Case Study: Can a SANY SY500H Excavator stand against a CAT 349?

SANY SY500H diggingSANY SY500H digging

The CAT 349 has long been considered the king of large excavators. Could a SANY SY500H ever stand against it?

That’s the question site foreman Gary asked himself as he decided to give the large SANY crawler excavator a try for the first time.

After five months of operating the SANY excavator on the job, we interviewed Gary and learned a little more about his experience.


Having never heard of a SANY before and being accustomed to operating CAT equipment and other brands, the site foreman expressed that he wasn’t sure what to expect of the SANY machine when he saw it in Newman Tractor’s product guide for the first time. However, one look at the powerhouse machine on-site and Gary said it would be the perfect asset for the job.

About the Project

Dugan & Meyers, a trusted construction company that has been in business for over 85 years, accepted the job of installing a 48” sanitary sewer in Wilder, Kentucky during the spring of 2021.

The job consists of around eight months of construction work, installing approximately 2,000 feet of pipe into an underground system that will transport wastewater to a new centralized treatment facility in Wilder.

After accepting the opportunity, Dugan & Meyers elected Gary to lead the installation and chose to come to Newman Tractor to find the perfect rental machines for the job.

Job Site Challenges

Having operated many different brands of excavators and other heavy equipment, Gary knew the challenges his crew would face on the job site. He explained that the machines would operate for 8+ hours a day and that resizing from a 24” to a 48" pipe meant digging a deeper, wider trench. The job required the ability to pull 24-foot boxes with 10-foot spreaders and pick up manhole bases that weighed over 20,000 pounds. 

The crew initially attempted this project with their previous 349 CAT excavator, but Gary explained that he found it too difficult for the CAT to pull its weight. 

Results of the SY500H Excavator

To accomplish the installation, Gary explained that he knew his crew would need an excavator that was:

  • Smooth to operate
  • Powerful enough to dig in the hard Kentucky clay
  • Steady on the hillside when pulling substantial weight
  • With a cab that sat high enough for the operator to see down into the trenches

Gary explained that when the SY500H (the SANY equivalent of the CAT 349 model) came on-site, it performed excellently. It operated smoothly and had all the features they required in a machine to pull the multi-ton boxes and dig the trenches with no issue.

Now, after five months of operating this large SANY excavator onsite, the crew has nothing but positive reviews to share about this SANY excavator powerhouse. Even compared to their previous experience with the CAT 349, the SANY picked up the multi-ton boxes with no problem, reassuring them that they made the right choice for the job.


Follow along in this video as operator Gary from Dugan & Meyers walks us through their site and explains how the SANY SY500H excavator has enabled him and his team to be more efficient and increase productivity on the job.


SANY excavators are the perfect machines for big and small jobs alike - smooth to operate, comfortable, and built with the power needed to withstand the demands of any job.

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Date: 11.02.2021