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Skid Steer Vs. Tractor with Box Blade for grading

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by SouthernYankee, Aug 29, 2006.

  1. SouthernYankee

    SouthernYankee LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 789

    In my part of town, most landscapers are using tractors with box blades to grade home sites with. The result is decent grading, with out the real ability to move material around the job site if thats needed. Most of these rigs have a laborer with a wheel barrow moving material around the job site.

    Back up North we never even saw a tractor with a box blade, it was skid steer/bobcat only which was a nice because we could move/ add/ remove materal very easily. I havent had time to get my bobcat side of the biz going and I am trying to get in with some builders, selling the fact that my bobcat is a bit more versitile than a tractor with a box blade.

    What do you think is better and why?
  2. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    Why don't the tractors have loaders on them?
    I think they both have about the same degree of effectiveness in what you described if there set up the same. AND the operaters know what there doing
  3. SouthernYankee

    SouthernYankee LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 789


    No front buckets at all, no idea why. Maybe because these lots are not that big, infact 1/2 is extremely rare even in estate $600k plus home sites.
  4. AWJ Services

    AWJ Services LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Ga
    Messages: 4,281

    I can do things with my Tractor that no Skid Steer can do.
    I can also do things with my Skid Steer that no Tractor can do.
    Thats why I own Both.
    Remeber that Tractors were the only thing available for Landscaping for years.

    The good thing about a Tractor is they do not mess up the freshly prepped ground like a Skid Steer.
  5. LindblomRJ

    LindblomRJ LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,570

    I agree.

    A tractor with loader and box blade or what ever else you want on the 3 point is real effective.
  6. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,794

    Tractors don't usually have the traction or break out power to dig with the loader at all. A skidsteer is a much more versatile soil mover. Add a 4-in-1 bucket and you've got a finish grading machine.
  7. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    I have a 4-n 1 bucket on a tractor and its the same as if its on the skid. matter of fact there quick coupler fronts so I can change them from one to the other in a couple min. Most skids do have more break out force but the guy wants to use it for grading not digging so a tractor with a drag box and down pressure will grade faster than a skid in this situation. And unless the skid has tracks on it a 4wd trac actually has more traction
  8. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,162

    I am trying to be too biased, but a tractor of any type with a loader and box blade is no match for a skid steer. With a skid steer, a scarifier attachment and a FFC Preparator (rock hound type landscape rake) we are faster and I would argue able to do a much better job. Perhaps with an experienced operator and much more time a tractor can match the results with a Harley type rake. Its not uncommon out here to moved several hundred yards of topsoil on a yard. A tractor is just way too slow. Our skid steers have two speed and ride control we can move full buckets (up to 83") and fly around the yard laying topsoil. Tractors for our type of yards are not competetive. Out of dozens of landscapers, only one uses a tractor, its a big one and he's an idiot. If your trying to convince home builders on why to use you with a skid steer over the tractor guys its simple. Your more productive. If they are paying by the hour, you get more done. If they pay by the job you get more jobs done with a skid steer.
  9. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    I'll argue the point that you can run a skid steer faster than a tractor using just the scarifier blade/attachment against a tractor pulling a box blade with teeth. Thats what the original post was about. Now if you want to start and do a full prep with a hound or preperator a skid is faster. As far as moving soil from a pile a hydro trac with hi/lo is about as fast as a skid. It not just a matter of running in grabbing a bucket full and backing up dumping it. you have to run in grab a bucket and back out and spread it as your moving, so how is a skid so much faster? Both have the Hi/low both are hydro driven and you can't spread much soil doing a 0 turn. Convincing a builder that your more productive means nothing to the builder only how much it will cost him does. since a skid cost more to begin with and all attachments cost more you need to do more jobs to make the same net profit as a tractor. But to the poster if the lco there don't have a loader on then its really no contest. Do one job at an agreed upon price and if your not more productive than a guy with a wheel barrow then its time to get another biz started :laugh: :laugh:
  10. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,162

    A skid steer cycles faster and dump on the run ya we do that. There really is no contest. I'll tell you what. Make the prize big enough to justify me flying out to Ohio and I'll rent a skid steer (CASE 95XT/465 with RC and two speed and 83" bucket) set up whatever kind of dirt moving exercise you would like. You run yours, I'll run mine. When the dust settles, we'll see who is right. Actually cover my plane fare and hotel and the beer as the prize and I'd be happy. I'll call it a vacation. If I lose (blow a tire, fall asleep from jet lag) I'll put up again the cost of the flight and hotel. Let me know when your ready.:drinkup:

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