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Skid/track steer on a budget...

Mr.Ratbastard

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after not following advice in my other thread by selling my tractor I am now looking for a skid steer for clearing trees after a hurricane. The larger trees are 26" in diameter with stupidly thick branches.
I am ruling out a mini ex for now I think. I wanted a track loader, the one I wanted sold(as advised in the other thread) It looks like I can get a nicer wheeled loader and not have to worry about rollers/idlers etc. So the first is a wheeled loader a bad idea, what about the metal tracks over rubber tires?
Next what's the smallest I should consider? I was looking at a 80hp but there is a Bobcat 763(46hp) in my small town, kept inside, grapple and 900hrs I am afraid it's too small and there are asking a premium 20k not unheard of but on the high side. There are a few larger just complicated but having to go get them I would have to have shipped. It looks like it will only pick up 1500lbs is that enough?My tractor would lift 2450lbs
So should I stick with tracked or will wheeled be ok for what I am doing(ground is pretty solid except for the 25" rain we just got) 46hp too little?
 
I know everyone on here loves wheeled machines, but I'd be looking at a ~7-8k lb track machine. I've moved logs as wide as the machine and near 48" in diameter (dead fir) it was a 52" butt, once we got down to the last 20' we had to cut them like 3' rounds so I could carry them like a sandwich because the grapples wouldn't open any further. :laughing:
 
I have an 853 it does pretty good for me, I am moving 30" cedar logs now to mill with it. If my machine burned to the ground, I would buy the biggest sob I could find to replace it. They are like barns = NOBODY ever says they wish they had a smaller one.. I have owned mine for about 13 yrs and have also driven tracked machines but I prefer wheels for the terrain I am in.
Nutshell: Biggest machine w/ lowest hours that does not use DEF. Take out a loan if you have to within reason-
 
I don't know your location or budget but here's a selection from govdeals, I've had good luck with them, i bought a 1999 37 foot Airstream motorhome with 15,000 miles and "electrical problems" for $3700, went and jumped it and drove home 130 miles, it's been great for the last 2 years. however YMMV.
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...9&acctid=10276
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...811&acctid=658
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...39&acctid=3249
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...=87&acctid=700
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...3&acctid=12157
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...4&acctid=19521
 
I have an 853 it does pretty good for me, I am moving 30" cedar logs now to mill with it. If my machine burned to the ground, I would buy the biggest sob I could find to replace it. They are like barns = NOBODY ever says they wish they had a smaller one.. I have owned mine for about 13 yrs and have also driven tracked machines but I prefer wheels for the terrain I am in.
Nutshell: Biggest machine w/ lowest hours that does not use DEF. Take out a loan if you have to within reason-

Gotta disagree, when you have to haul a 13k lb skid steer plus a few attachments, you'll wish for a smaller one. When you have to burn twice the fuel to do the same task, you'll wish for a smaller one. When you have to get into tight spaces, when you are in soft ground, ect.

Ive ran 259, 279, 289 and 299s doing forestry type work. There isn't as much difference as many people think. The one thing about the 2 bigger machines that was noticeable was the ride control (boom floats when traveling over a certain speed) which makes a huge difference in ride. As far as moving brush, they're all the same. Moving logs, obviously the bigger machines lift more, but it's really not that noticeable unless it's a big log.

The big machines also are the only way to go for running high flow attachments like a masticator.

My buddy owns a 299 that he bought new for moving logs, and even he said he'd probably just get a 259 or 279 if he did it again.
 
Why did you sell your tractor?

Profit and I think I will be able to earn money for clearing my property, If this isn't covered I need the best tool I can afford so I can do it myself.
I need a grapple and it was $2500 to put one on my tractor. I don't think it would have increased the value of my tractor that much so I would have been losing money.
I had already planned on selling the tractor and I have been bidding on equipment at auction hoping to get a little use out of something then selling.
20k budget so it will be a trick to pull off a tracked one that's not beat. It can be done. Wheeled is easier.
 
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I don't know your location or budget but here's a selection from govdeals, I've had good luck with them, i bought a 1999 37 foot Airstream motorhome with 15,000 miles and "electrical problems" for $3700, went and jumped it and drove home 130 miles, it's been great for the last 2 years. however YMMV.
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...9&acctid=10276
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...811&acctid=658
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...39&acctid=3249
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...=87&acctid=700
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...3&acctid=12157
https://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?f...4&acctid=19521

Alabama on the coast. I have bid on a few on govdeals. I just missed a couple that were promising.
 
Just buy what you can afford and make it work.
 
Should have kept the tractor you only think you need fancy shit, we had a wind storm her in the spring between me and the neighbor we had 15 trees down, 20hp compact tractor drug the ship up hill. If it was too big we cut it again.

Rent one
 
Should have kept the tractor you only think you need fancy shit, we had a wind storm her in the spring between me and the neighbor we had 15 trees down, 20hp compact tractor drug the ship up hill. If it was too big we cut it again.

Rent one

Many ways I could have gone. I buy and sell stuff to earn money, I did fine on the tractor now I will see if I can do fine on this. I may not but I have a decent track record. I could probably get it done with my old Homelite XL and Gorila cart but I am not.
Depending on what comes along and insurance I may rent.

Any opinions on a New Holland L216? I found one not too far 2017 with 684 hours, no bucket and wheeled for 17k it looks alright in pictures, 57hp
 
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Any opinions on a New Holland L216? I found one not too far 2017 with 684 hours, no bucket and wheeled for 17k it looks alright in pictures, 57hp

Seems too cheap. I'd expect a 2017 with those hours to be in the upper 20's, minimal.
 
Seems too cheap. I'd expect a 2017 with those hours to be in the upper 20's, minimal.

It seams like a pretty good deal. It doesn't come with a bucket, not the prettiest but really not too bad. It's at a Kubota dealer so it's legit as far as I can tell.

here it is https://www.lashleykubota.com/invent...-stock-u500573

Worse part is the tax $1700 then 850 to ship and 1500 for a grapple bucket.
 
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A wheel loader with a grapple is going to be much better than skid steer. Don't even need a grapple, just forks would do it well.

Pick up the whole tree, cut off the top and stump and stack in their piles.
 
We have a 289 and a 279.

The 279 constantly pisses me off because it's newer and won't let me pick shit up till I flip. The 289 I've picked stuff way heavier than the rating, and would have been screwed if I had to turn as it was up on the tips of the tracks, but it moved what I needed moved right then and there.



I will take tracks all day every day. They ride so much nicer and don't tear shit up. The new ones with the smooth ride are tits.


After being spoiled running CAT machines I'll never go back to a cheaper machine. Spend 50+ hours a week in one and all the little things really start to show (AC, quiet, no dust, radio, easy controls). Get back in a cheap piece of crap and you're just pissed off all day every day. I had to jump in an old case and I decided I'd rather quit than sit in that pile of shit ever again.
 
We have a 289 and a 279.

The 279 constantly pisses me off because it's newer and won't let me pick shit up till I flip. The 289 I've picked stuff way heavier than the rating, and would have been screwed if I had to turn as it was up on the tips of the tracks, but it moved what I needed moved right then and there.



I will take tracks all day every day. They ride so much nicer and don't tear shit up. The new ones with the smooth ride are tits.


After being spoiled running CAT machines I'll never go back to a cheaper machine. Spend 50+ hours a week in one and all the little things really start to show (AC, quiet, no dust, radio, easy controls). Get back in a cheap piece of crap and you're just pissed off all day every day. I had to jump in an old case and I decided I'd rather quit than sit in that pile of shit ever again.

I owned a 247B that I bought new back in 2006. 66" wide and awesome with a 4 in 1 combo bucket. Super handy machine and it fit into pretty tight spots. Just under 8,000 lbs with the combo bucket, closed cab, A/C, heat, the works. Awesome when working all day in the rain in winter. The CATs also use the ASV torsion suspension, so you can operate in comfort all day. The excavator controls are great too, no foot pedals to screw with and it makes it so much more comfortable to drive. I had a toothed CAT bucket, pallet forks, and a Virnig rock bucket. I'd buy another CAT in a second without hesitation.


__
 
I am looking at a 246b cat but the guy barely answers questions so it's hard to imagine renting a truck and trailer to drive 300 miles when he wont.. I will try again today. I am notsure of the year but 900 hours, wheeled very clean but no grapple. It's max budget too, not sure if I can pull it off. Anyone near Whitesburg ga?
 
There are a few at auction early this morning. Most are pretty beat looking.
 
Am I crazy for considering this https://www.ironplanet.com/for-sale/...isiana/4043962
auction soon, video of it running sounds good but it says blowby visible so maybe a no go.looks rough.

Nevermind. I bid it up to 13,500 with fees and getting is around 16k I was outbid.
I got outbid on everything this morning.
 
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Good price, good to hear, I saw those but was worried they might be weak. thanks!

There are definitely heavier duty ones available... but for non-commercial use, this works fine. I did bend a tooth, but meh... still works fine.
 
Trying to wire a deposit on a 2014 Bobcat T550 with 900+ a few hours it's a 66hp machine. It looks very clean, probably repainted. It's from a dealer in south fl and they are shipping it with a new grapple and the regular bucket that was on it. Soooo here's hoping it's not a steaming pile or a scam and I lose all my money.
I will post a couple pictures after he recieves the deposit.
Slightly over budget at $21,900 includes shipping and a new grapple.
 
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Not sure how to do more than one picture per post?
 
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The Bobcat showed up at 9:00 last night. I had to back it off their gooseneck trailer because they didn't know how. I took a look at the engine with my spotlight and the pan under it was full of water, there was a very slight diesel smell to it so this morning I spent 3 hours digging greasy mud out of the belly pan under the cab and engine trying to clear the drains and make it possible to see if anything is leaking. It looks decent now and I am thinking the steep backing down the ramps and the fact it had a full tank maybe caused a bit of overflow.
I ran it about 3 hours moving tree debris and it seams to be pretty good. I did get a fault for water in the fuel which cuts power. I checked the drain on the filter and only fuel came out. There is a youtube video showing it could be the sensor. It did make some weird noises the first time I put it in fast mode so we will see.
Overall pretty good, obvious steam clean, quicky paint job and decals. What I expected.
The controls for the grapple are a bit weird. Turn on aux hydro with the switch by the led screen. Then use the trigger on the handle you drive with to activate the fluid flow, toggle to close the grapples and pull trigger to keep them close or they auto open. Kinda strange. Also the lift arms for the bucket don't work right unless you pull the trigger to kill the flow. Does that sound right?
 
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