1. Missed the live Ask the Expert event?
    Not to worry. Check out the archived thread of the Q&A with Ken Hutcheson, President of U.S. Lawns, and the LawnSite community in the Franchising forum .

    Dismiss Notice

Shopping for a fullsize backhoe

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by Scag48, Apr 12, 2006.

  1. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,067

    Hey guys. Things have been nuts back home I guess, my dad called me yesterday and said he and another guy back in town want to partner up in starting a landscape supply yard with general supplies such as mulch, compost, etc. So, we need a mode of loading trucks, etc. so I've been shopping for a backhoe for the last couple days. First thing I've noticed, it's almost impossible to find anything out here. Everything seems to be spoken for and the amount of used pieces on the net is far too low for my liking. We're trying to spend under $30,000 I'm going to assume, I haven't been given a price limit as of yet, but $30,000 seems to buy a middle of the road machine with a couple thousand hours. So far, I'm looking at Case, Deere, and Cat. Cat's are hard to come by, everyone runs them until they're dead, Deere is a little easier to find, but like I said, any backhoe for sale around here is slim at best. Case is last on the list, but will buy one if we find something decent.

    So with all that said, I've been looking at Deere 310D/E, Cat 416B/C, Case 580SK/L. Any specific things to look for? I know how to inspect for leaks, etc. but anything "backhoe specific" I need to be looking for while inspecting a machine?

    I'll post a thread later about what kind of truck we're going to need, but that's another discussion.
  2. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    If you guys have a skid steer that will work in the mean time use it you don't want to rush into buying a used rubber tired hoe.

    If the landscape material place you want to set up is on flat ground why don't you look into a small wheel loader instead like a used Cat. All you would need is older 930 or 950 you can find them pretty cheap anywhere.

    The old Cat loaders are cheap to find cheap to fix you maybe can look at a John Deere not too bad. The old Ford loaders might be a little harder to get parts for.

    A rubber tired hoe really doesn't make a good truck loader it doesn't have the weight plus you have a tail hanging off your azz which you always have to remember that is there.

    If you do get a rubber tired backhoe it would have to be a 4x4 as a 2wd is almost useless even if your yard has hard ground.

    Small wheel loaders are not in demand so the price is lower rubber tired backhoes are because every home owner with acreage wants one.
  3. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,067

    We can't use the skid, it's busy on jobs. We need a dedicated pit machine that can load triaxles and our 216 won't do that. I've thought about the loader, looking at an '84 Cat 930 that looks to be in excellent shape. They're asking $34,000, a little high in price I think, but it's been repainted and serviced. It also comes with some sort of coupler, forks, and it does have 3rd valve plumbing. I agree that an older loader might better, but who knows what we could end up doing in a couple years, I thought that having a backhoe might be nice to have if we ever had a utilities job where we needed something bigger than our 303CR to dig. With that said, I'm still learning toward the loader. It sits higher, will be easier to load the truck, and we can get a monster 3 yard bucket for it if needed as we're loading light material.
  4. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    There is a Ritchie Bros Auction in Oregon on May 13 they have a good selection of loaders up for auction. There will probably more when equipment is added to the auction. You will find a better deal at a Ritchies on a used loader just have to check it out thoroughly.

    I see there is a Terex loader in the Oregon listings they are a good loader usually you can buy them fairly cheap. You really don't need a mint shape machine for loading trucks just aslong as it has good brakes and the center pins are not worn out.

    Some of those old Cat loaders I have ran are pretty well worn. The 950 I ran a couple times had no brakes and the loader arms were bent so the bucket didn't sit flat on the ground :laugh:
  5. mrusk

    mrusk LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,260

    Supply yard /excavation/landscaping is a good combo of business to be involved in. Each divison can work off the other, and equipment of each divison can be used in the other divisons when needed.

  6. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    A Backhoe is really the wrong machine for a supply yard. It's got too small of a bucket and too small of a reach, plus its a waste of good digging capabilities.

    Get a small articulated loader.
  7. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

  8. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,129

  9. gammon landscaping

    gammon landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 550

    i think that a backhoe is a great machine in the swiss army knife way. as dad told me along time ago, a backhoe can do everything but doesn't do any one thing well. i think if it was going to be a multi use maching go for it. 2wd will work fine for a yard machine. i will say that case probably makes the best machine we have used them for 35 years. we have never replace a major componat on one, ie engine tramsmission,pump,valve body, or rearend. other than tires, hoses, teeth, and a few other small parts, we have never had problems with them and i would guess that we have put 25,000 hours between three machines that we have owned.
    things that i would look for is slop in the pins, major oil leaks, or roll over damage. hoses and leaks are easy to fix, so i wouln't look at that stuff to much.
    one thing that i would stress is don't buy a machine that has been rolled hard. we rolled the 580b that dad started with and it was always hell after my uncle fliped it off a sea wall in to the lake. the front bucket was out of level and it was all just off. always somthing after that
  10. thepawnshop

    thepawnshop LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 387

Share This Page