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 How To Choose A Front End Loader For Your Application

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PostSubject: How To Choose A Front End Loader For Your Application   Sun Nov 13, 2011 4:09 pm

When considering the purchase of an articulated front end loader, there are many factors that you need to consider. These include:
What weight do you need to lift?Is there an operating weight you need to stay under?Is there a width requirement you need to stay under?Is there a lift height requirement?Are you usually on even terrain or undulating terrain?
With this basic information you can start to determine the right machine for the job, by looking closely at the specifications for the models you have under consideration. It would also be wise to work with your dealer to determine the most appropriate machine, and obtain a demonstration on site, so you know the front end loader will do exactly what you require.
Front end loaders and forklifts are suitable for a wide variety of applications, including agriculture, industry, horticulture, landscaping, parks, golf courses, mining, nurseries, construction sites, smelters and more.
Smaller front end loaders, often referred to as mini loaders or mini diggers are used in tight access situations. The mini loaders are able to operate in confined areas, such as down the side of houses to gain access to the backyard and through carports and up and down narrow nursery isles. For example, the mini loader range from Schaffer Loaders include the models 2027, 2336 and 3150. These compact loaders start in width from only 1150mm wide (890mm to gain access) making them perfect for narrow access situation. The fold down ROPS also allows the operator to access any space a person could walk through – the machine becomes just 1700mm in height. Generally their applications include nurseries, landscaping, agriculture, parks and gardens/councils. They particularly excel anywhere where super tight access is required.
Generally the bigger the front end loader, the greater the lifting capacity. The mini loaders and mini diggers have their place in small jobs for tight access situations, however if more space is available a larger machine is often more appropriate so more material can be move in a quicker timeframe.
The next step up in articulated loaders are the front end loaders, these are smaller versions of the bigger wheel loaders and start in operating weight around 3.5 tonnes. An example of a compact front end loader is the Schaffer Loader 5050Z. The step up from the mini loader brings more torque and a lot more capacity than the mini loaders. This size front end loader is found where loads over 1 tonne have to be constantly moved. Smaller mini loaders can do this job, however a bigger front end loader will shift greater weights faster over rough terrain. The front end loaders can handle a lot of weight and this is often what is required on job sites as an integrated tool carrier. Packs of bricks and limestone blocks often weight up to 2 tonnes so a front end loader or wheel loader is required on the jobsite to shift the material.
The biggest articulated loaders are the wheel loaders. Wheel loaders begin at 4.5 tonnes and go up to around 200 tonnes in operating weight. The start of the wheel loader range includes the Schaffer 5390T and goes up to a 6 tonne operating weight 9300Z. The bigger loaders are used in site clean ups and as an all purpose integrated tool carrier. As stated before, the bigger the machine, the bigger the tasks it can handle. It is important not to purchase a machine that you will only get limited productivity out of. For example if most of the year the requirements are for a loader that regularly lifts one tonne, needs to go up and down tight row spacing, then the Schaffer Loader model 3150 would be idea, but the 5050Z may be too big.
At this point it is worth considering a number of real world examples of loaders and there uses. Looking at these examples will give you a better feel for what type of machine is required for your application.
EXAMPLE 1
Industry type: Tree management and land clearingLocation: Kununurra, Western AustraliaModel: Articulated mini loader 2026Accessories: 4-in-1 bucket, mulch bucket, grapple
Usage: Loading logs and debris onto a truck after tree pruning or tree felling as well as moving and loading firewood and woodchips
Requirement: A versatile, nimble machine with the strength to lift logs without damaging pavers and lawns like a skid steer
Previous solution: Before taking delivery of his new mini loader, David needed to employ a skid steer contractor every time he took on a big land clearing or tree removal job. That meant half his profits were consumed in costs from the get-go. Not only that, but David found the skid steer would damage and compact the ground, which took a lot of time and money to repair. He says the difference using his mini loader was dramatically illustrated by a job removing and pruning trees and cleaning up around a local school. We used the mini loader as a shuttle all around the school, we loaded firewood and logs and rakings, and in the end you couldn’t tell where we’d been, David says.This customer purchased a Schaffer Loader 2026 generally used for tight access work. The customer required a compact machine and the 2026 is the most compact in the fleet, he didn’t need a massive lift capacity, as log were generally taken to the chipper and then a bulk bucket was used to pile or spread the mulch. The smallest loader of the Schaffer range had enough lift capacity and was easily able to access any area’s required. A bigger loader could have done some of the bigger tasks more efficiently, however the narrowness of the mini loader is constantly used on restricted sites and the initial investment is less with the smaller machine. If David has any really large jobs, he may consider hiring in a really large loader for the day.
EXAMPLE 2
Industry type: Advanced tree nurseryLocation Bullsbrook, Perth, Western AustraliaModel Articulated mini loader 3150Accessories Carry-all platform, forklift, auger, bulk bucketUsage: Loading trees onto trucks, digging holes and various jobs around the tree nurseryRequirement A versatile, strong, nimble machine to load advanced trees of up to one tonne onto trucks.This customer purchased a Schaffer Loader 3150 as they had relatively narrow row spacing and wanted something with a big lift capacity in a compact form. A smaller loader wouldn’t have been able to carry all the weight they require, as they occasionally needed to unload pallets weighing up to 1200kg. The customer could have bought a smaller machine and done some of this work manually, but it was the most efficient solution buying a 3150.
EXAMPLE 3
Industry type: Sand, soil and rock suppliesLocation: Blacksoil near Ipswich, QueenslandModel: Schaffer 5058ZS (70hp) wheel loaderAccessories: 4-in-1 bucket, GP bucket, forks, chain trencher and post-hole diggerUsage: Moving rocks and building rock walls, trenching, sand and soil yard workRequirement: An extremely heavy duty yet compact wheel loader capable of lifting heavy rocks and various other tasksThis customer bought a Schaffer Loader 5058ZS wheel loader. The customer needed to construct and operate a soilyard, specializing in wholesaling of granite rocks. This task demanded a very heavy duty loader with a high lift capacity, yet still being compact to navigate around the soil yard after construction to fill trailer and trucks. Although in the initial construction stages, a bigger wheel loader could have sped up the construction in some areas, it wouldn’t have been of much use after completion of the yard, so a smaller wheel loader was the optimum choice. Constant rockwork is known throughout industry to be tough on all machines, so this client in particular searched for a heavy duty front end, as this takes the punishment of the whole machine day in and day out.
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