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Kubota L48 or Skid Steer/CTL

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by Stroker, Sep 20, 2005.

  1. Stroker

    Stroker LawnSite Member
    Messages: 92

    As I have mentioned several times since I have been a member of this forum. Im starting a small side business. So far the only jobs I know I will have lined up will be some construction debris removal contracts. Naturaly the equipment of choice for that would be a skid steer. But I personaly have alot more seat time from a backhoe loader. Ive run a few skid steer/CTL's, but am nowhere near as confident in my skills on one. Though my seat time has been VERY limited. Maybe an hour or 2 total.

    I was thinking maybe something like a Kubota L48. With the backhoe off, the size of the tractor and a skid steer will be pretty close. Though the tractor will still be a little longer, I doubt there would be anywhere the skid steer could get that the Tractor couldn't.

    Naturaly the versatility of a machine like the L48 is very attractive. I also don't mind being "the guy with the grapple bucket on a tractor" doing the debris removal, as long as its getting done....

    Any opinions?
  2. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    If you are going with a tractor then you want a R series wheel loader a machine that articulates is better and more maneuverable. A R420S or a R520S Kubota or you can look at Bobcat's mini wheel loaders.

    If I was going to go with a skid steer it would be one with tracks it would cost a little more but the stability is better plus a skid steer turns on a time.

    If I was doing construction site clean up I would buy a skid steer with tracks. I do clean up by hand and haul it away on my F-450 there really isn't enough work to warrant buying a new machine.

    If I was going to buy a machine for the construction sites that we have around here I would prolly buy a mini excavator with a scrap grapple or a brush rake with a thumb. A excavator can crawl down the slopes and bail the crap up then move it to the truck. You never really want to travel far with the material it saves on dropping stuff all over the site ie nails etc.

    I do alot of brush (brambles branches) hauling a excavator with a thumb and bucket loads the truck fast. Plus you can sort your load so it doesn't jam up in the truck plus you can bust it up so it fits into the truck.

    The construction sites here are not flat most of them you can't get around with a machine so its packed by hand to a easier area to get at. It usually takes 2 hours to get my truck loaded which has a 12x8 deck with 2' sides.
  3. Squizzy246B

    Squizzy246B LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 837

    We do a lot of site cleans with skid steers, before and during construction. When I have two dump trucks running I can do three sites a day and make very good money. I have no doubt that you could do it with a tractor but nowhere near as fast and efficiently as a skid. The skid will be faster and easier in almost all situations where there is not a lot of room.

    A 4 in 1 bucket is essential. If you are only doing a few cleans now and then, and a tractor dovetails into your other business than you can probably get by. Also remember that you have to provide what customers want and for this work they expect you to turn up with a skid. Just my HO
  4. mrusk

    mrusk LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,260

    Uh the more you run the skid steer the more natural it will come to you. Ofcourse after running it for only a hour or two you are not going to be used to it. After 10 hours of experence on one, you will never want to use a tlb again!

  5. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,067

    TLB's are slow, regardless of what anyone tells you. There is no way that a comparably rated TLB and skid steer competition would even come close, the skid steer would prevail in overal productivity. I personally HATE grading with a front end loader like that of a TLB, you're so far from the bucket it's tough to see where grade is and forget about seeing the cutting edge. TLB's have their market, but it sure isn't in the construction/excavation business. Also, an L48 if I remember correctly sells for at least $35K, what a joke! I can buy a brand new Cat 248B with that.
  6. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,162

    A skid steer is much faster and much more adaptable to taking on other jobs that may come your way, such as backfiling, concrete removal, concrete prep work ect. Although all "can" be done with a TLB, it wont be as fast or as effective as a skid steer. New paint to new paint there probably is not much price difference. IMHO you will be limiting your potential with a small TLB. As said above the other contractors will expect you to have a skid steer. Small TLB's have their place, but I am not sure this are is one of them.
  7. Tigerotor77W

    Tigerotor77W LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Germany
    Messages: 1,892

    Yup... agreed. My suggestions are elsewhere... but at any rate, let us know what you end up going with!
  8. Stroker

    Stroker LawnSite Member
    Messages: 92

    Well, I was looking for SOMEBODY to say "Hey, thats a good idea, go with it".. But you didn't, you let me down.... :cry: just kidding :)

    Im gonna break down and get a skid steer or compact track loader. Because no matter how much I try to deny it, I know you are all right. I used to work as an equipment operator for a large contractor in my area. I would avoid a skid steer like it was contaminated with anthrax. I think the biggest cause for me having a hatred of skid steers is they werent built for me. They are small and cramped, and when you are 6'4 340, thats not a fun place to be. But I did start this South Beach diet 2 weeks ago, so maybe it will get just a little less cramped in the future....

    Takeuchis... Big and spacious cab. But with my size 14 feet planted on the floor and sitting upright in the seat, the restraint bar comes down, goes over the belly, but rests not all the way down on my legs!!!! Now I can lose weight to bail the belly, but I cant cut my legs off!!!! From what I understand, its gotta be all the way down for the machine to work.

    Bobcats... Forget about it!!!!!!

    Im gonna call my New Holland dealer. Im gonna tell him I don't want to talk about the machine, I just want to give it a fat boy test...

    Actualy, forget my new business. Anybody want to start Big Boy's Compact Equipment Manufacturing with me?

  9. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    I have troubles with Bobcat Skid steers too with that safety bar and I'am only 5'9" and 180lbs.

    Good Luck with your machine choices. If you can try get a machine with tracks I never tried a skid steer with them but I have ran Track Loaders (Cat and International) the stability with tracks is better. I have ran Bobcat skid steers you get bounced around. There is no way you can smoothly turn with a skid steer on tires I tried everytime to feather the hydraulics.

    I also have spent many hours behind a 217 JCB 4x4x4 backhoe you get bounced around but not as bad as a skidsteer. It was kinda like a bull in a china shop when it comes to doing fine work with it.
  10. tnmtn

    tnmtn LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NE Tn.
    Messages: 1,022

    hello stroker,
    i'm in the process of the same decision as you. i feel much more comfortable in a tlb than a skid steer. i noticed you hadn't mentioned the b300 bobcat. so far i am impressed with it. comfort wise it is hard to beat for a compact tlb. but you do give up the 3 point hitch. it almost seems like a compromise between a skid steer and a conventional tlb. good luck to you whichever way you go.

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