I had the opportunity to sit in the operator’s seat of a brand new mini-excavator today – and I must say, it was impressive. One of the first things to strike me was the size of the cab. It may be a mini-excavator, but there was plenty of room in the cab – even for a large person. The seat was quite comfortable – I could imagine sitting in it for hours on end working away at a trench or demolition job.
The most impressive part of the cab was the view – 360 degrees of unobstructed view. Now I know many heavy equipment operators would say they have that already, however, I am talking about a fully enclosed air-conditioned cab – not an open air cab. It was all glassed in with narrow corner frames that didn’t obstruct the view at all. Air conditioning was comfortable to work in, and the unit also heated for those cold winter days.
When it comes to controls, they are almost child-friendly. If anything, they may have been oversensitive, however, it only takes a little time to adjust to the fast response of these controls. When it came to actually digging, this mini-excavator had plenty of power, literally carving through dirt bucket load by bucket load.
You’re probably wanting to know what make of excavator I was sitting in, however, I’m not here to advertise that mini-excavator. Rather, I am pointing to how easy it is to use modern heavy equipment and how comfortable working life is. You don’t need to be built like a professional wrestler to handle these machines. In fact, a pro wrestler would probably have too much strength.
No, modern equipment relies more on the subtle touch than the brute force, and the office you’re going to be working from is almost luxurious compared to those from a decade or so ago. The view from the operator’s seat of modern heavy equipment is great – perhaps you’ll get the chance to experience it one day. It takes a couple of weeks of heavy equipment training to have you ready.