1. Thank you for visiting HeavyEquipmentForums.com! Our objective is to provide industry professionals a place to gather to exchange questions, answers and ideas. We welcome you to register using the "Register" icon at the top of the page. We'd appreciate any help you can offer in spreading the word of our new site. The more members that join, the bigger resource for all to enjoy. Thank you!
  2. ALL NEW MEMBERS READ THIS FIRST!! Thank you for joining Heavy Equipment Forums! If you are new to forums we communicate with "Threads", please search our threads to see if your topic may have already been answered and if not then click "Post New Thread" in the appropriate forum. This will allow all of our members to see your question and give you the best chance to be answered. After you've made a number of posts you will graduate to Full Member status where you'll see a few more privileges. Following these guidelines will help make this the best resource for heavy equipment on the net. Thanks for joining us and I hope you enjoy your stay!!

150 Acres Of Brush, Too Much For A Skid Steer?

Discussion in 'Compact Equipment Attachments' started by DiamondLTruckin, May 2, 2011.

  1. DiamondLTruckin

    DiamondLTruckin Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2010
    Messages:
    107
    Occupation:
    Truck Driver / Mexican Dragline Operator / Mechani
    Location:
    Wyoming
    Looking to clear about 150 acres of stuff pretty similar to sagebrush, a little lighter. Want to use a mulcher type deal. I was looking into the track or wheel mounted units but they're all too far away to rent. I was kinda thinking I'd be there forever running a brush mulcher on front of a skid steer, Probably a 297 or 299 Cat. Anybody got any input to help me figure this out. This is the first land clearing job I've ever looked at and had a hard time finding an acres per hour spec on anything.
     
  2. Dwan Hall

    Dwan Hall Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2004
    Messages:
    1,029
    Occupation:
    Self Employed
    Location:
    Juneau, Alaska
    Here is what I did to clear 2 acres in 2 day with a skid steer.
    Waited till the ground was frozen, put on a bucket with an 8" cutting edge, and ran around shearing off alder and other brush at ground level. Some small alder with trunks up to 5" in dia. I was told it couldn't be done but proved otherwise. There were other contractors watching and waiting with there excavators and dozer's to take over when I failed. I cleared just under $20,000 for a total of 2 weeks work including burning the brush.
    This left the roots in place. Next stage was to cover the area with Type R and cover with 2' of pit run to produce a parking/storage yard. This job could not have been done had the ground not been frozen for the price I did it for.
     
  3. DrJim

    DrJim Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2011
    Messages:
    166
    Occupation:
    General Dentist, including Implant Restorations
    Location:
    Oak Ridge TN
    Having had many hours experience mowing with a front-mower on a skid-steer (and I like 'em a lot), me thinks that your distance concern may be overstated. For 150 acres, a bigger machine will surely be cheaper. Unless, of course, you have nothing else to do and don't care if the project takes you a very, very long time.

    Or. . . if it's "sage brush, a little lighter", what about a heavy duty batwing cutter, such as a Woods BW 1800 or BW2400X behind an ag tractor? The higher-end Woods batwings have a deeper deck than many others, accomodating more cut material. With these you can drive slowly but get done fast. I have a lighter, BW180, and was surprised to find that I can trim with it around terrain and obstacles that I can't with smaller mowers--the overlap (extension beyond your tracks) allows you to trim up to or over obstacles and ditches. If you try this, I strongly recommend that you use a tractor rigged with (3) hydr actuators, so that you can control the height as well as both wings individually. Otherwise, if you T the two wing lift cylinders together, whichever one has the least pressure on it will raise all the way up before the other one begins to lift--like my hay tedder.

    If you are going to own the 150 acres and maintain it, the batwing will be a great asset to own. I like my other stuff but looking back, I wish I had bought the batwing first . Mow everything you can with that first, then worry about the problem spots.
     
  4. joispoi

    joispoi Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    Messages:
    1,284
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I agree with DrJim. A flex wing bush hog could be the right solution, especially if it´s for reclaiming overgrown fields. A skid steer is going to be too small to make any sort of production. Time and fuel are valuable. I would want an ag. or forestry tractor over 120 hp. Ideally, a front mounted bush hog would be best, but you can add undercarriage shielding and a push bar to bend brush and saplings down as the tractor passes over if you´re going to run a standard rear mounted forestry duty mower. Flat proofed tires would be a good idea as those little 1 foot x 1'' sapling stumps have a way of puncturing tires.
     
  5. Randy88

    Randy88 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2009
    Messages:
    1,768
    Location:
    iowa
    Your not going to find any per acre hour specs on anything its more like hours per acre and it'll vary from species to size to plants per acre and everywhere in between, go batwing or bigger, find a feller buncher with a brush hog head and mow the junk down, more hp and more suited to brush and garbage type material. As for costs and bidding it do it by the hour and that way its fair for everyone, forget bidding it, your gonna lose or not get the job you don't have enough experience to bid anything and at todays fuel and hourly costs you can't afford to get behind on any job.
     
  6. Monte1255

    Monte1255 Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2008
    Messages:
    317
    Occupation:
    Farming/forestry/TSI
    Location:
    Minnesota USA
    I'm with you on the Bidding Randy, clearing has got so many hidden surprises, you can loose big time if ya try. I'm a strong believer in giving the customer a good days work in exchange for honest pay. But if something pops up that you couldn't see ahead of time it's not your fault, but one must be compensated for the extra headaches.
     
  7. mitch504

    mitch504 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2010
    Messages:
    4,276
    Location:
    Andrews SC
    Boy Howdy, I wish we could work that way around here. The only time I get to work hourly is for a few established customers. I just add more to job prices than I think it will cost hourly, and hope it averages out over a month, or year, etc.

    When I have tried to explain to people that it'll probly be cheaper by the hour, unless the unexpected happens, and then we'll discuss it before I go over the estimate; I have had many people get mad because I won't agree to work for the lesser of hourly or my estimate.
     
  8. KSSS

    KSSS Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2005
    Messages:
    2,958
    Occupation:
    excavation
    Location:
    Idaho
    I have a mulcher and a highflow rotory brush cutter similiar to a Davco made in South Dakota. Give me a call and I'll run over and give you a hand with it. Sagebrush mulches easily, its the rock you have to watch out for with both a rotary and a mucher with chipper teeth. I am running asphalt milling teeth, rocks are not an issue normally.
     
  9. Yellowdog

    Yellowdog Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2004
    Messages:
    208
    I think a lot will depend on the terrain. Some customers want low impact. 150 Acres is a big job for a skid steer or any machine if the customer wants it to look good. Anyone can blow and go and cover up the roots later so a lot will depend on how they want it to look. The economy of scale of using a bigger machine might make sense but it depends on expectations of the customer and the time limit on the job. I have customers that won't let the big or tracked machines on their property because they bust too many oak limbs and/or leave too much of a foot print. A capable skid can do it.. it's just going to be slow.