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Grove RT540E Mobile Crane - Michielsens

Maker:  TWH Collectibles
Model No:  079
Scale:  1:50
Review Date:  May 2011

TWH Index
Mobile Crane Index

Cranes Etc Model Rating
Packaging   (max 10)8
Detail   (max 30)25
Features   (max 20)17
Quality   (max 25)19
Price   (max 15)10
Overall   (max 100)79%


Grove RT540E Mobile Crane - Michielsens Video
The box.
Where to buy
The parts out of the box.
Rear view.
Underside view.
Excellent graphics.
Rigged for travelling on site.
Opening engine compartment.
Graphics on the outrigger beams, and the pistons are solid.
Ready to lift.
The RT540E being carried on a Doll Semi Trailer.
The Grove RT540E is a rough terrain mobile crane used in general construction.  The real machine can lift a maximum of 35 tonnes, and has a boom length up to 31m.  A swingaway extension jib adds another 14m of reach.

This model is in the colours of Michielsens, the Belgian craneage company.


This model comes in a Manitowoc style box, with the model held between a pair of expanded polystyrene trays.  There were no defects or missing parts.

It comes complete with a small reprint of the Grove Product Guide, which is a nice touch, and a simple instruction sheet which describes some of the features of the model.


The crane is mounted on good quality tyres with a realistic tread and these are mounted on detailed hubs.  The carrier is really well detailed with the outrigger pistons looking like pistons instead of just screw threads.  The engine area is excellent with superbly etched grilles looking particularly convincing.  Other details such as ladders, handrails and other equipment are all very authentically reproduced.

The high standard of detail continues on the crane body, with the cab having windscreen wipers and mirrors, and inside the cab the controls are replicated.  It also includes a fire extinguisher, textured floor and numerous internal notices for the driver.  On the opposite side of the body there is a removable panel which gives access to the hydraulics and it is here that a particularly complex and detailed piece of modelling is found.  In fact the hydraulics are really good on this model with the lines to the drive motors for the winches also modelled.

The boom is a four piece telescope which is nicely made with the Michielsens name on every boom section.  The collars at the top of the intermediate boom sections are plastic and there is a slight colour variation to the metal parts.  A metal hook block is provided and this is already reeved in the factory, although it did not hang correctly on the review model and was re-reeved. 

Also supplied is a lattice extension jib and this can be attached to the boom top with pins.  It also has a telescopic extending section.  The only issue with the fly jib is although it fixes well when the boom is retracted, it does not hang properly if the boom is extended without the fly jib, and it then tends to flap around a bit.

Another part included in the box is a second hook block which is welcome as it allows the crane to be displayed with a hook on the fly jib and one on the main boom.  The only issue is that a single line hook would have been more appropriate.


Both axles steer independently and a shallow lock can be achieved.

The outrigger beams extend and the pads can be lowered, and they can hold the full weight of the crane.

The cab features an opening sliding door, and there is an additional opening flap which gives sight of the engine within.  A removable clip-on panel reveals detailed hydraulics connections.  Underneath the carrier deck there is an opening box which reveals the batteries inside.

The other functions of the model work well.  The crane rotates and the boom can be set at any angle.  The main boom cylinder is not very stiff and it can be pinned at a steep angle.  Two winches are modelled.

A nice touch is that the boom features a working angle indicator. 

The fly jib can be attached, and the telescopic section can be extended and pinned in place.


This is a good quality model with impressive applied graphics, with some of the warning notices being absolutely tiny.  The paint and graphics is not quite up to the quality of previous TWH models.  There is very little plastic used.


The model is reasonable value for the quality offered.


It is good to see this model in new liveries and this Michielsens version looks smart and will be somewhat rare in the limited numbers made.  The detail level is great and it is highly recommended.


The first version of the model appeared at dealers in August 2009.  It has been produced in a number of colour variants and a version in red and white is reviewed here.  The Michielesens version was produced in a limited run of 150 models.

The model inside the box.
The crane in configuration for being loaded.
Fly jib pins to the side of the boom.
Opening cab door and battery compartment underneath.
Twin winches and mirrors, and very small graphics.
Outriggers out and crane working.
With the cover removed, the hydraulics can be accessed.
Graphics on each boom section.
Lifting a small beam on the fly jib.
An impressive load.