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  1. #1
    Veteran Member bandit67's Avatar
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    May 2004
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    1,542
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    Foothills, Colorado
    Tractor
    B3000 HSDCC

    Default BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    Title says it all.

    I realize it may be an involved & expensive modification, but has anyone seriously considered doing this?

    I can probably think of more cons to actually pulling it off, but not being a hydraulics expert, I know it's possible, but is it even worth further consideration?
    2012 Kubota B3000, block heater, filled rears, rear wheel spacers, fender extensions, LA403 w/60" bucket, BH77 w/12" bucket & mechanical thumb, Kubota pin-type QA, Kubota forks, Caroni TM1600 flail, Buhler Allied YC6010 3pt blower, Meyer 72" FEL mounted plow, Midwest LR2072 rake



    Previous machines:

    2008 Kubota B3030 (Open Station), LA403, BH75, 4 - 55w halogen front & rear ROPS mounted worklights with L39 dash switches
    2004 Case NH DX24E Subcompact

    Kubotas from Barlow's

  2. #2
    Gold Member Monster5601's Avatar
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    May 2010
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    422
    Location
    Oakland, MI
    Tractor
    Kubota B3030 R4 Tires

    Default Re: BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    Quote Originally Posted by bandit67 View Post
    Title says it all.

    I realize it may be an involved & expensive modification, but has anyone seriously considered doing this?

    I can probably think of more cons to actually pulling it off, but not being a hydraulics expert, I know it's possible, but is it even worth further consideration?
    I think yes. In fact, I posted the same question a while back (albeit for a BH76) but didn't get any response. I would like to convert my thumb to hydraulic simply because of the way I use it which is mostly (these days) picking up and bucking trees. It is a matter of convenience and want, I've found ways to work around a fixed position thumb.
    Bob, n8zcc

    Kubota B3030 with R4s
    LA403, 60" bucket with hooks, bolt-on tooth bar, ratchet rake
    BH76 with 16" bucket and thumb
    Kubota Pallet Folks
    Bush Hog 35-06 72" Rear Blade
    Bush Hog SBX60 Box Blade
    Bush Hog Razorback RZ160
    Kubota ZD323-60
    Kubota RTV900 with Curtis hydraulic angle plow

  3. #3
    Bronze Member Gasifier's Avatar
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    Jan 2012
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    93
    Location
    St. Lawrence River Valley, N.Y.
    Tractor
    2005 Bobcat B300 T.L.B.

    Default Re: BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    That would be really cool. I would love to do that to mine. I see they have a hydraulic thumb on some of the new Kubotas. Trying to remember what model it was.

  4. #4
    Gold Member
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    Apr 2012
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    274
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    JACKSONVILLE, AL
    Tractor
    2011 KUBOTA L3200 W/ LOADER, BH77 BACKHOE

    Default Re: BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    If I am correct (and I think I am) my dealer offered me a mechanical thumb or hydraulic thumb on my bh77 when I bought it in 2011. I didnt get either one (had already went over budget) but later after my purchase became interested and did research to find that it is offered and is pretty beneficial to those who would use it alot. Wish I had just a mechanical one myself!

  5. #5
    Elite Member wdchyd's Avatar
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    Apr 2010
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    2,657
    Location
    Hooksett, NH
    Tractor
    Kubota B2320

    Default Re: BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    Knowing the kind of damage that can happen to hyd thumbs, I elected to spare myself the trouble to modify my mechanical one.....If I was relying on using it for work (which I don't) then a hyd thumb conversion would be on my christmas list

    That said, I love the mechanical thumb....
    2010 Kubota B2320 FEL & BH65
    If it ain't fixed don't broke it!

    http://www.tractorbynet.com/content/...-month-wdchyd/

  6. #6
    Veteran Member bandit67's Avatar
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    Foothills, Colorado
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    B3000 HSDCC

    Default Re: BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    The smallest hoe that a hydraulic option is offered on from kubota is the B26 commercial TLB, though it is close in size to the BH77. The BH77 is ONLY offered with a mechanical option. However, I'm sure there are a few dealers out there that move enough of these units that will do an in-house hydraulic modification for their customers.

    I certainly am happy to have a good quality thumb on my hoe, after not having one on the BH75 ( I got rid of a Brotec thumb that I hated), but I have used hydraulic thumbs on mini-ex's, and they are incredibly handy, which is why I wouldn't mind doing a conversion at some point. The nice thing about the hydraulic thumb is you can use it at any time without having to get off the machine to set the thumb in place and then retract it by hand, especially if you're wanting to just move one thing in the middle of a task.
    2012 Kubota B3000, block heater, filled rears, rear wheel spacers, fender extensions, LA403 w/60" bucket, BH77 w/12" bucket & mechanical thumb, Kubota pin-type QA, Kubota forks, Caroni TM1600 flail, Buhler Allied YC6010 3pt blower, Meyer 72" FEL mounted plow, Midwest LR2072 rake



    Previous machines:

    2008 Kubota B3030 (Open Station), LA403, BH75, 4 - 55w halogen front & rear ROPS mounted worklights with L39 dash switches
    2004 Case NH DX24E Subcompact

    Kubotas from Barlow's

  7. #7
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    274
    Location
    JACKSONVILLE, AL
    Tractor
    2011 KUBOTA L3200 W/ LOADER, BH77 BACKHOE

    Default Re: BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    bandit....you are correct. I have seen them on a BH92, and I'm pretty sure that my dealer said that the bh92 hydraulic thumb could be made to fit the bh77. wish I had one....I am trying to convence Santa that I have been good enough this year to warrant getting one under my tree!

  8. #8
    Bronze Member Gasifier's Avatar
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    Jan 2012
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    93
    Location
    St. Lawrence River Valley, N.Y.
    Tractor
    2005 Bobcat B300 T.L.B.

    Default Re: BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    Yes. I used a rented kubota excavator with a hydraulic thumb for a weekend. Man can you get a lot done with a machine like that. I do not understand why they do not offer it on just about everysize tractor that is a little larger. I mean if you can get it on a B26, which I looked at the other week as well, why not one a larger tractor? Oh, the B26 was about $38,000. I saw one sell on e-bay a while back that went for something like $17,000. Company had used it for one job they had and put 1500 hours one it. It looked like it was in beautiful condition.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member SSdoxie's Avatar
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    Jun 2010
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    1,911
    Location
    Cumberland Plateau, TN
    Tractor
    Bobcat CT225

    Default Re: BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    Mounting a cylinder to the thumb is not a major problem, just need to identify overall retracted and extended length and go from there. The BIG hurdle is a valve to function it with. If there is no auxiliary lines or auxiliary valve on the Backhoe, it would need to be added. This would be comprable to adding 3rd function to an FEL. The valve would need a circuit relief in it for the base end of the cylinder, probably about 1/2 the Backhoe pressure relief, so if the bucket was forced against it too far the cylinder rod can push back/retract to keep from bending the rod.
    Dennis

    CT225 w/7TL QA FEL, 60"tooth dirt bucket, 68" smooth bucket, Pallet Forks, Bale Spear. Hydrualic top llin, QH, 48 RC, 60" tiller, Angle blade, Landscape rake, Carry-all, Post hole auger.

  10. #10
    Gold Member
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    Sep 2012
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    Location
    Ottawa Ontario
    Tractor
    Kubota B3300SU

    Default Re: BH77 - has anyone considered converting mechanical thumb to hydraulic?

    I have every intention of modifying mine to hydraulic. While the mechanical one is certainly better than none, I find myself either getting on and off too much to adjust or having to bat things around with the bucket to get it just right to pick up.

    I got a 2 x 8" ram that will fit perfect once I cut off the cyl base end and re-weld it 90 deg so the ports will stick out the side. No aux lines to power it so I'll likely just run lines to one of my spare remotes. I can't find anywhere on the boom that I like to mount a diverter valve. I figure having to reach by my left hip to activate is still WAY better than having to get off to move the pins. It will mean an extra pair of lines to connect but a diverter valve would need wires so to me that balances out.

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