Looking to expand

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by Junior M, Aug 5, 2013.

  1. Junior M

    Junior M LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,584

    I wanna get in to bigger things, like real clearing jobs, grading prior to homes being built.. But nobody takes me seriously or thinks I can't do it because I don't own the equipment.

    My question is, should I just go ahead and invest in say a dozer or 12ton trackhoe?

    I've found a decent 550 case with 1800 hours for $16,500. I don't know if hours are true or not, but it looks to be in decent shape.

    I've done a few jobs where it'd be nice to have a dozer or Ive had to turn it down because I don't have one..

    I am bidding on a clearing job right now where I am looking at spending $2k on just a trackhoe rental. The dozer will be right around the same.. And I doubt I'll get it because guys who own the equipment can do it cheaper than that...
  2. alldayrj

    alldayrj LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,793

    You know what they say, high risk high pay. If you think you can get the work then go for it.
  3. Southern Heritage

    Southern Heritage LawnSite Member
    Messages: 169

    Only if that what you want todo. Owning machines like ain't cheap to keep up and move. Most guys that own these its all they do. Most builders don't trust landscapers to do grub outs
  4. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,067

    Dozer is so limited in what it can do and a 550 size dozer is a joke. A dozer is a grading machine, just because you can throw a rake on one and clear land doesn't mean it's the best tool to purchase. Excavator is so much more capable across the board, I'd be focused on purchasing something that does more than one task well. Think of all the guys on this forum and how much equipment they own; lots of excavators and skid steers, few backhoes, etc.. Very few of them own dozers, I know there are a few but those that do have a dozen other pieces of gear as well. A dozer, in my eyes, is a 3rd or 4th machine to add to the fleet. I don't know of anyone that makes a decent living with just a dozer, let alone a 550 that is a residential lot finishing machine.
  5. Junior M

    Junior M LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,584

    Good thing I am not a landscaper.. :laugh:
  6. Junior M

    Junior M LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,584

    What size excavator would you recommend?

    I am not necessarily looking to just clear Land, that's just some work I've got now.
  7. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,067

    You absolutely could not go wrong with a 5 ton machine. I know out here, guys do real well with 35 size minis but in metropolitan areas, a 5' wide machine is pretty idea. If a 6'-6'6" wide machine doesn't sound too large, you can do quite a bit of work with a 50 size machine. I've done a lot of work with a 3 ton mini, can only imagine having had a 50 in some instances. A mini is handier than any machine out there, period.
  8. AEL

    AEL LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,724

    I would never recommend to any one starting to just go out and buy a machine with hopes that they will pick up work because they own one. Go out line up a good amount of work and do a rent to own program. If the jobs you are going after are getting bid by guys for cheaper then the rent is, I wouldn't recommend trying to enter that particular market. Try to find a niche in your area and get involved in that.
  9. Cornell

    Cornell LawnSite Senior Member
    from MN
    Messages: 544

    Agreed, 5 years ago if you told me our family company would have a 16 and 18 ton excavator and a bunch of other CTLs, and small ex's we have now I would have started laughing and say keep dreaming.

    Wish we had a 225 or 235 zero swing almost all the time now. Our jobs keep getting bigger and bigger and I have to take our 180 Doosan into pretty precarious situations and am almost always at the machines limit or beyond that.

    Find your niche and run with it. There's always a better, faster way to do something if you think about it long enough.

    If you're good at something many times people will call you, or a good reputation goes a long, LONG way.
  10. Junior M

    Junior M LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,584

    Trying to find a niche here is what I am really struggling with.. But it'll all work out one day!

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