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

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wmgeorge
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 38 Central Iowa
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2008-01-25          150714


I know a couple folks on here built a Caddigger, I'm just wondering if you had good luck with it, and anything you would change??

And wondering about the resale value when you are done??

I have a John Deere 650 with a FEL now and need to do some work down at our lake property. I'd use it off and on for a couple of years. Rentals; this place is 2.5 hours drive from here so can't do a cheap one day, it would need to be a 3 day minimum.

Don't need to dig very deep, 4 ft at the most. I have the 608 plans on order.

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BillMullens
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2008-01-25          150730


I built a 708 a few years ago. I used it quite a bit the first couple of years I had it, last year I think I had it out twice to remove stumps.
Mine doesn't have hydraulic stabilizers, which would be nice; also I wish I had a narrower bucket for digging trenches for water/electrical lines.
Can't help you on resale value.
I've had good luck with mine within its limits. It isn't the same as a dedicated tractor-loader-backhoe; it is a very good alternative to a shovel and pick.

I've attached a link to the web page that documented my build; I haven't looked at the page for a long time, don't know if it all still works.

Good luck,
Bill ....


Link:   Caddigger 708

 
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wmgeorge
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2008-01-25          150733


How much of a problem was it Not having Hyd stabilizers? What I'm thinking is it just takes more time to hop off, make an adjustment to the manual one and get back on the tractor. The Hyd ones, you never leave the seat, except to move the tractor ahead a ways.
I'm thinking that the joy stick valves would be the way to go.
BG in Iowa ....

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BillMullens
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2008-01-25          150739


As far as function goes, the lack of hydraulic stabilizers isn't really a problem. It is inconvenient just because I have to unpin the stabilizer and insert it upside-down to get enough ground clearance to travel over rough ground when the hoe is attached to the tractor. Really not a big deal, it's just hydraulic stabilizers would make it easier.

It is hard to describe without a demonstration; but as far function goes, the extra expense and complication of hydraulic stabilizers isn't justified. I drew up plans to build some the first year I had the Caddigger, just not worth it in my case. Once I'm near the digging site I put the stabilizers in one position and they stay there until I'm done; the 3-point hitch is used to lift the hoe off the ground enough to move the tractor up.

Bill ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-01-25          150741


Bill thanks for taking the time to reply. I have been on your CADDigger construction website many times to look at your project. Nice job.

I've got the plans ordered and the debate I'm having with myself is to spend the extra money and just get the kit or do it on the cheap and make all the metal parts myself. I have a metal yard about 2 blocks from me that has recycled metal. I also have a plasma cutter and small cutting torch, plus a home machine shop so all it would take is time. I'm retired, so my time is free.

Did you go with the joystick valves? I see Surplus center has them for $249 for a 2 spool open center, if I got two that would do the trick. BG in Iowa ....

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BillMullens
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2008-01-26          150745


I used the 4-stick setup instead of the joysticks. Having no experience with either one, I just went with the cheaper of the two.

If I had a plasma cutter and a readily available source of metal, I would have cut my own metal instead of using the MetKit kit. It would have been cheaper and more satisfying; but the kit did save me some time and aggravation. I'm not very good with cutting torches and some of the metal is pretty thick.

Bill ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-01-26          150750


Well I thought for sure my Plans would be here Friday, but no. :(

My plasma cutter only will do 3/8 and as I recall the side plates and boom pivot plates are 1/2 inch. I will need to use my cutting torch and rent some larger tanks, or maybe pay my recycled metal supplier $20 to do the heavy plate cuts for me :)

Do the plans come with full scale templates for the side plates? I would imagine those are the most critical. BG in Iowa ....

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BillMullens
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2008-01-26          150752


I don't remember about the full-sized drawings. Everything is in book format, no folded plans or blueprints. So if the part is bigger than about sheet-of-paper size, the drawing won't be full scale.

If you want me to draw you up anything full-sized just let me know; I could easily draw it in AutoCAD, plot if out and mail it to you. I do that kind of thing for fun.

Bill ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-01-29          150922


Bill, I got the plans Monday. They seem pretty straight forward, I did make up an Excel spreadsheet to price out the major material before I go any further.

Having my salvage metal yard two blocks away makes it kind of nice. They won't be there to many more years. The City, EPA and OHSHA will soon take care of them, but they are about ready to retire anyway.

I'm trying to find the hydraulic cylinders they spec'd, all Surplus Center has is the Clevis ends in the sizes they want to use. I see you used the stock ones from Metkit, but the shipping is so expensive for both the metal and cylinders. I'd like to find them close by.... BG in Iowa (darn cold here!!!)
....

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yooperpete
Join Date: Jan 2004
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2008-01-29          150926


I'm currently in the process of striping a homemade loader off of a Farmall "C". I'm selling the tractor to someone that doesn't want the loader. It is going to the scrap yard minus the cylinders.

I may also have a larger diameter short stroke cylinder laying around. I sold the farm and am cleaning up 150 years worth of stuff that has accumulated.

If you are interested, I'l give specifics. Stuff will be cheap! ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-01-29          150927


Well most of the cylinders are 2", except for one 2.5 inch. They call for 1" cross tube on the ends, so they can be held on with 1" pins inside the tube. The longest stroke is 10", so I doubt on a loader you'd have any that short. Sure post what you have.... BG in Iowa ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-01-31          150987


Quote:
Originally Posted by BillMullens | view 150730
I built a 708 a few years ago.I used it quite a bit the first couple of years I had it, last year I think I had it out twice to remove stumps.


Bill M. or others, I'm looking at the Caddigger plans, and it seems as if the dipper end boom is too short in relation to the rest. I saw one over on Tractorbynet group a guy build, but with a 30 deg angle in the middle of the main boom.

I did a little small scale mock up aka Mythbusters and found it allowed the hoe to dig deeper and closer to the tractor. Perhaps as much as 20%.

I lost only a very small amount of overall reach and lift height. I called the designer and he did not have a problem but was not going to re-design his plans. :)


Any comments, since I can't find the OEM poster on the TBN group? ....

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kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5223 South Carolina
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2008-01-31          150988


wmgeorge,
some questions if you don't mind:

About what do you think it will cost you by the time you build this?

Are you sure you will only want to dig only 4 feet deep? (last post makes it sound as depth is becoming more important)

How often do you think you will use it?

Have you looked very careful to see what you may find in used or even junked that may suit your need? The best I understand what you are considering has very limited capacity. kt ....

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BillMullens
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2008-01-31          150990


I'm not exactly sure what you mean but the angle in the middle of the main boom sounds like the CadPlans or MetKit SuperBoom option. The Superboom has a kink in the middle of the main boom. You can find it on the MetKit web page, then follow New Products link and the 800 Accessories link. The price list also lists Superboom plans for the 600 series, I believe.

I did a full range of motion 3d model of my 708 on AutoCad, just for fun. So I knew pretty much what to expect before I built it. I've never needed more than about 4' of digging depth, even at that depth you have to move the tractor quite often. I have learned how to move the tractor with the hoe so I don't have to get off the hoe and on the tractor as much. For my use, I wish mine had more reach and was able to swing 90* left and right. But I've learned to adapt.
....

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wmgeorge
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2008-01-31          150991


Quote:
Originally Posted by kthompson | view 150988
wmgeorge,some questions if you don't mind: About what do you think it will cost you by the time you build this?Are you sure you will only want to dig only 4 feet deep? (last post makes it sound as depth is becoming more important)How often do you think you will use it? Have you looked very careful to see what you may find in used or even junked that may suit your need? The best I understand what you are considering has very limited capacity. kt


Well since I have a re-cycled metal dealer not far from me, and they are very flexible on pricing and will do some cutting for free... I figure the metal part fabrication cost will be $500 or less.

My major expense will be the cylinders and control valve, most of which will come from Surplus Center and perhaps if I'm lucky... the recycle yard.

I'm retired, have a home shop full of what I need to fabricate with, including a metal lathe and small milling machine, my building labor cost will be nil.

Renting would be an option, but since the main use will be 2.5 hours from any rental store one way, low cost rental is not feasible.
Four feet is really the max I need to dig but I think the boom design at an angle would be an advantage.

My total cost will be in the neighborhood of $1600 - 1800. Most of the backhoe equipment that is used, (and I have been looking), is either junk in need of expensive repair, priced like a new one or way too heavy for my 650 John Deere. I know the newer tractors with the die cast or aluminum transmission & clutch cases need a sub-frame to mount the backhoe or if its really heavy.

My tractor is cast iron and heavy duty, and the completed Caddigger 608 BH will weigh 500-600 lbs max. Besides I can pedal it on eBay for my cost or more when I'm done using.
....

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kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
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2008-01-31          150992


I would look around and see if I could find a boom from a wrecked or scraped out machine. A boom from a very small excavator or backhoe would probably be ideal. Your scrap yard my have the ability to help search for such. If you could find such it may provide what you need with little work including valves and cylinders. kt ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-01-31          150993


Quote:
Originally Posted by BillMullens | view 150990
I'm not exactly sure what you mean but the angle in the middle of the main boom sounds like the CadPlans or MetKit SuperBoom option.The Superboom has a kink in the middle of the main boom.You can find it on the MetKit web page, then follow New Products link and the 800 Accessories link.The price list also lists Superboom plans for the 600 series,


Hmm Bill I see what you mean, exactly the design I suggested and someone else had done, he was selling as a Upgrade or as the SuperBoom kit. So why did he not tell me this on the phone last night or at least offer to upgrade my Plans for a nominal fee??
I'll do the design change in ACAD and see if any boom length measurements need changed. I'm seeing all the new backhoes now have the curve or bend in the main boom. BG in Iowa

Edited: I did my drawing and checked in AutoCAD LT, it takes .0325% more tubing in the main boom to do this, and this by my scale mock up equals about 20% reach when it gets closer to the tractor. Not moving the tractor as much and the full depth of the dipper end. BG ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-02-05          151105


Bill M. Are you using the bronze bearing in the boom swivel and I see your attachment plate is different from my plans. Just wondering when you did yours?? ....

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BillMullens
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2008-02-05          151107


I can't recall. I'll have to look at the digger tonight to tell you for sure which pivots have bronze bushings.

I finished building mine in January 2002. ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-02-08          151185


Bill I have three, one on the frame,one on lower boom and one on top for dipper boom. I am making the lower boom 2.5 inches longer and putting in a 30 deg angle. According to the Metakit site this will allow another 12 inches deeper and as my mock up proved much closer operation to the machine. He must not answer his emails, as I asked just to purchase the 1/2" precut side plates for his super boom and no response! BG in Iowa ....

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BillMullens
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2008-02-08          151195


The CadPlans guy answered two of my questions promptly and never did get back to me on another question.

Sorry I haven't had a chance to look at my digger yet. I've been under the weather; actually took a sick day from work this week...doesn't happen very often.

I'll be interested in the results of your home-grown superboom.

Bill ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-02-09          151204


Well Bill, I called MetKit today, Sat., same guy runs both CadPlans and MetKit. Wanting to purchase the Super Boom side plates, but he said he can ONLY sell as a kit??? But since I already have the metal purchased, bronze bearings ordered and bearing plates done I was not interested in wasting money.

I did the drawing in AutoCAD LT and put in the 30 deg angle and did overall measurements old vs new so I know the cut length of the 2.5x2.5x 3/16 steel.

I sent him a email telling him that I felt it was unfair that he makes design changes and will not sell the improvement either as a extra cost drawing change or a side plate cut out that will let customers who are building now like I am not pay twice for the same thing.

IF I do not get a response then I will do the reverse engineering needed to make it work and make it available to other people who feel cheated on this design correction. I can look at the main boom and see that it is too long in proportion to the dipper boom and a drive by any equipment dealer (or website) that sells backhoes will see that the angle of the main boom on commercial backhoes have been that way for years... ticked in Iowa.

Hope you get over the flu or whatever, getting tired of winter!! ....

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BillMullens
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2008-02-19          151462


While I'm happy with my Caddigger, and was glad to have the direction given by the plans (especially with the hydraulics...I learned a lot), the marketing is puzzling. I can only assume the CadPlans guy has a day job and makes a few bucks on the side with the MetKit and CadPlans businesses. For a small business, his customer service isn't great.

Good luck with your own design. I can't wait to see pics when you have it done.

Still suffering with a cold or allergies or something. I've been sick more since we had the baby than I have been all the years leading up to it. I guess the little guy is bringing the stuff home; but he never gets sick.

Bill ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-02-28          151764


Bill or someone else with a Caddigger under their belt. I've got the backend or frame done except for the stabilizers or outriggers. Is there any time when the adjustment on the side to side leveling has not been sufficient? I need to cut them next the plans say 22 inches, and the way the holes are drilled it looks like that would give you 12 inches of adjustment.
I understand that the 3 point has no downward pressure, other than the weight that is one it, so perhaps this is a moot point.

BTW never got a reply back from John at Cadplans, MetKit, one in the same. He does not want to sell just the 30 degree side plates, or the plans. Or in other words... if you pay for the plans, and want the Super Boom which is a design correction, you must purchase the entire Super Boom kit from him, plus a lot of money for UPS shipping to you. If like me, you already bought the steel and rest locally, you're screwed.

I just got a nice pre-built curved back Bush Hog, new 13" deep profile bucket off ebay. I won't tell the price here, but 1/2 the price of a new regular one to my door!!! :). ....

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BillMullens
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2008-03-10          152052


I have found the adjustment to be adequate; although honestly I usually either just set them to the same hole and put up with being tilted to the side some; or eyeball the ground I'll be sitting on and set them once, then leave them that way the rest of the day.

As for having no down pressure; I built a link to connect the backhoe end of the 3-point hitch top link to the drawbar of the tractor; locking the hoe in a set position. That way you can pick up the rear of the tractor with the backhoe; but you have to disconnect the link in order to raise the 3ph and move the tractor. ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-03-11          152088


Quote:
Originally Posted by BillMullens | view 152052
I have found the adjustment to be adequate; although honestly I usually either just set them to the same hole and put up with being tilted to the side some; or eyeball the ground I'll be sitting on and set them once, then leave them that way the rest of the day.As for having no down pressure; I built a link to connect the backhoe end of the 3-point hitch top link to the drawbar of the tractor; locking the hoe in a set position.That way you can pick up the rear of the tractor with the backhoe; but you have to disconnect the link in order to raise the 3ph and move the tractor.


Did you drill a hole in the draw bar, or a clamp of some sort? It would make it more stable I'd think. I'm just getting ready to weld up the boom plates, after I make sure my cylinders are in the right place. Got a real deal from Cookssaw.com on all the ones I needed, $263 to my door. ....

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BillMullens
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2008-03-13          152125


My swinging drawbar had a hole for a trailer ball or attaching pull-behind implements; I made a bracket that bolts there; the extra link pins through there in the normal top-link way.

Edit: You can just make out the bracket on the bottom pic on this page.

Are you having fun building the 'digger?

....


Link:   

Click Here


 
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wmgeorge
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2008-03-13          152136


Bill, After I had posted I remembered your link :). Yes...having fun and being busy. My welding is really improving, one thing that helped was a "cheater" lens for my welding hood. Now I can actually see my weld in progress.

Learned that his plans are for his cylinders. IF you use the cheaper clevis ends Like I am, at 1/2 the cost. Be prepared to change the fabrication as you progress. I needed to relocate the 1" pin hole for the lower cylinder attachment point for the boom about 1" higher. Now doing the other end of the boom and I will make the cut and 30 deg angle when I make sure the rest is like its suppose to be...

So I;m looking at perhaps 2 more weeks. The weather here is really turning nice, I have lots to do outside. Helps to be retired, but not bored. Thanks for your help. BG in Iowa ....

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BillMullens
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2008-03-17          152226


I just got one of those 1.5X lenses for my welding helmet a couple of weeks ago. It really helped me, especially with my little MIG. I'm still in partial denial about how bad my eyes are getting. ....

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wmgeorge
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2008-03-26          152449


Bill, I can't figure out how to post pictures here, but I've put them on the Machine Builders Net forum and here is the link.... the end is near >>

http://www.machinebuilders.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=3896&PN=1&TPN=1



....

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wmgeorge
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2008-08-04          155805


I did get this Caddigger 608 backhoe done, it works fine, details are on the Backhoe Forum, Machine Builders Net. I hope what I posted here comes up ok! ....


Link:   

Click Here


 
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notme76
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2009-10-22          166474


i've got the same lack of a rspnse from cadplans when i asked for plans for the super boom build... wmgeorge if u've figured out the superboom and wouldnt mind sharing your work i'd appreciate it.... ....

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