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  1. #1
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    Default Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?

    Hi everyone, I am in need for a quality box w/ automatic Laser System for a 2009 John Deere 3320. I already own a BB2060 and BB4172 with a hand (manual) laser. I will be using it for house pads as well as for 10,000-45,000 sq. ft. fields. So far my options seem to be the Level Best system, or use a John Deere hydraulic box (LL1372) with the Level Best valves and Laser. Anyone use these systems and how well did they work? I do not want to spend 15-20,000 on something that doesn't work well.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?


    Wow. That is going first class.
    Interested in what the answers will be.

  3. #3
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    Deere 110tlb, 4520, x749, x758, L130

    Default Re: Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?

    Are you interested in elecric/hydraulic controls? Some of the Topcon setups seem lke what you would need.

    It has been a couple of years since I investigated this last but there are units out there that will follow the laser to provide a level grade or slope. Last one I saw was working a baseball field. This was a small unit you could use, this has been available for quite some time on the larger earth moving equipment.

    I would do a search on Google.

  4. #4
    Veteran Member jake98's Avatar
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    Default Re: Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?

    Quote Originally Posted by The Tractor Guy 22 View Post
    I will be using it for house pads
    Where are you that they're still putting in houses?
    Kioti CK 25 Hydro: box blade, brush hog, rake, roto-till, grapple, bucket forks, de-stump cyl, Wallenstein Chipper
    John Deere 410 Backhoe Loader: 25 hoses ready to blow


    Thus by the beneficence of Providence, we shall behold our empire arising, founded on justice and the voluntary consent of the people, and giving full scope to the exercise of those faculties and rights which most ennoble our species.

    Samuel Adams

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?

    As I understand it their are 3 main components: 1. Laser system, 2. electronic valves, 3. the box blade.

    1. The Topcon Laser system does seem to be the most popular and reliable for commercial use.
    2. Electronic hydraulic valves- will probably go with "Level Best"
    3. Box Blades- JD seems to have a higher quality, heavier duty box blade (LL1372), as opposed to Level Best or other complete laser/box systems on the market.

    Getting to the point- Will the JD box blade behave well with an automatic laser system or are the complete packages from Level Best my best bet.

    Jake 98- I am from Sacramento County in California. Right now their isn't a lot of "new" houses being built, but I have received a lot of calls about home owners who recently purchased foreclosed homes (1-5 Acres) and want grading for: separate granny units, 1% sloped horse arenas, 100-200 ft driveways, and general regrading of there fields for horse pastures or proper drainage. Also calls from the city to regrade a couple baseball fields.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?

    There are a lot of skid loader grading attachments -Bob cat tooling in one instance in particular that use the laser grading system and have the poles and beacons... BEEEP BEEEEP BEEEP, sorry could not resist after seeing one used at my place for a septic systems pump chamber.

  7. #7
    Super Star Member
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    Deere 110tlb, 4520, x749, x758, L130

    Default Re: Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?

    Typically I would expect a larger machine for this work in that you may need to take a bigger bite to hold grade than the 3320 can handle. You would have to be very close to start with as the dirt can build up quickly.

    I have a BB1284 boxblade that weighs 1250 lbs and this can be a full load for either of my tractors. Ideally I would use a LE or LJ 210 landscape loader to get close and then run a laser retrofitted system on this machine afterwards.

    Have you considered leasing to try out your business plan first?

  8. #8
    Platinum Member EquipmentJunkie's Avatar
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    Ford 1520

    Default Re: Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?

    The Deere unit is designed more for taking a larger cut at a time while the Level Best and other fine-grading box scrapers are for smoothing out loose material and making shallow cuts. Also, the Deere unit is towed with a drawbar which won't be as easy to manuever as a three-point box.

    The Deere drawn box scraper may be a challenge to add the laser controls to it. Fine-tuning laser systems can be time-consuming.

    A properly-ballasted 3320 Deere will easily handle a 6-ft. Level Best box. I have used a 6-ft. Level Best grading infields with a Ford 1520 and it worked just fine. I had plenty of horsepower for the work despite the tractor having less than 20-hp. Weight tends to be more important than horsepower in my laser grading experience.
    If it has wheels and an engine, you have my attention.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?

    So it sounds like a purpose built laser box blade is the way to go.

    The only down fall to one would be when trying to cut into native compacted soil..? which I could either use my BB4172 for rough grade or if it is a field- Rototill, Disk, or rip before hand.

    Jenkinsph- I have tried out this business plan, and their is enough work in my area to purchase a laser box and have it pay off. JM Tractor Service - Home is my website, you can see the type of work I will be using it for. I have thought about a JD 210, especially since the newer models come with a cat. II quick hitch and PTO, but the 3320 is a perfect size to tow around and it gets the jobs done. (for now)

  10. #10
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    Deere 110tlb, 4520, x749, x758, L130

    Default Re: Laser Grading System for 30-40hp Tractor?

    My take is you would need something heavy duty to rough in and get close to grade, then the Level Best box scraper setup with your 3320.

    You could posssibly do the whole job with a 3320 it would take along time if you need to move lots of material. Just depends on the individual site conditions.


    What kind of prices have you come up with for the Level Best setup complete with laser controls and hydraulics? Looks like a good setup.

    I would also consider using a large landplane/grader implement to help with the rough in work. I have had good results using mine but certainly not near as exact or accurate as using a laser guided box.

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