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Forums > Active Threads > General Tractor Discussions > Loaders Back Hoes

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Brush fork attachment

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mobilus
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 171 Clay County, TX
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2007-12-23          149585


Howdy, Y'all!

Do any of you use a brush fork attachment on your loader bucket? I've started building one, but I was hoping that you could provide some input by way of pictures of what has worked for you.

The way I'm approaching it is to bolt it in the bucket the same way that tooth bars are added. Later, I'll build my grapple to the same depth as the brush forks.

Thanks,
Mark

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2007-12-23          149586


I had one made for my backhoe loader bucket for picking up construction debris, firewood and brush. I designed it with a 4" x 2" angle that fits snug against the leading edge of the cutting edge. Picture a grate of sorts made of 5' long x 1" sq. bars and spaced 4" apart welded perpendicular to the cutting edge angle (the angle sits about 4' off the ends of the bars so that about a foot of bars are under the bucket). You'll need to cut/shape the ends of the bars down to a chisel point for best performance.

A 4" x 3/8" steel plate along the other ends of the bars was drilled with 5/8" holes to accept 1/2" Grade-8 bolts with lock washers (Grade 5's will snap).

I put mine through it's paces and found that the front ends of the bars needed 1" x 1/4" x 4" stabilizer plates welded between them to keep the bars from spreading and bending.

Got to careful with the load you place on the grate though---I pulled all four 1/2" bolts with washers clear through bucket bottom---there's a lot of leverage on the underside of the bucket with this design even with the plates along the rear of the bars. Also, the leverage put a long "wow" where the rear plate was. So if you have a typical CUT loader bucket think long and hard on how you will either treat it gently and not beef up the bucket bottom, OR use-it-like-you-stole-it and really take some time to reinforce the bottom or redesign it so it doesn't ruin things. BTW I experimented with chaining or ratchet strapping it to the bucket. That failed. The grate would fall off or twist when only part of stayed on under load.

I haven't used in 7 years since I bought a bobcat with an industrial grapple bucket. I pick up just as much or more with the grapple---sometimes 5 yards at a time depending.

Buuuut I'm jis' sayin' ....

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auerbach
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2168 West of Toronto
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2007-12-23          149588


What will you use it for? Picking up what's in a brush pile? Ripping up growing brush? And is it to be used in conjunction with an add-on grapple?

....

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Brush fork attachment

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mobilus
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 171 Clay County, TX
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2007-12-24          149592


Thanks guys.

EW, I appreciate the advice. Experience is a great teacher, only better if you can learn from someone else's doings. I was thinking of having a piece of 1/4 inch plate the width of the bucket, welded to make a deep > for the bucket lip to slide into, with the inside piece having ears to bolt throught the sides of the bucket. The forks would be welded to the plate under the bucket. What do you think?

auerbach, I want to use it for moving brush piles mainly...and eventually with a grapple.

Thanks again! ....

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2007-12-24          149593


I'd go 3/8" along the back and across the front for the lip. Bolting to the side is a winner, but you may still find that depending on how strong you make the grate ad how strong the bucket bottom is---you may still bend the bucket bottom. And if your machine is fairly small...err not real big---you may not have enough "butt" if you add a grapple. And the grapple itself could add extra leverage to damage the bucket either from it's mounting on top or pushing down on the grate.

Before I had the loader grate, I used to back up to a pile with the backhoe, grab it and off I went. And that was before I had a thumb too. ....

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Brush fork attachment

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mobilus
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 171 Clay County, TX
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2007-12-24          149596


If only "Santa" would bring me a backhoe this year!

I'll use 3/8 plate as you suggest.

Merry Christmas! ....

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auerbach
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2168 West of Toronto
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2007-12-24          149599


I bolted a 1/4" steel plate onto the inside floor of my bucket, sticking forward a few inches. Then I bolted projecting-tooth grabbers (small plow teeth) onto the plate. Genius!

So after a bit of money and a lot of time I was ready to dig into my brush pile, now the size of two city buses. Totally futile. Picked up just a few more pieces with the teeth than without. But maybe with a grapple....

I rented a 12" chipper and a Bobcat fitted with a grapple. After the first day I deemed it slow and awkward -- I'd need both full-time for a week and wear myself out.

Hired a guy with a 36" chipper that fed by a crane-mounted grapple. With me using my FEL and rear blade to push the diminishing pile into the range of his grabber, he turned my two buses into two car-size chip piles in a few hours.

Bottom line: unless you've been cutting up your brush before you pile it, it can be highly resistant to handling. ....

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2007-12-24          149602


I was going to add just mulching it in place. I effectively have done this when clearing land. My blue is only 33hp (29 pto) with a KingKutter 5' brush hog. I've chopped standing 4" caliper oak trees simply by backing into it. I cheat a little by having the hydraulic toplink with makes it sooo much easier to do that, but you could do the same just by adjusting the toplink close-in to raise the rear of the cutter for easier attack. As the site gets messy simply use the backblade to tidy up and remulch. ....

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