Caterpillar’s new MH3295 material handler a marriage of 390F and 385C excavators

Updated Jun 25, 2016

Caterpillar MH3295 material handler 1

In order to create a machine engineered for the wear, tear and torsion of bulk material handling and scrap recycling applications, Caterpillar engineers married the design facets of two excavators.

The new MH3295 combines the cab of the 390F with the boom, stick and most of the undercarriage of the 385C to create a package Cat says is more stable, better performing and more fuel efficient than using a conventional excavator for material handling applications.

“A big part of a material handler is the undercarriage and it’s important for a material handler to have a square footprint and the reason for that is you want to be able to pick as much over the side as you are in the front because you’re always swinging,” explained Cat product manager Rich Knudson.

The undercarriage on the MH3295, the majority of which was carried over from the 385C, is nearly square at 20 feet long by 18 feet wide, and gives 360-degrees of stable handling.

For the new machine however, Caterpillar improved on the 385C’s frame by dropping the idler and raising the final drives up about 5 millimeters each. Knudson says the change gives the MH3295 more track engagement.

The carbody, which joins the undercarriage to the machine’s upper body, is wider and fabricated with thicker plates than similarly-sized conventional excavators, and therefore allows for higher load capacity. Plus, the machine’s upper frame uses thicker sections and higher-strength material while the boom tower features double-plate construction to handle increased side loading.

The MH3295 will be available with a 56-foot, 6-inch Barge Front for inland waterways that features a shorter boom and stick, and a 71-foot, 6-inch Scrap Front optimized for above grade lift performance.

Caterpillar MH3295 material handler 2

Cab and operation

As we said before, the MH3295 features the same cab found on the 390F. The machine is equipped with a hydraulic cab riser that raises the cab up to 24 feet, 7 inches, and can be lowered to the ground 360 degrees around the machine.

The cab also features an automatic climate control system, a fully adjustable air suspension, heated and ventilated seat with reclining back and a programmable LCD monitor. A rearview camera is standard and a side view camera is optional.

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Operators will also find two new engine power modes and an automatic engine speed control assist for reducing fuel consumption. Plus, the new machine features Cat’s Adaptive Control system which puts hydraulic flow “where it’s needed, when it’s needed,” optimizing performance and further reducing fuel consumption.

The machine is powered by a Cat C18 Tier 4 Final engine with 524 net horsepower. Cat says the machine is 10-percent more fuel efficient than the 385C in barge and scrap loading applications.

Caterpillar is taking orders for the MH3295 now and the first shipments will go out in July.