Gehl Compact Excavators — 2014 Spec Guide

Gehl introduced its first compact excavator range in 1987. The fourth generation Gehl excavator product offering provides key market-focused models with customer-driven features. During its 25 years in the excavator business, Gehl has acquired a wealth of industry knowledge and market experience. Over the years, the company’s excavators have become more user-friendly, with key features like zero tail swing for operation in tight places and large comfortable cabs.

Today’s Gehl’s compact excavator range consists of five models: the Z17, Z27, Z35 GEN:2, Z45 GEN:2 and Z80. Each model is built around a Yanmar engine. The hydraulic system is designed to enhance engine performance, resulting in a more efficient system, says Gehl. These models are true zero tail swing machines, eliminating cab overhang beyond the tracks in all directions. This allows the machine to operate directly against a wall or other obstruction without causing damage to the structure or machine.

The hydraulic system incorporates two variable pumps and two gear pumps. The pump oil flows are efficiently combined, redirected to where it is needed and allows for simultaneous operation without loss of hydraulic power. The Z35 GEN:2, Z45 GEN:2 and Z80 excavators add the Eco Mode feature. This mode reduces engine rpm by 10 percent without sacrificing power when activated, saving fuel when full speed is not necessary. The mode is easily activated and deactivated with a simple toggle switch.

The Z27, Z35 GEN:2, Z45 GEN:2 and Z80 are equipped with a hydraulic quick-coupler, making attachment changes as simple as flipping a switch. Plus, the universal-style coupler works with a wide range of excavator attachments, putting tools you already own to use. An integrated boom light on all models mounted under the boom illuminates the area being excavated, extending the work day when necessary.

Rugged, high-strength booms are constructed with a single boom-pin design and thick side-plates with internally routed hydraulic lines. Heavy-duty cylinder guards protect exposed cylinders from damage. Longer, offset crawler tracks enhance stability and provide smoother travel. Tracks are short-pitched to reduce wear, fatigue and damage. The angled crawler frame reduces soil buildup on the undercarriage. The large, walk-through operator’s stations on canopy units increase operator safety and comfort and enhance productivity.

Easy-to-remove side covers and a large rear access door allow access to all daily inspection and major maintenance points. In addition to those features, the Z17 is equipped with a variable undercarriage which extends from 3 ft, 1 in. wide to 4 ft, 2 in. wide. This allows the machine to access narrow, hard-to-reach areas and also gives it the ability to increase stability on uneven terrain.

Advice to Buyers

“Purchase a unit that best fits the majority of applications that you work in. In most cases, excavator designs are very similar across brands, and it is the performance, design and comfort that separates them,” explains Brian Rabe, manager of product development for Gehl. “Once you have selected the best unit for your type of work, attachments are a great way to customize the unit to your application. For one-off jobs that require more dig depth or higher performance, look to rent a unit to best fit the application.”

Gehl Compact Excavator Specs