What order did you purchase your equipment in?

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by Drafto, Feb 20, 2006.

  1. Drafto

    Drafto LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 442

    I was out looking at equipment today, skid steers, mini-ex's, compactors, concrete buggys, and more compactors. I was just wondering what order most of you guys purchased your equipment in?

    When the time comes, I was thinking large compactor (no-brainer), then mini-ex and concrete buggy, then skid steer (I am actually leaning trac-steer). I was looking at a Toro dingo too. After I was at the CAT dealer and I was tooling around in an 257 I was thinking skid should be the first piece.

    What are some of your theories as to the order you purchased your equipment in and what were the reasons? Also, when I was at the CAT dealer I booked the 257 for a large project we have coming up I was shocked it is $900/week to rent. Almost makes me think purchasing one is the only way to go.

    Dan
     
  2. cgland

    cgland LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,929

    Our first large piece was a skid steer. I got sick of renting one at $750-$1000/week and it raining 3 days...:hammerhead: :cry: IMO a skid steer is a must for a hardscaping crew. I'm sure others will say not, but when you consider that you can excavate, grade, stage materials, move pallets..etc. It is a very valuable tool. Also get yourself a nice reversible plate compactor like the Wacker 2450 (Mike has one, as will I soon) ICPI just raised it's minimum requirements for compaction, so a larger machine will be in order. I like the 2450 because it hits at 5,600# and can be used for base and paver seating (Although ICPI is calling for 7000# for the base, which I think is a bit unrealistic.) Mini - X's are nice, but you can rent those as needed.

    Chris
     
  3. Drafto

    Drafto LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 442

    Comapactor wise I was going real large, like 10,000-14,000#'s. We have a small 3500# for pavers and I want one large enough to not have to do any lifts, or minimal lifts (6" max). I agree with the skidsteer, but after renting the excavator a few times, I am convinced I won't excavate with a skid-steer again. After talking with a few excavating companies in the area I was interviewing to sub work to, I was surprised that most (3 out of 4) will use an ex for a driveway project we have coming up......I mean I was shocked. So that kind of had me leaning towards an ex instead of a SS. I hope others chime in so we can hear more opinions.

    Dan
     
  4. cgland

    cgland LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,929

    I guess we will agree to disagree! I don't believe that you can control the digging depth as well as a SS. Plus w/ a SS you can backdrag and level your excavation much better. An excavator is a great tool if you find yourself in an overdig situation or are digging wall footers, but not for patios, walks, pool decks, etc. Not going to happen! JMO though!
    P.S. 10,000-14,000 is waaayyy to big! Try taking that next to a foundation. 5K - 7K is perfect!

    Chris
     
  5. UNISCAPER

    UNISCAPER LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,426

    Dump trucks, then roll off trucks, then 257B's then Mini-X's, then track drive and tire driven power buggies. In the middle of the mix a Bomag pad foot vibratory roller, jumping and vibratory compactors, we made two 20" saws, cut off saws, etc etc. I just got pricing for a 14" Edco table saw with expandable yuppy devices and a vaccum.

    Does it ever freeken end?
     
  6. cgland

    cgland LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,929

    The answer is no! Not if you want to stay competitive!

    Chris
     
  7. Drafto

    Drafto LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 442

    Roll off trucks? Like the trash companies use for dumpsters, this is very interesting. You can have multiple containers at multiple job sites and one driver emptying containers all day instead of having multiple dump trucks on the road. If you could do it over again Bill, wold you have chosen the same order?

    Dan
     
  8. UNISCAPER

    UNISCAPER LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,426

    I guess we will agree to disagree! I don't believe that you can control the digging depth as well as a SS. Plus w/ a SS you can backdrag and level your excavation much better. An excavator is a great tool if you find yourself in an overdig situation or are digging wall footers, but not for patios, walks, pool decks, etc. Not going to happen! JMO though!
    P.S. 10,000-14,000 is waaayyy to big! Try taking that next to a foundation. 5K - 7K is perfect!


    Put a computer assited lazer on the mini-x and all the operator ever does is turns and dumps. We can get within 1/2" of whatever we need to hit.
     
  9. Drafto

    Drafto LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 442

    For our applications I think using an EX to excavate a patio, or walkway is better than a skidsteer for a few reason (please disagree b/c I respect many people on this board and value each opinion I get on here):

    1. if I can put my dump trailer within reach is does much less turf damage than a SS in and out
    2. hands down with my limited experience on any equipment i found the EX to be entirely more accurate and efficient than the SS
    3. even spreading and staging materials, I have unloaded the dump trailer with the EX to drop materials right where I needed them.
    4. the rutting from a wheeled SS in the types of soils we have around here create quite a mess!

    All right, all of the above means nothing when you consider my experience level compared to some on this board. Do I know how to run a SS? I have no idea! I have some hours in them but I need to see one used properly for an excavation before my opinion means anything!

    Dan

    P.S. We rent a New Holland wheeled SS (don't remember the model), but today when I was trying the 257B, what a Cadillac! I also think I really liked the hand controls compared to the feet in the NH. What other manufacturers use hand controls?
     
  10. cgland

    cgland LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,929

    Bill - This isn't Cali!:laugh: Those units are big bucks. Us plebians are speaking of the old fashioned way, by eye!

    Chris
     

Share This Page