View Full Version : starting out....

11-21-2002, 11:27 PM
Hi guys, I'm a 17 year old from Washington who works at a Nursery operating a 580b case backhoe. My boss owns another 580B extendahoe with a thumb and a fiat-allis wheel loader. I was just curious to know which is better to do when starting your own company. Buying smaller machines first or to get a big machine like a backhoe, trailer and dump truck (obviously)? It almost seems that some routes that people take is just as expensive in buying a backhoe, trailer etc. so I'd just like some input on what you have done and what you bought to start out with. Thanks.

Blake Iverson

11-22-2002, 02:31 AM
The dump truck (5yd + ) and a good trailer is a definite no matter which way you go.

Without talking dollars, and going with most work in landscape construction/maintenance (not full blown excavation), here's my opinion:

I think for the smaller scale excavating and grading we do in landscaping, youre better off with the smaller machines. There are mini excavators that can be much more productive with less collateral damage then a backhoe on smaller scale jobs. Same with skid steers.

There's definetly a place for a backhoe, but for starting out, I would imagine a used skid steer and mini-x would be the way to go. You can be a little more flexible with the jobs you take on.

Just my opinion though......I've had nothing but great experiences with the smaller equipment and our backhoe's stay parked most of the time and are barely used anymore (only as a back-up)

You need to determine what type of work you will be concentrating on and that will make up a big part of the decision for you.

Good Luck!

11-22-2002, 10:15 AM
Guido's right I would start out with the smaller machines bobcat min excavator.There i a nich market for them you can get in places that the bigger machines can't get to plus you could get away with a smaller dump or even start with a pick up and trailer at least to start out with untill you get going.

Gravel Rat
11-22-2002, 01:32 PM
Rubber tired hoes are sort of a thing of the past a good mini excavator can do small excavations faster and less damage to the property your working on. I don't think you will be getting into heavy excavation business because once you buy a 590 Case you will have to buy a tandem axle dump truck then you will end up buying a full sized excavator like a 150 Hitatchi and a tag trailer to pull behind the truck.

Where rubber tired hoes shine is when you are doing water mains or city work where you gotta travel with ease and can't use a steel tracked machine on pavement. A rubber tired hoe is better for loading trucks when using it like a wheel loader in larger open areas.

To sum up the rambling a RTBH is too large todo some jobs and its too small todo others with a Mini excavator you are in a niche market you can do quite a bit of work with a mini and put it in combination with a skid steer you can move alot of material out of a confined space.

Last thing you should look at investing atleast 60,000 dollars to get started buying a excavator isn't cheap and you need a truck and trailer to move it. You don't want tobe buying a old excavator with lots of hours on it you will loose too much down time in repairs.

11-22-2002, 08:03 PM
Thanks for the info you guys. I only ask that just because I saw an article on that in the excavation and grading magazine. I want to actually do the big stuff, like land clearings, foundation excavatons, rockeries and all the other big stuff. I wouldn't mind starting out with the small guys just because like it was mentioned, I don't have to deal with buying the huge expensive trucks etc. but a 10 yrd. truck could pull a 580C backhoe right? I'm not too interested in the little jobs really, but I understand that that might be the way to go for a while until I have enough money to buy larger equipment. 580C's aren't too terribly expensive (although I'm not nuts enough to buy a trackhoe like a 2700 linkbelt). The thing is though, that if I'm going to buy a min x and a skidsteer, isn't that a ton of money right there? I know that a 580C is a lot of money, better than a 580L, but it just seems that buying two little guys is almost as expensive. I don't know, I have plenty of time to figure out what I want to do and how I want to do it. I just want to hear some ideas, and what you all have seen. Thanks again for the help.

Blake Iverson

11-22-2002, 10:17 PM
If your gonna sink money into a 580 try to get at least a 4x4 with the e-hoe.I started out with a 580C now i upgrades to a 580L.A 24K LB gvw truck will pull a 580 with no problem.

11-23-2002, 01:14 AM
That's what I would do, is get an extendahoe. Then I'd put a thumb on it. My boss has an extendahoe with a thumb. It's very nice to use, sometimes I've had to use my own which is a standard hoe and I wished I had his backhoe. But it's also nice to use my backhoe when I'm on uneven ground and in very muddy conditions.

Blake Iverson