Finning Wins Arnold Earthmoving Business

Nov 15, 2016

Five years ago, John Arnold, part-owner of Arnold Earthmoving Ltd. was making a good living in Ireland operating a successful earthmoving business. “I had my own earthmoving company in Ireland for years, but when we were hit with the economic downturn in 2012, you might say I jumped ship,” jokes John. That jump brought him to Canada where he immediately set to work in the earthmoving business in Saskatchewan. “As soon as I had my permanent residency, in February of this year, my partners and I opened our own business.” And so Arnold Earthmoving was born.

John operates the business located just outside Saskatoon with his partners Wiola Syslo and brother Tony Arnold. They contract their services to the mining sector, in the potash industry, building tailing ponds and dikes and retaining tailings, roadways and rail extensions. The Arnold Earthmoving team was looking to expand their fleet to keep up with demand but needed specialized equipment. “We deal with three to one slopes with soft surfaces and heavy dozers won’t work, so we opted for the Cat® D6N dozer which is light enough to stay on top of the slope but tough enough for the job.” According to John, he knows from experience these machines are extremely reliable and he can say they are almost trouble-free.

“We were going to rent the equipment because we had a very tight turn-around,” says John. “I met with Todd Kennedy a sales rep for Finning and he had a good rate on a purchase of a machine and he said they could deliver and they did.” The machine required the supply and installation of a Trimble fully-automated grade control system before delivery. SITECH Western Canada, a division of Finning delivered. “They went above and beyond to get this job done” says Tony. “Five days after we ordered the dozer, it was on-site with the GPS system fitted exactly to our requirements.”

Two weeks later the Arnold Earthmoving team were in the market for a new excavator. The company had always operated a competitor’s brand and had no intention of switching loyalties. “My dad had a construction company in Ireland and always had those excavators and I was a big fan. I had no intentions of buying a Cat,” says John. That was until his rep Todd suggested he just come in and have a look at what Finning could offer. John went in and tried the Cat 336 excavator and was immediately won over. “I was super-impressed with the machine, the filters are so easy to access, there is more hydraulic lift than other machines and the higher cooling cycle of the radiator is amazing.” says John. This is because Cat has designed the radiator as a square panel, so the machine is drawing more air over the entire surface area of the radiator.

Tony added that he was really impressed with this unique machine’s capability to use recovered energy from the swing to load the trucks all day long. “And they use 33% less fuel than most same-size competitor machines doing the same work,” says Tony.

“I cannot believe the advancements in technology that Cat has made in the last 10 to 15 years on these machines. I used to think that Cat excavators were less fuel-efficient and less powerful than their counterparts, but that is definitely not the case,” says John.

The other feature of the 336 that sets it apart from its competitors is the comfort. “Our operators have told us they’ve never driven a machine as comfortable as this one,” says John. “This is really important, especially if you are operating an excavator as you have to be constantly aware of your surroundings, looking out for obstacles and watching for people on-site, which puts a lot of stress on your body. So for our operators to be able to jump out of the cab at the end of the day without sore knees and a sore back, that’s incredible. It’s like the machine was built with the operator’s comfort in mind.”

Ownership was also an important element. “Owning your own equipment means you determine how and when the equipment is used and you have complete control over its maintenance and operations,” said Wiola. “This means you know it will be at your disposal when you need it”.

Arnold Earthmoving is still a relatively new customer of Finning’s but a happy one. “We are definitely pleased with the choices we have made on our last two pieces of equipment,“ says Wiola. “We love the uptime that Cat provides and the availability of parts. And when it comes to supporting our business needs and back-up service on our machines, the people at Finning go way beyond. The customer service we’ve received has been excellent.”