Liebherr’s latest addition to its recycling line-up – the small but mighty LH 18 M material handler – proved instrumental in helping Thorncliffe Building Supplies on the way to its busiest ever year. The skip hire and waste transfer station, located in North Wales, swiftly got operations back up to full speed following a forced month-long closure to apply COVID-19 measures. According to Managing Director Tim Harper, this was in large part thanks to its fleet of Liebherr material handlers:
“We run a number of Kubota mini diggers to initially pick through the waste. Anything larger than 8 tonnes though and it’s a Liebherr. We are lucky enough to have our own fitter who takes care of all our requirements. He really knows his stuff – he’s an ex-Liebherr employee.”
Launched only 18 months ago, the LH 18 M material handler is the smallest dedicated handler in the Liebherr portfolio and was specifically designed to meet the demand from the waste and recycling sector. It can be particularly useful for smaller, restricted sites and as such, has been exceptionally well received by the market. With an operating weight of 17-18 tonnes (depending on specification), Thorncliffe uses their machine for loading the entry hopper to the material picking line. The Liebherr replaced an ageing Volvo excavator and sits on a wide undercarriage supported on heavy-duty axles fitted with solid tires. The LH 18 M model joins the fleet of wheel loaders that Thorncliffe already runs across two sites.
Tim Harper firmly believes that the Liebherr loading shovels are the best in the market – well made, up to the job, and fuel-efficient. “If these machines break down, our whole recycling chain is put in jeopardy. We can’t stop trucks coming in and we need them to keep them loaded and leaving the site.”