Hitachi and Pryme Earthworks

“In the last eight or nine years, I think I’ve bought 40 Hitachis,” said Craig Henson, the down-to-earth, no-nonsense owner of Pryme Earthworks. “We’ve got everything from a little 1.7-tonne 33U up to a 135 Hitachi, and I don’t ever have any issues.”

That’s a big endorsement from someone who’s general-hire earthmoving business maintains a sizable fleet, and specialises in swimming-pool excavations and site cuts.

Craig Henson (right) enjoys an excellent relationship with Dylan Selby, his Hitachi dealer rep.
Hard-won experience

Craig established Pryme Earthworks in 2014 after 11 years running a similar company and has continued to expand ever since. Growing from a home office with a single truck, Pryme Earthmoving now has over 15 employees, numerous trucks and machines, and a 1250m2 warehouse/office space in Yatala, Queensland.

Craig and his partner Toni are eager to make the most of the continued growth of the Gold Coast and greater Brisbane areas, and keen to assist locals with any earthmoving or excavation needs. The company prides itself on having the capability to take on pretty much any job, large or small, that comes its way.

Craig’s machinery fleet covers a lot of ground, including a hydraulics truck, and his huge experience adds immense credibility to his thoughts. He rates the smaller Hitachis as every bit as productive for his business as the big units.

“The little 1.7-tonne is quite a small machine,” he pondered. “It’s great for sneaking in, even through garages and tight-access areas. The canopy set up is quite handy because we can remove it if we ever have to drive through a garage. Then we can put the canopy back on so the boys can operate it in the backyard.”

The canopy can be removed from the 33u, allowing access into confined areas.

It doesn’t take long before Craig is talking about his Hitachi machines as a group, and he’s clearly a fan, especially when it comes to Hitachi reliability.

“It’s brilliant,” he said in a matter-of-fact way.

“I don’t ever have any issues. The only trouble comes from maybe the boys getting hitches caught on tree roots or something like that.

“The Hitachi equipment is very, very good in the respect that it has a dual-pump system on our six-and-a-half tonners. We do screw piers and that sort of foundation work, and they do flow a lot of oil to the boom for augers and those kinds of attachments.”

It’s not only the strength and efficiency of the Hitachis which Craig is keen on. It’s some of the smaller details which make a big difference to a day’s work, too.

“The foot pedals are really handy for tracking with your feet,” he explained. “Some of the other brands, their foot pedals stick up higher off the floor and you’ve got to lift your legs to put them on the pedal. Something as simple as that does make a difference.

“The ergonomic design of the 13 is great, too, with an air-dampening seat and the controls being in exactly the right spot. It’s really good. You get good feeling through the levers, you can dig with them, you can dig around services, and you can do really detailed fine work with the small machines. Their hydraulics are really, really responsive, too.”

Craig also related how he appreciated the safety of the hose-burst protection on the excavators.

When he finally wound down a little, Craig summed up his experience with Hitachi in just a few words…

“They’re great. Yeah.”



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