Enhanced operator experience

140X tracked excavator

A South East construction firm's investment in a fleet of JCB X Series tracked excavators has seen glowing feedback from its team of experienced operators.

Supporting operators with the best and most comfortable equipment undoubtedly contributes to a higher quality of workmanship and a safer, happier and more productive workforce. The leadership at one leading construction firm has been swift to recognise this, with their machines' operator environments a key factor when choosing its latest fleet additions. Early feedback from the team suggests it was a prudent decision. 

50+ years of excellence

Founded in 1972, Sunbury on Thames-based Houlihans has grown into an £85m construction business with over 500 employees. It delivers housebuilding, civil engineering and concrete frame services across Oxfordshire, West Berkshire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Essex, London, Kent and Surrey. 

In a recent update of its fleet, the company added 11 new JCB 140X 360 excavators, supplied by dealer Greenshields JCB. A repeat JCB X Series customer, the new additions take the groundworks specialist's total JCB machine line-up to more than 30 machines. The new tracked excavators have been supplied to a high specification, with a full safety handrail on the upper structure, a set of cab guards, hydraulic quickhitches and factory-supplied hydraulic breaker piping.

Houlihans works with the majority of leading housebuilding firms operating in the South East and these latest models are being used for road, drainage and foundation work on their new build developments across the region.

140X tracked excavator

In control

Houlihans Managing Director, Richard Knight said: "We chose to invest in JCB based on a superb relationship built over many years. JCB's service and support is second to none which demonstrates not only its passion and commitment to its products but also to its customer base as well."

"JCB's research and development work for the X Series range has resulted in a great product and it is clear they have listened to their customers."

Performance of the excavators has been excellent, as has been the feedback from our operators who have highlighted improved comfort, control and stability which gives them real confidence in the machine.

Houlihans operate a one-driver per machine policy, which garners greater synergy between operator and digger and helps ensure equipment remains in the best possible condition.

Site Foreman, Richard Hume added: "Our operators get on well with the JCB machines. The 140X machines are much smoother than our previous manufacturer's excavators, offering more control for the operator."

Designed for operators

JCB has a growing range of Stage V-compliant X Series crawler excavators, from the 131X through to the 220X in conventional layout nd the reduced tail swing 245XR. 

The Stage V machines retain all of the operator benefits introduced with the X Series launch, including a cab that is 15% larger than the previous JS excavators, featuring improved HVAC, increased standard specifications, a reduced noise level and an adjustable 7" monitor. The machines require fewer daily checks than their predecessors, with extended hydraulic oil service intervals and ground level access to all inspection areas.

As part of the move to Stage V, the cab specification has been improved further, with a deluxe Grammer heated air-suspension seat, climate control air conditioning, a Bluetooth radio, front, rear and right-hand side blinds, a refuelling pump and a revised toolkit all as standard. They boast particularly low vibration and noise levels, with internal cab noise in the JCB 140X, 15-tonne excavator reduced to just 67dB(A).

Proportional hydraulic controls allow the operator to set their desired preference for speed and control of attachments. A power boost function ensures that there is enough tearout force in even the toughest site conditions. Increased slew motor torque also ensures rapid acceleration and braking, for improved control when excavating and levelling.

140X tracked excavator

Digging the scene

While Houlihans acknowledges the housing industry is facing challenges, they are confident their new machines will remain in constant use throughout, due to their strong order book and client commitments. The investment in the JCB X Series is more than just a fleet upgrade; it's proving a commitment to excellence, team engagement and productivity. And the operators dig it.

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