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  1. #1
    Silver Member ManAtArms's Avatar
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    2009 Kubota M59

    Default HD grapple shopping advice needed

    Hi Gang,

    I've been following a few grapple threads on TBN with great interest. I'm grapple shopping for my Kubota M59, but I'm seriously concerned that I will bend/break a grapple made from mild steel (A36). This includes HD models from many reputable makers like Markham/Gator, WR Long, Unlimited Fabrication, Wildcat, etc. The "high-end" grapples (Anbo, Eagle Talon, Bradco i.e. - expensive) are all made from T1 or AR400 steel. From my research, it appears that T1 is twice as strong as A36, and AR400 is stronger still.

    I知 looking at using the grapple to dig out small trees and roots, move firewood logs (log length, bucked up and splits) and move lots of really big boulders. The M59 has a lift capacity of about 4k.

    I致e been talking to various makers of grapples over the last few weeks, and the cost of a T1 or AR400 grapple ($3500 - $5000) is typically 2x that of a HD model from mild steel ($1700 - $2000). I assume the cost of the raw materials (steel plate) explains the difference in price.

    The makers of the expensive ones will tell you that mild steel does not belong on a grapple, for example, http://www.skid-steer-solutions.com/...%20vs%20AR.pdf

    Not having seen any of these T1/AR400 grapples next to a mild steel grapple, I have no idea if this is marketing BS or the truth. I知 not too concerned with how heavy the grapple is, rather if it can take the abuse of lifting and moving 2000lb.+ rocks. At the end of the day I want something that will last for the best price possible. If t1 or AR400 is overkill?I will gladly buy one made from A36 and save quite a bit of cash.

    To complicate matters, it appears most of the 塗igh-end grapple designs are of the 途oot rake variety with a single 田law (I think some call it a clamshell). I知 told this design might not be good for picking up bucked up logs and splits. If one piece of wood is positioned such that it stops the complete closure of the grapple before it grabs the rest of the load?t will just lose the pile because the short lower tines will not support a load without the top claw creating pressure.

    Here痴 an example of the 途oot rake type (bradco from EverythingAttachments.com):




    Maybe I知 better off with the 澱rush grapple design, with split claws from (bradco from Messicks):



    Why are there so many **** grapple designs and names??? This is really confusing.

    Does anyone have experience with a mild steel grapple on a loader with 3k or greater lift capacity, or one of the big skid steers or industrial backhoe? How about picking up logs and firewood?

    -Mark
    2009 Kubota M59, Hydraulic Thumb, front aux hydraulics,
    8' Ford 917 Flail Mower
    Belltec H-300 auger, Markham Grapple, Bradco forks
    Landpride GS-1560 Grading Scraper
    2008 ASV PT50

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    a pit bull or two (RIP Tugboat)

  2. #2
    Elite Member dex3361's Avatar
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    Kubota L4400-1 HST,FEL, 3x3 remotes, TNT. BX1500 54 mmm

    Default Re: HD grapple shopping advice needed

    I have the Anbo Grapple Root rake and I love using it. You have nailed the shortcoming of the root rake design but they do offer the ability to back rake. Here is a link to a post from some work I did last weekend.
    The Anbo is tough and light for its size.
    Randall



    1Timothy Chapter 2:
    3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
    4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
    5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.
    From: The HOLY BIBLE

  3. #3
    Elite Member dex3361's Avatar
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    N. of Charleston WV
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    Kubota L4400-1 HST,FEL, 3x3 remotes, TNT. BX1500 54 mmm

    Default Re: HD grapple shopping advice needed

    I am able to exceed the capacity of my tractor if I am not careful. It handles what I need it to do very well. Disregard the Jack Russel Terrier I let him run the grapple every now and again or he gets a bit grumpy.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -hpim1874a-jpg   -hpim1865a-jpg  
    Randall



    1Timothy Chapter 2:
    3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
    4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
    5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.
    From: The HOLY BIBLE

  4. #4
    Elite Member
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    MtnViewRanch's Avatar
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    Default Re: HD grapple shopping advice needed

    Just my opinion here, but I doubt that you really need an industrial beat the heck out of it everyday grapple. I very well could be wrong, but to be able to make full use of one of the $5K grapples, you would most likely have to abuse your machine and that would be a bad thing.

    I have one of the Skid Steer loader Root Grapple Heavy Duty. The extreme duty was not available when I purchased the HD unit. My tractor is about 12,000 lbs and the heavy duty unit has held up fine for me. Now I do not abuse it, have moved a few boulders and parts of downed trees, brush, scrub oak and the like. What I feel has been the hardest on it has been when I have the front edge about 8 inches in the dirt and then move forward to dig up roots and the like, after all it is a Root Rake Grapple.

    Believe me, I am a believer in HD implements, had a few medium duty that just ended up costing me more money. I don't know if any of this helps, but I hope that it might.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -p2090011-jpg   -pc200040-jpg   -pc200041-jpg  
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Brian
    Top and Tilt Kits by Fit Rite Hydraulics

  5. #5
    Veteran Member
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    Default Re: HD grapple shopping advice needed

    I got mine here and this thing is bullet proof. Also hey have made some specialty stuff for me, great people to deal with and their prices beat most out there.

    Root Grapple

  6. #6
    Super Star Member IslandTractor's Avatar
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    2007 Kioti DK40se HST, Woods BH

    Default Re: HD grapple shopping advice needed

    I don't understand the fascination with heavy duty grapples for tractors. The M59 is a powerful machine but it is not a bulldozer or skidsteer. The FEL is designed to lift not ram. Why do you think you would need to spend three or four times as much on a heavy duty grapple than a light duty? For that difference in price you could easily buy two light duty grapples (which no one, including a M59 owner) has "broken" yet and have one to use while the other is in the shop for ????needed repairs.

    I have a 48" light duty Millonzi grapple on a tractor with 2700lb lift capacity. I have put it to heavy use in digging out rocks, stumps, trees and brush and except for one busted hose (snag) and splaying out the tips of the upper grapple while digging out large rocks (heat, bend back, weld on reinforcing gussets fixed that). The Millonzi is no longer made but it is lighter duty than a slightly beefed up Markham 48 "light duty" ordered with 1/2 inch end tines and extra spacer tines. The Markham is considerably less money than most other grapples on the market now and they have had a pretty uniformly positive experience reported on TBN.

    A light duty grapple weighs about 300-350lbs. A heavy duty grapple weighs 500-700lbs and that difference in weight comes right off your net lift capacity. Mild steel can be easily rebent with heat and easily welded. High tech steel becomes fragile with heating so repairs are not likely to be as successful.

    Clamshell grapples are nice for collecting small brush as they can compress it but as you noted they are less ideal for assymmetric hard materials and can actually be damaged by applying pressure to an offset rock or stump where the "clam top" gets twisted. Two upper grapples is more flexible but adds weight and cost. A single upper grapple is quite versatile and in four years I have never had any object I could fit into the grapple fail to be clamped. Yes, small stuff will fall down between the bottom tines as it will with any style grapple but anything larger than the bottom tine gap can be securely held for transport with a single upper jaw.

    I'd suggest you PM Charlesaf3 who has the same grapple I do on his M59. See what he thinks.

  7. #7
    Platinum Member
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    upstate South Carolina, Greenville
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    Kubota M6800, Massey Ferguson 240

    Default Re: HD grapple shopping advice needed

    After researching many posts here, I bought a Markham a year ago. My M-6800 kubota 4 WD with loaded tires is pretty heavy and powerful, but it's lift capacity is around 2600 (If I remember correctly) My Markham is the 48" built with 1/2 steel with extra spacer tines. We have really worked this hard uprooting trees, clearing land, moving logs, debris, rocks, etc. Believe me, it has held up to everything we have put it through. Works great. The single top "claw" holds everything securely. I don't see how a double would improve things. Other than a minor bend of one spacer tine, the grapple is untouched. I personally would never spend more on an Anbo or other brand. THis Markham works great and has held up to extreme use.

  8. #8
    Veteran Member Charlesaf3's Avatar
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    Default Re: HD grapple shopping advice needed

    Island Tractor, who is pretty much the resident grapple expert, is precisely right.

    I have the lightest duty Millonzi 48 on my m59. I've bent the tines - no biggie whatever. If I cared I'd bend them back and gusset them. Its not important.

    The dozer style grapples are great, but not for what you want - that's more of a fancy york rake if you think about it. For forestry, the millonzi/bradco/markham is much better.

    Get a beefed up Markham (from what I've read here). Its the millonzi improved, and perfect for the m59.

    And as Island tractor has mentioned elsewhere, no need to get full width, and actually downsides. I have a 48" wide, and wouldn't go much wider.
    ----------------------------------------
    Charles

    Kubota B3030
    Kubota M59 w/hydro thumb
    Neat stuff - ATI Preseeder, Hydraulic PHD, Wallenstein BX62r Chipper, Millonzi Grapple, CA 4n1 Bucket. Delta Hook Rear QA system.
    Too many other random attachments to list (or to own, per my wife) and a really bad tool addiction. But at least I haven't bought a dump truck or bulldozer. Yet.

  9. #9
    Elite Member dex3361's Avatar
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    Default Re: HD grapple shopping advice needed

    Quote Originally Posted by IslandTractor View Post
    I don't understand the fascination with heavy duty grapples for tractors. The M59 is a powerful machine but it is not a bulldozer or skidsteer. The FEL is designed to lift not ram. Why do you think you would need to spend three or four times as much on a heavy duty grapple than a light duty? For that difference in price you could easily buy two light duty grapples (which no one, including a M59 owner) has "broken" yet and have one to use while the other is in the shop for ????needed repairs.

    I have a 48" light duty Millonzi grapple on a tractor with 2700lb lift capacity. I have put it to heavy use in digging out rocks, stumps, trees and brush and except for one busted hose (snag) and splaying out the tips of the upper grapple while digging out large rocks (heat, bend back, weld on reinforcing gussets fixed that). The Millonzi is no longer made but it is lighter duty than a slightly beefed up Markham 48 "light duty" ordered with 1/2 inch end tines and extra spacer tines. The Markham is considerably less money than most other grapples on the market now and they have had a pretty uniformly positive experience reported on TBN.

    A light duty grapple weighs about 300-350lbs. A heavy duty grapple weighs 500-700lbs and that difference in weight comes right off your net lift capacity. Mild steel can be easily rebent with heat and easily welded. High tech steel becomes fragile with heating so repairs are not likely to be as successful.

    Clamshell grapples are nice for collecting small brush as they can compress it but as you noted they are less ideal for assymmetric hard materials and can actually be damaged by applying pressure to an offset rock or stump where the "clam top" gets twisted. Two upper grapples is more flexible but adds weight and cost. A single upper grapple is quite versatile and in four years I have never had any object I could fit into the grapple fail to be clamped. Yes, small stuff will fall down between the bottom tines as it will with any style grapple but anything larger than the bottom tine gap can be securely held for transport with a single upper jaw.

    I'd suggest you PM Charlesaf3 who has the same grapple I do on his M59. See what he thinks.
    Well I feel so bad for buying a Anbo Grapple after reading Island tractors post. I may just sell the Anbo now there will be no joy in ownership from here on out. When I think about using it now to stack brush and stack debris I imagine now I will just do it by hand. Naaa. Really now my Anbo weighs only #340 and it is a 66" I got a good deal really(I bought it used) can you cut a guy a break and let him in the grapple club(even if it looks like a root rake). I went for a lighter unit because my FEL will only lift about 1500# at bucket center.
    Randall



    1Timothy Chapter 2:
    3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;
    4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
    5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.
    From: The HOLY BIBLE

  10. #10
    Super Star Member IslandTractor's Avatar
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    2007 Kioti DK40se HST, Woods BH

    Default Re: HD grapple shopping advice needed

    Quote Originally Posted by dex3361 View Post
    Well I feel so bad for buying a Anbo Grapple after reading Island tractors post. I may just sell the Anbo now there will be no joy in ownership from here on out. When I think about using it now to stack brush and stack debris I imagine now I will just do it by hand. Naaa. Really now my Anbo weighs only #340 and it is a 66" I got a good deal really(I bought it used) can you cut a guy a break and let him in the grapple club(even if it looks like a root rake). I went for a lighter unit because my FEL will only lift about 1500# at bucket center.
    I still cannot bring myself to believe your grapple weighs #340. Someone at Anbo was dreaming when they published that number. It is a very nice grapple I agree and you got a deal but I think it costs a lot more new than the Markham so I tend to steer people to the Markham. I'd like to have a clamshell as a second grapple but would personally take a standard root grapple for general work as it is simpler and usually lighter etc. You do have a premium grapple at a great price and deserve to be happy with it though.

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