Sitka Gear
skid steer instead of tractor
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
olebuck 20-Sep-19
Grubby 20-Sep-19
Cowdoc 20-Sep-19
t-roy 20-Sep-19
[email protected] 20-Sep-19
Joey Ward 20-Sep-19
Thornton 20-Sep-19
M.Pauls 20-Sep-19
t-roy 20-Sep-19
sschultz 20-Sep-19
Pat Lefemine 20-Sep-19
iplumb 20-Sep-19
bb 20-Sep-19
Corn bore 21-Sep-19
LKH 21-Sep-19
Tradmike 22-Sep-19
drycreek 22-Sep-19
olebuck 23-Sep-19
Pat Lefemine 23-Sep-19
olebuck 23-Sep-19
drycreek 23-Sep-19
skookumjt 23-Sep-19
DanaC 27-Jul-21
JL 27-Jul-21
Missouribreaks 27-Jul-21
Pat Lefemine 27-Jul-21
Shiloh 27-Jul-21
Bake 27-Jul-21
olebuck 28-Jul-21
Lost Arra 28-Jul-21
olebuck 28-Jul-21
Pat Lefemine 28-Jul-21
olebuck 28-Jul-21
Pat Lefemine 28-Jul-21
olebuck 28-Jul-21
GFL 28-Jul-21
GFL 28-Jul-21
From: olebuck
20-Sep-19
has anyone considered using a skid steer for property mainteance instead of a tractor?

i have a cab air 60HP tractor - but a tree just fell on it - and i am afraid the insurance company is going to total it out.

i am considering replacing it with a JD 317 compact track loader - used with less that 1000 hrs - I can get a 5' brush mower - and then a tiller as well...

I know its not a complete replacement for a tractor - but it would be very handy at fixing roads, and doing fence repair work - as well as food plot prep.

anyone here own one?

From: Grubby
20-Sep-19
I know a few guys who built 3 point mounts for them on quicktatch plates. You can really work up a plot quickly with a disc mounted on the front.

From: Cowdoc
20-Sep-19
tracks or wheels?

From: t-roy
20-Sep-19
I have both, olebuck. I have a 4020 John Deere tractor as well as a Bobcat 863 skid steer. Each one has certain capacities that are best suited for their respective applications. I guess it would depend on how many acres you’re talking about. If doing only a few acres, I don’t think it would be that big of a difference, however, I would hate having to till my food plots (12-15 acres) with only the skid vs using the tractor and varying implements for that job. Likewise, it is WAY more handy to use the skid for clearing new plots, fixing trails, grubbing out trees/stumps, fence repairs, etc. plus, IMO, doing those things with a tractor and a loader bucket is harder on that equipment, than using the skid for them.

If you go with the skid, I would HIGHLY recommend looking into a stump bucket as one of your attachments. Extremely versatile attachment. I use mine extensively.

20-Sep-19
As noted above, big acreage with a skid is a pain. But, skid steers are incredibly handy for a lot of other tasks.

From: Joey Ward
20-Sep-19
I just can’t see any benefit to a skid steer over a 4wd tractor with a front end loader for plot work and general farmland maintenance.

Implements, parts, and service should be easier to find for a tractor too.

From: Thornton
20-Sep-19
Skid steer will beat you up and would not be as good as a tractor.

From: M.Pauls
20-Sep-19
Skid steers blow a 4wd tractor out of the water for the things they are intended for. But for general property work IMO they don’t really compare to a 4wd tractor, not to mention that your cost on both the actual unit and implements are generally speaking far less on the 4wd. They’ll also keep their value better, again, generally speaking

From: t-roy
20-Sep-19

t-roy's embedded Photo
t-roy's embedded Photo
A track loader is not nearly as rough on you as wheeled loader. Mine is wheeled and I wish it was on tracks, but it would have been considerably more $.

From: sschultz
20-Sep-19
Take a look at the Bobcat Toolcat does everything a tractor and a skid steer will do

From: Pat Lefemine
20-Sep-19
I don't own a skidsteer but I have used them plenty and they are sweet little machines - for what they were designed for. They were not designed for farming. Sorry.

From: iplumb
20-Sep-19
Both have a purpose - And I own both. Skid is the bomb for "making new" not so much for planting... Skid - Tracked is 100% better. My humble opinion having more than 100K tied up in iron.

From: bb
20-Sep-19
track loader is head and shoulders better for this type of work than the wheeled machines. They are fast and maneuverable. The hydraulics tend to be better then they put in tractors. of similar sizes. That would be my first choice. I work on jobs where they are building athletic fields. From starting the site work to finish. We're talking large areas. They all use skid steers with tracks and wheels. I have yet to see any of this work done with a 4WD tractor.

From: Corn bore
21-Sep-19
For food plots buy a tractor with tiller if you need to move a bunch of dirt or trees etc. rent the skidder.

From: LKH
21-Sep-19
On my place we use a skid steer for certain tasks but much of my land is wet and "STUCK" is what you can get. Badly! Tractor can too but not as easily or as bad.

From: Tradmike
22-Sep-19
I have both, use the track loader way more than a field tractor. Get the loader.

From: drycreek
22-Sep-19

drycreek's embedded Photo
drycreek's embedded Photo
I couldn’t do without my tractor, but then I have a JD 310 backhoe also. Used to have a Cat D5 dozer but when I sold my other place I didn’t use it much so I sold it too. My tractor bucket comes in handy for small stuff, but there’s a world of difference between it and my backhoe, they’re not in the same league. I wouldn’t mind having a skid steer, but wouldn’t use it enough to justify it.

From: olebuck
23-Sep-19
I have two tractors

a 50 HP 4x4 FEL and a 60 HP 4x4 FEL Cab ( the one the tree fell on)

the insurance company is going to repair it - so it went to the dealer for a new hood and radiator etc.

Probably going to trade the 50 HP for a cab and air - and sell the 60HP when it comes back from the shop - and start looking for a compact track loader...

From: Pat Lefemine
23-Sep-19
Olebuck your first post never mentions two tractors so if you already have a tractor then by all means get the skidsteer and your life will be complete.

From: olebuck
23-Sep-19
Pat,

well the 50HP is actually my dads - of the 720hrs on it - i have probably put 500... since he has used my cab tractor he has his mind on getting one himself.

From: drycreek
23-Sep-19
Getting into a cab tractor was the best move I ever made. I can trim limbs better than I can suffer the heat and being covered up in pollen and crap.

From: skookumjt
23-Sep-19
Depends on what you are going to do. Tractors are meant for field work and skid steers are built for the rest. Digging, lifting, moving, grinding, etc.

Using a front end loader for anything other than light, loose material is dangerous, ineffective, and hard on your equipment.

From: DanaC
27-Jul-21
Like Joel says. Doing 'field' or 'woods' work? Buy what you'll use most, contract for 'occasional' jobs. Our club has used a (rented) skid-steer for brush clearing, controlling 'invasive' species and it's great for that. We contracted a guy with a heavier unit and a 'forest mulching' head to clear several acres of wood debris after logging. We _own_ a tractor with assorted attachments for tilling, planting etc. etc.

27-Jul-21
Understand the post is years old I agree with the posts above. For tilling and planting food plots a tractor. For moving rocks, brush and more demolition type work rent the Skidsteer.

Of course owning both is nice if you can justify it

From: JL
27-Jul-21
I've been using a Kubota tractor for the the plot tilling the last 3 years. I have used it to dislodge a few big boulders out of the ground and remove them. I think a lot has to do with knowing the tractors do's and don'ts....what it's limitations are. From my use.....more hydraulics and less tractor works pretty good on the boulders.

27-Jul-21
I have both. The biggest mistake I see made is getting a tractor that is really too small for the tasks at hand. Of course a 1/2 acre of food plot is much different than doing 40 acres or so. In any event, I enjoy my skid steer on wheels, and tractors.

From: Pat Lefemine
27-Jul-21
I bought my Deere 450h dozer 8 years ago for 22k, I had a guy offer me 35k for it last week. I guess heavy equipment is in high demand and short supply these days like everything else. Pretty good investment to clear your entire land then make a 13k profit.

From: Shiloh
27-Jul-21
Pat I’m in the construction business and I have told a bunch of folks to buy a good used piece and use it then sell it. This suits some, but not all. Good move if you can maintain equipment and keep it in good shape. Bad move if you can’t mechanic at all and are rough on stuff. Probably still a good move even if you have to hire someone for maintenance as long as you buy right.

From: Bake
27-Jul-21
I don't food plot (yet), but my dad has an 85 horse cab tractor that is super handy with implements behind it like a brushhog or box blade, etc. Super annoying to do a lot of loader work with it (if you're a desk weenie like me, your left leg gets tired of clutching that sucker all day long). Plus not handy at all around trees or brush. Cab sticks way up there and the mirrors grab every limb they can. I REALLY want a compact track loader since I already have access to the tractor.

From: olebuck
28-Jul-21
i started this post a couple years ago. i have since bought a 65HP cab tractor and sold it and bought a skid steer.

just recently bought a 2021 John deere 317 G compact Track Loader. its an awesome machine, and the multiple attachments are awesome. there are things both machines can do, but they both have there place. one thing i really like about the track machine is the low ground pressure. i can get into places with the tracks that a tractor could never go. i have planted two food plots with the CTL, i will have more input as i use it more.

From: Lost Arra
28-Jul-21
Used track loaders for sale in decent shape (relatively low hours) are rare around here.

From: olebuck
28-Jul-21

olebuck's embedded Photo
olebuck's embedded Photo
used equipment is tough to find period. that is why i ended up buying a new one.

From: Pat Lefemine
28-Jul-21
Ouch, that machine is not cheap! Sweet setup. Do you have to drive backwards when tilling?

From: olebuck
28-Jul-21
Pat,

i Fabbed up the skid steer plate on the back of the disk, so i push it forward. usually go back and forth and the ground is really nice and smooth - plus i can ally down pressure to really get it down deep.

also mounted the seed spreader on the front with a 2" receiver hitch.

From: Pat Lefemine
28-Jul-21
Interesting. I would think for tilling jobs where you want a fluffy soil the tracks would compact the soil. I've never seen that done before, pretty ingenious.

From: olebuck
28-Jul-21
Pat,

i've never seen it before either. i just couldn't afford a tiller so i came up with this. the ground pressure is less than 4lbs per square inch - so it really doesn't pack it that hard.

From: GFL
28-Jul-21

GFL's embedded Photo
GFL's embedded Photo
Track loader is great for building new plots,etc but I have way more hours on my tractor.

From: GFL
28-Jul-21

GFL's embedded Photo
GFL's embedded Photo

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