PONSSE unveiled their latest solutions for improving productivity in responsible forestry at their product launch earlier this year.
The new Scorpion Giant, was one of the stars of the event along with a new 25 tonne capacity Mammoth forwarder. The new equipment, developed by listening to customers’ requirements, was demonstrated for the first time in Surahammar in Sweden, over two days in front of eight hundred guests.
The original PONSSE Scorpion harvester took the world by storm when it was launched in 2013. It was a radical design with unobstructed vision and a level of operator comfort that had never been experienced before. Up until May there were two models available, the Scorpion and Scorpion King. The King was the larger model and was designed for harvesting medium sized trees in thinnings and clear fells using the Ponsse H7 harvesting Head. PONSSE soon realised there was an opening for a more powerful Scorpion harvester capable of felling larger trees.
I spoke to Marko Mattila, the sales, marketing and service director of PONSSE while he was out testing their new Scorpion Giant Harvester in Sweden.
“The new Scorpion Giant has been undergoing trials for over a year and we have had fantastic feedback from customers. The Scorpion Giant has 11% more tractive force, which helps the machine to be more agile in challenging conditions, including snow, steep slopes and soft terrain. The new C50+ harvester crane fitted in the Scorpion Giant, with customer options of reach from 8.6m to 11m, is in a league of its own when it comes to lifting power when handling larger stems.”
“The Giant can be fitted with the PONSSE Harvester Active Crane control system; this offers a new way to control the crane and streamline harvesting operations. With Active Crane, operators control the location of the harvesting head instead of individual movements of the crane, allowing the operator to focus on actual harvesting instead of positioning the crane. Harvester Active Crane is available as an option and requires the Opti 5G control system.
“The PONSSE Scorpion Giant is the most powerful harvester in the Scorpion product range, while the PONSSE Bear is still the most powerful of all the Ponsse harvesters. The Scorpion Giant is available with the H6, H7, H7 HD Eucalyptus or H8 harvesting heads.
“Being able to use the new Active Speed H8 harvesting head is the game changer on the Scorpion Giant, feeding speed is determined by the tree species and stem diameter which makes this a very productive head. The geometry of the saw box has been improved so it can handle trees with flared buttresses which are quite common in the UK.
“The feed rollers are designed so they are holding under the stem of the tree which means we can reduce the pressure on the de-limbing knives to allow faster feeding.
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“All the harvesting heads come with the new fifth generation PONSSE Opti 5G operating systems, this is a user-friendly system where adjustments can be made with stopping and restarting the engine.”
“Another improvement is the Cabin ergonomics and usability. In the PONSSE Scorpion machines, including the new Giant, visibility has been improved in all directions – the new cabin features a one-piece windscreen that extends to the roof of the cabin which offers even better visibility and ensures safe working in all weather conditions. The cabin is a practical and quiet environment developed to support the operator’s comfort and wellbeing.”
I asked Marko which markets he thought would be most popular for the new Scorpion Giant. “Sweden, Norway, UK, Ireland, France Germany and North America will be where the Giant will be in most demand and it will be available from early 2023.”
Marko was also eager to talk about the company’s new 25 tonne capacity Mammoth forwarder which is available with the prominent new feature, the PONSSE Active Seat.
“This has been developed with a focus on ergonomics and usability according to feedback from forest machine operators” explained Marko. “The new Active Seat improves usability, as it turns and follows the work area according to the crane’s movements. This will see a significant increase in the operator’s productivity.
“The Active Seat, developed by Ponsse, is only available for PONSSE forest machines. Another feature is the PONSSE Active Cabin, which is an effective cabin suspension system using a simple structure for reducing stress on the cab. This increases operator comfort especially during longer work shifts.
“We have introduced the CVT transmission technology into this new forwarder, this is a stepless changing of gear ratios. In forest machines equipped with CVT, the conventional hydrostatic transmission is replaced by a separate CVT system. This allows higher fuel economy and tractive force. The advantages of a high tractive force are especially clear when working in demanding conditions.
“The new Mammoth has the K121 loader fitted (available with Active Crane) which combines high slewing and lifting power, longer reach, new loader geometry and superb controllability. The K121 loader improves the efficiency where load handling takes up a large part of your working day. The Mammoth can be equipped with a tilting kingpost for increasing slew power on steep slopes.
“The Mammoth has a large load area with a long rear frame, it is easily capable of carrying 25 tonne loads over long extraction distances. It was built for use in Sweden, Norway, North and South America and possibly Australia and South Africa. We don’t see Europe as being a big market as it is 3 tonnes heavier than the Elephant King and 3.1m to 3.3m wide.
“Many of the countries listed can have long extraction routes and the key to success is to increase productivity while reducing fuel consumption.”
PONSSE Active Manual
“To compliment our new machines, we have a new customer oriented PONSSE Active Manual, this is an instruction and maintenance manual service with videos to support the daily work of forest machine operators.”
Pinja Aho, a visual specialist at PONSSE Plc explains more.
“The visual PONSSE Active Manual is an instruction and maintenance manual service that works on your mobile device and supplements the current instruction and maintenance manual by offering educational videos in addition to the manual. The new service makes use of the latest technology. Active Manual has multiple benefits for forest machine operators: it is clear, fast, and easy to access. These days, people use instruction videos for doing all kinds of things, so it’s a natural progression to have operating instructions for forest machines available in video form. You can watch the videos whenever and wherever you want over the internet, and they can provide you with instructions for daily operation procedures.
“The new service improves the productivity of forest machine operators by providing them with fast and easy access to the most common instructions for the operation and maintenance of forest machines. The service’s videos will improve the utilisation rate of forest machines by ensuring access to instructions and support whenever and wherever they are needed.”
I am looking forward to seeing these new machines at work soon, I managed to have a look around the Scorpion Giant at the Highland Show and it looks an impressive harvester with the H8 head.
PONSSE are very clever at keeping new products out of the spotlight as their new machines have been undergoing rigorous trials in Sweden, Uruguay and Canada for some time. “It is important for us to thoroughly test our new products and make sure they are as perfect as they can be before we show them to others.” were Marko’s final words.
Forest Machine Magazine is written and edited by a forest professional with over 40 years hands on experience. We are dedicated to keeping you informed with all the latest news, views and reviews from our industry.
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