A new Volvo L220H loading shovel has been ordered and delivered to Portland Stone Firms Ltd to spearhead the company’s relatively new mining operations at the Perryfield Quarry site on the Isle of Portland.

“We started our mining operation here at Perryfield Quarry back in March and required a suitably sized loading shovel to extract and handle dimensional stone from the underground faces of the mine,” says Quarry Manager Andrew Jackson. “We found the team from Volvo to be very proactive in working with us to agree on the specification of the L220H and checking all the details were correct to ensure the machine would do ‘what it says on the tin’.”

The Perryfield site has a long experience in operating Volvo loading shovels having previously run the larger 50 tonne L330E from the end of 2002 when the stone was being extracted in the quarry and even before that in 1996, when an L180C was delivered and ran for eighteen years. “Back then the quarry was operated by the Hanson Bath and Portland Stone Company and the L180 was an excellent machine, clocking up an impressive 31000 hours with only a transmission change in all that time,” says Jackson. “So if our new L220H can perform in a similar manner we’ll be extremely satisfied.”

The L220H has been supplied complete with hydraulic attachment bracket, a 4.7m³ general purpose bucket and 1500mm heavy duty block forks capable of handling blocks weighing up to 24 tonnes. To facilitate this the machine has been equipped with an additional block handling counterweight, XLDD2A L5 wheel and tyre assemblies, a fire suppression system, an RDS Loadmaster weighing system, Sensor vision, a Brigade white noise reversing alarm, flashing blue rear lights and a full lighting package. This enables the machine to be used primarily for extracting stone blocks from situ, then carry them to the mine entrance where they are sorted and cut to customer requirements. The L220H is also used to carry the sawn material up to a marshalling area at the top of the quarry where it is loaded onto trailers destined for either customers directly or to Portland Stone Firm’s cutting shops and to aid this activity, the machine benefits from Volvo’s ride control or boom suspension system. In addition the machine is used to clear waste material from the mining process which is disposed of in the old quarry workings at the Perryfield site.

Developing 373hp in a relatively low rpm range the 13 litre Tier IV final Volvo engine coupled to Volvo designed and manufactured powertrain components are the significant features found on the L220H. These coupled to other fuel saving devices such as optishift with torque converter lock up, the reverse by braking feature and the Volvo Eco pedal encouraging the operator to run the machine at its optimum rpm in the engine’s torque curve make this a highly efficient and productive loading shovel in its size class.