A Skid Steer loader or ‘Bobcat’ is a small, compact construction machine. Their small size and maneuverability, as well as the large number of add-on attachments that can be fixed to them make them extremely popular for a wide range of tasks such as construction and landscaping. As well as being very agile and compact, they can easily accommodate a wide range of different attachments which makes them ideal for many different industries, including construction, landscaping, manufacturing and demolition. Bobcats normally come with 4 wheels, but they can be fitted with tracks – just like a small tank – to operate in muddy conditions.

Usually the engine is located behind the cab, and there are two arms that run from the back to the front and latch on to the tools. If you need bobcat bucket teeth check online.

Why The Funny Name ?

The actual “skid steer” term is used because of how the vehicle drives. Instead of having a steering mechanism like an automobile, a skid steer loader turns by moving the wheels on one side while stopping the wheels on the opposite side. This causes the skid steer to “skid” on the wheels that are stopped, thus turning the vehicle towards the wheels that have stopped. This makes skid steers not only more robust with fewer parts to go wrong, but enables them to have a very small turning circle. OK, so what should I look for when I buy one of these.

Choose the right size machine

You should consider three fundamental factors when choosing your Bobcat Skidsteer.

1. Overall size. Will it fit in your garage, down your driveway, through your gate? Most skid steers are between 3′ and 6′ wide, and between 5′ and 7′ tall. Taking into consideration the physical work area can make it easier to make your choice.

2. Dumping Height. Do you know how high you will need your skid steer to lift things. It is important to realize whether you need to dump over a 9′ truck or a 4′ fence. This is usually called the “height to hinge pin” measurement, or the distance from the ground to the point where the loader arms pivot the bucket. This usually ranges between 8′ and 10′.

3. Lifting Capacity How much do you need to lift? Will you be lifting heavy loads? Many manufacturers also refer to this as the operating capacity. This is alos commonly known as the operating capacity. The most popular size, is the 1,700 lb – 2,200 lb range. Although some skid steer loaders can lift over 3,000 lbs, if you need to lift loads this big you really would be better to consider a full-size front end loader instead.

What About Tires

Skid steers come with three main choices of tire. The tire choices are air filled rubber tires – just like your car, foam filled tires, and solid rubber tires.You would normally fit one of three types of tire to these loaders – hollow air-filled rubber tires, rubber tires filled with pneumatic foam and solid rubber tires.. Remember they are also available with tracks.

1. Air-Filled Tires – the cheapest and probably the best solution for most people. these are the least expensive and are the best for smooth rides on rocky or uneven surfaces, of course, being air filled they can get punctures at just the wrong time!

2.Foam-Filled Pneumatic Tires – if you are worried about punctures, on sharp gravel for example then these are a good option, albeit a more expensive one. Also because foam-filled tires are much heavier than normal air-filled tires they can lead to breakdowns from the extra strain placed on the skid steer’s transmission.

3.Solid Rubber Tires – these are thinner and longer lasting than foam or air filled tires but not nearly as comfortable.

Most of the time you should choose air filled tires as they are the most economical and certainly the most comfortable. You should remember, though, that you can easily change your tires to suit the surface if required to do so and many spare sets are often available from specialist dealers or websites at very reasonable prices

Can I Have Tracks?

Certainly, tracks are an option. There are several benefits when working with tracked skid steers; you get much better traction in mud and on loose ground and there is generally less damage done to the ground than with a wheeled skid steer loader.

Tracked skid steer loaders tend to be bigger than wheeled ones, and therefore more expensive. As with tires, though you can buy conversion kits that enable you to attach tracks to a wheeled loader thus gaining the advantages of both.

Comfort & Visibility

Once you have determined the size and capacity requirements for your skid steer, you will need to try out the available models and consider the following factors:

Cab Comfort Since you will probably be spending many hours in the cab it should be comfortable. Comfort is important because in many instances you will be inside a cab for hours. Make sure the seat can be easily adjusted and is well padded and that the main controls are all within easy reach.

All-round visibility Safety should always by uppermost in your considerations when buying a skid steer. In any work environment it is important to be safe. Good visibility from inside the cab, can both speed up work and reduce errors and accidents.