250 hours on a CASE TR320

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by ksss, Aug 26, 2012.

  1. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,157

    I thought I would give account of ownership on my TR320 I got this Spring. I have 250 hours on it.

    The warranty work to date on the machine. 1. A sensor that when triggered tells you to change the hydraulic filter via light on the console. 2. A handle was replaced due to wire chaffing.

    I wanted to wait for a couple hundred hours before posting my thoughts on this machine. I think by doing that it gives a more accurate account of the more subjective views of the machine.

    PERFORMANCE: Push power/engine response. Seldom can you pull the engine down, when you do its recovery is immediate. I really like this engine. I was a 4.5 fan and still am but the 3.2 in this machine does everything I have asked it to do with better economy. The machine will lose traction before the engine will pull down considerably. I am considering adding the 200 pounds of counter weight to it, that is an option I did not get. The only hold back to even greater push power is weight. The bucket breakout is good. The lift circuit I would like to see improved. I am told they have a fix for that. I have not taken it in to address that. Its lift capacity is ok, but if I would doing a lot of heavy pallet work, I would want the update. Ride Control continues to be an essential option for me. After 250 hours, the operators continue to be amazed at how much work this machine will do. With comments like "I love that machine". That says a lot to me.

    CONTROL SYSTEM: The E/H system on this machine, especially since they gave us the ability to set the sensitivity and speed to our liking, is fantastic. Other than the wire chaffing in the handle I have had no problems with it. Its responsive and less fatiguing after a day than standard servo. They did a great job on it. CAT by comparison still has a shutter issue that is very irritating at least to me. This machine has displayed no such gremlins. The response is immediate (unless you set it to have a delay) and precise. I like the tension in the control handles. Enough so that you dont inadvertantly move the lever but not so much that its fatiguing to run.

    CAB COMFORT: HVAC is about as good as you can hope for. Even in the 90 plus degree weather the AC can keep the cab very cool and in a lot of cases I turn the AC down. The cab filter does a good job of keeping the dirt out. Very little dust gets in the cab. The air seat is nice. The layout of the controls is totally adjustable but its not as user friendly to adjust as in other machines like the CAT. However once you set it to your liking, its comfortable. Handles are nice. I would rather have the ride control activation be a trigger like it used to be rather than a button on the side of the handle. Plenty of room in the cab, its reasonably quiet. Visibility to the rear is better than you would expect it to be. The towers cause some blind spots but after rock raking around sprinkler heads, the vision to the ground is surprisingly good around the tracks. The front visibility to the right is a little limited depending on the bucket size due to the small glass piece on the front, next to the door. Its most noticable when grading around concrete. Smaller buckets required me to sit more forward in the seat. I am currently running a Bradco 84" low profile extended lip bucket with this bucket I can see the edge through the side glass instead of the front. Front visibility to the left is fine. Easy to see cutting edge from a comfortable position in the cab. This ability has as much to do with bucket design as cab design. The cab overall (subjective) is excellent. This was by far CASE's biggest shortfall in previous machines. I think they have turned it into a real strength.

    SERVICEABILITY: Big improvement over the 400 series. Everythying is easy to get at and its easy to change filters. They removed the zerk up by the top of the tilt cylinders do you dont get grease where you put your hands. The one area I am not happy with is access to cleaning the radiator. This requires removing to 14mm bolts. The top radiator hose does not allow enough flexability to pull it back far enough. I will need to make some mods to correct this when I start mulching with this machine.

    HYDRAULIC PERFORMANCE: This machine is equipped with the high performance high flow. I have yet to use it due to not having a demo door for this machine as so I can run the mulcher. That will have to wait for a separate evaluation. The standard aux. hyd makes great flow. This machine does something that has not been possible any other machine I have owned. I can keep the aux on like when running a FFC Preparator (rock rake) and the flow continues regardless of what I do with the lift or tilt curcuits. I really like that, before if you adjusted either of those circuits the flow would be cut or reduced to the aux hyd. That is no longer the case with the Alpha series machines. NICE! I like having the roller activation on the flow control at times, but for some applications I would rather have a button. I keep locking the activation in the detent by mistake. Sucks when running a grapple bucket, thats my own issue I am sure.

    Some things I am not pleased with. The Console. It has a lot of capability (machine settings, job clock, monitor different engine functions) but its not user friendly. The console needs to go, use one that doesnt require breaking out the manual when you want to use it. The small buttons on the console also suck. CASE must have bought a container full of these when they brought out the 400 series. They sucked then and they suck now. I have largely got used to using them, but I am still not happy about it. I would rather see switches like CAT uses in their cab. This is a must. Make presets available so that different operators can use their own preferences when running the machine. Also make it easy to make those selections. This will require a different console. This one is already packed with too many options to use effectively.

    The radiator I already mentioned.

    I would like to see the terminals come back on the remote battery connections like the 400 series had.

    Overall I am happy with what this machine brings to the table. We are more productive and profitable having this machine and thats really why you upgrade machines. I am pleased with what CASE has done with the Alphas. It is not perfect, but its well done.
  2. excav8ter

    excav8ter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 213

    Glad to hear it's performing good for you. Do you like the controls better than the Takeuchi? I would like to try one myself.....but the only dealer I know of is 175 miles north of me.....kind of a deal breaker.....
  3. YellowDogSVC

    YellowDogSVC LawnSite Gold Member
    from TX
    Messages: 3,791

    sounds like the issues are minor and that you can make some field mods or wait for service field mods to correct. I'm real curious to hear how your high flow runs that mulcher..
  4. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,157

    The 320 feels stronger than the 140's I have run from a power standpoint. The engine certainly recovers faster. The controls are similar in feel and response even though the CASE is E/H and the TK is Pilot.
  5. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,157

    I am also curious. I have been tempted to run it anyway just to see. However I know that if I do I will get to see how much the door costs. I would rather not do that. I have a good size mulching job bid, if I get it I will pickup the demo door. Its about 3K.
  6. meets1

    meets1 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,850

    I demoed that machine. I have bc machines now but......case before that so I stil like case just dealer is a bit of a drive for us. But I liked that machine for the 50 plus hours we put on it. I glad to here your response to these newer units.
  7. stuvecorp

    stuvecorp LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,246

    First off, am glad too hear you've racked up that many hours. :clapping:

    Am excited that the new motor is performing, the 4.5 is great but if the 3.2 can get the job done and save some fuel that sure helps the pocketbook. Is the aspirator still available?

    I still don't understand why here people are not happy with the E/H and out there it's been fine? Are your dealers setting stuff up better?
  8. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,157

    I have the aspirator on this machine. Its as outstanding on this as it is on the 400 series machines. That $300 add saves that much or more in air filters a year.

    I have no idea. I doubt our service department is any brighter than any other. There are quite a few of the new machines out over here and no one that I know of is having issues. I know on the initial release there were some issues but since then I have not heard much in the way of problems. The dealers here did not get any machines until about 4 months after the initial release. Maybe we missed the run of machines with issues.
  9. excav8ter

    excav8ter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 213

    E/H is not as responsive as pilot....at least in the ones I have run. I, personally am not a big fan of all the electronics on the new stuff nowadays.
  10. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,157

    From a reliability standpoint, I would agree. There is little to go wrong with a good servo system. However as far as responsiveness. This EH system can be set to flinch when you sneeze. Just for kicks I set the setting to be as responsive as the machine will allow. I had to back it off. It was too touchy. I think these EH systems are improving very fast.

    I am fast being converted to believe in this EH system. That might change if I have to fix it one day but from an operators standpoint its pretty baddasss.

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