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Skid steer ?'s

Wed Aug 29, 2012 7:08 pm

Looks like I'm going to be pulling the trigger soon on getting a skid steer. Any tips on what to look for or noises to be weiry about? I'use them in the past but must admit I don't know much about them mechanicaly. Thank you in advance for the help.

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Thu Aug 30, 2012 6:19 am

Listen for excessive growling or whineing in the hydostatic drive. That means wear and big $$$.
Slack in control levers and pedals.
The usual engine sounds and smokes you probably know.

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Thu Aug 30, 2012 12:14 pm

Suggest kicking the tires, look the machine over carefully, test drive.
Don't buy yet. Go home and check the machine's problem areas out on the internet.
Reason, there are a number of different drive mechanisms, engines, control operations, etc..

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Thu Aug 30, 2012 2:03 pm

I had a Bobcat 743 that was used for a rental by the previous owner…. You thank rental cars have a hard life…thank again.

In my opinion Bobcat, Cat, John Deer and New Holland are all good. I borrowed a New Holland track machine the other day to move big round bales of hay and it was powerful and fast.
Tracks seem to be easier to use on pavement and flat surfaces, wheels are better when the surface is rough. (Out in the fields). The New Holland I was using the tracks were worn and the owner uses it on a cattle /hog feeding operation on concrete. I’m thinking that is what is wearing them.

Bobcat’s used several different steering systems, some have straight mechanical linkage, (I think better) and some have hydraulic servos, hoses and linkages. (I had this type and leaked a lot of fluid) Bobcat uses two engines; Perkins (Caterpillar owned), and Isuzu, both reliable engines. On Bobcat’s one of the big things to look out for is the u-joint’s (between the engine & pumps) condition, for some reason they don’t get greased when maintained and will eventually break. On backhoe units; look where the arms pivot at the Backhoe because they crack, but can be welded. Mine were and never cracked again.

I now used my Massey Ferguson 40 Industrial backhoe for all my needs.

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Thu Aug 30, 2012 2:16 pm

My suggestion would be to find someone who works on such equipment and pay them to give you an impartial evaluation. It will be worth the cost in the long run. You shouldn't have any problem finding someone in your location.

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Thu Aug 30, 2012 4:19 pm

Thanks for the advice guys. At the present moment just looking, but it won't be long before I purchase (if the right machine comes around). I just have to make sure I think about it before I say sold. Thank again.

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Tue Sep 04, 2012 6:32 pm

Well, I looked at one over the weekend. Called a couple days before to see if it was still available and to get basic ?'s out of the way including "Does it have aux. hydro. for running grapple bucket, etc.. ?" They said sure it has it. So I drive a hour and a half to find out it doesn't. :x Still drove it & worked it for 10-15 min. Put it back and was walking around it to find hydro leak from one of the lines. Fluid smelled burnt to me. Needless to say that one is still on the lot.

The day wasn't a loss though, because I have an uncle in that area that I don't get to see very often so I spent 4-5 hrs. catching up with him. Overall a good afternoon.

The search continues...

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Tue Sep 04, 2012 6:48 pm

If you're looking for one with aux fittings, make sure it has a high capacity pump.

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Mon Sep 17, 2012 10:45 am

You really have to look up the model and year it was made to see what problems it may have. A lot of them had problems certain years and are to be avoided. I got a 2002 JD 250 last year while I had seen some older ones that looked good. But when I started looking them up I found they had lots of problems up to 2000 and made a lot of fixes in 2001.

You want to figure out what the min lift capacity you need is and the gpm of the hyd. Along with physical demision of the smallest area you need to get in. My friend had to go with a small machine since he had to stay less than 73" tall and still get in his barn. For me size didn't matter but I wanted a min of 1500lbs of lift. As I planned on using it in the woods for lifting logs and brush. I ended up with a machine that working lift 1750 or 2100 with the optional weight box which I got and a max lift of 3600lbs. And I have maxed it out a few times.

Track machines are nice but the tracks are expensive and don't hold up well. If you see a cheep one thats because its hard on tracks. Some are better than others. But for the most part you need to be making enough money with it so you can afford to replace them.

Billy

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Mon Sep 17, 2012 12:32 pm

JackF wrote:I had a Bobcat 743 that was used for a rental by the previous owner…. You thank rental cars have a hard life…thank again.

In my opinion Bobcat, Cat, John Deer and New Holland are all good. I borrowed a New Holland track machine the other day to move big round bales of hay and it was powerful and fast.
Tracks seem to be easier to use on pavement and flat surfaces, wheels are better when the surface is rough. (Out in the fields). The New Holland I was using the tracks were worn and the owner uses it on a cattle /hog feeding operation on concrete. I’m thinking that is what is wearing them.

Bobcat’s used several different steering systems, some have straight mechanical linkage, (I think better) and some have hydraulic servos, hoses and linkages. (I had this type and leaked a lot of fluid) Bobcat uses two engines; Perkins (Caterpillar owned), and Isuzu, both reliable engines. On Bobcat’s one of the big things to look out for is the u-joint’s (between the engine & pumps) condition, for some reason they don’t get greased when maintained and will eventually break. On backhoe units; look where the arms pivot at the Backhoe because they crack, but can be welded. Mine were and never cracked again.

I now used my Massey Ferguson 40 Industrial backhoe for all my needs.


Bobcat did use Kubota engines as well. I really don't know how we survived without a Bobcat. Only down-side is it is always on another job when I wanna use it.... :? Also tracks are cool but I don't see the cost justification for general use.

One suggestion. Some older ones I have seen do not have a ROPS. If it doesn't have one I would automatically pass. If you have a load in the bucket and need to raise it high, the machine gets very tippy.

Al

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:26 pm

Thanks for the advice guys. I've looked at a few so far and had to pass on them for various reasons. There is one I'm looking at and as soon as it gets through the shop l'll be able to test drive and go from there. It is a low hr machine and was used on a farm. It should be big enough for the jobs I have planned, just might take alittle longer. The lift is 1700# and wieghs about 5400#. The other ones I've looked at were alittle bigger but had 2,000-2,500 more hrs. Should know more in acouple days.

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:06 pm

Trigger has been pulled. Had a chance to play alittle yesterday. Sorry no action shots so far, I'll wait untill it looks like I know what I'm doing. :lol: I have lots of projects around the house for it so I'm sure it won't take long for more pics.

Image

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Wed Sep 26, 2012 4:50 pm

Congratulations. Buy the parts and service manual for the machine.

You will find a skid steer one handy piece of machinery.

Neighbor told me I could have 1/4 mile of barbed wire fence if I would remove it. I dropped and rolled up the barbed wire. Then put son in skid steer with chain over bucket to pull post. Pull a post, throw in bucket. Took us about 30 minutes to pull all the steel fence post, toss in the wire in the bucket and drive off with the loot.

One thing you will find is that skid steers are a royal pain to work on. Currently repairing a hydraulic oil leak on the bucket tilt valve and one wheel seal on a Bob Cat 610. Cost of the repair parts and supplies will be around $40-. If I had to pay shop labor rates, guessing the bill would be close to $1000-.

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Wed Sep 26, 2012 8:58 pm

You will never regret buying it. I use mine all the time. I see that you have the bolt-on teeth for the bucket. They will come in handy. So would a set of pallet forks.

Image

Re: Skid steer ?'s

Wed Sep 26, 2012 9:05 pm

Don McCombs wrote: So would a set of pallet forks.


Got a set of pallet forks for my tractor. Very helpful Wish I had gotten them sooner.
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