Low vibration ratings have a direct impact on productivity on site, as the lower the vibration rating of a tool, the longer it can be used for.
Hilti’s reputation for reliability is second to none. Although the cost for us to buy or to hire out the range of Hilti low-vibration products does reflect this, we find most users are aware of the reasoning behind it, and if they are looking to get a job done quickly they are prepared to pay the extra.
Something that surprised us recently was that the newest Hilti models actually had slightly higher vibration readings than the previous models.
Medium breakers have always been the most popular breaker with our customers and one of the most utilised tools on our hire fleet.
It’s also become a fiercely contested arena for vibration levels and what appeared to be a race to the bottom.
But, Hilti’s new medium-weight (7.9 kg) TE 700-AVR, which replaces its popular TE 706-AVR, actually has a higher vibration reading: 6.5 m sq s versus 5.5 m sq s.
This means a user can operate the new breaker for a total of four hours and 44 minutes in an eight-hour day.
That is almost two hours less than its predecessor, which could be operated for six hours and 36 minutes (working to the Exposure Limit Values).
However, the single-impact energy of the tool has increased from 10 joules to 11.5 joules, meaning that the tool is now more productive when hammering.
We believe this change represents a more realistic approach to a user’s actual trigger time in a working day, taking in to account breaks and non-continuous use, plus an increase in real power which should enable users to get the job done more quickly.
We wonder if this is because the industry is moving more towards achieving a balance between productivity and low-vibration readings/health and safety priorities.
Perhaps we will now see a more realistic approach to the balance between these priorities from manufacturers.
Neil Graham is managing director at The Hireman