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How much can a loader on a garden tractor lift? Deere 110 loader project?


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#1 Tennblue59 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 02, 2011 - 10:04 PM

Our main house is in Tennessee, but because of the dismal real estate market in Florida, we still have our old house down there. While towing the big tractor down to Florida for a couple projects, I started thinking about getting/building a loader for one of the garden tractors and leaving it in Florida for tasks down there. Just a suburban house and yard, so wouldn't need to do a lot of heavy lifting - and I could use it to cut the grass as well!

So on to my questions! How much can you practically (safely) lift in a bucket on a 500-700 lb tractor? And with most of these being 1 or 2 wheel drive, doesn't traction become an issue? I have experience with bigger tractors/loaders, but never with a garden tractor.

I have two possible platforms - a 110 round fender, and a 316k. I have a set of plans for a standard type loader and would probably size it to fit the platform and build it myself unless I could get a good deal on an existing one. The 110 has NO hydraulics at all, so I would have to go with an engine driven pump. The 316k has hydraulics, but would there be enough flow to support a loader off the internal system? Would it be better to use a seperate pump/hydraulic system on that one as well?

Are the front axles/wheels/frames on these up to the added load of a loader (no pun intended...:blush2:)?

Are most loaders mounted to the frame or is a subframe member added to spread the weight to the rear axle?

I have most of the tubing, plumbing and valves for a loader system, so am not too concerned about the cost, and building it would be fun. But I want to make sure it will be productive enough to warrent the time and effort. I don't expect to lift the front end of cars with it, but would expect to ba able to move some cinder blocks or a load of dirt if needed.....

Sorry for all the questions, but There always seems to be someone out there who has good answers to all my questions!

#2 Trav1s ONLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2011 - 07:02 AM

Can't answer the details but can offer this: All of my reading says a LGT with a loader is a very capable combo. Weight on the rear is necessary to keep it on the ground.

If I were to choose the 316k is a no brainer. The hydrostatic drive would be a huge benefit when working. I would even consider adding power steering on the tractor.

#3 ducky OFFLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2011 - 07:37 AM

A foot controlled hydro is a BIG plus for a loader tractor.
Think of the the hydro lever, the steering wheel and the loader control valve and only 2 arms. It least you would want the loader control valve on the opposite side as the hydro lever.
Don't forget the can holder either.LOL

#4 mjodrey OFFLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2011 - 07:59 AM

You may want to do a spindle upgrade on it.

#5 bhts OFFLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2011 - 08:45 AM

I would go with the 316 as it has bigger front spindles and just upgrade to a heavy duty bearing in the wheel.You will need to use a external pump as the hydro will not have the pressure to run the loader.You will need a weight box that can hold something in the 400 lb area.The loader on my bolens ht23 bolts to the frame and can lift in the 5-600lb range.Power steering would be nice but not nessacery as long as the right weight is on the back.

The 110 you refer to did have a loader setup for them and was setup for around 300lbs max so it's really up to the needs you have for which tractor to use.The setup would be the same as the 316 just smaller.
  • Tennblue59 said thank you

#6 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2011 - 04:37 PM

Just for reference I believe the loader for the X700 series is rated to lift 400lbs to full height. That is with a ballast box and wheel weights. That is a bit much for safety IMO with a tractor as small as a 316. You can design it to lift a lot of weight but it won't be safe and you will likely break something. I would say 300lbs would be a good safe limit.
Another example. My 2320 with ballast weighs in at about 3200lbs. It can lift 620 to full height and feels safe doing it.

#7 olcowhand ONLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2011 - 05:22 PM

Bob is right, go with the 316. He's right on needing a dedicated hydraulic pump/reservoir too. Power steering is a BIG plus, but not a "have to have" item. The 110 I have has 1" spindles as the 316, but the bigger the tractor, the safer you are.
I also agree with JDBrian on the weight. On totally flat ground, with plenty of rear ballast, maybe 400lbs max height, but on even the slightest of slope, never lift to max height, even with a light load. And NEVER drive with loader at full height, except to pull up to whatever you're dumping in. On uneven ground, just the weight of the loader arms & bucket at full height....you can tip over sideways. Duals really help reduce tipping.
FEL's are extremely useful. I do a LOT of true WORK with mine. They will dig a lot too, if your tractor is weighted enough. Mine is on a Massey 1855 with no subframe. You would likely do fine without an added subframe too.
I say do it! You WILL NOT regret having it once finished, and will never run short of jobs it can do for you. Also could save you thousands of dollars in back injury costs, and the extreme pain!

#8 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2011 - 06:52 PM

It's not just weight that is an issue with the tractor. A smaller tractor has a shorter wheelbase, is usually narrower and has smaller tires. These things all influence stability.
The JD 2305 and the 2320 used the same loader. When I hung out on MTF there were a number of instances where guys rolled their 2305's while using the loader. IMO it is not so much a weight issue in that case but the other factors, particularly the much shorter wheelbase and smaller tires. The smaller tires will sink more in soft material on the downhill side and cause the tractor to tip more which can lead to a rollover.
This is not something to play with. Designing a loader that's too heavy or strong for your tractor could get you killed. An alternative for those who don't need to lift material to load a truck or trailer is the Johnny bucket. It keeps the weight low and works very well on smaller tractors. You can even get a tooth bar for it to help it dig.

#9 Tennblue59 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2011 - 07:57 PM

Thanks guys! That was the kind of info I needed. We have a 2320 deere as well and I know on this much bigger platform, weight, and more weight in back makes a big difference.

One good thing about this project would be that it would be used in FLAT Florida. I do know from experience that hills (we have some very hilly areas on our Tenn property) and slope make a big difference with loader comfort. I wasn't sure how the feel would be on the smaller (shorter wheelbase, smaller tires, lack of weight and no 4 wheel drive...) platform.

#10 Reverend Blair OFFLINE  

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Posted October 03, 2011 - 08:01 PM

I say go for it. The loader on my 420 just loaded my trailer with broken concrete. I've spread maybe 60 yards of clay fill, 3/4 down lime, and top soil this year. Lifted motors, knocked down a fence and shed too.

Go with the 316. Bigger is better. Get wheel weights and fill the tires. I keep the tiller or rear scraper (with some extra concrete weight) on for a counter weight too. Keep the loader as close to the ground as you can, full or empty (same as in a full-sized loader or a forklift...safety rules never change) and be careful on hills and uneven ground. A loader is the most useful accessory you'll ever have.

#11 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted October 04, 2011 - 03:19 PM

[QUOTE=Reverend Blair;102022

Go with the 316. Bigger is better. Get wheel weights and fill the tires. I keep the tiller or rear scraper (with some extra concrete weight) on for a counter weight too. Keep the loader as close to the ground as you can, full or empty (same as in a full-sized loader or a forklift...safety rules never change) and be careful on hills and uneven ground. A loader is the most useful accessory you'll ever have.[/QUOTE]

Agreed. You will use it all the time for lifting anything heavy or awkward. I suggest looking into a ballast box if you have a 3pt hitch. Also make sure your front tires are in good shape and inflated to the max. pressure.

#12 Tennblue59 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 04, 2011 - 10:50 PM

Thanks for the info folks.

The concensus seems to be lots of rear weight, that folcrums the weight off the smaller front wheels and onto the stout rear axle (thats really what happens with rear hitch weight..).

You are adding a static load of 300-400 lbs fr counterweight, weight of loader (500 -1000 lbs?) plus payload (400 - 600 lbs), plus dynamic weight (lifting, bouncing, shifting, etc). Are Garden Tractor frames strong enough to take this kind of weight without twisting?

Obviously some models are, because there are members out there using them this way. Looking at the frame of my 316, is much thicker than the frame on my LX173 mower. Garden tractor vs lawn tractor?

If you were going to pick a garden tractor for loader duty, what would be some of the prefered models and why? Not trying to start a "my brand is better than your brand" war, just curious! I've only had Sears and Deere L/G tractors, so I don't know much else. If there were a platform head and shoulders better than my 316 to start with, I might try and do some trading around. So what's your loader hooked on and why does it work/not work?

#13 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted October 05, 2011 - 07:19 PM

The older 300 or 400 series JD's are good candidates. Generally bigger and heavier is better. It also helps if the tractor was designed to have a loader on it. If you can find any of the big JD's like 445 or the x485,585 or x700 series they are big and strong enough to run a loader. The frames are huge on these tractors. I had a X475 for a while but did not have a loader. Other nice features are a dif. lock and power steering. I'm sure there are models in every brand that can do it, but I'll leave it to others to comment. I am most familiar with the green tractors.

#14 Sergeant OFFLINE  

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Posted October 05, 2011 - 08:14 PM

Just for reference I believe the loader for the X700 series is rated to lift 400lbs to full height. That is with a ballast box and wheel weights. That is a bit much for safety IMO with a tractor as small as a 316. You can design it to lift a lot of weight but it won't be safe and you will likely break something. I would say 300lbs would be a good safe limit.
Another example. My 2320 with ballast weighs in at about 3200lbs. It can lift 620 to full height and feels safe doing it.


45loader at max lift height is 365Lbs. At transport height 640Lbs or 36inches if You shim it You can get 1200 to 1500lbs at transport height
40Loader same as 45 loader
44loader for 316Onan to 332 400lbs at Max height
420 & 430 with a 44loader 500Lbs at Max lift Height
Johnson Loader on a 110, 112, 140 and 200 thru 216 350lbs at Max Lift Height
Kwik-way Loader is about the same as the 44loader for the 316Onan to 332 or 420 & 430
:thumbs:

#15 JDBrian OFFLINE  

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Posted October 06, 2011 - 04:10 AM

Thanks Sergeant that's good info. to know. I couldn't quite remember how much the 45 could lift. I considered one when I had the x475. The dealer was offering me one at a great price but I decided to go to a bigger tractor. The factory designed loaders serve as a good design limit guide for those DIY ing a loader. I cringe when people talk about their small GT's being able to lift huge weights. Trying to transport 1500 lbs with a x700 series tractor would be very dangerous IMO.




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