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Home-Built Heavy Duty Loader

There's not much Ira Hoover's home built front-end loader can't lift. He has even picked up a 4-ton forklift. He patterned the loader after a 540 International Harvester, but built it several times heavier.
  "I used 1/2-in. thick steel bar to make 3 by 4-in. tubing for the arms. A pair of 3 1/2-in. cylinders provide for the lift and 2-in. cylinders dump the bucket," explains Hoover. "Originally I used steel 3 by 4-in. 1/4-in. steel tubing for cross supports, but they cracked under the strain, so I put in 2 by 8-in., 1/4-in. steel tubing for more strength."
  The loader has found plenty of uses from bulldozing dirt to loading gravel out of a gravel bank and lifting machinery at a twice-yearly farm machinery auction. Hoover's home-built 7-ft. bucket made with 3/16-in. steel has had to be reinforced several times to match the loader's lift capacity. So far, the home-built forks have yet to bend.
  "Each fork is 6 in. wide by 2 1/2 in. thick and weighs about 300 lbs.," says Hoover. "I can pick up a 6-bottom plow with no problem."
  However, he has already overloaded his modified steel rim front wheels a couple of times and bent the shafts on the dump cylinders by overloading them.
  Like the original 540 IH, Hoover's loader is self-leveling and uses quick attach couplers. His 36-in. cylinders dump the loader all the way out, but when he rolls them back, they don't retract fully. Altering them is one change he would make with his loader, either moving the anchor point further back or using shorter cylinders.
  Although he hasn't tracked all his costs, he is sure it is less than a new loader would have cost. He is also sure it is much heavier duty.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Ira Hoover, Himrod Rd., Penn Yan, N.Y. 14527 (ph 315 536-2141).


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2005 - Volume #29, Issue #4