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First crawler crane for HKV - Liebherr LR 1500 expands fleet

From left to right: Erich Schneider (Liebherr-Werk Ehingen GmbH), Michael Schmitz, Gabriele Schmitz, Herbert Schmitz, Yvonne Schmitz (all from HKV Schmitz and Partner GmbH).

HKV adds Liebherr 500-tonne crawler crane to its fleet 
The deciding factors were performance, low cost transportation and fast set-up time
HKV values Liebherr's range of services 

HKV Schmitz + Partner GmbH has purchased the first crawler crane in the history of the company. Liebherr officially handed over the new LR 1500 to the crane rental company in March at its Cologne site. Its low cost transportation and fast set-up time were the main criteria behind the decision to buy the 500-tonne crawler crane. The overall concept of the LR 1500 is designed for simplicity and great economy in every respect. 

By purchasing the new LR 1500, HKV is breaking into a new performance class as it is the first lattice boom crane the company has ever owned. Managing Director Michael Schmitz explains: “We analysed the market and the future requirements of our customers. We also modernise our fleet continuously and invest in the latest technology. Purchasing a powerful 500-tonne crawler crane gives us a whole new range of ways to serve our customers and to acquire new customers.” 

The LR 1500 will replace an LTM 1500-8.1 telescopic mobile crane at HKV whilst staying true to the company's slogan “Class not mass”, as although crane performance has been increased, the number of cranes in the fleet has not. In the past year, HKV has won an order for the crane work for the construction of a power plant, for which the LR 1500 is the perfect machine.

Michael Schmitz says: “We decided on the LR 1500 because it is one of the most modern crawler cranes on the market. It requires short set-up times and features high safety standards for the set-up and operating personnel – aspects which are extremely important to us. The LR 1500 is very compact yet it delivers high lifting capacities. Compared to other crawler cranes, it is much more economical to transport as it has truly been designed for low cost transport. In view of the fact that there are now infrastructure problems for cranes and heavy haulage vehicles, the new crane delivers some significant benefits. The keywords for HKV are “Weight reduction”. As with our large telescopic mobile cranes, the LR 1500 uses technical advances to reduce its transport weight.”

The new Liebherr LR 1500 crawler crane at HKV Schmitz's Cologne site.

HKV ordered the LR 1500 with a Quick Connection so that the slewing platform can be separated from the central crawler section for transport. HKV also ordered the VarioTray, the split derrick ballast system. This enables the centre ballast pallet to be separated from the base plate and used for hoisting work with partial ballast. HKV will use the LR 1500 throughout Europe for industry and wind power jobs. That is why the company ordered the 500-tonne crane with a wide range of boom systems. 

HKV has now been trading successfully for more than 20 years. In addition to crane work, the company has specialised in assembly work, including the engineering and complete planning of heavy haulage and hoisting work. The HKV Group now has a workforce of 45 and operates 26 mobile cranes, all supplied by Liebherr. Schmitz says: “The LR 1500 won us over through its properties, innovations and technical features. But in addition to the machine's performance data, its reliability and Liebherr's range of services play an important role. We therefore regard Liebherr as a strategic partner. And partnership is something we are very keen on at HKV.”