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ksss
01-24-2006, 04:00 PM
I saw an ad it happened to be for Takeuchi and it said something to the effect of The power of name recognition can be more powerful than the equipment. I thought that was a profound statement. Obviously it is aimed at Bobcat being the marketshare leader in both mini ex and tracked machines (skid steers also but that didn't pertain to Takeuchi). If Bobcat was just now entering the market with its current machines. Would they immediately capture current marketshare? Would they ever reach current marketshare? Does Bobcat build a machine that is 20% better than CASE or 60% better than CAT (using marketshare percentages as a guide). I don't think any company does a better job of marketing than Bobcat. They entered the market first (although not by much) gained a commanding marketshare and have not looked back. I don't believe it is because there equipment is that great, but rather how effective they have been over the years in marketing their equipment and their brand. This is not to say that they are not innovative as they are but I think it is amazing that the name carries as much weight as it does. Especially enlight of how powerful the competition has become in the last 15 years. I think in many ways Bobcat has been passed by in the market mechanically yet they continue to be very strong in sales, due to extremely savvey marketing by capitalization of their name recognition. To many, a skid steer will always be a Bobcat (much to my dismay). I think they are now able to sell competent equipment (I would not say they are market leaders in any particular area of performance in any machine,) based soley on the name and the paint. They are able maintain or expand current marketshare. Any thoughts?

Tigerotor77W
01-24-2006, 05:29 PM
I welcome criticism [hopefully constructive] to this post, especially by Digdeep. However, I'm more than willing to articulate further on the points I make below (when possible).

[Written after the message was finished: I realized I don't have a specific point here... haha]

Personally, I hope Bobcat reads this message. I also hope they take what I've said in the past about them to heart. They have a very competent product, not the best in all respects by any means, and they have people who are very loyal to them. (This is also true with certain Caterpillar ranges -- such as small track-type tractors.) However, I would argue that they don't market nearly aggressive enough. If you pick up a Deere magazine, you see instances -- maybe poor ethics -- of stories that each proclaim that Deere is the best machine. Period. Bobcat's Worksaver has a few issues where one or two contractors used "other brands," usually in a different size class and moving up on the Bobcat ladder, but nothing to the extent of Deere. Instead, they highlight their innovation: innovation which is pure and creative, to be sure, but they rarely focus on how their common machines -- mini-excavators without Fasttrack, skid steers, and compact track loaders -- are better than the competition. (There is one product -- the S250 -- that I will argue is a better buy than its competition.) But take a S300 against a 95XT? Hardly, even if the S300 advertises more net horsepower. "But the S300 replaces the 883," Bobcat argues. That is perfectly fine by me -- the 883 was based on the 873; the S300 is based on the S250 -- but then why call it a S300? Why not an S280? Or S285? Or take a look at the 773. It has remained much unchanged since the 7753 -- that was twelve years ago. Only in October 2005 did the 773 receive a weight increase that puts it on-par with similar product offerings in terms of weight. The wheelbase of the 773 is still the shortest wheelbase in its class -- some machines in one size lower have a longer wheelbase than Bobcat puts on its 773 -- and now, S205.

Don't get me wrong: I love Bobcat skid-steer loaders and other products. Innovation, in the pure sense of being unique, is rampant in the company. EH controls, power attachment kit, enclosed cab, various control options, high-flow, air-conditioning, these were all more-or-less developed or perfected on Bobcat machines. That owes a lot -- in an age when most contractors might not consider AC for a full-size wheel loader, Bobcat decided not to put AC on skid steers. But as the operator environment became more and more a "desk," the creature comforts first starting appearing on Bobcat equipment. Simple and rugged sums it up pretty well. Every competitor claims that Bobcat's chaincase is weak and its axles being welded makes it impossible to service. True, but how many contractors will take the time to *properly* adjust their skid's axles and chains? Bobcat has a transverse-mounted engine that makes it difficult to get to the back of the cab. Again, true, but how often is a repair there necessary? If one does become necessary, it will usually be a major overhaul to begin with -- one that certainly would take time on any color skid steer.

So when it comes down to it, Bobcat advertises its uniqueness in the industry. They have a decent product, superior to some competitors, and they use the innovation they have to lure new customers. The Toolcat and A300 are marvels in their day -- too expensive to be everywhere, but an amazing concept nevertheless. Durability has yet to be proven, but the average customer looking for a skid steer that is somewhat friendly on turf but can still skid has finally found a solution with acceptable durability. What Bobcat hasn't done is really invigorated its mainstream line of skids and mini-excavators. You can easily argue that the ZHS machines are pretty slick, with Fasttrack and ZHS, but the "plain old skid steers and conventional mini excavators" are barely touted. Digdeep has affirmed again and again that the ASV machines superior to Bobcat's -- yet Bobcat has no fielded a single claim otherwise. Their literature makes little mention of why their machine is the best -- it just lays out the features that make the machine "good." But any machine can be good, and looking at literature won't cut it. What Bobcat does have is a few machines that are standouts -- machines that no competitor can currently match. I wouldn't think that Cat won't go out of its way to make a Toolcat; it wouldn't seem to fit in its business portfolio. Neither will Case. Deere may be a possibility, but then, what else could it do but present a similar machine? More power? More strength? No Toolcats are falling apart left and right, and most contractors won't use a Toolcat to dig a basement anyhow. So I would argue that it's Bobcat's surprising innovation that keeps them on top. With the innovation surely comes some brand recognition, but a few more decades along, I'm not sure "White will always be right."

all ferris
01-24-2006, 09:42 PM
hmmmm....I guess its easy to hate the "leader".

tnmtn
01-24-2006, 09:50 PM
i grew up a Cowboys fan and stayed with them through the good and bad years. this thread reminds me of that time.

Scag48
01-24-2006, 10:47 PM
I will agree that Bobcat has a very agressive marketing scheme. For the most part, they need it, otherwise they would get knocked right out of the #1 spot. With the exception of the Fasttrack ZHS, A300, Toolcat, and a couple other innovations, they haven't released anything that is mindblowing. If I am correct, Cat was the first to put pilot controls in skid steers and look where that got Cat in the market. Cat entered the market in 1999 and as far as I'm concerened, they're basically beating the crap out of everyone with the exception of Bobcat and Case and for good reason. Bobcat is where they are for who they are, they've been building these machines for 50 years and a name just sticks. When you get to the point where people are calling every skid steer regardless of brand a "Bobcat", you've done something right throughout the years.

When Bobcat was building the machines in the 80's when the market really caught on, creature comforts were nothing to operators and that's how these machines were built. Yank 'em sticks that had the most simplistic grips and just a steel rod with linkage to control the hydros, a seat that more than likely came off a farm tractor, probably no safety bar, just a ruggedly built machine. The 90's came around and innovations like BOSS came out and the hydraulic attachment coupler (F series), innovations nobody thought of putting on a skid steer. Then cabs became an option, along with respective heating and A/C units. The advanced hand controls were available on the F series, but at a hefty price. Bobcat has made their way to #1 throughout the 90's.

As we entered the new millenium, for some reason or another, equipment just exploded. If you look at what's happened with large excavators between 1996 and 2002, they are almost a completely different machine from an operator's standpoint. The cabs are extremely comfort oriented. I see this same change with skid steers, Bobcat has pushed for comfort and ease of operation, along with things that just make you want to buy the machine. Cat never entirely jumped on this bandwagon and knew that they couldn't when entering the skid steer and compact equipment market. Case, from what I've seen, is almost in the same boat as Cat, putting just enough creature comforts in the machines to make most operators happy.

My outlook for Bobcat is fairly straightforward. Bobcat will continue to build machines for who knows how long, they will continue to attract repeat sales, and they will strive to put innovations on machines that nobody thought of. I think the people buying Bobcat currently are the ones who have bought in the past, fell for Bobcat's marketing plan, or just decided to jump on the bandwagon. Bobcat is not the best equipment made by any means, they don't produce anything that blows the wheels of anything else in regards to getting the actual work done. My honest opinion of who produces the most efficient and productive dirt slinging machine? Case, hands down. Cat behind Case, then Bobcat, New Holland, Deere, etc., etc.

I don't hold anything against Bobcat, they produce excellent equipment. But what I get tired of hearing is how they're better than everyone else's equipment just because they've been around the longest. That simply is not true. The pilot controls epidemic has proved to be Bobcat's shortfall, they STILL haven't gotten up to speed with Cat and others who are now producing pilot controlled machine. Only time will tell how the rest of the story goes.

Tigerotor77W
01-24-2006, 10:56 PM
I'd argue against the Case being the most efficient. Productive, perhaps, with the exception of the Gehls, but on a per-size class basis, I might even wager that Deere will do pretty well nowadays. If the 332 can't stand up to a 95XT, Deere's marketing is stronger than its product for sure.

I forgot to mention the biggest reason driving Bobcat's limited acceptance of certain features (*cough* true pilot controls). Cost. Cat is trying to make its manufacturing process leaner -- as are most companies -- but it's evident that Bobcat can produce a very inexpensive skid-steer. The electronics Bobcat uses can reduce the complexity of the system; in many cases, it may be cheaper to throw a circuit board on a machine than it would be to put an actual pilot valve and associated equipment.

I'm hoping that one day I can get on a Bobcat and dig with it (as I have with Case and Cat) and see for myself just she stands. That's in the unforeseeable future, though, so maybe things will have changed by then.

UNISCAPER
01-24-2006, 11:22 PM
I agree with KSSS in many ways. Prejudiced as I am, I've been a cAt stockholder since the 90's, my uncles company recieved their first Cat in 1932 for cutting the original site work for the "Chicago World's Fair. When the fair authority could not pay the bill, Caterpillar stepped up and gave them a D-2A to settle it. That machine now sits in front of Patten Tractor in Elmhurst, Illinois.

Even though Outboard Marine Corporation went BK in 1990, and Johnson-Evinrude brand has begun manufacturing by Bombardier, I've gone boat and motorless because I can't push myself into buying a Mercury and would not be caught dead with a Japanese engine haning on my transom. Grandpa had a marina when I was a kid and we sold Evinrude outboards and when I was a kid I would go all over the neighborhood telling people that Mercury pollution had to be stopped........I mean't Mercury outboards of course, I was not a leftest environmentalist whacko

I would rather push a dead Harley than strattle a crotch rocket, even in those dooms day AMF years. You would not catch me dead with a Kawasaki engine on any small equipment I own. Too many thrown rods and failed warranty claims to ever buy one again. And last, you got yer truck guys. I have had them all, and after failure after failure of recent year electronic shift Ford trucks, they turned me in to a brand sensitive (GM) owner.

Back to brand recongniton in general. I make my living selling billable hours. If when I had the small issues I have had with our Cat products, they told me they could not get to me for 3 days as Bobcat has told folks out here that use many of their machines in a fleet, I would look at another brand in a New York minute. But, when the Caterpillar service truck has never been over an hour away, when we lost a turbo a new machine was given, and they called after we got ours back to say they needed to change our engine, when they could well have let it go so the engine blew out of waranty, that is what keeps me comming back.

I don't get some of the truck guys, like my friend who is on his 5th turbo and 2nd transmission on an 05 F-350. He's already talking about hanging on for 6 months and trading for an 07 F series. The minute I ad that much trouble with any brand, I would look very hard at the next brand.

Dirty Water
01-25-2006, 12:06 AM
To me, Bobcat is pretty similar to Ford...Good, but flawed products that sell by brand loyalty while all the other companys have passed them up in technology.

Scag48
01-25-2006, 01:17 AM
Bill, you're an exception to the rule, you are so brand loyal! I guess I'm somewhat the same way, I refuse to ride any motorcycle unless it says Honda on the side, I run only Stihl hand tools, John Deere is the only acceptable farm tractor, and Cat is all we will continue to operate.

Green Pastures
01-25-2006, 01:34 AM
Time after time I see Ford products bashed here on Lawnsite.

I pray to God Almighty that you guy's are wrong.

I have a 1999 Ford F-250 V-10 2WD Auto trans with 97K on it. I bought it used with 13K on it. Only thing I've done to it I thought was outside normal wear and tear was replace the drivers electric window motor at like 40K miles.
I keep the fluids and filters changed.

I just bought a 2004 Ford F-250 4WD PSD Auto trans with 30K on it. It needs new tires....

I run them both hard daily. I tow heavy weight with them both daily.

I love my Ford trucks.

Dirty Water
01-25-2006, 01:40 AM
Eventually your going to pop a spark plug and have to replace a head or have the threads helicoiled, on the v-10.

payup

Also, don't back either of those trucks up with at trailer attached if you can manage, Those automatics don't circulate fluid in reverse, so when you put it back into drive you will blow the input shaft seal. (been there, done that '95 F-250)

I lost faith in Fords becauase of their auto trannies. My dads old '76 F-150 still runs like it came off the showroom floor...what happened to those days?

Scag48
01-25-2006, 02:57 AM
I did that, reversing up a slope with 12K of gravel and trailer behind me. Fluid went everywhere. Been 6 months since then, everything is fine. Our F350 PSD has 150K miles, no problems. I like my GMC but the Ford is a much better work truck, independent front suspension sucks. Look at how a Ford is built, transmission aside, the frame is much beefier than a Chevy. If someone could build a truck with the frame of a '00 Ford, the body of an '02 Chevy, an Allison tranny, and a Cummins out of a '94 Dodge, you'd have one hell of a work truck.

ksss
01-25-2006, 06:28 PM
Bobcat 250
I think it is hard to quantify efficiency without some perspective. If your using the term to describe fuel usage, that maybe one thing. If efficiency is used to describe maybe the operating system that would be another measure (which is more subjective). I think to measure productivity and efficiency (as it pertains to fuel consumption) we must then put it in an equation that quantifies productivity per unit of fuel consumed. The large Gehl machines although big and powerful don't seem to be as productive as they would appear on paper. This is my opinion based on talking to people who have run the machines, and tested them. I don't want to make it sound like CASE has all the answers. I know they don't. However, they do one thing particularly well. When it comes to high production dirt work, I do think they are the most productive/efficient (yards of material moved or excavated per gallon of fuel) of any machine out there. When I am referring to high production machines, I am specifically refering to the 440, 450 and 465 machines. Conveying the idea of just what these machines can do is difficult to express in a way that people can understand and believe.
So I will just say that in my area, some contractors including general contractors would scoff at me showing up to build large building pads, do large scale demolition etc. with a 12K excavator and a 95XT and maybe a 70XT. At the end of the day, no one is laughing. What I here is "I can't believe that you can move that much material with a skid steer." If there is another skid steer that can do what these do (in this area) I have yet to run it. The other great thing is that they also hold their value very well.

Tigerotor77W
01-25-2006, 06:37 PM
Which is another reason I'd love to see how some companies claim they are the most productive out there. I'm not sure how it figures. As far as the 90XT and 95XT (I'll eventually change over to the 400 series nomenclature... hehe) go, you're right: if I had an earthmoving business and digging was my specialty, I would get an 90XT for the digging, no doubt whatsoever. However -- if I wanted to lift as well, but have a machine weight of less than 8,500 pounds (granted that's pretty narrow a search...), I believe the S250 will outwork the (now) 445. And Ls180, Ls185.B, L185.B (NH changed their nomenclature), 252B, or possibly even the Deere 325. However, completely rebuffing everything I have just said, I have seen evidence that Case is not the most fuel-efficient (tons of dirt moved/gallons of fuel used). I can't comment on specifics, but not having seen the test, I also can't say it was a fair test. (We've been through this one before...)

In the end of it, I think Bobcat relies heavily and repeat customers and also small, new customers (much as Cat would). They have good dealer support and a decent overall product. I don't think it will kill them in the next few years, but I do hope they're looking at more significant changes than a heavier drivetrain, hydraulically-powered fan, and yet another machine based on a crippled wheelbase.

Scag48
01-25-2006, 06:55 PM
Kaiser, have you run a Cat skid steer? I know your thoughts about the 277, but have you tried a wheeled machine? I'm just curious if you have on how they stack up against Case, in your opinion.

Squizzy246B
01-25-2006, 07:07 PM
Bobcat 250
So I will just say that in my area, some contractors including general contractors would scoff at me showing up to build large building pads, do large scale demolition etc. with a 12K excavator and a 95XT and maybe a 70XT. At the end of the day, no one is laughing. What I here is "I can't believe that you can move that much material with a skid steer."

My experience exactly. We have a customer who builds gas powered power stations by tapping into rubbish dump mounds and drawing off the methane and other combustible gases. Just before christmas he was in a bind for a loader working around the site. We were there rockbreaking with the Ex and he asked if we could bring the skid down and at least cleanup the spoil. He was so impressed with the machines ability and speed that we ended up doing a heap of work for him....not as fast as a loader...but with the quality he required. He just didn't believe a skid could do so much work. That was his perception Before.

Which brings me back to the topic of brand recognition. We find (with our clients) CAT exudes confidence. Its got nothing to do with how good the machine really is...its just people see us roll up with that yellow colour and it instills a great deal of confidence in them. I read somewhere awhile back how, worldwide (and I'm talking non-english speaking countries included) CAT was up there with Coca-Cola and Reebok for "recognition".

Brand loyalty is another issue and we are definetly far less loyal than we used to be. I go with CAT because of the service and support. Having said that, in our sandy conditions there are better skids out there in terms of ground performance. I was a Canon freak until the stupid camera we bought went back three times and is still no good. Went and bought a Fuji. When it comes to Trucks we will buy Japanese everyday of the week over something American just on reliability, economy and spare parts. Its chalk and cheese in that regard. Which is not to say I still don't love the new (and old) Mack's but (is that a touch of brand loyalty) I'll get a new ISUZU 15 tonne machine and never put a spanner on it.

I can't speak of the Bobcat brand because here in the wild west things have not been so good for Bobcat. Mustang has a formidable rep with operators but not so much the community as a whole. CAT probably has an advantage simply because of the name. Bobcat competes pretty much on its merits alone and it could be suggested this is why Mustang and Toyota outsell Bobcat (the $$$$ affect this more I suspect). Starting to see a few more Gehls around too.

Scag48
01-25-2006, 07:20 PM
I will also agree that when people see you're running Cat equipment, they believe you seem to have your head on straight. People recognize the legendary Cat name as quality, rugged equipment and for some reason or another they believe that you as a contractor are the same way. Especially in a time when people think American made is the only way to go (if only they realized half of Cat is built in Japan) it sure does look professional in their eyes. Hell, I know our excavator was built in Japan by Mitsubishi, but it sure looks American and I'm still damn proud of it. I have to say that nothing looks more badass than our 2 trucks running in tandem through our small town with 2 pieces of Cat equipment on the trailers. People notice our equipment and we get compliments on how clean we keep them, I think image plays an extreme role when working with homeowners and small contractors. When working with large contractors, nobody cares, but when you're working 1 on 1 with the customer it's a whole different ball game.

ksss
01-25-2006, 07:44 PM
I have run the 246 and the 252 while testing the new 435 and 445 CASE machines and the pilot CASE 440 last month. In its 2K ROC class I think it competes well in most areas, but CAT really does not excel at conducting difficult excavation such as basement type digging. I found that due partly to a light weight and having a front to back weight ratio that is not favorable to digging. The CAT ratio is more favorable when lifting pallets but struggles when trying to break into hard ground. CAT also doesn't have a wheeled machine that is heavy enough, powerful enough to compete in the 3K and over class. This is where the high production machines come from in my opinion. The 90XT/450 would be the exception, although with a midrange lift capacity of 2450, it is able to excavate and move material with any machine in any weight class. I believe that to have a high production skid steer with the abiity to move a lot of material either loose or by excavating there are several basic components a machine must possess. High engine HP, heavy machine weight, ability to handle large bucket capacitys, ride control, two speed, and high bucket breakout forces. How these are put together is another matter. But without these components, I believe it is impossible to compete at the same level as those that have these characteristics.

Bobcat250 I agree that the 250 is a better all around machine than is the 445. The 85XT that I had I was very displeased with. However, last month in Phoneix there was a guy there who had 16 of them and was happy with them. My specific needs are different than a lot of guys. I rely on skid steers as my primary dirt moving or material moving machines and we move a lot of material a year. We operate at high elevations and therefore I need a turbo and a lot of HP. The 85 although a higher horse machine does not have a turbo. There have been many improvements to the machine since the one I owned. It may now be more competetive. Honestly I don't understand CASE's reasoning for how they are specing that machine. To me it should be about 75-80 turboed HP with a lift capacity of 2600 pounds. As it stands it is too close to a 435 only heavier. I will say that the tracked 445 and the T250 compared very well with each other.

ksss
01-25-2006, 07:57 PM
A little of topic but still somewhat relevent. I have found the same thing. We run white trucks with my logo on everything. I get compliments on how big we are and that people see us everywhere. I laugh because I have 3 trucks and three pickups and seldom are they running all at the same time. We are not near as big as people think. However I believe that because the trucks standout they are noticed more and there for when people see them they remember it. It is quite a sight to pull two skid steers on one trailer and the mini excavator behind another followed by a matching dump truck. People are comforted by seeing you around, knowing that you didn't just hit town trying to out run the law. Our stuff looks good and performs good. It is an advantage to keeping things clean and color coordinating your equipment with a standout logo. It portrays a winning image to customers and employees afterall everyone whats to associate themselves with a successful organization.

Tigerotor77W
01-25-2006, 10:35 PM
*That* image of a professional contractor does wonders. :) I know I'm a lot more likely to take notice of contractor with clean (unrusted, not necessarily simply spotless) machines than one with bent rims, cracking paint, ripped seats...

UNISCAPER
01-25-2006, 10:58 PM
"I know our excavator was built in Japan by Mitsubishi,"

Caterpillar bailed Mitsubishi heavy industries out from going under in 1969 and since then has a 61% interest in that division. I have the perecntages in a stock holders report from several years ago somewhere. So, you can say your excavator is built by Mitsu, but they are owned and controlled by Caterpillar. That aquisition is the one and only reason Caterpillar is of the 9 major American companies who was allowed to operate a plant in Japan.

Tigerotor77W
01-26-2006, 12:17 AM
Out of curiosity, who are the other ones? I never knew there were only nine!

UNISCAPER
01-26-2006, 12:31 AM
Chrysler is one, I believe Harley Davidson is another. Caterpillar bumped into the same plant occupied by Mitsu heavy industries. Then of the food ginat's there are McDonalds, Portillo's beef. Dick Portillos did not do badly for starting a beef joint in a small tag trailer in a parking lot of a Villa Park Illinos shopping center.

Scag48
01-26-2006, 02:09 AM
Bill, I understand what you're saying about Mitsubishi. Without Mitsu, Cat would not be in Japan period. The Japanese have a very different way of conducting business and most folks don't understand why most American companies won't venture there, the biggest reason being that American companies are not wanted unless they earn their keep and keep their nose where it belongs in the Japanese business world.

Kaiser, I hear you on Cat's non-existant 3,000 ROC machine. They just don't produce anything that can compete with a backhoe, I mean the 248 would be close but Cat isn't producing a behomoth backhoe killer of a skid steer. If and when that day comes, watch out. They need something with 90+ HP and tons of torque, just one heavy ass machine that could plow through just about anything.

Squizzy246B
01-26-2006, 02:35 AM
*That* image of a professional contractor does wonders. :) I know I'm a lot more likely to take notice of contractor with clean (unrusted, not necessarily simply spotless) machines than one with bent rims, cracking paint, ripped seats...

You can say that again!. and what Kaiser said. Your/our own business brand is the one we really should be worried about and neat/tidy machines and clean trucks definetly create a good impression. Having the right, well maintained, equipment is a big factor when you have just talked Mr & Mrs Homeowner out of the $600.00 clean-up into a $20K+ frontyard makeover. I don't believe you can do that on a regular basis if you are standing there in greasy shirt, shorts with A*se out of them and a busted up rusty old machine sitting in a 20 year old truck.

We have a number of raggedy a*sed, busted up, rattlin truck local operators who work for $50/hour...and thats all they will ever do. I like them around...they are good for my business...how else does the customer know what is good and what is crap. They can have all the $50/hour jobs they can get.

I suppose inn relation to the original topic our own business brand is more important than the colour of the machines we drive and I'm sure that hardscapers and machine operators survive predominantly on their merits not on the brands of machine they use. (although it may help:) )

UNISCAPER
01-26-2006, 11:12 AM
2007. The launch of the 288A, an 87 HP Caterpillar/Mitsu powered machine with radial and verticle lift.

Tigerotor77W
01-26-2006, 12:24 PM
2007. The launch of the 288A, an 87 HP Caterpillar/Mitsu powered machine with radial and verticle lift.

Time will tell.

tinman
01-26-2006, 01:02 PM
Name recognition is very powerful. Maybe a little off main subject but close..... Ever notice tv commercial "jingles". Well I do and even my kids do. One came on the other day for some company that was totally irrellavent to a 5 year old, but she started singing along with the little song. Repetition is powerful. There is a radio ad for a jewelry store in Atlanta,,,Shane Co.....Boring vanilla voice of the owner is on every ad, BUT it stands out from all the other ads on the radio & it is consistant with their theme.

Tigerotor77W
03-06-2006, 06:53 PM
Why, hello, thread! Time to bring back my favorite marketing thread to show some of the good, moral, and safe practices some of our manufacturers tout.

http://skidsteer.cleandesign.com/

Let's go to this site,

http://skidsteer.cleandesign.com/content.cfm?section=cs&page=1

(BTW: you can click on "More Info" to see how the large-frame machines stack up.)

Dirty Water
03-06-2006, 08:24 PM
But who really believes manufacture "tests".

ksss
03-07-2006, 01:39 AM
That is very interesting. When testing the TK140 the sensitivity in the joy stick causing one or the other track to spin was a complaint we saw as well. Some of that is the operator being familiar with the equipment. The feel in the 140 was very similiar to the stick feel in my TB53 It did not take me long to get the hang of the 140 others really struggled with it. The 287 doesn't surprise me in the push power testing. You may run a CAT CTL for many things but I don't think anyone buys them because they have a great deal of power. The testing appeared as though the Deere starts out faster than the TK or CAT anyone else notice that? Deere is aggressive in their advertising.

Scag48
03-07-2006, 01:41 AM
I've noticed advertising trends. Deere tries to prove they are the best (even though they aren't, especially in the skid steer market), Bobcat markets versatility/new features, and Cat markets their impeccable service and long lived reputation for excellence.

Gravel Rat
03-07-2006, 02:49 AM
For skid steers everybody associates Bobcat as the name brand even thou the other brands are still called Bobcats instead of skid steer loaders.

As for the John Deere name its still associated to farmers and farm tractors I don't think that will ever go away.

Caterpillar is mostly associated with bulldozers they are really not associated to any other of their equipment maybe except for the famous 966 which is used alot here. A 966 Cat is the most commonly used loader some of them still used here date back to the 60s the 966s just go by the name "the 66".

Terex was always associated with green screaming wheel loaders as most old Terex machines were Detroit power.

Fiat Allis or (Fat Allis) was associated with track loaders with International it was mostly associated with farmers and trucks even thou old International trackloaders and bulldozers are pretty good then changed to Dresser.

Hitachi is aways been associated with the best excavators you can buy it started when the old UH Machines came to B.C. and it was good bye Caterpillar. Hitachi orange is a common color you see everywhere same with Deere Yellow.

The UH Machines pretty much took over then the EX series came out Hitachi's market grew even bigger now the Zaxis machines teamed up with Deere they rule the roost for full size excavators. Komatsu is muscling into the market and Caterpillar is slowly getting pushed out of the excavator market.

The over priced and expensive Cat parts and machines that don't last any longer than Hitachi contractors just don't put up with it anymore even gravel mines are getting tired of it.

Cat isn't associated with residental construction anymore its mostly mining but Caterpillar still makes one of the best marine and truck engine you can get.

Hitachi is one of the most reliable excavators made and proven itself digging the hard granite rock conditions.

Hitachi has to be reliable and tough I bet none of you guys have taken your machine into remote places 30 or more miles past the nearest paved road or community. The excavators gets loaded onto a barge and taken for a 6 hour journey up the inlet and will spend couple months to a year working on a site. When you have a excavator making 3 grand a day it has to be reliable and no down time.

If there is a problem that can't be fixed by the operator or the company mecanic then a specialist has to be brought in their service truck gets loaded onto a barge and taken to the site. Or the service man loads his tools and parts onto a boat and goes for a ride. By the time that service man has left his shop it would be 6 hours of driving and boat time before he even reaches the machine.

You guys poo poo on Japanese or overseas made equipment but I think its all to do with being scared that its not US made its not that good. When large resource contractors have proven Hitachi and Deere excavators are very reliable.

You guys are worried that you have to travel too far for dealer help look at how far resource contractors have to take a dealer service man. Its a 2 hour ride in a fast boat to get to some of these places you definatly make sure you got everything you need. For the boat to go back to the dock to get parts is 100 dollars in fuel if its a private water taxi serice its 100 dollars per hour for the boat.

As I said a few times before I'am really really surprised Cat even wants to deal with landscapers I guess down in the US they really work on your guys pride attitude we are made in America we are the best.

For contractors here its who gives a crap if the machine is tough reliable buy it. Soon as the overseas made machines proved themselves it will be the only machines used. The only thing the oversea's companies that haven't built yet is proven Wheel Loaders and Bulldozers.

Excavators in B.C. see some very hard abuse you definatly don't want to buy a used machine from B.C. especially a West Coast machine.

Scag48
03-07-2006, 02:59 AM
The thing about you guys having your dealers 4 and 6 hours away is that you have NO choice how far away your dealer is. We do have a choice and we don't choose to have our dealers that far away. Wouldn't you like to have a dealer within 30 minutes? Of course you would. So do we. Actually, a dealer 5 minutes away would be great, but I won't push my luck.

Gravel Rat
03-07-2006, 03:13 AM
No not really we don't need dealer support contractors do everything in house everything is done by company employees. The only time dealer support is needed is if there is a hydraulic problem that can't be solved or something to do with the electrical. The most problem is hydraulics something like a servo acting up.

If the machine is still under warrenty then the dealer mechanic may have to come out and fix it. Otherwise there is local heavyduty mechanics in the area that have 10 to 40 years experience behind them they can figure out anything.

If you need a dealer to do scheduled maintenance thats pretty sad it doesn't take much to change oils and do the servicing yourself. The operator of the machine is supposed to do that most of the time. Grab a 20 litre pail of engine oil a drain bucket and filter the oil is changed on the site.

If you have to subout your maintenance work that adds to your overhead big time.

The dealer sells a contractor a new machine once it leaves its sales lot the dealer will prolly never ever see that machine again. The last time they will see it is when its on the lowbed.

The dealer is always talking with the contractor on the phone for parts orders to be shipped.

Squizzy246B
03-07-2006, 04:54 AM
Same old BS:angry: Give it a rest with ranting crap that has nothing to do with the thread.

Squizzy246B
03-07-2006, 10:05 AM
Hey Kaiser, going wayyyy back to your initial post I have the perfect test case for you:

I live in the most isolated Capital city in the world...Singapore or Kuala Lumpur is closer than Sydney or Melbourne.

Due to the isolation Bobcat was never a legend here on the West Coast, they arrived with the rest of the skids. Mustang, Case and Toyota outsell Bobcat about 4 to 1 in recent times. Doesn't that prove your point. Of course price and other factors affect this but well.....

And GR, I like my Cat dealer 1 hour away. They overnight parts 3000 miles from Melbourne for free..Bobcat want you to pay air freight from the good ol US of A.:usflag: :confused: ;)

TerraFirma Excavating
03-07-2006, 01:22 PM
Terex was always associated with green screaming wheel loaders as most old Terex machines were Detroit power.



Yep, I remember the 72-51B is used to run. Big, LOUD, and slow, but practically unstoppable.

ksss
03-07-2006, 05:54 PM
Squizzy, actually that does prove my point. If everything was equal as far as all the OEMs starting a zero (they all started today making skid steers with their current machines) it would be interesting who would be on top.

7 IRON
03-15-2006, 05:28 PM
I've noticed advertising trends. Deere tries to prove they are the best (even though they aren't, especially in the skid steer market), Bobcat markets versatility/new features, and Cat markets their impeccable service and long lived reputation for excellence.



Scag48,Just curious ,What Do You Dislike About The Deere Skidsteers?I Drove
A Cat246B AWhile Back And Felt Like It Was A**End Heavy.Also,the Pilot
Controls Had Me Jumping Around like I Was In A Rodeo.Don't Get Me Wrong,
Cat has A Very Strong Name,Deep pockets,And Top Quality Service Support.
I'm Not Bashing Cat,Just Trying to Get Your Experience/Opinion.

Thanks.

Scag48
03-15-2006, 06:10 PM
Well, a lot of folks, like myself, haven't moved past the original 200 series skid steers that absolutely ruined Deere's reputation in the skid steer market. From an operation standpoint, I won't consider a Deere until they come up with a better control system. Also, I'm not a huge fan of their vertical lift system. The old series used to slop around alot, not sure if this has been corrected with the newer series, but lateral stability in the boom arms has been an issue in the past. I also don't have a need for a vertical lift machine that digs and grades like absolute crap. This isn't a Deere issue so much, all vertical lift machines from all brands are inferior to radial lift when it comes to digging.

Deere machines, out here, are outrageously priced. A basic 317 is around $31,000, what a joke. There is no way I'm going to run away from Cat to pay more for a Deere with half the service. And that's why we don't run Deere at the moment. If they can produce a machine that competes with Cat's standards with a lower price, then we'll look into it, but our Deere dealer isn't my favorite and I'd rather not deal with them, already tried that once with an excavator.

Squizzy246B
03-16-2006, 06:33 AM
I Drove a Cat246B AWhile Back And Felt Like It Was A**End Heavy. .

Thats a cause they are, all the better for lifting and loading high sided trucks.
They can be a pig without some weight in the bucket until you get used to them.

Also,the Pilot Controls Had Me Jumping Around like I Was In A Rodeo.Don't Get Me Wrong,
Cat has A Very Strong Name,Deep pockets,And Top Quality Service Support.
Thanks.

Don't worry, most skid users who have not run pilot controls have exactly the same experience. Young bloke working for me, and never having driven a skid in his life, jumps in mine and has it sussed in about 20 minutes....took me about 3 days and then some:dizzy: but then again...I could be a slow learner??;)

7 IRON
03-16-2006, 09:54 AM
: Well, a lot of folks, like myself, haven't moved past the original 200 series skid steers that absolutely ruined Deere's reputation in the skid steer market. From an operation standpoint, I won't consider a Deere until they come up with a better control system. Also, I'm not a huge fan of their vertical lift system. The old series used to slop around alot, not sure if this has been corrected with the newer series, but lateral stability in the boom arms has been an issue in the past. I also don't have a need for a vertical lift machine that digs and grades like absolute crap. This isn't a Deere issue so much, all vertical lift machines from all brands are inferior to radial lift when it comes to digging.

Deere machines, out here, are outrageously priced. A basic 317 is around $31,000, what a joke. There is no way I'm going to run away from Cat to pay more for a Deere with half the service. And that's why we don't run Deere at the moment. If they can produce a machine that competes with Cat's standards with a lower price, then we'll look into it, but our Deere dealer isn't my favorite and I'd rather not deal with them, already tried that once with an excavator.




Points Well Taken.Deere's Early 200 series Were A Nightmare.Should Have
Had Better Quality Control.Since The 200 Series ll And Now The 300 Series
They Are Much Better Machines.Being Produced In Dubuque Has Mad A Huge
Difference.

jd270
03-16-2006, 11:57 PM
i would go with the deere i have a 270 and it has been a very good machineit digs great i have a 9 ft dozer blade on it it will push some serious dirt my dealer has the best suport of any brands around here i had a 873 but the dealer suport sucked and i didnt like it near as much as the deere .i had a cat 246b this last summer it worked fine on a auger but i was low on power and at 800hrs it started missing under load and it went to cat twice but it still did it .it also had a hydro pump go out so it is now gone and will be replaced with a deere this spring ....try to find out which brand has the best suport in your area it means a lot

7 IRON
03-18-2006, 10:29 PM
Glad To Hear Your Happy With Your Deere Skid!I Think They are A Great Design,But Had Some Issues In The Beginning That Soured Alot Of Customers:cry: Within The Last 4 Years +/- They Really Have Improved
The Quality.Not To Say They Never Break Down,Because That's Not Reality
With Any Brand.

JDSKIDSTEER
03-20-2006, 02:38 PM
That is very interesting. When testing the TK140 the sensitivity in the joy stick causing one or the other track to spin was a complaint we saw as well. Some of that is the operator being familiar with the equipment. The feel in the 140 was very similiar to the stick feel in my TB53 It did not take me long to get the hang of the 140 others really struggled with it. The 287 doesn't surprise me in the push power testing. You may run a CAT CTL for many things but I don't think anyone buys them because they have a great deal of power. The testing appeared as though the Deere starts out faster than the TK or CAT anyone else notice that? Deere is aggressive in their advertising.

I sell Deere. I first show the video on my lap top. I tell them it is a Deere Video so they need to be skeptical. Then I leave my machine and let them see for themselves. The video so far has lived up to the on site demo's and I have been kicking butt. I can not get new track units in fast enough. Have waiting list. I can honestly say we have the most stable and strongest machine on the market and I will put it side by side anyones machine. No machine on the market is perfect, but so far these have been great. I am fortunate enough to work for a dealership that takes care of their customers which makes a big difference.

thepawnshop
03-20-2006, 07:28 PM
Welcome on board, JDSKIDSTEER. I am the resident Deere "fanboy" here in the Heavy Equipment section. I love my 322, though she did breakdown on me today. They had a service truck to me within two hours as well as a loaner machine. I can not say enough good things about my machines, but honestly, for me at least, it all comes down to dealer support. Our Dealer here (James River Equipment) is so good that if they were selling complete junk, I think I would be buying from them, just because of the way they support their equipment and customers. If I have a problem, it is fixed FAST. They treat me as well as the customer that spends millions a year, or at least it feels that way (of course I have purchase 4 machines in two years, though).

I like the fact that you are so confident in your machines abilities, but you may start yet another "Deere is better that Cat is better than Case is better than Yanmar, etc" debate.

Once again, welcome aboard and enjoy the ride!

JDSKIDSTEER
03-20-2006, 08:38 PM
Well, a lot of folks, like myself, haven't moved past the original 200 series skid steers that absolutely ruined Deere's reputation in the skid steer market. From an operation standpoint, I won't consider a Deere until they come up with a better control system. Also, I'm not a huge fan of their vertical lift system. The old series used to slop around alot, not sure if this has been corrected with the newer series, but lateral stability in the boom arms has been an issue in the past. I also don't have a need for a vertical lift machine that digs and grades like absolute crap. This isn't a Deere issue so much, all vertical lift machines from all brands are inferior to radial lift when it comes to digging.

Deere machines, out here, are outrageously priced. A basic 317 is around $31,000, what a joke. There is no way I'm going to run away from Cat to pay more for a Deere with half the service. And that's why we don't run Deere at the moment. If they can produce a machine that competes with Cat's standards with a lower price, then we'll look into it, but our Deere dealer isn't my favorite and I'd rather not deal with them, already tried that once with an excavator.

The basic 317 runs $23,500.00

JDSKIDSTEER
03-20-2006, 08:50 PM
You hit the nail on the head Pawnshop. It is all about dealer support. We survived the early 200 series nightmares by keeping our customers up and running.We never lost a customer in our area. I suggest to anyone in the market to buy from the dealer that can back up their product no matter which brand. Unfortunatly there are some bad dealers of all brands scattered across the country.

Tigerotor77W
03-23-2006, 12:36 PM
Following that thing with dealer support... I was at the Bobcat rodeo yesterday; I saw a sign that said

"Take care of your customers, or someone else will."

Indeed!

Squizzy246B
03-23-2006, 06:33 PM
Following that thing with dealer support... I was at the Bobcat rodeo yesterday; I saw a sign that said

"Take care of your customers, or someone else will."

Indeed!

I thought that was about your woman??;)

Tigerotor77W
03-23-2006, 06:42 PM
I thought that was about your woman??;)

:laugh: should've seen that one coming... though with some of the college girls I know, losing one would yield a significant decrease in operational overhead.

ksss
04-15-2006, 02:30 AM
I got a call today from Deere and Company. Wanting to know if I would be interested in demoing some Deere equipment. I mentioned that I had just ordered a CASE. However I maybe be trading the next machine in a year. So he said that he would call me in six months. If he calls I am going to try and get a 332 to run against my 95XT. Should provide enough information for an interesting thread anyway.

thepawnshop
04-16-2006, 08:17 PM
If he calls I am going to try and get a 332 to run against my 95XT. Should provide enough information for an interesting thread anyway.

There is a comparison that I am looking forward to!

Tigerotor77W
04-16-2006, 10:32 PM
There is a comparison that I am looking forward to!

Me, too! Kaiser, can you post a somewhat-thorough blurb about how the S300 stacks up against the 95XT? (As in, if you demo the 332, can you demo the S300, also?)

ksss
04-17-2006, 02:03 AM
Getting a bobcat to run is no problem. I'll try and run them at the same time and see what happens.