Well, let me start off with what this beast is called & her specifications:-
Model No: KMK8400
CRANE TYPE: TELESCOPIC WITH LATTICE BOOMS
LIFTING CAPACITY: 400 TONS
NO.1 - MERCEDES BENZ OM SERIES INLINE 6 CYLINDER (286 PS)
NO.2 - MERCEDES BENZ OM SERIES INLINE 6 CYLINDER (286 PS)
TOTAL OUTPUT - 572 PS (564 HP) COMBINED FROM 12 CYLINDERS
NO OF WHEELS - 16 (TUBELESS & PUNCTURE RESISTANT WITH RUN FLAT CAPACITY TYRES)
GEARBOX: 5 SPEED AUTO WITH DIFF LOCKS FRONT & REAR
SUSPENSION: AIR (PNEUMATIC CONTROLLED & HEIGHT FULLY ADJUSTABLE - SEPARATE FOR LEFT/RIGHT/FRONT & REAR SIDES)
STEERING: EITHER 6 WHEEL OR 16 WHEEL
BRAKES: STEEL DISCS WITH 4 CALIPERS SET FOR ALL WHEELS
PRICE: ASTRONOMICAL (COUPLE OF CRORES) SUBJECT TO FINAL DUTY AMOUNT
Let me give you a feel of what its like to be in command of this beast:-
Open the Driver Door ( Left Hand )
Place yourself on the comfy fully adjustable driver seat & what gets your juices flowing is seeing the huge instrument panel which covers half of the cabin length with Dozens of Guages & Switches monitering every damn function of the beast & King Sized Steering Wheel ( I kid not! - sorry no pics as was too exited to drive it & hence forgot to take the cab interior pics!) Other half of the dashboard has just a couple of handles to grip for the assistants occupying the centre bucket & right bucket seat - 3 Seats in all, driver's included. Drivers area is compartmentalized by huge tunnel on which the Height Adjustment Buttons & Guages are placed followed by gear box lever, which is the Crane Version of a 'TIPTRONIC' Auto Box, all sorts of slots preventing the operator to make any mistakes while changing gears, lever itself was hardly 6 inches long & so very smooth to operate, what with all the hydraulic/pneumatics involved. Now, onto starting procedure - Turn the Ignition Key (Key itself is hardly 2.5 cms long - you would imagine the key size to be proportionate to size of this beast!)
Just one turn of key & the Instrument panel is alive & all sorts of lights flashing - buzzers too (enough to give someone new at it a huge scare) then press the Engine No.1 Switch to make the beast come alive - fantastic growl as exhaust tail pipe/silencer combo are located right behind the cabin on either side, then wait for air pressure to build, keep monitoring the guages watching the pressure bars rise gradually, then press started button switch of Engine No.2 & again got mesmerized by the growl of engine no.2
Repeat same procedure of pressure build up. WOW, when i press the accelerator pedal, I can feel the raw angry exhaust notes of 12 screaming cylinders doing their dance in tandem, I cannot describe the feeling in words!
Release the air brake & she runs like a dream! You just need to feather her throttle as the twin engines really give her some oomph, bet she can do a comfy 100 odd, given the chance, I could barely do 30 - my heart was really thumping like crazy! Steering was nice & light - 6 or 16 wheels, 16 makes turning her a breeze, plus the air suspension was very comfortable, weight of the equipments on board taken into consideration. Brakes are brutal, she can stop on a dime, hence you should get accustomed to them!
That then was my brief experience of the beast called the KMK8400, hope you guys can feel atleast 1/10 of what i felt about her. And yeah forgot to add, she weighs 221 tons!!!