Japanese tracked aerial work platform manufacturer Nagano has produced the first units of an upgraded version of the 31ft Z11Auj, a big platform on a telescopic boom, sometimes referred to as a ‘scissor on a stick’.
A key aspect of the upgrade is the ability to work safely and with full capacity on slopes of up to five degrees. In terms of general performance it offers a working height of up to 11.4 metres with a maximum unrestricted capacity of 600kg. The overall platform length is just over three metres, with a width of just over two metres - barely 200mm narrower the machine’s overall width, avoiding the stretch often required to reach the work on a wall or vertical surface. The three section telescopic boom provides a maximum working outreach of 6.5 metres, which is available at working heights of up to almost nine metres. The machine can also drive at full height, but kicks into an extra slow creep speed above a seven metre platform height. The five degree model will be slightly heavier than the standard machine at 9,150kg.
Power comes from a Kubota diesel, while standard equipment includes 360 degree slew, secondary guarding, and a fireshield package, which includes special protection of electric cables and hydraulic hoses. The upgraded machine will initially only be available through the manufacturer’s Belgian distributor Vertimac, which has helped with the development of the upgrade.
Vertimac says that the first units of the new machine will arrive in the new year and that it plans to hold a decent inventory of the new lift for quick delivery. The Z11Auj joins two other Nagano European models, the 59ft 20ATuj tracked articulated boom lift and 43ft 20ATuj regular telescopic boom lift.
Nagano is finally beginning to make inroads into the European market, with those who have purchased units stating that the reliability and quality is second to none. This is hardly surprising, first of all it is Japanese, and secondly the company manufactured crawler and wheeled boom lifts for Aichi for around 20 years - having started the OEM contract in September 1988. Those machines had an almost legendary reputation for quality and reliability.
Nagano was purchased by Chinese company Beijing Jingcheng Heavy Industry (JCHI) in 2012, then early last year Japanese investment company Jafco acquired 100 percent of the company's capital, providing the support required to increase production, develop new products and expand overseas. The move to a five degree safe working angle - compared to three degrees on the standard unit, makes good sense – trying to level up a self-propelled tracked machine on rough ground can be a nightmare.
It will be interesting to see if demand for this type of machine takes off outside of the Benelux region and Northern Germany.