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earthmoving euip

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by fredbear, Jan 9, 2003.

  1. fredbear

    fredbear LawnSite Member
    Posts: 7

    Basic Q is will a skid steer do this.....
    we have 11 ac property. I'm not sure what to buy, skidsteer, backhoe, or small dozer.

    first job is a driveway. about 150m (450ft) in total. fors 40m(120ft) will be across a 30-40% slope. hill is shale/rock.

    First quote says 12 days & Au$50,000 (USA$25K). 2nd quote due soon but estimated @ 4 days. ummmm....3rd guy coming out this w/e

    Based on first quote I'm thinking I should buy my own toy.

    Rough calc on a 5m(15ft) wide 10% slope driveway would mean moving around 10,000m3 @ 2.2m3/T = 4,500Tonne or 450 loads inthe farm truck! (I'm visualising a small mining camp to pop up somewhere :))

    Anyhow is this beyond what a skidsteer could do (however slowly). I'm thinking I might buy & sell it in 12 mths once the work is all done & irrigation & landscaping is in etc etc.
    or would this size job 'kill' a skidsteer?.
    Would a backhoe do better / worse? What about a dozer (thinking D4 size) or do I need a D9 & a 20T excavator?

    Many thx for any thoughts.
  2. coopers

    coopers LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,224

    Well, I'm guessing you're going to remove cement too, or what? It all depends, it would be easy in my opinion to use a trackhoe, with a thumb of course. Although, using a backhoe isn't that big of a hassle either. If you use a backhoe, it's really very convenient to have an extendahoe, it's all the better to have a thumb on it, a good one! That way you can load the cement into the truck, better than having to use your own energy to put it in the front end, then you can use the front end to load the dirt. If you really want to get detailed, using the trackhoe would be fine too, and when you remove dirt, get a larger bucket (don't remember the size) that has the smoot edge with out the teeth. That way it's nice and pretty once you've scraped, and it holds a lot more. But it's not really ment for hardcore work like the buckets with the teeth. I personally don't care for skid steers, I try to not use them if possible. That's also one heck of a job in laoding all that dirt with a skidsteer. But, I'm only 18 and have had not nearly the amount of knowledge nor experience as others on this site. If you go the tractorbynet.com, you'll get a lot of people to help you as well. Just have to join.

  3. fredbear

    fredbear LawnSite Member
    Posts: 7

    Hi Blake,
    Not sure where you read cement from (no existing cement to deal with). At this point I expect we will use crushed rock or similar as a base. need to get driveway cut first however.

    I've not hear of a trackhoe, have to look up what one of those is.

    Thx for reply
  4. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    I would buy a excavator a EX 150 Hitachi is about the smallest I would go a EX-200 would be better you can't beat a excavator for building road and clearing land. If you get one make sure its equiped with a hydraulic thumb a mechanical thumb can be used just takes a little longer. We call them Excavators here in Canada but they also are called crawler excavators its almost all we use to clear land and build road.

    Good luck I wouldn't try doing the project you have in mind with a skid steer loader even a rubber tired loader it would take alot of time.
  5. Remo Sid

    Remo Sid LawnSite Member
    from USA
    Posts: 55

    Here in the southeast U.S. most people refer to a "excavator" as a "trackhoe".

    I think a backhoe will serve you well. A thumb is very handy, especially if you are not very experienced in using a backhoe, or trackhoe. Another must have is a 4 in 1 front bucket on a backhoe. If you prefer a boom extension type backhoe, and you buy used, you need to make sure it doesn't have a lot of "play" in it. Extendable booms are fine when new, but can get rather sloppy pretty quick, especially if not properly maintained.

    A skid steer is out of the question.

    A trackhoe has advantages over a backhoe. To sum it up quickly. A trackhoe is not much more than a suped up backhoe.

    The drawbacks of a trackhoe is mainly cost, and moving it around. You can drive a backhoe rather long distances, but not a trackhoe.
  6. fredbear

    fredbear LawnSite Member
    Posts: 7

    Hi Remo , thx for reply & explaination of trackhoe.
    I've been trying to find a comparision between the 2.
    eg I'm looking at a CASE 580 backhoe and wondering how it compares with a trackhoe for digging in shale / rock. eg is this machine about the same as a 4T or maybe a 7T excavator (trackhoe)? (I was looking at some of the small Jap machines eg Yanmar)

    The backhoe offers lots of advantages for a farm compared to a trackhoe. and avoids the costs associated with the track maintenance (which seem to be huge if it needs work during the 12-18mths I'll have the machine).

    I've read a couple of bad reports on 580K's & think a 580SLE (?) is the better choice to look at. And I think I'm looking for something with roughly < 5000 hrs.

    OTOH Ford 4500's are cheap, MF960 looks similar and the JCB?CX seems to be a direct copy. (There is a 2, 3 and a 4CX from what I've seen so far.

    Is there a web page somewhere that outlines what to look for when buying this sort of machine?

    Anyone care to comment on maintenace / running costs or any of the above brands / makes or on suitability of any as an alternate to a 7T-12T excavator (trackhoe)

    Many TIA
  7. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    The things I can see wrong with a backhoe is sharp rock and tires don't mix if you will be chewing up tires like no tommorow and tires are not cheap. If you are going to buy a backhoe it should be 4x4 a 2wd backhoe is almost useless on slippery surfaces and on steep slopes. The expenses to operate a excavator isn't much more than a backhoe it you get a machine in good shape it shouldn't cost you anymoney.

    The only benefit I can see using a backhoe is if you gotta cart material long distances but if you got a dump truck that shouldn't be a problem.

    Like I said around here excavators are used for almost all road building and excavating ya you need a trailer to move a excavator but if you are working on one site that shouldn't be even a problem for you.

    A 580 Case is a good machine the 590s are better and it should be 4x4 just keep in mind older Case machines use the frame of the machine for fuel and hydraulic tanks. These machines are prone to cracks and you get diesel leaks and hydraulic leaks very hard to fix. The Johndeere 410 and 510 are fairly good machines the 310 is alright its a lighter machine the only problem is you would if you get a older 2wd model you should put low profile tires on the back to reduce the tippyness.

    To get a good 2wd backhoe look at spending 25,000 dollars CND a 4x4 30,000 a good excavator is gonna cost you around 30-35,000 depending on year and condition.
  8. fredbear

    fredbear LawnSite Member
    Posts: 7

    Hi Gravel
    Appreciate your view re excavators.
    Out of interest what size excavator does a backhoe compare with for digging ability? (I'm not sure of the correct term here - is it breakout force?)

    Many TIA
  9. coopers

    coopers LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,224

  10. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    It all depends on what size of hoe you get but a 580 would have about the same power as a EX-60 maybe a EX-100 Hitachi one contractor I work for they own a 151X Kubota and it digs pretty good its a 11,000lb machine. They also have a 217S JCB rubber tired hoe its got the 4 equal sized wheels it can dig harder than the Kubota but it can't get into the places the Kubota can.

    If your doing this project yourself and the time line is no real big concern you may get by using a 580 Case but a contractor wouldn't want to try tackle a good sized landclearing or road building job with a backhoe. A experienced operator makes the maching work to its fullest using a backhoe takes alot of skill they are harder to run over a excavator. When using a backhoe on steep slopes you gotta know how to use the hoe stabilizers etc to keep yourself moving or preventing a flip over.

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