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  1. #1
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
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    Aug 2001
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    South Bend, Indiana (near)
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    Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year

    Default PT425 Grapple Build Project

    OK. I'm too cheap to buy the PT grapple bucket. However, I'm not too cheap to build my own [img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]

    Here's what I have planned.

    I will build the grapple out of 2 inch wide by 1/2 inch thick steel. I'll put two next to each other about 2 inches apart, on edge. Then I'll put one on each side near the width of the small bucket. I'll put one more between the center ones and the outside ones. I'll connect them all by running 1/2 inch threaded rod through holes that I'll drill every so often(haven't decided yet) and bolt them into place. Taht way I can fudge the spacing until it works properly. Probably 3 or four rods. I'll use CAT2 pins to hold it into CAT2 3pt hitch ends welded to the bucket and secure it with lynch pins, which will make it removable.

    For the hydraulics, I'll use a cylinder with an 8 inch throw. It should give me about a 90 degree opening to the bucket. I still need to figure out how to attach the cylinder to the bucket and grapple. Might use 3pt ends and pins for that as well.

    As for the fingers or teeth, I'll experiment with different lenghts of 1 inch by 1/2 inch steel. I'm still putting it together in my head, but have purchased some parts from TSC today.

    Two each of 3pt ends, pins, bushings and lynch pins for $37.00. If I plan it correctly, I'll be able to get away with under $200.00. Also, with a little planning and some extra 3pt ends, I'll be able to use it on either the big or small bucket.

    Any pictures or links to any existing grappels on buckets of any brand would be appreciated.

    I'll make a drawing later in the week and post it as I go.

    So what do you think? Can we do it?

  2. #2
    Gold Member
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    Mar 2002
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    299
    Tractor
    Toro 266H and PT422

    Default Re: PT425 Grapple Build Project

    MR,

    Interested in seeing your drawing. What project do you intend to use it for.

    Duane

  3. #3
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
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    South Bend, Indiana (near)
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    Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year

    Default Re: PT425 Grapple Build Project

    Generally, moving brush to a central brush pile. I had to cut down a 60' sycamore this weekend and it had two 18' trailer loads of branches. I had to stack them all by hand as I trimmed them off, then move them again onto the trailer. It seems that I always have some brush or branches to move. Plus, if we ever build on some property that we own, there are over 20 thousand trees that are always dropping branches or needing trimming, etc.

    Also, I just think it would be neat and I have too much free time [img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img] I wish that was the case!

  4. #4
    Platinum Member
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    Mar 2002
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    945
    Location
    Bucks County, PA
    Tractor
    PT425, Kubota L2050, 3 hydrostatic Exmark mowers. Z21D Kubota ZTR, 2 Kunz acrease wing mowers, 1 rough cut kunz mower, one vintage grasshopper ztr, one vintage gravely ztr, various large garden tracto

    Default Re: PT425 Grapple Build Project

    mr. m.r., if you can do it try to make two pistons, and two independent parts, so if on one side the contends (load) is smaller than the other you don't loose the side that you are not able to close completely. that is the only drawback with th pt grappler. another addition we already made to reinforce the teeth and keep some of the looser stuff in the grappler such as leaves and twigs we added flatiron about 13 inches apart. this keeps the loose stuff in very nicely, i used it loading all kinds of manure.

    good luck

  5. #5
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
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    South Bend, Indiana (near)
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    Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year

    Default Re: PT425 Grapple Build Project

    Do your teeth close against the bucket, or do they overlap?

    What is the smallest object (like a log shape) you clamp down on? Say 2-3 inches in diameter or bigger like 6-8 inches or all the way down? I'm trying to get some idea of what would be the best radius for the 'curve' of the fingers.

  6. #6
    Platinum Member wasabi's Avatar
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    Mar 2002
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    717
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    Cullowhee Mountain, NC
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    PT2445 and PT1850

    Default Re: PT425 Grapple Build Project

    Good luck with this ambitous project Mossman. I'll be watching for and interested in your progress. I have definate need for this implement, but thus far am leaning toward getting a chipper first. Keep us posted!.

  7. #7
    Platinum Member
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    Mar 2002
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    945
    Location
    Bucks County, PA
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    PT425, Kubota L2050, 3 hydrostatic Exmark mowers. Z21D Kubota ZTR, 2 Kunz acrease wing mowers, 1 rough cut kunz mower, one vintage grasshopper ztr, one vintage gravely ztr, various large garden tracto

    Default Re: PT425 Grapple Build Project

    mr. m.r.
    nothing that small, that is why i suggested to make two separate pistons. after practicing for a while you will be able to pick up individual twigs with the teeth and slide them back into the bucket without disturbing the soil/turf. if you look at your digging bucket the pipe that the grappler teeth are attached to is about two inches higher then the top of the bucket. to me the teeth are a perfect circle from that pipe to the front of the bucket, but don't quite touch the bucket.
    there are three teeth. i would add a fourth tooth and make the two sides independent from each other for the reason i mentioned before.

    good luck

    hrl

  8. #8
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
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    South Bend, Indiana (near)
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    Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year

    Default Re: PT425 Grapple Build Project

    Let me get this straight.

    You'd make two halves.
    Two fingers per half.
    One cylinder per half.
    Plumb the cylinders in parrallel.
    Pick up something eneven, like a fat ended log, and both halves will close down on the object. Sounds cool.

    I want to start with a minimum of parts and $$$ The way I'm making it, if I want, I could split it down the middle and add the second cylinder later as well as the two additional pivot points.

    By the way, what size cylinder does yours use? Does it look similar to any of the cylinders on the PT425, the quick attach cylinder, or any other PT implement, or is it a completely different size?

  9. #9
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
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    945
    Location
    Bucks County, PA
    Tractor
    PT425, Kubota L2050, 3 hydrostatic Exmark mowers. Z21D Kubota ZTR, 2 Kunz acrease wing mowers, 1 rough cut kunz mower, one vintage grasshopper ztr, one vintage gravely ztr, various large garden tracto

    Default Re: PT425 Grapple Build Project

    Let me get this straight. YES
    what size cylinder does yours use? my yard is about 9 some miles away so i will check tomorrow and get back to you, sorry.

  10. #10
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
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    South Bend, Indiana (near)
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    Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year

    Default Re: PT425 Grapple Build Project

    Attached is what I've drawn so far. It is a side view of the grapple. The attachment is of an annimated gif file. It is bigger than the screen, but is only 14K in size. Let it load. It changes every 2 seconds, then repeats. I haven't decided on lenghts or where to connect the hydraulic ram, as I've got no experience as to the best mounting points, best leverage, etc..., but its getting there. Now I just have to find some steel [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img] Not this weekend, as we have family stuff going on.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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