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View Full Version : which excavator is best?


getthenet
02-05-2008, 05:32 PM
bobcat, cat, volvo, takeuchi, kamatsu, case, new holland, kubota, or other. I have test drove bobcat 430. Also looked at cat 303.5. I want zero house swing and under 10000 lbs. If you can recommend one or the other matching these machines let me know. thanks

kreft
02-05-2008, 05:55 PM
I heard from here that cat and takeuchi are the best, and also people said that bobcat has alot of problems. I think Cat is the best and new holland is a close second!

kreft
02-05-2008, 05:55 PM
what size are you looking to get?

mrsops
02-05-2008, 06:07 PM
kfeft have you ever been in a excavator?

mrsops
02-05-2008, 06:08 PM
bobcat, cat, volvo, takeuchi, kamatsu, case, new holland, kubota, or other. I have test drove bobcat 430. Also looked at cat 303.5. I want zero house swing and under 10000 lbs. If you can recommend one or the other matching these machines let me know. thanks

i been doing the same testing cat and bobcat i heard that bobcats 435 zhs is stronger then cats 303. i tested the 305 has alot of power

ma5tr
02-05-2008, 06:14 PM
I am Biased towards cat. I've had luck with them. Great customer service. AND ITS A CAT!!!!! Have also tried deere, gehl. volvo (nice machine!), and takeuchi. Cat more than likely will be the most $$, but in my opinion money well $$.

For example whe I purchased my skidsteer...looked at gehl which really impressed me, however they had no service trucks, so any service that needed to be done to the machine had to be brought in. That was one reason that detered me from gehl.

BIGBEN2004
02-05-2008, 06:20 PM
It is going to range from what size your looking at to which one is the best. I like Cat and Takeuchi but if I were to go with a Mini around the 7,000 to 8,000 pound class I would like the Deere 35D ZTS. That is one of my most favorite mini to run. A guy I sub work with owns a brand new one and I love to run that thing. It is the perfect size mini in my opinion to work in the tight areas that we do all our work in. It is fast, powerful, smooth controls, and has good reach for its size.

On a side note, I know the new Cat minis have a angle blade left or right on them now. I don't know if any other brands have that now yet but if you are digging ditches allot and backfill them with the same machine then that would be a time saver and a half.

getthenet
02-05-2008, 06:30 PM
I looked at my records for our bobcat store in 06 we spent over $15000 alone on an excavator. We always rent a 331 with breaker or buckets. I have not seen what we paid in rent for 07 yet but I know it was quite a bit more than 06. I can buy a machine for around $10000 a year and it will be mine in 4 yrs. I tested a bobcat 430 and loved it. It had a 3ft bucket and a 2 ft bucket. There is no way you could dig mud with a 3 ft. bucket in the 430. it will lift and move it fine but gets tipsy spinning around with 3 ft. bucket. The 430 also had the fast track which I could not stand at first. After getting used to it though, I really liked it. As ma5tr said, volvo is a nice machine. I have heard alot of people say this. I talked to a volvo rep today and he is going to try to let me demo one. Bobcat and cat are both here in my town so they are probably going to be my choice. Another choice is cab or no cab. I think I would rather it be open because of dirty windows and not being able to hear others talking back to me. (sometimes could be a good thing.) thanks for input

mrsops
02-05-2008, 06:32 PM
you wont be saying that when its raining on you or the dust is flying all over your face lol you can always open the windows like i do when someone wants to talk to me lol

Fordsuvparts
02-05-2008, 06:37 PM
Every bobcat Mini I have ever ran ( I own a 2006 430 ZHS) has been weak as a kitten when it comes to power, yes it can curl a lot of weight but they want to flip over way to easy, and the teeth that bobcat uses are complete junk. The fast track is the only thing we like about it. Kubota put them to shame all across the board, we ran our machine versus a brand new Kubota KX91-3S demo digging utilities in fairly rocky ground with a 24" toothed bucket and the kubota was pulling away from the start( I was running the New Machine) My Brother who is our main operator was running the bobcat. It seems like they just have fallen behind everyone in the industry in quality and power.

mrsops
02-05-2008, 06:39 PM
why would you buy a machine if it is weak? didnt you demo before you buy?

getthenet
02-05-2008, 06:52 PM
The 430 zhs was what I demoed. It seemed to have plenty of power to me. But it seemed really tipsy with the 3' bucket. I really liked it though. Something funny, the one I demoed messed up. The levers for forward and reverse got out of whack. He said they replaced a part on it and it was fine.

Fordsuvparts
02-05-2008, 06:53 PM
Mrsop You think we didn't demo it, it had valving issues form the start, and it never got any better. My brother just wanted to get rid of the 303.5 that had 1700 hours and bobcat made him a great deal on the machines as a combo. He made the decision as the primary operator, and he has kicked him self ever since. Why do you continually try and talk other member in to buying an underpowered machine??? Bobcat does make a nice skid loader, but even they admit that there mini's need work to be brought up to par with the rest of the industry. I am watching several threads were it looks like you work for bobcat trying to pushing there machines, on poor unsuspecting Lawnsite Members.

I saw that us ask another guy if he had ever been in an excavator, My question have you ever ran the machine other than doing some light weight digging or moving some rocks. Bobcat machines don't have the power they need to do any real hard work efficiently.

mrsops
02-05-2008, 06:56 PM
i guess you havent seen my last thread lol i am demoing both a cat 305 and a bobcat 337. check my last thread and you tell me if i think 337 is better then the 305 i didnt think so. i thought the 305 was a stronger machine but then again you think i work for bobcat lol

Fordsuvparts
02-05-2008, 07:00 PM
I am just messing with you, I saw the thread, I believe that our old 303.5 with a lot of rental hours still had more power than the bobcat does. I just saw the last thing you wrote about the cat having more power.

bobcat_ron
02-05-2008, 07:17 PM
I never like the Bobcat ZHS series, that's the first thing that was wrong with them was their lack of stability, I tried a 435 with a loaded 36" bucket and swung it over the side and even before it could get to 80% of it's max. reach, it tipped, Volvo was the same, Hitachi and Cat's were the only ones to get to 100% reach and hold it there, they would both tip if you forced it to, but they always popped back down. The Hitachi had a 36" high capacity bucket and the Cat 305 had a 42" bucket.

Bobcat's excavators are also horrible on fuel, the 425 ZHS has a 4 cylinder engine in them when everyone else uses a 3 cylinders and they still don't have anymore hydraulic power in the 3 ton categories with the other names.

Dirt Digger2
02-05-2008, 07:17 PM
My question have you ever ran the machine other than doing some light weight digging or moving some rocks.

haha :laugh:

mrsops
02-05-2008, 07:42 PM
haha :laugh:

if i was moving around little rocks i would probably buy a kubota there only good for that type of work :)

getthenet
02-05-2008, 07:47 PM
msrops, what all epuipment do you run including rentals?

mrsops
02-05-2008, 07:48 PM
msrops, what all epuipment do you run including rentals?

i didnt understand a word you typed???

mrsops
02-05-2008, 07:50 PM
I never like the Bobcat ZHS series, that's the first thing that was wrong with them was their lack of stability, I tried a 435 with a loaded 36" bucket and swung it over the side and even before it could get to 80% of it's max. reach, it tipped, Volvo was the same, Hitachi and Cat's were the only ones to get to 100% reach and hold it there, they would both tip if you forced it to, but they always popped back down. The Hitachi had a 36" high capacity bucket and the Cat 305 had a 42" bucket.

Bobcat's excavators are also horrible on fuel, the 425 ZHS has a 4 cylinder engine in them when everyone else uses a 3 cylinders and they still don't have anymore hydraulic power in the 3 ton categories with the other names.

ron did you like the 305 and that machine can handle a 42'' bucket i thought 36 was the biggest

BIGBEN2004
02-05-2008, 07:54 PM
i didnt understand a word you typed???

I think he meant what equipment do you run in your operations, including all the equipment that you own and all the equipment you have to rent in a years period in order to get all your jobs completed?

mrsops
02-05-2008, 07:55 PM
thanks ben lol i run all bobcats, and i dont rent anything i dont need to i have every machine for every job application

BIGBEN2004
02-05-2008, 07:59 PM
That is how I would like to be in a couple of years. I only own (well the bank owns it as of now until I finish with the payments) a Takeuchi TL130. Eventually I want to add a mini excavator but for now I will have to rent or rent a friends to get other jobs done. I also want to add a single or tandem axle dump truck in their also but the housing market and weather will have to cooperate first.

mrsops
02-05-2008, 08:00 PM
is there alot of work down there in maryland

BIGBEN2004
02-05-2008, 08:11 PM
Not as much as it was about 3 years ago. That was the about the end of the 10 year boom that was going crazy. Now all the work is down around Bethesda,Gaithersburg, and the Potomac area. Basically anything near Washington DC. This winter is a little hard since it has been so wet for so long. All the jobs are very tight and with mud or frozen ground you are just wasting time and money trying to do anything and the builders know that so they are waiting for spring and summer to try to finish up yards. It is going to be hard for the next couple of months but I am hoping things will get better.

minimax
02-05-2008, 08:13 PM
I really like the deere 35D,a very fast machine and well footed.Here are a few pic's, the undercarriage is very easy to clean:):)
99053

99054
minimax

mrsops
02-05-2008, 08:14 PM
wow same thing here its amazing. no snow all rain everything is drenched . suppose to be 62 here tommorow and rain so you know its just delaying everything. the only thing i got going on is my t190 and 334 or 341 have been working on jobs

getthenet
02-05-2008, 08:17 PM
What did you compare the deere to? It looks like a nice setup. We have a deere dealer here in Jackson so that might be something to look at. Anyone know how this compares to bobcat and cat?

BIGBEN2004
02-05-2008, 08:23 PM
Is it possible to have a Hydraulic thumb and a swivel for the bucket and be able to run both at the same time. I guess I am asking can you get two sets of aux. hydraulic lines ran out the boom? I like the thumb but if I ever buy a mini I want a swivel on it to be able to cut in swells between houses smoothly but I also want a Hydraulic thumb on their for quick clean up of trash, rocks, and brush. Also with a hydraulic thumb will it go all the way up against the boom when fully retracted?

BIGBEN2004
02-05-2008, 08:28 PM
wow same thing here its amazing. no snow all rain everything is drenched . suppose to be 62 here tommorow and rain so you know its just delaying everything. the only thing i got going on is my t190 and 334 or 341 have been working on jobs

Well at least you got jobs. Since I just went out on my own I am still building a customer basis. It will come in time. I have some good connections and a very good history of quality work from past employers I used to work for. The weather is the same for here tomorrow warm and wet. Not good for dirt work.

BIGBEN2004
02-05-2008, 08:29 PM
I really like the deere 35D,a very fast machine and well footed.Here are a few pic's, the undercarriage is very easy to clean:):)
99053

99054
minimax

I see you have different tracks then I am used to seeing. How do they work and do you like them?

Dirt Digger2
02-05-2008, 08:55 PM
if i was moving around little rocks i would probably buy a kubota there only good for that type of work :)

that little thing we got?...thats only used for digging up septic lids and driving through door ways...we save the dirt work for our real equipment

mrsops
02-05-2008, 08:57 PM
i was being sarcastic i would never buy a kubota. i had one it was crap

bobcat_ron
02-05-2008, 09:16 PM
ron did you like the 305 and that machine can handle a 42'' bucket i thought 36 was the biggest

What makes us West Coaster's different from the East Coast people is the buckets we use on the excavators, Cat's 305's can handle a 42", the 304 a 36" and the 303 can handle a 30" bucket. I always laugh and scoff people that have a dinky toothed bucket and use it for everything, they have no idea how much more material they can move with a larger bucket and not sacrifice power and lifting abilities.

I liked the 305, that was the first one they had out and I'm sure the new ones are even better, my test was grab a bucket of wet mountain gravel, swing over the side of the tracks and put the bucket 2 feet off the ground and have my Dad stand on the bucket, his 200 lbs of body weight made it tip down, but as soon as he got off, it was on the tracks again, Bobcat ZHS and the bigger 442 (with a 44" bucket) tipped even before I could get the stick and boom to 85% of reach, that was piss poor. :nono:

When we were looking for a 3 ton machine with an U/C width of 60", Hitachi was the only one that could pass the test with a 30" bucket, Cat didn't have the newer 303 out yet (2 months later they did) the Bobcat didn't come out for another 6 months and the Volvo ECR38 failed miserably, and it was a heavier machine with 3" less U/C width, all because of the side mounted engine.
Then 2 months later we both sat in a Komatsu PC27, that's when Dad started swearing and I wanted to kick his ass for buying a machine with a small cab compared to the bigger cab that the Komatsu has.

mrsops
02-05-2008, 09:26 PM
how did you like that 442? i had a few guys checking out the 305 today they were saying the same thing it doesnt tip as much as the bobcat

bobcat_ron
02-05-2008, 09:28 PM
I really liked the cab, very European, but it sucked on power and boom/stick pulling power, Bobcat should have never, ever brought a machine that large into their name.

mrsops
02-05-2008, 09:29 PM
from what im hearing there going bigger then the 442 and bigger then 330

bobcat_ron
02-05-2008, 09:33 PM
As far as I know, they (Bobcat) will never be able to compete in the market for the 8 ton class excavators, there aren't any of them here, it's either 12,000 or 20,000 pounders here and the only good ones that the general public wants are the Cat 307/308, Komatsu PC-75 and the Hitachi 75/80, even the Link Belt "Spin Aces" are not the greatest.

minimax
02-05-2008, 09:58 PM
getthenet,I compared the bobcat 430,case 36B(case,new holland and kobelco are the same,yammar 35,kubota u35,cat303 and 303.5cr, and komatsu 35.I like the deere,komatsu,cat.The bobcat was way jerky,the yammar did not have the aux. hydraulic flow and I found the machine weak from the hydraulic coupler,the Case and kubota did not have aux. hydraulic flow,I really liked the komatsu but the dealer is over 3 hours away,and the cat was 10k more than deere.
BIGBEN2004,yes you can have a thumb and swivel at the same time,you can unplug the thumb hoses and plug in the swivel hoses or have your dealer add a 2nd aux. circuit.The tracks are steel with bolt on rubber pads,steel tracks don't flex like rubber tracks and if you ruin a pad you just replace it vs. the whole track if they are rubber,pads are about $15 each.The thumb store against the stick and only sticks out the depth of the tines.

minimax

mrsops
02-05-2008, 10:24 PM
getthenet,I compared the bobcat 430,case 36B(case,new holland and kobelco are the same,yammar 35,kubota u35,cat303 and 303.5cr, and komatsu 35.I like the deere,komatsu,cat.The bobcat was way jerky,the yammar did not have the aux. hydraulic flow and I found the machine weak from the hydraulic coupler,the Case and kubota did not have aux. hydraulic flow,I really liked the komatsu but the dealer is over 3 hours away,and the cat was 10k more than deere.
BIGBEN2004,yes you can have a thumb and swivel at the same time,you can unplug the thumb hoses and plug in the swivel hoses or have your dealer add a 2nd aux. circuit.The tracks are steel with bolt on rubber pads,steel tracks don't flex like rubber tracks and if you ruin a pad you just replace it vs. the whole track if they are rubber,pads are about $15 each.The thumb store against the stick and only sticks out the depth of the tines.

minimax

looks like you may be going with a deere. why the hell is cat so much more then the rest

getthenet
02-05-2008, 10:26 PM
This is off topic for my own thread but we just had a tornado here in Jackson Tn. Hit a college and knocked down a dorm and alot of buildings around it. They said cars are everywhere like a junk yard and alot of medical problems. Just happened about 1 hr. ago.

mrsops
02-05-2008, 10:28 PM
what is this world coming to

BIGBEN2004
02-05-2008, 10:30 PM
Thats just crazy. It is not to often to hear of a Tornado in Feb.

getthenet
02-05-2008, 11:29 PM
tornado warnings everywhere. big trucks turned over. Lots of buildings demolished and another line fixing to hit at 70 mph in about 30 minutes. We have a tornado shelter here though.

minimax
02-06-2008, 01:06 AM
mrsopslooks like you may be going with a deere. why the hell is cat so much more then the rest I went with a deere,is my 2nd deere mini and they are great mini-x's.The cat dealer up here sucks big time,if you are not buying a 200k or more machine they dont even want to talk to you.I have no idea why cat is so much than the rest of the OEM's

minimax

Scag48
02-06-2008, 01:19 AM
The cat dealer up here sucks big time,if you are not buying a 200k or more machine they dont even want to talk to you
minimax

For real, the Mt. Vernon NC branch blows and they deserve to get their ass kicked. We were working at Cascade one day this summer and the NC guy showed up to talk to the boss about why he went with Yanmar. Basically told the guy straight up that they blew him off, which was true, and that he just didn't feel like they cared about his business whatsoever. That sales guy left like a dog with it's tail between it's legs. Too bad though, the Cat dealers in Eastern WA are awesome. I've had the opposite experience with Deere dealer in Wenatchee, they blew me off 3 different times. Just figured they didn't want our business, didn't waste any more time with them. Pape in Wenatchee is getting stomped on by NC Machinery, 5 to 1, Cat rules the eastside of the state by a large margin.

coopers
02-06-2008, 05:09 AM
For real, the Mt. Vernon NC branch blows and they deserve to get their ass kicked. We were working at Cascade one day this summer and the NC guy showed up to talk to the boss about why he went with Yanmar. Basically told the guy straight up that they blew him off, which was true, and that he just didn't feel like they cared about his business whatsoever. That sales guy left like a dog with it's tail between it's legs. Too bad though, the Cat dealers in Eastern WA are awesome. I've had the opposite experience with Deere dealer in Wenatchee, they blew me off 3 different times. Just figured they didn't want our business, didn't waste any more time with them. Pape in Wenatchee is getting stomped on by NC Machinery, 5 to 1, Cat rules the eastside of the state by a large margin.

That's too bad that there's such differences between stores. I'm really surprised that NC Mt. Vernon was like that, they can't afford to be lazy with so much competition in that county and in Whatcom. Pape in Mt. Vernon has a few people that deserve to be smacked but other than that they're good. We never had problems, but I did have a ruthless employer too.

Minimax- You said the Kubota didn't have Aux. hydraulics? Was it not standard or what. I've seen them with Aux. hydraulics, that's interesting. For your Komatsu adventures, did you go to Farmer's Equipment off the hwy there in Burlington? How do you like the cab of the Deere? My boss has a 35d with open ROPS and I hate it so much, I'm 6'2" and it's just too cramped for me.

Blake
WA

Scag48
02-06-2008, 12:21 PM
Blake, you're totally right about NC in Mt. Vernon, there's a LOT of competition up there and they just blew my buddy off when he wanted a quote, not sure if he asked for a demo or not. I don't blame him for not bothering with them after that, there's Deere, Bobcat, Yanmar, and Kubota dealers pretty close in the Mt. Vernon area as you well know. To be honest, if a Cat dealer gave me that kind of hustle when I was shopping, I'd go elsewhere too, even though I'm a die hard Cat fan. When you can't get dealer support, the machine is worthless to me. Everyone wants to believe that new equipment doesn't ever need service and we all hope that's the case, but there are other things I need from my dealer.

I think minimax meant the Kubotas didn't have enough auxiliary flow for his needs, he's running a flail head on that mini. That's a tough department for minis, getting the right flow you need is challenging.

minimax
02-06-2008, 12:43 PM
Yes Scag was right about what I ment in thet the Kubota,case,new holland,kobelco and yannar don't have enough auxiliary flow to run a brush cutter very well but they all have auxiliary hyd. Last I knew Farmer's Equipment was just New Holland,IH and Kobelco dealer:confused::confused:

minimax

minimax
02-06-2008, 12:50 PM
About the CAT dealer in Mt. Vernon there is amost no buddy on the Island that buys from them,I tryed 3 times to get them to give me a Quote:confused:,and never did get one.The one guy I know that buys from Cat has to go to the kent stote and use his mothers address to buy from the kent store because Mt. Vernon blows him off.

minimax

jamo1911
02-06-2008, 01:06 PM
I have a Kubota KX 121-3 and I am very happy with it. If I could ask for more it would be more power in the crawler tracks. It is fine until you are in some goofy positions. I have rented other machines such as an IHI, takeuchi etc. I have never tried a Cat or Bobcat or Deere. I chose the Kubota based on my previous experience with a Kubota TLB. Whenever I had a problem they were right there to service it. I did not demo the machine first, I called my dealer on the phone on Saturday and went and signed the papers on Monday - Machine was delivered on Tuesday. Good luck with whatever machine you choose.
James

coopers
02-06-2008, 04:25 PM
minimax, I think you're right. I used to work for Birch Equipment and we would dabble with a Komatsu every now and then and I thought it came from Farmers but maybe it didn't. I am drawing a blank where it came from or where a Komatsu dealer is up there.

coopers
02-06-2008, 04:31 PM
If I could ask for more it would be more power in the crawler tracks. It is fine until you are in some goofy positions.

I agree, it's a little annoying at times the lack of power, but luckily it's not the end of the world.

bobcatexc
02-06-2008, 06:13 PM
I agree Minimax John Deere's 35 mini is my favorite mini out there to run. Use to work for a guy that had a 35C, though you were really something with that. Now the 35D are out and we rent that from time to time, that thing is fast now and smooth with plenty of power. You can have a 36 smooth mouth bucket full and it won't tip one bit.

mrsops
02-06-2008, 06:14 PM
who knows what the best is anymore

bobcat_ron
02-06-2008, 06:52 PM
who knows what the best is anymore

One of the owners of CONECO (Komatsu dealer here) told us the only good machines out there are Cat (still the top) Deere'tachi, Komatsu and Volvo following up last.

mrsops
02-06-2008, 07:07 PM
One of the owners of CONECO (Komatsu dealer here) told us the only good machines out there are Cat (still the top) Deere'tachi, Komatsu and Volvo following up last.

for excavators yeah. but for skids we all know what the best is lol:)

Construct'O
02-06-2008, 07:08 PM
Ron ! I see that Bobcat doesn't get mention,where do they fit end:rolleyes:?????:usflag:

mrsops
02-06-2008, 07:10 PM
Ron ! I see that Bobcat doesn't get mention,where do they fit end:rolleyes:?????:usflag:

that dealer prob had bobcat in there ron prob just didnt want to type there name lol

kreft
02-06-2008, 07:38 PM
kfeft have you ever been in a excavator?

yes, ive been in a kubota on one of my dads jobs.

mrsops
02-06-2008, 07:39 PM
kreft i posted some more truck pics in the picture forum check them out

getthenet
02-06-2008, 07:44 PM
I see alot of people like the deere. I have steered away from them because of deeres I've owned in the past but it sounds like I need to check them out. When it comes down to it, it matters about who is going to service them here in Jackson. Its between bobcay 430, cat and deere right now. thanks for all the inputs.

BIGBEN2004
02-06-2008, 07:59 PM
I personally like the Hitachi track hoes and since they build them for Deere and you can get the good service from Deere it would be a seller for me. If I was in the market to buy a Mini now I would check out Cat and Deere but would be leaning toward Deere at the start. Until I had both side by side to compare I couldn't tell you which one I would buy.

bobcat_ron
02-06-2008, 09:25 PM
Ron ! I see that Bobcat doesn't get mention,where do they fit end:rolleyes:?????:usflag:


He was just talking about the excavators from the 8-200 ton class. No one will comment on the compact equipment, but Cat is still leading the pack, I just saw 2 new 3-oh something's on jobsites while driving around doing errands and 3 new Cat skidsteers heading out of town on a trailer for a landscape company.

When I drove past the Bobcat dealer, their yard looked the same as it did 2 weeks ago, not much going on there.

bobcatexc
02-07-2008, 08:07 PM
BIGBEN2004: I personally like the Hitachi track hoes

I agree ben, I've ran the the newer Hitachi 35 zaxis also, awesome machine, since there both the same (Hitachi/JD). I would go with either one, which ever one was closer and good service, Hitachi is normally is a little cheaper.

getthenet
02-13-2008, 12:00 AM
Anyone own a bobcat 435? Its only downside I see is 2000 lbs more than 430. I need some info.

jrdean62
02-13-2008, 05:41 PM
I would take a good look at Yanmar. They make a great machine that from my understanding has very little to no downtime. I also know that they now offer 3 year 3000 hour warrenty on their machines.