Plant Machinery Sales of Mini Excavators


Excavators are heavy construction equipment consisting of a boom, stick, bucket and cab on a rotating platform. The cab sits on top the undercarriage with tracks or wheels. A cable-operated excavator uses winches and steel ropes for movements & is often called a power shovel. Hydraulic excavators use hydraulic fluid, with hydraulic cylinders and hydraulic motors for movement.

Excavators can also be known as diggers, mechanical shovels, or 360-degree excavators, JCBs (an example of a generic trademark). The many types of excavators include wheeled, walker, mini, long reach, towed and rail excavators. Many excavators feature a quick hitch for simplified attachment mounting, increasing the machine's utilisation on the jobsite.



In 1948, the first wheeled excavator was developed by Carlo and Mario Bruneri. They released the patent and manufacture rights to a French company named SICAM in 1954, the same year SICAM built the Yumbo. The Yumbo, an S25 excavator, had a truck mounted on it. Wheelers and crawlers made their way into the picture as buyers became interested in the product.

HY-MAC All Hydraulic Excavator. Hymac was the pioneer of all hydraulic 360 excavators. The hymac 580 range progressed to the 580c and 610 wheeled excavator. Hymac originally was part of Hydraulic Machinery Company America. Peter Hamilton formed Hydraulic Machinery Company UK, which later became HYMAC LIMITED, manufactured at Ryynmey, Wales.

The TU was produced in 1951 by Poclain in France & is one of the first excavators to change their digging power by the use of cables and winches to a hydraulic pump and cylinders.


Some of the most notable machines in the industry today are models such as Hitachi’s 570-ton EX5500 and Caterpillar’s 360-ton Model 5230B.

Other Manufactures: Liebherr, Komatsu, Terex/O&K, Case New Holland, Caterpillar, Kobelco, Hyundai, Hitachi, JCB, Doosan (Daewoo), Volvo


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Mini Excavators, also called Compact Excavators or Mini Diggers, have been gaining popularity because of their ability to work and manoeuvre in tight spaces that larger excavators can’t reach. In terms of size, mini excavators are classified as having an operating weight of 9,999 pounds (4,535 kg) and under.

Due to its small size, simple operation & ease of transport, the mini excavator is used by contractors from all different backgrounds. It is capable of performing a wide range of tasks that include utility trenching, concrete removal, tree harvesting, repair digs, small scale excavation operations, tree transport and planting, grave digging, light demolition, home repair, renovation, and roadside applications.



The mini excavator is relatively new  in the construction equipment industry.  Yanmar designed a mini excavator in 1968, the YNB300, and introduced it to Japanese markets in 1969.

Takeuchi began initial production of its first compact excavator in 1971.

The mini excavator became widely used in the Japanese and European markets first before being introduced to the North American market in the early 1980s.

By the 1980s, Bobcat began to reposition itself as a manufacturer of compact machinery. This led to a decision to develop and manufacture mini excavators. Bobcat also pledged to stop referring to the small machines as mini excavators branding them as compacts instead.

Bobcat then decided to pitch the compact excavators (mini digger) to the company’s large market for backhoe loaders. The company took a risk by emphasising that buyers could buy a skid-steer loader and a compact excavator for the price of a backhoe loader.

Risky as it was, it caught on! By the 1990s, a number other manufacturers started to follow Bobcat’s lead. About the same time, the rental of compact equipment such as skid steer loaders and compact excavators was taking off. The machines were being bought in large quantities by rental fleets, providing equipment users a risk-free opportunity of testing their usefulness.

The demand for mini excavators in Japan and Europe still far outweighs demand in North America. In general, the North American market has been slow to catch on to the use of mini excavators where a preference for backhoe loaders and larger hydraulic excavators dominates.




Most manufacturers are now building mini excavators with zero tail swing. Zero tail swing allows the machine to rotate a full 360 degrees without the cab overlapping the width of the tracks. This is useful since most mini excavators work in compact spaces & this enables the cab to avoid hitting any obstacles when rotating. Offset booms also known as articulated booms or swing booms are also becoming a standard feature on several models too. The offset boom or independent boom swing enables the machine to dig within close proximity to walls, foundations, or other structures without having to change angles or be realigned. This provides the machine arm with the ability to dig parallel to the tracks.

Bucket Sizes: Mini excavators come with a variety of bucket sizes designed to handle different types of jobs. The standard range of bucket sizes is from 12 to 24 inches.

Manufacturers: Bobcat, Case, Champion, Daewoo, Doosan, Fiat-Hitachi, Hitachi, JCB, John Deere, Kobelco, Komatsu, New Holland, Scat Trak, Tata Hitachi, Wacker Neuson, Kubota, Caterpillar, Komatsu, IHI, Deere, Yahmar, Volvo, and Terex

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