<b><i>Lawn & Landscape</i> Compact Equipment Guide</b>: Small but mighty

Features - Supplement

They might not be the biggest machines out there, but they're probably some of the most valuable in your fleet.

April 14, 2010

As part of this month’s Lawn & Landscape Compact Equipment Buyer’s Guide, we’ve included an overview of the machines many manufacturers offer professional contractors. For contact information about these manufacturers, click here.

To submit compact equipment information for inclusion in an upcoming issue of Lawn & Landscape, contact Managing Editor Chuck Bowen at cbowen@gie.net or 330-523-5330.

The new Bobcat M-Series compact excavators are re-engineered to deliver increased performance in a lighter machine. The E32 and E35 models are in the 3-to-4-ton weight class, while the E42, E45 and E50 are in the 4-to-5-ton weight class.

The M-Series excavators include an auto-idle feature that decreases fuel consumption and overall jobsite sound levels, fingertip boom swing control that is easier to operate and opens up space on the floor for the operator’s feet and an integrated slew brake.

Overall sound levels have been reduced by more than 50 percent for quieter operation, arm breakout force has been increased 20 percent and an X-frame undercarriage sheds debris and prevents dirt from leaving jobsite, the company says. The workgroup is redesigned for improved lifting performance and longer structural lifespan, and a load-sensing hydraulic system provides smoother and refined cycle times.

A redesigned cab has more foot room and adjustable armrests for greater operator comfort. It also features a lockable toolbox and pocket console.

Case Construction Equipment
Case Construction Equipment’s CX B Series compact excavator line offers proportional auxiliary hydraulic control, swing tower foot pedal control and a four-way dozer blade.

Available on the CX27B, CX31B, CX36B and CX50B, proportional auxiliary hydraulic control allows operators to regulate the hydraulic flow to attachments. This will control the speed of attachments for better handling and manipulation, enabling the operator to precisely control the closing speed of a thumb or grapple or the rotational speed of a rotator. 

The swing tower foot pedal control allows for simultaneous function command over the swing tower and house. Operators will now be able to swing the tower and house at the same time, enabling them to quickly position the CX B Series compact excavators to dig parallel to buildings and other objects.

The proportional auxiliary hydraulic control and swing tower foot pedal control are also available as a dealer installation to retrofit existing machines in the field.

A four-way blade, available on the CX31B, CX 36B and CX50B, offers increased productivity in trenching applications. Operators will be able to dig the trench and then angle the blade for quick backfilling of the trench without repositioning the machine multiple times.

Case compact excavators are all zero tail swing configuration, making them useful in all applications, especially those that require digging in tight spaces. Case compact excavators are equipped with features like a standard feature control pattern selector valve, rubber tracks, pilot-operated hand controls and one-touch engine deceleration that give them operating smoothness and precision.

The Caterpillar 303.5C CR Mini Hydraulic Excavator offers contractors high dig forces, fast cycle times and high bucket rotation angles. A choice of stick lengths and Cat Work Tools makes the 303.5C CR even more versatile.

The Cat Quick Coupler makes Cat Work Tool attachment changes fast and easy – maximizing performance and compatible with all standard attachments. Attachment versatility is further enhanced with the option of a second additional auxiliary supply. Tools include digging buckets, ditch cleaning buckets, angling ditching buckets, hydraulic hammers and augers.

Service points are easily accessed through rear door and side cover, and a 500-hour engine oil change period lowers operating costs, the company says. A swing out rear door provides access to major components and service points, including the engine oil and filter, starter motor and alternator. A lifting side hood allows access to the air filter, main implement valve, auxiliary change over valve, accumulator, fuel filter, hydraulic tank and radiator and oil cooler.

Cub Cadet Yanmar
The Sx3100 offers users a drive-over Select Cut System deck, a curved boom backhoe and loader and a Yanmar direct-injection diesel engine.

The machine offers fully hydraulic power steering, cruise control, selectable four-wheel drive, wide open operator’s station and auxiliary work lights.

The 60-inch, fully fabricated, mid-mount deck features a drive-over design and attaches in just a few simple steps. Users are able to install the drive-over deck without having to first remove the backhoe’s sub-frame. Additionally, the heavy-duty deck features a full float height control for cleaner cuts, an adjustable cutting edge and heavily reinforced commercial drive system for a superior quality of cut in all types of grass.

Extend Manufacturing introduces the new line of TMX Towable Mini-Excavators, designed to provide exceptional power in a towable, easy-to-maneuver package.

Featuring a quick-on and quick-off hitch system, the TMX units can be hooked behind a standard half-ton pick-up, van or light-duty tow vehicle. No trailer is needed, and no CDL license is required, making it the ideal option for small contractors, the company says. Lockout drive hubs enable towing at highway speeds of 65 mph.

TMX units eliminate tracks through zero-turn technology common on lawn mowers. The zero-turn rotation allows access to tight locations and work on well-established lawns. The drive tires are designed for muddy terrain, and the machine features an orbital motor with tapered roller bearings on the output shaft, the wheel motors allow plenty of durability for challenging loads.

Weighing 2,941 pounds (1.5 ton class), the TMX features an 8-foot digging depth and a 6,600 pound digging force. The unit features a 7-foot 2-inch loading height with a swing radius of 140 degrees, allowing easy digging access next to walls and other obstructions.

The TMX offers a 72-inch, four-way blade system for efficient backfilling and grading after excavation work is complete. The blade features 21 degrees of tilt. A fully hydrostatic drive provides ease of operation and ample power at the touch of a finger for both the backhoe and blade. 

Gehl’s compact articulated loader models 140, 340 and 540 feature tipping loads ranging from 1,900 to more than 5,100 pounds (when not articulated) and rated operating capacities from 950 to more than 2,550 pounds. They can run virtually all universal-type attachments, putting tools customers already own to good use. Compact sizes from as narrow as 41 inches on the model 140 allow easy access to extremely tight spaces, the company says. Articulated steering allows for turns up to 45 degrees, which further enables these compact loaders to navigate confined spaces while minimizing damage to sensitive surfaces and reducing tire wear.

Gehl articulated loaders come equipped with Yanmar diesel engines, which feature Interim Tier IV-certified emission technology with excellent performance in all applications. Horsepower ranges from 23 hp on the model 140 to 47 hp on the model 540.

A heavy-duty oscillating joint offers 45-degree turning angles to the left and right and 10 degrees of oscillation in both directions for optimal stability and maneuverability. The bucket and tires follow a constant turn radius, so the rear tires of the loader follow the path of the front tires.

Two accessible auxiliary hydraulic lines with flat-face couplers power a variety of tools and make attachment changes easy, the company says. Lift arm and bucket float features allow for “floating” of the lift arm and bucket for light scraping and rearward leveling actions.

The lift arm on the Gehl articulated loaders is designed to achieve maximum strength, excellent visibility and fast cycle times. The parallel-type linkage on the models 140 and 340, and Z bar-type linkage on the model 540 provide excellent bucket breakout forces from 2,433 pound-force on the model 140 to 10,749 pound-force on the model 540. The linkage design allows for mechanical self-leveling action in both the up and down directions, excellent bucket dump angles at the mid- and top-ranges of the lift path.

The new JCB 515-40 is 5 feet, 11 inches tall, 5 feet, 2 inches wide and 9 feet, 6 inches long and weighs 7,672 pounds. To achieve the lowest possible overall height, JCB developed the 515-40 with an all-new, innovative, off-set single-spine main frame. As a result, the machine boasts a full-size cab with both easy accessibility and plenty of space for the operator.

With a turning radius of just 9 feet and very compact dimensions, the JCB 515-40 can maneuver in even the smallest work environments, the company says. Equipped with four-wheel steering, four-wheel drive, a hydrostatic transmission and exceptional ground clearance, the machine can traverse challenging outdoor conditions. Its four-wheel drive system and hydrostatic transmission have four drive motors in the axle hub, ensuring the power is exactly where the operator needs it.

Powered by a 50-hp engine, the 515-40 can carry 3,300 pounds up to a maximum lift height of 13 feet, 2 inches. This combination of features allows the JCB 515-40 to maximize storage space inside small buildings, enables it to load a truck from one side and even grants it access to the inside of a standard container to load it from one end.

John Deere Construction & Forestry
John Deere’s new D-Series skid steer loaders and compact track loaders (CTLs) include more comfortable cabs similar to those on larger pieces of Deere equipment. Overall, D-Series cabs feature 24 percent more room than their predecessors and six more inches of headroom. They are also 50 percent quieter, positively pressurized and easier to enter and exit due to a larger door opening, the company says.

D-Series skid steers and CTLs have electronically controlled Tier 3/interim Tier 4 engines coupled with a new auto idle feature, providing quieter operation and fuel savings. The optional reversing hydraulic fan is a variable speed unit working with a computer program that monitors engine and hydraulic fluid temperatures to ramp fan speed up or down as needed.

Massey Ferguson
The Massey Ferguson 1600 Series of compact tractors offers six models and 22 configurations with the power, performance and comfort to meet exacting yet highly varied needs of the lawn and landscape contractor. The MF1600 Series offers all-steel and cast iron construction for durability plus high capacity performance with 35 to 60 engine horsepower.

The new MF1600 series is powered with efficient Iseki three- or four-cylinder liquid-cooled diesel engines that meet Tier IV interim emission standards. Heavy-duty cast-iron housings and oil-encased bevel gears allow for smoother operation and longer life, the company says.

The one-piece EZlift steel hood has a gas lift-assist cylinder to help access to the engine compartment. Basic service points are accessible without even lifting the hood.

Mustang’s 2056 Skid Steer Loader includes a new, compact chassis allows for as narrow as 59.7 inch loader width (without bucket) when equipped with optional offset wheel/tire package. Width is 62 inches with standard wheel/tire package.

A 62-hp Deutz TD2009 Series Tier III-certified turbo-diesel engine supplies extra power, and provides smooth, quiet operation. The loader offers lift heights up to 120 inches with standard 10.00 HD tires, and up to 122 inches with optional 12.00 HD tires.

It has a rated operating capacity of 1,900 pounds; 2,050 pounds when equipped with optional counterweight. Standard joystick controls are on moveable towers with full adjustment forward/rearward to match operator size and preferences. And a new “open-view” lift arm design allows for ease of entry and exit out of the cab, and better visibility of the bucket and attachment.

New options include deluxe cab enclosure with air-conditioning/heater system, two-speed drive and Power-A-Tach hydraulic quick-attach system.

New Holland
The L185 skid steer loader features a turbocharged engine rated at 82 gross horsepower, and has a 2,500-pound SAE-rated operating capacity, a bucket breakout force of 7,670 pounds and an operating weight of 7,135 pounds.

The L185 includes many of the same features available on New Holland’s other skid steer models, such as the patented Super Boom vertical lift linkage for better dump height and reach, a long wheelbase for stability, fast ground speeds and no rear towers to impair visibility.

The vertical lift Super Boom design provides more forward reach than radial lift designs, which allows the L185 to load material into the center of a truck.

The optional dual-range transmission provides extra performance and delivers travel speeds in excess of 11 mph.
The spacious cab on the L185 provides a comfortable environment for the operator. An optional sound suppression package reduces noise levels by up to three decibels for an even quieter working environment. Choose from standard mechanical controls or the optional pilot control system for added working ease, improved productivity and operator comfort.

The four-foot profile of the PT-30 offers productive work in limited access areas. The 33.7-horsepower PT-30 offers an operating weight of 3,600 pounds, a tipping load of 1,900 pounds, with a 950-pound operating capacity at 50 percent tipping load capacity, and a lift height of 101 inches. With a 3.0 psi ground pressure, the PT-30 easily works on soft or sensitive surfaces with minimal damage or impact, the company says.

Several features on the new PT-30 have been updated to match the Terex PT-60 model, including the design of the loader arm. The PT-30 comes standard with loader-mounted quick attach interface, allowing it to easily attach to a wide range of attachments including an auger, backhoe, brush cutter, leveler, pallet forks, box rake, snow blade and blower, tiller and trencher, as well as general purpose, light material and multi-purpose buckets.

Terex also offers a special Turf Track for the PT-30. Turf Tracks feature a special smooth tread that allows select Terex compact track machines, including the PT-30, to maneuver on virtually any surface with barely a trace, the company says.

The Vermeer S800TX mini skid steer features a rated tip capacity of 2,400 pounds (1089 kg) and rated SAE operating capacity of 840 pounds (381 kg), all in a compact frame, enabling contractors to lift and transport pallets and bucket loads in and around confined spaces.

The S800TX is powered by a 35-horsepower (26.1 kW) diesel engine. And measuring  40.5 inches (103 cm) wide, the S800TX offers a narrower footprint than other mini skid steer models with similar horsepower and operating capacity ratings, enhancing maneuverability and access to confined spaces.

The hydraulic system of the S800TX has exceptional flow rate, capable of providing 14 gpm (53 L/min) of hydraulic flow that helps more efficiently power a variety of attachments. An optional dual auxiliary hydraulic circuit helps provide operational efficiency with varying attachments. A universal mounting plate allows operators to quickly swap out attachments, making the S800TX extremely versatile in the field.

The Volvo MC90B skid steer loader has an operating capacity of 2,000 pounds and engine power of 83 net horsepower. An upgraded Tier 3 engine now provides increased ground speed along with decreased lift/lower/curl/dump cycle times that are up to 35 percent faster than the former Tier 2 models. The 16-valve, liquid-cooled Tier 3 engine delivers strong engine peak torque for digging in tough conditions and power required for a large variety of operations.

Volvo B-Series skid steer loaders offer the operator a choice of foot and hand mechanical controls or the comfort and efficiency of hand-operated hydraulic pilot controls. The operator cab is available in open canopy or enclosed cab configurations and both feature ROPS and FOPS safety engineering.

Service intervals for Volvo skid steer loaders have been simplified and extended on the B-Series, the company says. A completely overhauled hydraulic system provides increased serviceability with the hydraulic filter integrated into the hydraulic tank to open up space in the rear engine compartment. The hydraulic hoses have been upgraded to steel tubes for more durability, and the hydraulic lines are now located on top of the lift arm.

Wacker Neuson
The Wacker Neuson line of compact equipment includes wheel loaders, excavators and dumpers. Wacker Neuson’s compact excavators feature performance-proven machines ranging in class from 1.5 to 8 tons, the line spans everything from a mini-sized unit to machines with high output engines and zero tail swing options that perform digging tasks in the tightest confines. These units offer comfortable cabs/canopy options and a full line of attachments.