XWatch and K&W Mechanical – A Partnership for the Ages 

K&W Mechanical has spent decades building a strong reputation as fast, reliable engineers specialising in mobile plants and cranes.  

The company, based in Bloxwich in the West Midlands, was founded in 1977 as mechanical engineers working exclusively on mobile cranes. Simon Wheat, the current Director, and his brother Martin bought the company in 2012, and the business has since gone from strength to strength with a team of eight staff members, including five full-time engineers.  

Simon was first aware of the Xwatch product when it was still in the design stages in September 2018 and was invited to the Xwatch HQ in Cwmbran for the pre-launch. This was the very first system that was installed on a demo machine being trialled, where Simon provided his input and suggestions. The XW1, a simple height limiter, was born and was released to the market in its finished form in 2019.  

Shortly after, K&W Mechanical installed their first XW1 system to a Fuchs MHL310 material handler, which has an elevating cab. Since then Simon and his team have installed over 450 systems with another 25 systems on order, making the firm the biggest of the Xwatch distributors.  

Simon explained that the most popular system at his company is the XW4, a slew, height and proportional control system. However, those wanting to futureproof their machines are ordering the XW5, which now accounts for more than half of the incoming orders.  

Simon comments: 

“New regulations on Network Rail require track lock and full envelope control. We like to guide our customers toward the best long-term solution for them. We have an eclectic mix of customers which include OEMs and single plant operators. We are fortunate to have a good rapport with the OEMs and the Xwatch systems are just one of the products we are able to supply. We also supply and fit Engcon tiltrotators, 360 camera system from the FTC Group, VEI Weighing Systems, Wire-Watchers overhead powerline detection system, IDig 2D Excavator Grade Control System.”  

Explaining that he likes to offer a full-package service, Simon summed it up perfectly: 

“If you’re taking a machine apart once you may as well fit all the systems you need at one time. This makes it very cost-effective and we can offer competitive labour quotes – it makes perfect sense!”  

Talking about the Xwatch suite of products, Simon said, “It’s quick to install and operators and companies like the ease of use of the system. The longer warranty on the product is also a USP and most often servicing and repairs are down to damage not failure, which, again, speaks volumes.”  

Dan Leaney, Sales and Operations Director at Xwatch, says: “K&W Mechanical have established themselves a true ‘one-stop shop’ for all your retrofit systems. It’s incredible that Simon and his team have sold and fitted 450 Xwatch systems in the three years we have been established.” 

Frequent collaborators with Molson Green, K&W Mechanical have recently installed Xwatch systems on several projects for Sennebogen, one of which included a gantry crane, due to the Xwatch products’ versatility and how easily they can be adapted to work with the majority of construction equipment. 

However, not all installations are entirely straightforward. In fact, Simon comments: 

“An interesting install was for four flail machines for drainage – the Spearhead SPV 3 W machines have a four-wheeled body and a rotating cab, which takes some very innovative installation!” 

Have you tried Xwatch’s products for yourself? Get in touch in the comments below and let us know. 

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