Thanks for all the great info and please keep it coming - I too was curious about the bucket size of .8 cubic foot - a heaping shovel is about that. So I'm now leaning toward a larger machine - 4-5K#, and am thinking used might be the way to go, to save a bit of cash. But this is our best year to date, and I've been in a toy buying frenzy over the last month. Gets addictive! I have one more question - I'm trying to figure out how much each model can lift, and there is no straight SAE lifting capacity, just bucket breakout force, and a couple other non-specific ratings. What number can I use to determine what size stones I can lift?