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Homestead Machine Recommendations Needed

Discussion in 'Compact Track/Multi Terrain Loaders' started by koselig, Jan 1, 2020.

  1. Coastal

    Coastal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2006
    Messages:
    323
    Location:
    BC, Canada
    Oh I missed this post... I see you've already figured it out. :p
     
    DMiller likes this.
  2. ThreeCW

    ThreeCW Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2019
    Messages:
    150
    Location:
    near Calgary, Alberta
    koselig,
    There is an interesting discussion that gets into comparing tracked units vs wheeled units in the snow. Since one of your primary uses is snow removal, it is worth a read.
    https://www.heavyequipmentforums.com/threads/skid-steer-in-snow.70022/

    It may be difficult to get both “good winter traction for plowing hills” and “low ground pressure in the summer for wet ground conditions” all in one machine.

    I too was considering a tracked unit when I recently upgraded my skid steer but decided against it after reading about the higher repair and maintenance cost of a tracked unit and the questionable winter traction even when used “winter” tracks. Admittedly, I don’t have soft summer ground conditions to deal with, so my choice of a “farm / hobby” machine was easier.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2020
    DMiller likes this.
  3. elyislander

    elyislander Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2020
    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Minnesota
    This is a great thread to read... thanks for all of the insights. I am just a few hours away in Minnesota, just down I35 near Pine City and (was) also in almost the same situation as the OP although I don't really have inclines to deal with... I do have substantial low areas that are frequently soggy. But other than that the snow removal as well as general forestry and construction use is what I am doing.

    So with that I ended up finding a used Cat 257B3 with 2400 hrs from a twin cities landscaper. Have had the machine about a month now, so far so good, appears well maintained and undercarriages and tracks are nearly new. Only issue with it is that it doesnt look all that great - the paint sucks, it is fairly rusty from being used as the landscaper's snow mover. I'll probably put 50 hrs a year on the machine so really hoping I can cover all the maintenance on it myself...Cat sure is proud of their parts and service based on looking at what it costs.
     
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  4. koselig

    koselig Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2020
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    Location:
    Two Harbors, MN
    Hey all - wow what a trip this year has been. We're still working on finishing our house - wow winter is coming - but I'm back to sorting this out. I am going to give away the old Toyota 4x4 plow truck (which has been awesome and cost us $0) and figure out what is next for this. Now that the house is close to done we're thinking a lot more about land management, getting the orchard restored, getting a big garden in, reclaiming overgrown land, etc. So we definitely have a 50/50 or so split between warm- and cold-weather needs. I might even lean more toward warm weather. It's really overgrown here. Originally homesteaded in 1924.

    With the 0% 60mo financing I am thinking of getting a new Kubota SVL75-2 with high flow and 14-pin. I wonder how the "new" track style would run on our driveway in the snow? This year I probably won't have budget for a snowblower attachment, so I'd be plowing either with the bucket, or with a blade.

    I don't want to put studs on the tracks because I want to be able to park in the garage.

    Do you think I'm nuts?

    Cheers!
    Patrick
     
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  5. koselig

    koselig Active Member

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    Jan 1, 2020
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    Location:
    Two Harbors, MN
    Awesome! So you've got a Cat with the ASV undercarriage. We have an old family lake place (1935 log cabin) near Moose Lake, so not too far from you. How do you like the machine now?
     
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  6. elyislander

    elyislander Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2020
    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Minnesota
    Hi Patrick, machine has been good so far - just minor things to fix. I have done some excavating and leveling out of a foundation pad for a floating garage slab. Being that this year has been relatively dry I have not really pushed it as far as getting it stuck. Feels like it would take driving it into a swamp to really bury it. I bought a Jenkins stump grapple mainly for rock picking which works great and also bought an old western 7' blade on a quick attach plate and replaced the hydraulics, looking forward to plowing with it.
     
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  7. koselig

    koselig Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2020
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    32
    Location:
    Two Harbors, MN
    Cool! I have been talking with the dealer about having winter tracks installed (the "OEM" Kubota 15.5" wide zigzags) but I am a little trepidatious.

    I'd end up with dirt bucket, snow bucket, and pallet forks at first, then look for a used snowblower next year. Definitely need stump/rock grapple and rough cut mower of some sort.
     
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  8. old-iron-habit

    old-iron-habit Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
    Messages:
    4,219
    Occupation:
    Retired Cons't. Supt./Hospitals
    Location:
    Moose Lake, MN

    Just wondering how you are making out with your new machine now that we have had a wee bit of snow and ice.
     
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  9. CMC76

    CMC76 Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2019
    Messages:
    42
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    I'll add another note going into winter 2.
    As long as I get down to base gravel when scraping snow out, I am far better off. I also got a new truck this spring, the tires on it can't even get me in the gate. So I walk in. Grab the track machine and clean out well. Worth noting. I did bring out a dozer in the spring and cut down the worst sections of the drive. I had some 12-14% spots, all cut to below 9%.
    Knock on wood, but the tracks have done fine so far.
     
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  10. old-iron-habit

    old-iron-habit Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
    Messages:
    4,219
    Occupation:
    Retired Cons't. Supt./Hospitals
    Location:
    Moose Lake, MN
    Question for you Cat skid steer guys. A few weeks ago a coffee shop friend called and asked if I could help get his stuck Cat skid steer out. He had slid off his narrow built up road into a bog between two steep tree covered slopes. I took my 1 ton truck with a 12,000 lb winch and two parted the line for more power and a slower retrieve. His skid steer was setting with one side was on the road, the other in the swamp. He was leaning heavily. Setting further up the hill. I chained my hitch to a tree. I hooked to his downhill side to help turn the lower end to the road. He had a 16 inch tree 6 ft behind him and no way for me to get to the front of him. I started pulling him and asked him to just give me a bit of power to the lower track, but not to spin it. He would engage it easily and it would fully engage and do nothing but spin. He would feather the upper track and it would engage and back him up turning him back into the swamp. He said that with the pilot controls he could not finesse the amount of pull. Don't make no sense at all to me. It seems to drive fine on hard ground. Are the Cat controls that insensitive that you can't control the spin in low traction conditions? It would scare me to death on snow. Not sure if he was giving it to much or if there is an issue with his machine.

    I did get him out by by running a chain around his lower side in the mud and hooking my snatch block to that sliding the lower side around the tree to the point that both sides grabbed a bit of traction and crawled back onto the road.
     
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  11. koselig

    koselig Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2020
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    32
    Location:
    Two Harbors, MN
    Hi there, the SVL75-2 has been really great. I ended up with a "Kubota" snowblower, 74" smooth bucket, and Virnig forks. Everything extremely useful. I am never worried about slipping or sliding on the driveway, probably thanks in part to snow tracks. These tracks do dig up the grass so I did some damage when moving a wood stove around the yard.

    More than anything, the snowblower took some getting used to.

    I am not great at grading the driveway with the smooth bucket.

    This was a great purchase for managing our property. I'm now potentially looking at a power rake, brush mower, and skeleton grapple. Thanks for all your help!
     
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  12. zeroo

    zeroo Charter Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Messages:
    118
    Occupation:
    plumbing contractor
    Location:
    lexington/tollesboro
    So you got a svl75? I bought a new a couple years ago. one thing, put some foam tape on cab filter housing. The hard rubber on the filter will not seal. Kubota parts diagram even show foam tape on the housing, they even have a part number for it. Just amazing the machines dont come with it. It would cut down on a lot of the ac problems the svl’s seem to have.
     
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  13. koselig

    koselig Active Member

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    Jan 1, 2020
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    Location:
    Two Harbors, MN
    Oh that is good to know!
    I am now looking at acquiring some attachments from Jenkins (Long Prairie, MN):
    We are working on expanding our open land somewhat for orchard/food forest, and I am going to try to cut some swales and berms.
    Also a LOT of logs to haul.
    Should be fun!
     
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  14. JBrady

    JBrady Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2019
    Messages:
    191
    Location:
    NE OK
    To me, cutting swales, berms, ditches, dikes, or whatever your part of the country calls them, is one of the few things I'd prefer a different machine over a skid steer or CTL. You either have to make the berm perpendicular to the direction of the berm which requires tons of short turns, have a tilting quick attach or dozer blade (both are expensive), or have some other way to get your bucket to tilt. I'd take an angle blade on an old farm tractor's 3 point any day for this type of work.
     
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  15. DMiller

    DMiller Senior Member

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    Kinda Retired
    Location:
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    Cut swales with track loaders long ago, 955s, Deere 555s, cut first angle of banks driving straight in for a few entries then set machine In the Ditch and cut bank slopes moving along ditch, load bucket and set to high side, repeat, clean up edge spoil piles as got any reasonable length completed.
     
  16. DIYDAVE

    DIYDAVE Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2007
    Messages:
    2,205
    Location:
    MD
    Also, a 2-way blade on a skidloader becomes a PAT blade when you figure in bucket curl and roll. Easy as a bulldozer, quicker turn arounds and lighter to haul...:D
     
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  17. zeroo

    zeroo Charter Member

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    Nov 21, 2003
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    118
    Occupation:
    plumbing contractor
    Location:
    lexington/tollesboro
    I’ve wondered how good a dozer blade would work on an svl75 size machine. The main thing I’m using my svl75 for right now is building and maintaining a small motor cross track. Small, because it takes a wile stockpiling dirt.
     
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  18. DMiller

    DMiller Senior Member

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    Occupation:
    Kinda Retired
    Location:
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    Unless running a Belly Pan or tandem High side Dump truck dirt will be a slow process move.
     
  19. Kn1ghtWolf

    Kn1ghtWolf Member

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2021
    Messages:
    13
    Location:
    Minnesota
    I am considering a 96" Jenkins dozer blade as well, their prices seem reasonable compared to what the online carriers offer. I also looked at cmp attachments in clear lake but they are way overpriced in comparison to Jenkins last time I checked.


    The rocking/bouncing from front to back can cause dips so you have to go slow and steady for a smooth surface but counter weights, creep/crawl modes, and a good operator help. I've only seen the 100hp machines use them so results may vary with 75hp.
     
  20. koselig

    koselig Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2020
    Messages:
    32
    Location:
    Two Harbors, MN
    Rocking/bouncing (and me being a novice) gave our ~1/3mi driveway a very 'humpy' grade. I am hoping I can smooth it out with the power rake once I have it here, since I'll have a 'longer wheelbase' to even things out. I just need more experience with grading!