05/05/2015 Australian wood pallet manufacturer Dormit Pty Ltd changes entire wheel loader fleet to Liebherr

  • Australian wood pallet manufacturer Dormit Pty Ltd has changed its entire wheel loader fleet to Liebherr – last Liebherr machine delivered in December 2014
  • Unique cooling system of Liebherr ideal for applications in Dormit’s saw mill
  • Hydraulic braking action of the hydrostatic driveline increases safety at work

Dormit Pty Ltd is Australia’s largest manufacturer of wood pallets. Since October 2013, when Dormit purchased its first Liebherr wheel loader, the company has changed its entire fleet to Liebherr. The directors David Rowe and Tim Gilder appreciate the high reliability and the unique cooling system of their Liebherr wheel loaders, which is suited for timber applications. Moreover, the hydrostatic driveline offers benefits for Dormit: A remarkably low fuel consumption of an average of 9.14 litres per operating hour and increased safety at work due to the hydraulic braking action of the driveline.

The Liebherr L 550 with high-dump bucket at operation in Dormit’s production plant. Its cooling system is particularly designed for dusty environments and well suited for the timber industry.

The Liebherr L 550 with high-dump bucket at operation in Dormit’s production plant. Its cooling system is particularly designed for dusty environments and well suited for the timber industry.

The final product of Dormit has to carry heavy loads all around the world: Based in Dandenong South, a suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, the Australian company produces wood pallets and skids. Starting in 1981, Dormit has achieved a strong position in the market. Today, the company is Australia’s largest manufacturer of wood pallets. The directors David Rowe and Tim Gilder employ a staff of approximately 75 in their saw mill and production plant.

At Dormit, wheel loaders are transporting logs, wood shavings and further materials. In October 2013, the company purchased its first Liebherr wheel loader. “We are dependent on the reliability of our machines for maintaining our leading position in the market. And we were immediately convinced by the robust L 550,” states director David Rowe. Due to this experience and despite running a different European wheel loader brand than Liebherr for more than 20 years, the entire fleet of Dormit has been changed over to Liebherr within a short period of time. Today, three Liebherr wheel loaders L 550, two featuring a Stage IIIB / Tier 4i engine, one with a Stage IIIA / Tier 3 engine, are working in the saw mill. The latest L 550 was delivered at the company’s Swift’s Creek Site in December 2014.

Dormit appreciates reliable Liebherr solutions for the timber industry

Equipped with industrial lift arm and either log grapple or high-dump bucket, Dormit’s Liebherr machines are tailored for timber applications. The industrial lift arm is designed as alternative to the standard lift arm – customers can choose with no effect on the price. It is available for all Liebherr wheel loaders from L 550 to L 580, offering high torque in the upper hoisting gear positions and movement of the load over the entire hoisting area without altering the control settings. This is important for working with heavy equipment, such as log grapples for loading and transporting large heavy logs.

One of Dormit’s keys to success is its particularly low downtime. “Our long operating hours are extremely demanding for the machines. At our Dandenong Site, we run a L 550 on double shift, another one even on triple shift,” tells David Rowe. “Our wheel loaders are racking up operating hours very quickly. One wheel loader has been in operation for 13 months and it has already been working for more than 5,500 hours. However, our Liebherr machines are running smoothly – they are reliable and cope with these tough conditions,” he claims. “We hold on to our planned maintenance. However, in case of emergency, the Liebherr service team is quickly on-site and well-approachable. This is very important, because machine availability is crucial for us to ensure a continuous workflow.”

The industrial lift arm of Dormit’s Liebherr L 550 wheel loader is ideal for working with heavy equipment, such as the log grapple for transporting tree trunks.

The industrial lift arm of Dormit’s Liebherr L 550 wheel loader is ideal for working with heavy equipment, such as the log grapple for transporting tree trunks.

The unique cooling system was a further decision criterion for Dormit to purchase Liebherr wheel loaders. Liebherr’s cooling system is mounted between the diesel engine and the cab on the rear chassis, where it can absorb clean air, maintaining cooling efficiency in dusty atmospheres, such as in a saw mill. Moreover, optional equipment is available to prepare Liebherr wheel loaders for timber applications: A fluff trap, developed for dust-intensive operations, prevents the radiator grills from becoming clogged to rapidly. A large-mesh radiator can help to reduce contamination with sawdust or wood fragments. The reversible fan drive cleans the intercooler by itself, expelling dust from the radiator. As a result, the unique cooling system ensures continuous cooling, decreasing expenditures for cleaning and maintenance and increasing the machine availability. “Liebherr designers did a good job. The cooling system perfectly suits for working in our saw mill, where sawdust is often a problem for other machines,” says David Rowe.

Hydrostatic driveline: Reduced fuel consumption and increased safety at work

Liebherr has been driving forward the development of wheel loaders with low fuel consumption for decades. Due to Liebherr’s hydrostatic driveline, Liebherr wheel loaders require on average up to 25 percent less diesel compared with other wheel loaders of the same size. “Our Liebherr wheel loaders need less than ten litres per hour. This is significantly less than the previous brand we had in operation,” states Tim Gilder. In addition, this reduction in fuel consumption removes a massive amount of pollution from the environment. As a comparison, one litre of fuel produces up to three kilograms of carbon dioxide (CO2). By saving up to five litres per operating hour, up to 15,000 kg less CO2 is produced in 1,000 operating hours.

The hydrostatic driveline offers further advantages. “Besides the remarkable fuel savings, the tyres last longer due to the continuous traction control,” adds Tim Gilder. Furthermore, he highlights the hydraulic braking action of the driveline. “With the hydrostatic driveline, there is hardly any brake wear and we have less running expenses with our Liebherr wheel loaders. Additionally and most importantly, the machine is much safer, because it practically brakes itself. And we put a lot of effort in creating a safer working environment for our staff.” Working with Liebherr since 2013, David Rowe puts it in a nutshell: “We are really satisfied with our Liebherr wheel loaders. Dormit will continue to work with Liebherr in future.”