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Commercial Innovation of the Year​: Winner

Miller UK and Hewden Stuart – Hydraulic Breaker Enhancements

Brilliant, genuine innovation is always going to impress the panel of judges, but when it’s the result of inter-company collaboration, then all the better.

Such is the case with Miller UK and Hewden Stuart, which were able to demonstrate what can be done when firms get their heads together to figure out a difficult problem.

Miller’s collaboration with Hewden has produced a threefold set of advancements for the breaker market.

Hewden engaged with the main players in this sector with a tough brief. This included reducing the number of breaker variants it would need to stock to suit excavators and backhoes from 1.5 to 20 tonnes, and it also wanted to reduce the number of head brackets needed to suit Caterpillar and JCB machines.

At the same time, it wished to provide full automatic lubrication across all models as well as incorporating the ability to recover stolen or lost assets. And finally, it needed to launch the full solution within three months.

“This is a suite of innovative solutions that addresses all the issues Hewden had. Miller has got velocity and agility; it has picked up the challenge and said, ‘Yes, we’ll have a go at that’, and it has done it in three months, which is remarkable”

Judges’ comment

Undaunted, Miller picked up the gauntlet. Within this tight timeframe, it managed to come up with an attachment that features a bespoke hanger bracket with interchangeable pins that will fit a wide range of OEM machines and sizes across excavator fleets.

The bracket means a reduction in breaker change times from the industry norm of 90 minutes to under five minutes. It also eliminates the traditional manual handling element of swapping brackets to fit a specific machine, with some brackets for larger machines typically weighing more than 100 kg – four times the maximum recommended weight for one person to manage.

The judges were impressed by the incorporation of a tracker device into the attachment that has enabled the recovery of numerous breakers, including one stolen from a site in Southampton last summer.

They also appreciated the design’s automated lubrication system that allows for operation of the breaker during use, maximising uptime and extending the life of the tool.

Since hammers should be greased every three working hours, the auto-lube system saves end-users having to stop work to grease, in what might be a hazardous environment.

The panel felt this was a very well-rounded submission, which covered all the bases.

Finalists

  • A-one+ – Barrier Master
  • ARC Building Solutions – ARC T-Barrier
  • Asset International (part of the Hill & Smith Group) – Zoneguard
  • C-Probe Systems – Alkali-activated Cementitious Build and Restoration Materials
  • Nationwide Platforms (Lavendon Group) – SkySiren PCS
  • SGN – Osprey Pressure Validators
  • Tarmac – UltiLow
  • VPS Site Security and Costain – Wireless JCB Smart Towers

Readers' comments (1)

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