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Caterpillar 432E Side Shift Backhoe Loader

Maker:  Norscot
Model No:  55149
Scale:  1:50
Review Date:  September 2009

Norscot Index
Roadworks Equipment Index

Cranes Etc Model Rating
Packaging   (max 10)8
Detail   (max 30)22
Features   (max 20)15
Quality   (max 25)17
Price   (max 15)12
Overall   (max 100)74%


The Caterpillar 432E Backhoe.  The black rivets are obtrusive.
CAT style box.
Travelling with the bucket raised.
The backhoe showing the side shift mechanism at the rear.
The H70 hammer attached.  The extendible stick is also opened up.
The AccuGrade laser levelling attachment fixed to a rear stabiliser.  The front bucket is shown open.
Telescopic material arm.
The Caterpillar 432E is a machine that weighs a little over 7t (16000lbs) and is a standard multipurpose piece of equipment used in construction.  The version on which the model is based includes an extendible stick on the backhoe.


The model comes in a typical Caterpillar box style with a window.  Unusually, the model is not tied in place with ties, which is a relief, but is just enclosed between two clear plastic formers which also hold the attachment parts so it is easy to remove from the box.  There were no defects or missing parts on the review model.

There is no information about the real machine but the box has some details about the model and there is a simple instruction sheet explaining, with diagrams, how the parts are fitted.


The model feels quite heavy for its size and there is relatively little plastic used.

The tyres have a good tread pattern and they are mounted on detailed plastic hubs.  The cab frame is nicely formed in metal and it has some painted lights front and rear.  There are no windscreen wipers, but the interior is well detailed.

At the rear the backhoe is modelled well, and the rivets are painted to match the colour of the model so they are unobtrusive.  The front mechanism has painted rivets also, but for some reason they are black so they show more. 

A number of attachments are provided with the model.  The front and rear buckets are entirely in metal, as is the H70 hammer and material arm.  The forks and auger have plastic parts.  All the attachments are good quality and convincing.

Also provided is an AccuGrade laser guided attachment and this is a plastic part.


The steering mechanism works quite well although the range of movement is a little limited.  The front axle is also oscillating so it can be posed as if on rough terrain.

At the rear, the stabilisers pull down into position. 

The backhoe has a functional side shift capability, and the boom and stick open up, with the cylinders being stiff enough to hold a pose. The stick is also extendible.

At the front, the loader mechanism works well but the range of movement is limited at the upper end so the bucket cannot be held as high as the real machine.

There are quick hitch arrangements front and rear and the various supplied tools are easily attached.  The front bucket opens clamshell style and the material arm is telescopic and can be opened out.


This is nice model which feels solid and well made.  The paint and graphics look good also.


It is good value given the attachments included.


This type of machine is a workhorse of the construction industry and is popular across the world.  Norscot have produced a pleasing model and but for the black rivets looks good posed in a number of ways with the attachments provided.


The model first appeared in 2006, and had a minor revision in 2007.
The various parts and instruction sheet.
Rear view.
Emptying the hoe.
The auger attached.
Using the forks to lift a piece of metal.
The material arm shown closed.