Digger Man

Digger Man Blog

by Nick Drew  |  Fri 05 Jul 2024

Cat 200 Series Memories (Digger Man Blog on Holiday, Post Re-Visits)

Nick's on holiday, so we are looking back at some favourite blog posts from the archives over the coming days.

Our German friend and contributor to this blog Dirk Bömer has sent over another fantastic bunch of historical photos, this time focusing on the much loved, remembered and largely American built Caterpillar 200 series excavators.

Cat 200 Series Memories (Digger Man Blog on Holiday, Post Re-Visits)

I’ve selected some of the best ones from this collection for this post. Dirk informs me that the vast majority of these images are from the well-respected machinery journalist Heinz-Herbert Cohrs archive, and were official Caterpillar promotional shots used in press releases at the time.

As we have mentioned on this blog in the past, Caterpillar were late comers to the hydraulic excavator sector, despite its dominant position in the earthmoving machinery market. It was 1972 when the first of these iconic machines was launched, the 24.5-tonne 225, the later model with revised cab is seen here below on a very different looking demo plot in Malaga.

A year later and Caterpillar launched the next model, the 235 which competed in the 35-tonne class sector.

The 235 was also available in face shovel configuration, as we see in this black and white image, clearly shot in the UK with the machine featuring the Shand logo.

In this shot we see an early 235 model with the sloped cab window design, being displayed at what I believe to be the Bauma Trade Fair when it was held in Hannover.

In 1974 Caterpillar launched the third model in the 200 series, the "Big Daddy" 245, which was a beast of a machine competing in the 45-50-tonne class sector.

Naturally the 245 was also made available as a face shovel too, and in this shot we see the machine loading the ever-popular Caterpillar 769 rigid dumptruck.

Customers had to wait until 1976 to be able to purchase a smaller model with the introduction of the 215. This machine, unlike the other three models, was designed and built primarily for the European market, in Caterpillar’s Belgian facility.

These machines remained in the Cat excavator line up until 1992 when the first of the 300 series models started to roll out, but they had various upgrades during that time.

The 200 Series were much loved by Caterpillar customers around the world, with many commenters on social media to this day suggesting that these venerable machines come from a time when Cat built tough machines to last.

Nobody can deny that, as we still see many of these units still putting in a hard day’s work around the globe to this day, they were truly great machines.

The Digger Man Blog once again would like to thank Dirk for sharing these great images with us for this post.



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