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  #1  
Old 02-15-2011, 04:55 PM
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newjerseylandscaping newjerseylandscaping is offline
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Compact tractor vs. skid steer?

Ive been talking to a few guys about the future of my buisness and one brought up a good point. i would be doing snow removal, and landscaping, including hardscaping as well. my question is, whats better for our industry considering the above, a compact tractor withloader or a skid steer?
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Old 02-15-2011, 05:08 PM
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aarons lawn aarons lawn is offline
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i say a tractor for a first machine in that area but get one that will lift a pallet of brick2500lbs
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Old 02-15-2011, 05:28 PM
hackitdown hackitdown is offline
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Tough call. A skidsteer is faster as a loader. A tractor is lighter, cheaper and you can get loads of attachments.
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Old 02-15-2011, 05:36 PM
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I agree with hackitdown, this is a tough call.

I have thought about the same issue and I think in the end it depends on what you are going to do more of.

With a skid steer, you can get grapple attachment for debris handling which is helpful for landscaping clean out etc. Also with a skid steer, you have more liklihood of damaging the turf (from what I have seen anyway). Skid steers are heavier than compact tractors but they are also faster and more compact.

With a tractor, you can get the loader bucket which is also helpful but not grapple. You may have to improvise on how to load debris, if you do a lot of that. The tractor is lighter and less expensive.

My opinion one is 6 and the other half a dozen. It comes down to what you do more of and what you want/expect from your investment.
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:14 PM
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I bought a compact tractor (not subcompact) with front loader and backhoe. The backhoe has a thumb too. And in the years since, I now own a pto generator, york rake, box blade, brush hog, post hole auger(great for planting bushes), and a pto finish mower.
I ordered it with r-4 industrial tires, they're easy on the turf as long as its not really wet or if your moving a heavy load and turning real tight in 4wd.
It's been a great addition and I can't think about not having it around.

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I've operated a bobcat before and like them too, however the tractor seemed to make more sense to me at the time when you consider the host of Cat 1 attachments that are around I think I made the right choice for my situation.

Only thing I would have changed is to buy the next larger machine, cause there never big enough.
An early pic before adding the thumb.
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:25 PM
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newjerseylandscaping newjerseylandscaping is offline
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Thats the size i was considering in this convoration, can you fit trough a double fence with that bad boy?
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:27 PM
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No problem at all, 5 foot wide bucket. So it fits most anywhere.
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenchoppers View Post
I agree with hackitdown, this is a tough call.

I have thought about the same issue and I think in the end it depends on what you are going to do more of.

With a skid steer, you can get grapple attachment for debris handling which is helpful for landscaping clean out etc. Also with a skid steer, you have more liklihood of damaging the turf (from what I have seen anyway). Skid steers are heavier than compact tractors but they are also faster and more compact.

With a tractor, you can get the loader bucket which is also helpful but not grapple. You may have to improvise on how to load debris, if you do a lot of that. The tractor is lighter and less expensive.

My opinion one is 6 and the other half a dozen. It comes down to what you do more of and what you want/expect from your investment.
I have a DX 45 case and I put hydraulic remotes on the front of the loader ( I t'd off one of the rear remotes and ran it to the front). I can run a grapple bucket, post hole digger, snow blade with hydraulic tilt ect.
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:38 PM
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newjerseylandscaping newjerseylandscaping is offline
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Can you load a mason dump with that loader and also a pickup with a salter?
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:57 PM
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mowerbrad mowerbrad is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newjerseylandscaping View Post
Ive been talking to a few guys about the future of my buisness and one brought up a good point. i would be doing snow removal, and landscaping, including hardscaping as well. my question is, whats better for our industry considering the above, a compact tractor withloader or a skid steer?
THanks
Not trying to bash you but aren't you like 16 and just starting your company this spring? I think you probably shouldn't be looking at buying tractors or skid steers anytime soon and more focusing on succeeding as a new business and actually building up a business. I highly doubt that you can afford a $50k skid steer or even a $15k used skid steer. Like I said, I'm not trying to bash you, but I think you're putting the cart before the horse here.

Now on to the actual topic...

There is no one piece of equipment, skid steer or compact tractor, that is better for our industry. This decision is more based upon a company's needs and what type of work they do. You are comparing apples to oranges really, like comparing a Ford Ranger to a Ford F250. It all depends on what your intended use is.

Compact tractors are light and fairly manuverable. If you are going to be using the machine on established lawns, the compact tractors are going to create the least amount of turf damage and you don't have to worry as much about the weight creating ruts. These can get all sorts of attachments from loaders, backhoes, mowers, tillers, snowblowers, etc. These attachments are also less expensive than the comparable skid steer attachments. The price point is also significantly lower when buying new than a skid steer.

Skid steers however are extremely heavy duty machines. If you are going to be installing new lawns or using the machine on new construction properties these will be great. Since the skid steers are much heavier they can cause more damage to turf on existing lawns, there are tracks/tires out there that are supposed to reduce turf damage. These machines are also able to lift quite a bit of weight, much more than compact tractors. These machines also can get tons of attachments, they are just more expensive but are typically extremely heavy duty.

I would consider compact tractors to be light-medium duty use machines where skids are more heavy duty use.
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