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I tried a 6-way dozer blade today

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by TerraFirma Excavating, Aug 14, 2005.

  1. TerraFirma Excavating

    TerraFirma Excavating LawnSite Member
    Posts: 163

    My friend is considering purchasing a Cat 6-way dozer blade for his 246B. He dropped it off for my comments this afternoon. This is a brand new (only used twice) blade which an owner of a 277B is selling. He didn't like it and would rather use his D3 for dozing. The original owner is selling the practically new blade for a heavy discount.

    I have been eager to try a 6-way dozer blade for my machine, so I was excited when he offered to try it on his machine. I only used it for about a half hour, so please take my comments with a grain of salt. First off, I don't like the fact that the tilt function will not work unless you are using the angle function. It makes it difficult to make corrections while dozing because you are adjusting two parameters at the same time. This would be reason enough for me not to like the attachment.

    Secondly, the dozer blade is close to the machine and it is difficult to see the cutting edge, especially when angled. A true dozer has much better cutting edge visibility.

    Third, I think skidsteers are generally pretty much a short wheelbase machine. Any adjustments of the depth of the cut are magnified when the machine travels forward. This might be less of a concern with a track equipped machine, but the original owner has a 277B and is still selling the machine.

    Overall, I give the 6-way dozer blade a thumbs down. The dozer blade does offer a skidsteer some great capabilities like tilt and angle, but comes no where close to true dozer grading capability.

    UNISCAPER LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,426

    We have a dozer blade for our 257B. If you have to use the angle to make the tilt work, there is either somthing wrong with your machine, or you're not using it right to begin with. All you do is hit the rolling dial on the right stick and it tilts. To get it to angle, you push a button on the left stiuck, and roll the dial on the right. It's the only way you can get a multi function from a machine such as a 246, or 257.

    As far as usabilty, we have put 800 hours on one blade, and about 500 on another. Yes, they do take getting used to if you are running a D-3 all day and switch. They are not going to have the power a D-3 will have, and simply the machine weight can tell you they won't.

    Now, for us, we get alot of call for people who want to cut platforms into 2-1 slopes. So, we crane a 257B and a blade over the house, set it in the back yard, then start driving up the hills in the back to cut the platforms and remove spoils with the 463 Bobcat. Our soils are rock hard, and you have to take little bites, but the machine will work well on a 2-1 side slope if ytou keep the blade in thew dirt and keep working back and fourth until the first part of your pad is cut.

    I hated it for the first week or so, until we figured out how to make a 6-1 work on the machine....Now, no way I wuld go back...Another great function of the 6 way, grading the gravel under a paver driveway. Can't beat it.

    Give it more time, after you figure out the controls, the thing has limitless possibities.....
  3. TerraFirma Excavating

    TerraFirma Excavating LawnSite Member
    Posts: 163

    I spread out about 100 yards of material this afternoon with the bucket. Now I have about an acre and a half to grade. I'll give the 6-way dozer blade the benefit of a doubt and use it tomorrow. I will check the controls and connections once again in the morning and see if that helps the tilt function. I think this 246B must have different controls than what you have. There are no dials. Left stick is 2-speed function on the trigger. On the top side of the left control is the horn button and two other buttons side by side. These buttons tilt the blade, but so far, only when using the angle function. Right control has the two buttons on top to angle left or right.
  4. TerraFirma Excavating

    TerraFirma Excavating LawnSite Member
    Posts: 163

    Do you know if the electrical connection of the Cat attachment will work on my Bobcat?

    UNISCAPER LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,426

    I sure don't....Let me know if they work ok?
  6. TerraFirma Excavating

    TerraFirma Excavating LawnSite Member
    Posts: 163

    I used the blade for 2 hours this morning. First off, I looked at the controls real close. The right stick only has two buttons and two blanked off buttons. The tilt function can be operated independantly of the angle function. I have to depress the left button on the left stick and use the left and right buttons on the right joystick (normally the angle function). Things went better after I found this out.

    Visibility is terrible to the left side where the hoses are routed. I constantly found myself leaning forward to try watch the left cutting edge corner. I also found better control if I tilted back the loader function to allow the skid pads to float the blade. I also controlled the cut by rolling the blade back onto the skid pads.

    I was getting better with the controls, but did find it hard to doze with a rubber tire machine. The tires would sink in soft spots and cause washboarding. Tracks would allow the machine to float and maintain a level work area. I think I could really like the 6-way dozer blade on a track machine. I may take some more time before I am sold with it on a rubber tire machine.

    It would be great to see a factory or aftermarket "tee bar" control like true dozers.

    UNISCAPER LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,426

    I am not sure, but it sounds like the rubber tire and track controls are different...I was told by our Cat service manager that the controls on B series machines are all the same...Sounds like diffeent controls here for sure....

    Yes, dizing with wheels does not work that well. There are alot of rubber tired dozers in out necl of the woods, and all they use them for is pushing piles, there is no precision what so ever...

    It sounds like you are at least getting the hang of the blade, because that is exactly how I felt when I first coupled ours to the machine. All in all, that D-3 will blow the 6 way on a skid steer out of the water....
  8. Ole JIM

    Ole JIM LawnSite Member
    Posts: 3

    Like most modern Innovations--the Six way Blade on a Dozer leaves a lot to be Desired!--& the Dozer manufacture will inform You it takes a little getting used TO?--Yeh Right!--if You have ever Used ONE?--You Realize it just Don*t Work as Describbed!--& the Problems Are Numerous!--I have operated many--& have Found that by Placing a Block under the High Side--before You start Your Grade--Will give YOU a Start on the Angle you Need to Grade--& after YOU get the Desired Pitch--Back Dragging will make the JOB nice & Pretty--I Hope this HELPS?

    FIRESCOOBY LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 981

    Are you talking about a 6 way for a skidsteer, or a 6 way blade on a real dozer? I ask because I've logged MANY hours in a D-5C and a D-6M. I can finish grade like crazy as long as the grade markers are correct.

    If you need to place a block under the balde to get it at the "right" angle, then either something is wrong with the dozer, or the person isn't proficient in grading/ dozer work.

    Also, backdragging makes a job look cheap. A grade looks much better when graded forward. Some people just cannot work a dozer for final grade work. I had a hard time getting the hang of a motor grader, but a dozer is easy if it's "in you". Heck, some of us could even get a final grade with a Cat 621 pan with someone walking in front of us with a grade stick and laser level.
  10. Mini man

    Mini man LawnSite Member
    Posts: 241

    Backdragging makes a job look cheap....What the HE11 are you talking about?

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