As more recycling material was getting processed and revenues were on the rise, Action Metals turned to SENNEBOGEN materials handlers to help the company be even more efficient in moving material in order to grow the business.
By Robert Adeland

When Boris Grinstein took over the reins of his father’s recycling business in 2018, his first goal was to develop new business and clients. Action Metals has been serving the Dallas/Fort Worth, TX area since 1994. The younger Grinstein could see that the business was in need of some renewal and increasing the volume of material in the yard would underwrite his plan to invest in new equipment.
Step one of the plan was highly successful. More material was getting processed and revenues were on the rise. The second step, however, became problematic. Grinstein recalls. “We got an excavator and a company converted it for scrap handling. They raised the cab, extended the boom and added a counterweight.”

With the reach on his 821, picking material from his flat deck and moving it for processing, is a snap. Photos courtesy of SENNEBOGEN.

However, the crew at Action Metals soon learned that the converted excavator was absolutely not the solution they had hoped for. “It was an awful experience,” says Grinstein. “It wore out real fast. The conversions took the machine ‘way out of spec’. Everything was vibrating. The cab was swinging like a pendulum. We tried welding in some reinforcements for the cab, but they didn’t help.”

Looking for a better idea, Grinstein reached out to a nearby branch of ASCO Equipment, part of a growing network of distributors supporting SENNEBOGEN LLC sales and service across the Americas, the Dallas area’s distributor for SENNEBOGEN purpose-built material handlers. “Around Dallas, you see SENNEBOGEN everywhere,” says Grinstein. “One yard has five of them running. They have a good name. When you see the green, you know the work is going to get done.”

SENNEBOGEN has been a leading name in the global purpose-built material handling industry for more than 65 years. Based in Stanley, NC, within the greater Charlotte region, SENNEBOGEN LLC offers a complete range of purpose-built machines to suit virtually any material handling application.

From his vantage point, the operator has a clear view of the trailer, making it safe and easy to unload.

Grinstein had actually looked into earlier models of SENNEBOGEN machines several years ago, but he had some reservations about their design at the time. He was pleased to see that, with the new E-Series models, his concerns had been addressed. After comparing three models in the lineup, he placed his order for a crawler-mounted 821 R-HD scrap handler. “We looked at the 818, but decided on the larger 821, for its higher capacity,” he reports. “The 825 would have been a good option too, but the size of the 821 is a better fit for our yard.”

Just One Way to Grow
The size of the Action Metals yard was a key factor in all of the decision-making for the new unit. “It’s a small yard, with really room for just two machines to operate. Especially as our volumes increase. The only way to grow the business is to be more efficient in moving material.”
Choosing the tracked 821 over the rubber-tired 821 was also driven by the size of the yard. While the wheeled model can cover long distances quickly in a larger yard, Action Metals does not have the long aisles to take advantage of the speed. However, the crawler design makes maneuvering more efficient in his compact yard. Models on wheels need to deploy outriggers to stabilize once they are in position for loading, requiring extra set-up time and extra space for its footprint. On tracks, the 821 R-HD has the inherent stability to lift and swing loads, without outriggers, so it goes right to work as soon as it is in position.

“I Really, Really, Really Like this Machine”
This time, with the 821 on the job, Grinstein is achieving his goals for Action Metals. “This machine loads two times faster than the excavator did. We can get into the yard early and ship out seven or eight trailer loads before we open up for the start of the day.”

“The cycles are faster, so we move more material. I’m very hands-on with equipment and this is an awesome machine. We can load a trailer full of HMS in just 12 minutes, which would take 20 to 30 minutes using the excavator. I finished one trailer load in just eight minutes, and weighed it in at 79,000 lbs.”

When the pickups back in, the responsiveness of the hydraulics allows Boris to pick the bed of the dump trucks without any worries.

“The 821 has good reach and the elevating cab has great height; we don’t even have to go up all the way to see into the trailer. And there’s no shake. It’s very stable even when we’re crashing down on the load. Our operator used to get lower back pains and aches from all the vibration. Not now. And as we say, ‘Happy operator, happy yard.’”

“Purpose-Built” to Save Costs and Downtime
As well as moving more scrap, Grinstein finds that the new SENNEBOGEN is also reducing costs for his yard. He reports no downtime for the machine, and fuel costs are lower. Since the SENNEBOGEN went to work, Grinstein has retired two of his older machines. The 821, he says, can do its own clean-up by easily attaching a magnet in place of the grapple—a five minute operation. “This has a smart generator setup,” he says. “It detects faulty connections so, if there’s any problem, it won’t power the magnet. It protects itself from shorting out the generator and from damage to the magnet. That was a recurring problem with the excavator.”

“I hesitated about the money for this kind of new machine,” he admits. “But a lot of yards will do what I did: they have an excavator and just put a grapple on it. It’s cheaper. But the SENNEBOGEN is really better financially. Every dollar is the best spent money—I make my payment, and I know I’m not spending any other money on my crane. I’m being efficient.” | WA
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Robert Adeland is Senior Account Manager at Marketing Strategies & Solutions. The article was submitted on behalf of SENNEBOGEN LLC by Marketing Strategies & Solutions, a full-service communications firm specializing in B2B industrial markets for more than 25 years.