Product feature: Attach2 GPS and Heli-Tilt

Some of the latest technology deployed in the Graeme Bagrie Contracts business is a suite of diggers running full 3D GPS systems integrated into Heli-Tilt units

GPS and Heli-Tilt quipped diggers

Known in short as GBC, Graeme Bagrie Contracts has what many would consider a traditional grassroots origin. It started with farmer Graeme Bagrie and a bulldozer to work his property. The neighbours saw how effective Graeme’s farm development was and that became the GBC we know today, which is based in Levin.

Growth and changes

The next generation of Bagries were also growing up around the contracting business, so it was a natural progression for oldest son Chris to join the family business.

"Like many from Dad’s generation, we put in a lot of hard work to grow the business; we didn’t always have the latest technology like we do today," says Chris, who’s now operations manager of the civil construction division.

Their hard work continued to pay off. After a few busy years in the late ‘90s, brother Ryan joined the business after qualifying as a diesel mechanic with experience in Australia and the US. Ryan, now the quarry manager for GBC’s Waitohu Quarry, provides GBC’s contracting arm with resource confidence and has all the business’s biggest toys.

Technology increases work done

Technology uptake within the earthmoving industry has been on a steady upward trend, and it’s the area Chris, as operations manager, sees as benefitting the business’ ability to complete work with less staff and machinery than the traditional process yields.

"We only purchase the best equipment because there’s no point getting the most technologically advanced equipment if it breaks down; that’s why quality and back-up come before price."

Some of the latest technology deployed in the business is a suite of diggers running full 3D GPS systems integrated into Heli-Tilt units.

"There’s a lot of time savings in having the GPS and Heli-Tilt with it, and no tilt bucket hose changes adds safety with less reason to get out of the cab. And with no more pegs to complete cuts, which can require surveying and frequent re-checking. Overall, we can say that these things together have resulted in a 25% uplift in work done."

Foxton settling pond project


Located outside of Foxton, GBC is working on a new settling pond for treated wastewater, using two of their latest GPS and Heli-Tilt quipped diggers. Operators’ Hayden and Kieran have been on this project since the start that, so far, has involved bulking, shaping, and contouring a new pond built up from a local sand resource.


Speaking of using the Heli-Tilt, both Hayden and Kieran are in agreement.

"It makes things so much easier. Previously, changing hoses on a tilt bucket and the tilt sensor would take over five minutes; now it’s just seconds. This is also good, as you can tilt the rock bucket, which we have on occasion used for some shaping when a rough tooth finish was needed," says Hayden.

Making it easy

More work completed over the same time frame doesn’t need to be a sprint every day, although you get that, as Chris says, "The advantages of the Heli-Tilt with GPS far outweigh and the disadvantages. There’s a bit of a learning curve from the traditional, but the results speak for themselves."

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