Cat Telehandlers Feature Design Overhaul

By Walt Moore, Senior Editor | September 28, 2010

Caterpillar recently announced three new "B-Series" telehandler models, the TH350B, TH360B and TH460B, which have been redesigned to provide increased performance, easier operation, expanded versatility and reduced maintenance.

The new models all use a Cat 3054T diesel engine that's mated to a purpose-designed, 4F/3R transmission, which is designed to eliminate the need (and maintenance expense) of a transfer case. Axles have oil-immersed disc brakes that are 25 percent larger than on predecessor models, and an optional differential lock is available. Optional self-aligning steering allows the operator to switch steering modes (two-wheel, crab and circle) with the wheels in any position.

Both the canopy and cab for the operator's station is certified to provide falling-object and rollover protection. The operator's station, says Cat, is engineered with advanced virtual-design techniques and provides unobstructed sight lines to the work area. An electro-hydraulic joystick controller allows all boom functions to operate simultaneously to facilitate load placement.

For lifting stability, a rear-axle lock automatically engages when the boom is raised more than 45 degrees. Newly designed stabilizers provide ±5-degree leveling capability, and a frame-leveling system allows ±10 degrees of movement to facilitate level lifting. A 48-degree axle turning capability and no tail swing enhances operation in congested spaces.

The new B-Series models can be fitted with either a manual or hydraulic quick-coupler, the latter allowing non-powered tool changes from the cab. With the exception of access platforms, all tools from predecessor models will fit B-Series machines. New work tools include a material-handling arm, universal standard carriage, side-shift carriage and pick-up broom. Also available are a rear tow hitch, tire choices (including foam-filled) and lighting packages.

Daily maintenance for the new B-Series models entails only fluid-level checks and a walk-around inspection. Service intervals are 500 hours for engine oil and 1,000 hours for the hydraulic/transmission filter. The Cat Electronic Technician system can be used for problem diagnosis, and the new machines can be equipped with the company's Product Link system, which employs the Global Positioning System (GPS) and the Internet for machine management.

Basic Specifications
TH350B TH360B TH460B
Cat Engine 3054T 3054T 3054T
Horsepower (gross) 99 99 99
Rated load (lb.) 6,600 7,000 9,000
Operating weight (lb.) 18,700 20,800 23,100
Max. lift height (ft.) 36 44.3 44.3
Max. reach (ft.) 24 30 30
Travel speed (mph) 20 20 20