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LS180 new holland vs 250 bobcat

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by whiteclifflawn, May 1, 2005.

  1. whiteclifflawn

    whiteclifflawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    I have a 03 LS180, and I am very happy with it but I have been told that a 250 bobcat will eat it alive, that is hard to belive to me, My loader it STRONG. I have never found anything that came close. but I have limiited use of other brands. let me know,
  2. Caribbean Breeze

    Caribbean Breeze LawnSite Member
    Posts: 60

    Last year we ran a LS180 that was new and a Bobcat S220 side by side in a backfilling operation. It was for about a week. As for the operators, they switched sometimes because they preferred to operate the S220.

    For everyone that was present during that week, it was noted that the S220 had more pushing power, breakout force and a bit faster in terms of cycles.
    I would imagine that the S250 will indeed be stronger than a LS180.
    In our operation, both machines had the same size bucket and had no tracks.
    Bobcat's axle torque is very high with the engine at 1,800 > 2,000 rpm's (i mean in real life, not on paper).
    In my opinion, the Bobcat is very hard to beat!

  3. Tigerotor77W

    Tigerotor77W LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Germany
    Posts: 1,891

    I'm going to be honest here, which means it will be a little bit biased and I'll tell it to you how I feel. I think NH's machines are old, outdated, and are in need of a major overhaul. This isn't to say they're not some of the most stable skid steers out there, and it's not to say that the visibility out the side and back isn't good, but the skid steer platform it's riding on has been going ten years without any renovations. That's ridiculously old. (NH owners, what I've said is true so far. I'm not trying to bash your machines; if they were ultimate crap, no one would buy them, which is not the case!)

    I also feel that the Bobcat S250 is much more of a machine than is the Ls180.B (or Ls185.B, for that matter). Most of its vital specs are actually lower (including axle torque and engine torque) than the Ls180, but I strongly doubt you'll see this when you're digging into a pile. (As a note, the S250 has more breakout force. The reduced axle torque is made up for the added weight of the machine; it will really dig in because it's heavier, while the Ls180 will spin its tires potentially.) The S220, S250, and S300 have a LOT of power, and you'll need to stroke the levers all the way to get them to stall. With high torque rise, however, you'll also be able to rev the engine down quite a bit before stalling it completely.

    Lift capacity may be a different issue. The S300 weighs only 320 pounds more than the S250, which means it can safely lift 320 pounds MAXIMUM more than the S250. If the S300 has an ROC of 3,000, then, the S250 can lift around 2680 SAFELY, per the SAE requirements. While I can't say you'll fell more stable in an S250 than in an Ls180, the S250 can handle your needs more than adequately. There is a note here, however: if you routinely lift 5,000 pound pallets (which requires extremely, extremely strong forks and an accurate scale -- there simply aren't many 5,000 pallets, even though NH would have you believe there are) off truck beds, the S250 may be a bit light for you. Its reach maxes out at mid-height, whereas the NH machines are still moving outward at mid height. Given that the two machines are rated roughly at 5,000 tipping load, the Ls180 will probably be a safer bet for this one instance.

    I invite you to compare visibility of the two machines. And right up, let me tell you what NH will say. They'll tell you that you can get 180 degree visibility, which you can, but 180 is NOT the extent of a jobsite. Sometimes you need to look down, to see where your tires are rolling. Or sometimes you need to look to the rear corner, where a building might be. And in the Ls180, the boom arms block any view of the tires, and the cab pillars block the rear corner (you could move around in the seat to see what's back there). And then, try this: put a cone behind the two machines and see how close it is before an operator sees the cone. While I presume the Ls180 will have the advantage here, the S250 has remarkably good visibility -- even when you raise the loader arms (what happens when you do this to dump material in a low pile in the Ls180? Can't see out the sides).

    I urge you to try out a Bobcat. Although some people still think they're hyped up, I'm no longer one of them. (For the S220 and S250, anyhow... the S300 needs more power to compete successfully.) Overall, I think Bobcat makes some of the finest loaders in the world, the S250 definitely and easily being one of them.

    Now, if you wanted to compare a Case with your Ls180... :) That would give the S250 a run for its money.

    If you want more info on any loader, people here know... there's a pretty diverse group of people here.

    PS: NH people, I apologize for breathing fire down your backs. If any of you decided to go for a Ls180 or Ls185 instead of a S250, please post!
  4. whiteclifflawn

    whiteclifflawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    Thanks for the input guys, My next machine might be a diffrent color.
  5. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,129

    My thoughts are very similar to BobcatS250. The popularity of the NH machines continues to amaze me. I believe that their continued popularity is why they haven't changed much. Concrete guys around here buy almost exclusively NH. There are several landscapers with them but not many. I have told the story before, but when I toured the skid steer plant in Wichita, Ks they will point out the differences between the CASE machines and the NH machines. The CASE machines are much heavier built. However, a large part of the market does not need that much machine or its associated cost, so the NH machines are capable and cost effective if not crude by current standards. I doubt very much you will see any substantial changes in design of that machine for a long time.

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