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Author Topic: Bucket forks  (Read 1093 times)

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Offline starmac

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Re: Bucket forks
« Reply #20 on: September 14, 2017, 03:28:30 am »
You will be amazed at how much you can't lift with the forks on the bucket instead of removing the bucket when forks are used.
Our 4020 john deer farm tractor would easily handle more weight with just forks than a 930 cat with forks mounted on the bucket.
Old LT40HD, old log truck, old MM forklift, and several huskies.

Online Crusarius

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Re: Bucket forks
« Reply #21 on: September 14, 2017, 07:45:27 am »
I know I will be limited. I am planning a skidsteer quick attach just didn't want to invest the time in that right now. So I made the bucket forks instead. Kinda dead in the water waiting for the wheels for my sawmill that were supposed to be here last saturday.
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Online Crusarius

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Re: Bucket forks
« Reply #22 on: September 14, 2017, 08:17:00 am »
Here is the fully assembled forks after yesterdays test run. They worked better than I expected. I will be doing more when I get home tonight. It is still challenging seeing the ends of the forks but I think it will be tolerable. Especially after I get used to them. My biggest issue is now that the front of the bucket is 4' further out tiny little movements are amplified quite a bit.

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Offline btulloh

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Re: Bucket forks
« Reply #23 on: September 14, 2017, 01:48:17 pm »
Glad to hear they're working out.  Nice job.  It's good to get something like that done while you're in a delay on your main project.  They will come in handy.  Even with the limitations of bucket forks (and 3-pt) forks, they are a lot better than no forks.  You'll get used to having all that  new length in front, but they do describe a large radius when turning.  They don't take shock loads very well either. 

When you get to picking up things you'll find out how much counter-weight you need.  You probably have enough scrap steel laying around to make something.  Another project for one of those delays maybe.  A couple pieces of I-beam and some railroad track would add up pretty quick.

I knocked out a second counter weight this morning, because I need one at the sawmill and at the house too.  I can always pick up a heavy log for a counter-weight, but it just adds to the amount of side clearance I need. This one's just 8x8 solid blocks on a skid made of 2x4's on 4x4 stringers.  Not pretty, but effective.  20 blocks makes a pretty good ballast.

 

  

 

My forks aren't as pretty as yours, but it's not a beauty contest.  There are some challenges to putting forks on a 4-in-1.  That's probably why I've never seen any for sale.  These are fixed to the sides, which makes them a bit less versatile than movable spacing.  They work though, and I'm glad to have 'em.

Having forks on the back really increases what you can accomplish with tractor forks.  They'll handle at least twice the load the bucket forks will.  The also give you options on maneuvering loads.  A tractor is not very nimble in tight spaces compared to skid steers and forklifts.

Keep up the good work.  I'm looking forward to watching your mill come together.  I wish I had your fabrication skills.

BT
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Online Crusarius

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Re: Bucket forks
« Reply #24 on: September 14, 2017, 01:57:46 pm »
I really like your skid idea for the rear. I may have to do something similar to that. you are correct I have lots of scrap steel around. I bet I could make a box for my quick hitch and load it with lots of heavy steel from work to. Might have to look into doing that.

Those forks looks really sweet. looks like they work great. Do you have anymore pics? curious on bottom detail.

Thanx for the compliments on the fab skills. Definitely feels good :)
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Offline btulloh

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Re: Bucket forks
« Reply #25 on: September 14, 2017, 03:39:16 pm »
Here's the bottom.  Not much to it.  The jaw of the 4-in-1 is not a flat plate.  It's a thin triangular box with a cutting edge in front and a cutting edge in the back.  The top and bottom plates are pretty thin.  As a unit, it is strong and holds up well to abuse from typical use, which does not include mounting bucket forks.  The reason I made them this way was to put keep the force at the front and at the rear of the jaw, where the big steel lives.  There are some shim pads welded on to the top of channel steel at the back so the force is applied there instead of the thin steel of the box structure.  I did not know if would work when I was building it, so I just used a piece of 5x1.5 channel that was laying around and some 5/16 plate.  I didn't spend a lot of time making it pretty - I was just trying to see if would be functional.  Someday in my spare time I'll make another one now that I know it works.

 

 

 

 

There's a plate on the outside of each fork and two bolts through the side of the jaw that hold it in place.  The bolts don't have any real strain on them unless I catch a tree while backing and turning.  Not that that would ever happen. ;)

The whole design is dictated by the design of the 4-in-1.  My first idea was to just make it with a vertical bit at the back end of the channel and just slide the forks on and bite them with jaw to hold them in place.  Could work, but the geometry of the jaw and the cutting edge on the blade was too much to deal with at the time.  Maybe I'll go back to that on Version 2.0

Here's another counter-weight I use.  It works fine, but with the log on the back and a 10 foot pallet of lumber on the front, it's hard to get through the drive-thru at BurgerDoodle.

 

 

One thing I've found with this tractor is that I'm constantly switching between using the counter weight and using the back forks for actual work.  If my counterweight was hitched on I'd have a lot less flexibility from task to task. 
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Re: Bucket forks
« Reply #26 on: September 14, 2017, 04:15:15 pm »
Thank you for the detail. that really is a pretty slick setup. Definitely looks very stout.

I have a quick hitch on my tractor so changing from weight box to forks is not that much work. I do find that I almost always want my box blade on there for quick cleanup as I drive through an area so that has been my goto weight.
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Online Crusarius

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Re: Bucket forks
« Reply #27 on: September 15, 2017, 10:35:55 am »
Real testing performed last night. I almost had to post a picture like Kbeitz but I managed to save it. I would have gotten a pic but I could not get off the seat without it wanting to fall over. I definitely need counterweight.



Also works for trees.
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Online Crusarius

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Re: Bucket forks
« Reply #28 on: September 15, 2017, 10:36:45 am »
Forks did bow with the jeep on there but straightened right back out after setting it down.

I am very pleased with how they work.
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