC-6 is powerful and fast, as well as being easy to operate and enjoyable to work with. It is smoother than the previous model, which means that I am not as tired after a long shift,” says Dimitar Georgiev, operator of the first Zaxis-6 in Bulgaria.

“The cab is also very comfortable and quiet - the best thing about this high-quality machine. It is perfect: stable, strong and well suited to the demands of a quarrying environment.”

Wheeled loader operator Stoycho Guglev adds: “The ZW310-6 is very fast for moving between the stockpiles and even more productive than the previous model. The joystick is effortless for steering, as well as being smooth to operate and easy to control the machine. Loading is straightforward thanks to the traction force associated with the limited slip differential (LSD). The most impressive feature is the comfort in the cab, with ample space and a lack of noise.”

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