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Brush Transport

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
As some of you know, I recently got a welder and am slowly learning to weld: https://habitat-talk.com/index.php?threads/welder-thoughts.12664/. I also soon hope to buy a mini-excavator: https://habitat-talk.com/index.php?threads/mini-excavator.12269/. One of the many tasks I have on my list is clearing some brush along my new driveway. While the mini-excavator will be great for clearing the brush, they are quite slow at transporting the brush. My tractor with FEL would be much faster for transporting brush, but the bucket could not hold much. It also has little bucket curl.

So, I'm considering a new project. I'm thinking of welding brackets to the bucket that I can bolt 2x4s into that would parallel the loader bucket curl cylinders when the bucket was fully curled. I would then use the mini-excavator and thumb to tear out the brush, pick it up, and place it on the bucket and 2x4s with the bucket lifted. I could then transport and easily dump the brush in a pile.

Thoughts or inputs on this concept?

Thanks,

Jack
 

Iowa_Dave

5 year old buck +
FWIW, I recently ordered, but have not yet received, a grapple bucket for my tractor that should be just the ticket for grabbing brush and logs. Although I have yet to get it and use it, I have watched others use them and they seem to be very effective and they aren't that costly...about $1500 I think.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
Yes, a grapple would be ideal, but I'm looking for a free "good enough" solution since this is an infrequent use.
 

Knehrke

5 year old buck +
I agree that a grapple is ideal. Perhaps you might rent or borrow one for infrequent use? I sold mine when I got rid of my NH TC55DA - too much tractor for what I needed at that point, but I wish I still had it now lol.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
I'm now thinking about welding faceplates to the bucket and screwing in black pipe. I don't need the full functionality of a grapple as I don't need to pick it up. I'll use the excavator to pick it up and just set it on the bucket of the tractor, transport it, and dump it.
 

buckdeer1

5 year old buck +
I got a set of clamp on forks for my old tractor and they would be ok for brush but they did bend when trying to lift much.I had a welder friend re enforce them and now they are good and strong and for sale since I bought a set of forks for my new tractor.But they work good for piling brush in there,got mine from northern and my real good ones from Titan
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
Good idea. I'll bet a pair of inexpensive pallet forks would extend the bucket the other direction and work. This pair seems to have brackets for vertical 2x4s built in: https://www.amazon.com/Pallet-4000l...9Y2xpY2tSZWRpcmVjdCZkb05vdExvZ0NsaWNrPXRydWU=

There are occasionally other tasks that come up where pallet forks would be convienent.

Anyone have experience with these? I realize they are not going to be like a dedicated set of forks for the FEL, but they are pretty cheap.

Thanks,

Jack
 

jlonll

5 year old buck +
They will bend
 

jlonll

5 year old buck +
Depends on lifting capacity of bucket. Ordinary brush ok.. can be hard on hoses. Don't forget with the weight further out less lifting capacity.

Sent from my SM-G998U using Tapatalk
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
Yep, this is just ordinary brush. The lift capacity of the bucket is only around 2500 lbs at full height. The forks I linked are rated at 4,000 lbs. Brush is bulky but not heavy, maybe a few hundred lbs. Other uses would be for minor things around camp like transporting 30 gal drums of gly (maybe 250 lbs) or loading implements (maybe 1,000 at most) on to a flatbed trailer. I now just use the bucket and chains to load implements.

Thanks,

Jack
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
I'm going to have to take some measurements. They say the forks are 4" wide. I'm not sure if I have that much space between the teeth on my toothbar or if it is designed to go over a tooth.
 

ruskbucks

5 year old buck +
I move a ton of brush piles with our JD 4120 FEL. I just gather it up in one and push it with the bucket almost touching the ground. I easily push a pile bigger than the tractor. One in a pile the brush pretty much stays held together. I think forks on the bucket would work even better.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
I move a ton of brush piles with our JD 4120 FEL. I just gather it up in one and push it with the bucket almost touching the ground. I easily push a pile bigger than the tractor. One in a pile the brush pretty much stays held together. I think forks on the bucket would work even better.
Yes, I've done that as well and it works fine but only if I float the loader. If I leave the loader teeth a little above the ground, it will often roll over branches and I have to back up and adjust. In this case, the brush I'll be extracting with the mini-excavator is along a new driveway. I need to move the brush about 1/4 mile. That is why I just don't use the mini-excavator and thumb to move it. If I push it, I'll be tearing up the driveway I'm trying to improve.

Thanks,

Jack
 

Knehrke

5 year old buck +
Whatever you manage to fabricate, make sure to post pictures. Inquiring minds want to know...
 

Chainsaw

5 year old buck +
I have a set of forks that clamp onto the bucket. I use them for moving blinds and lifting skids of stones doing some landscaping. They haven't bent but the tractor bucket has been bent a little here and there (JD 4500). Will get a picture of the bucket when I uncover the tractor in a few days. I simply put too many stones on the pallets when I move them. Brush is generally very light in comparison. Brush however does not stay on the forks well and often when dumping the brush from the forks or backing out of the pallet one of the forks will fall off and then I just clamp it back on. It is a nuisance getting off the tractor and putting one or two forks back on.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
I have a set of forks that clamp onto the bucket. I use them for moving blinds and lifting skids of stones doing some landscaping. They haven't bent but the tractor bucket has been bent a little here and there (JD 4500). Will get a picture of the bucket when I uncover the tractor in a few days. I simply put too many stones on the pallets when I move them. Brush is generally very light in comparison. Brush however does not stay on the forks well and often when dumping the brush from the forks or backing out of the pallet one of the forks will fall off and then I just clamp it back on. It is a nuisance getting off the tractor and putting one or two forks back on.

I was thinking of not actually using a pallet. Most uses of forks require picking something up. In my case with brush, I would already have the bucket lifted a few feet off the ground. Using the vertical brackets on the forks for 2x4s or putting brackets on the back of the bucket for the 2x4s I was hoping would let me simply transport and then dump the brush. Since I'd be extracting the brush with the excavator, I'd just set it on the lifted forks with the excavator bucket and thumb.

Thanks,

Jack
 

Chainsaw

5 year old buck +
I was thinking of not actually using a pallet. Most uses of forks require picking something up. In my case with brush, I would already have the bucket lifted a few feet off the ground. Using the vertical brackets on the forks for 2x4s or putting brackets on the back of the bucket for the 2x4s I was hoping would let me simply transport and then dump the brush. Since I'd be extracting the brush with the excavator, I'd just set it on the lifted forks with the excavator bucket and thumb.

Thanks,

Jack
And that works as you envision. he forks are heavy duty and thus heavy so on my tractor they do sometimes fall off when I dump. It isn't a deal breaker but just not perfectly efficient. Still it is one of the ways it is done here.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
And that works as you envision. he forks are heavy duty and thus heavy so on my tractor they do sometimes fall off when I dump. It isn't a deal breaker but just not perfectly efficient. Still it is one of the ways it is done here.

Thanks, I get it now. I thought you were using a pallet to transport brush and the pallet was falling off the forks. It is the forks that are falling off. By the way, are your clamp on forks the same ones that I linked or a different brand?
 

Chainsaw

5 year old buck +
Correct Jack, the forks hold the pallet no problem ever. Yes they are definitely the same forks you linked to.. I have them and my neighbor has a set also and when we need them they do the job. Surprisingly things come up and they get used fairly often. They are handy for picking up large pushed over buckthorn because there is space between the ground and the trunk so picking up is just a matter of driving up and lowering the forks under the trunk and lifting and driving to the pile to dump.
 
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