ERNEST DOE SUPPORT LEADS TO FIRST HX85A FOR JJ SUGRUE

Suffolk-based plant hire and contracting company JJ Sugrue has added its first HD Hyundai HX85A compact excavator to the fleet, with a second machine already on order. Supplied by local dealer Ernest Doe & Sons, the 8.5-tonne excavator is the 38th HD Hyundai machine to be purchased by the company.

Started by Jerry Sugrue in 2006, as an owner operator business, the company has grown steadily to a fleet of almost 200 machines, with more than 80 staff on the payroll. Sugrue’s first excavator was also an 8-tonner, which was traded in to Ernest Doe for a 13-tonne HD Hyundai in 2013. That machine was supplied from Doe’s Ulting, Essex head office, but since that time Sugrue has dealt exclusively with Doe’s Wymondham depot, which is closer to the firm’s Saxmundham base.

“It’s because of Chris really,” said General Manager Tim Sugrue, talking of Doe’s Branch Manager Chris Bunn.

“We have a really good working relationship. Ernest Doe are really good, but it’s about Chris, we talk every day. It’s all about the back-up. I can ring at night and someone will be there to the machine in the morning.”

Working across East Anglia and beyond, the Sugrue fleet includes almost 30 HD Hyundai machines, ranging from the compact R17 mini excavator, through to HX145A mid-weight excavators. Indeed, the company has run every model of HD Hyundai excavator up to the 14-tonner, other than the R55, over the last decade.

“They are really good machines,” said Mr Sugrue. “They are good value for money, reliable and the longevity is excellent. We usually change our equipment at four or five years, but we have had some of the HD Hyundais for longer than five years. The paint quality in particular is really good and it doesn’t dull on older machines.”

The HX85A is a big step forward from the previous generation 8-tonne model. Boasting a powerful Stage V Yanmar diesel engine and a load sensing hydraulic system, the HX85A is available with monoboom or two-piece articulated boom and a four-way angle dozer blade. Equipped with a spacious, comfortable operator cab, the machine is incredibly versatile, with the lifting and digging power of a much larger model and the compact dimensions of a midi excavator.

“We do run the latest HX130A excavators as well,” said Mr Sugrue. “We bought the HX85A to trial it on site and now we’ve already ordered our second one.”

The machine is proving particularly popular on house building sites, where its compact dimensions and rubber tracks make it an ideal model to work with the construction team. Sugrue’s HX85A is equipped with a hydraulic quickhitch, for rapid bucket changes without the operator having to leave the cab. The machine also works with pallet forks, allowing it to move materials and carrying out lifting duties for the house builder, adding to its versatility.

“It’s the perfect size,” said Sugrue’s operator Tony Gear. “The machine has a lot more power and lifting capability than our older 8-tonners, it is really good for lifting, but it is the right size for a house building site. The cab is a great place to spend the day as well, with plenty of space, it’s really comfortable.”

Sugrue offers its fleet of equipment with a team of experienced operators, or on a self-drive basis across the East Anglian region. Ernest Doe maintains the equipment while in the warranty period, with Sugrue’s own service team taking over after that. However, Ernest Doe is always available to help and the company will often carry out service and maintenance on older models when required. The two companies have very similar operating territories, which certainly helps when back-up is required.

With so much experience of the brand, Mr Sugrue is in an ideal position to compare different models and the latest HD Hyundai A-Series excavators certainly get the company’s seal of approval.

“Resale values on the Hyundais are good,” said Mr Sugrue. “We never struggle to sell them on. The Hyundai’s have always been good, but this generation is just better than before.”