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EquipmentWorld

Morbark Steps Up Again JAY DONNELL Morbark, Inc. held its annual Demo Days August 20-21 in Winn, Mich. and attracted several hundred customers and dealers from throughout the world. Morbark demonstrated eight machines and hosted an extensive tour of its sprawling factory. Attendees were treated to an excellent breakfast on the first morning at headquarters as ChairMorbark representatives fielded all questions. man Lon Morey and President Jim Shoemaker, Jr. updated everyone on the state-of-Morbark. Attendees then toured the 1.1 million sq. ft. factory and observed station-by-station manufacturing of various equipment lines. After the factory tour customers and dealers went out to the Morbark proving rounds, just a few miles away from headquarClose to 350 came to Demo Days. ters, and had the chance to walk around eight different machines and direct questions to the Morbark representatives stationed at each piece of equipment. Shoemaker noted that Demo Days isn’t exclusive to existing customers but as importantly is open to potential customers. “About half of the customers here don’t run our equipment,” he said. “It gives us the opportuMorbark Chairman Lon Morey, left, and President Jim Shoemaker, Jr. were feeling good about Demo Days. nity to listen to them and it also gives them an opportunity to see what the differences are and we’re confident in our ability to shine in an environment like this and quite frankly we have.” On Friday, attendees enjoyed a pancake breakfast at Morbark headquarters and then it was off to the proving grounds to watch Morbark’s equipment take center stage with live demonstrations. Close to 350 people were in attenWhole tree chippers were part of the mix. dance. Active equipment included: the HT1042 slow-speed Several new developments were in shredder, Beever M20R Forestry, 30/36 the product mix on display. The NCL track whole tree drum chipper, HT1042 slow-speed shredder was the 40/36 NCL whole tree drum chipper, first production machine with a more rebuilt 50/48 NCL whole tree drum aggressive 30 hammer pattern and the chipper (2004 model), 3200 Wood Hog product itself is just now available. horizontal grinder, 6600 track Wood The 30/36 drum WTC track maHog horizontal grinder and the 1300B chine is based on a standard product, Tub Grinder. but this unit was the first track machine 42

SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2015

to incorporate the design changes (sloped infeed, bottom feed roller, larger top roller, Tier 4f engine) from the wheeled 30/36s. The 40/36 micro chipper has been in production for about two years now, but the machine demonstrated was the first one with 800 HP. The chipper is known for its efficient feed system due to a staggered knife configuration and contains fewer moving parts, reducing maintenance. John Foote, vice president of sales and marketing, commented, “Morbark is the industry leader for several reasons. We have an extensive dealer network across the United States and contractors come to us because they know they’re going to make money with our equipment. It lasts longer than any other equipment in the field.” The day concluded with a Texas style barbecue at the site of the demonstration. Thomas Prince of Forestry Resources, a large mulch production operation with locations in southern Florida, was pleased with the event. “I think the Morbark team has done a really good job and we’ve been treated really well,” he said. “You get to meet a lot of people; that’s the best thing about it.” Prince says his operation runs a Morbark grinder. “It’s been excellent,” he added. Demo Days is a longstanding tradition at Morbark and the Morbark team continues to make it better every year. “Our company is absolutely committed to continuous improvement,” Shoemaker said. “Every year our shops look just a little different and the team is always looking for ways to improve. It’s the same with Demo Days.” Shoemaker was impressed with the variety of attendees from throughout the world, especially the Southern Hemisphere. “We’re learning a lot from our customers,” he said. “It’s always great to talk to the people who actually run the equipment and make a living doing it. We’ve been able to unveil some new products very successfully. It all bodes well for Morbark.”

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