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Suzuki Fitted With One-Armed Bucket
Jeff Weeks' one-armed hydraulic bucket on his Suzuki Samurai moves snow just as quickly - or maybe even slightly faster - than his neighbor's skidsteer.
  The Belchertown, Mass., welder wanted something small that wouldn't tear up the yard when he moved snow. He purchased the Suzuki, which is slightly bigger than a Jeep, and he custom built a framework to hold a used 5-ft. bucket. He built a one-post lift that doesn't block his view from the driver's seat.
  "I removed the passenger side floor, so I could run a 6 by 4-in rectangular steel tube from the frame to the rollbar," Weeks explains. He welded pieces of angle iron to beef up the frame and from the rollbar to the back of the Suzuki.
  "I mounted a very small belt-driven hydraulic pump where the emission pump used to be on front of the engine," Weeks says. In order not to overload it, he designed the loader to work with a small, vertical cylinder. It was enough to give the loader a 6-ft. lift.
  "I installed a Timbren load booster on the front axle, to help carry a load - it's like an inexpensive heavy duty spring," Weeks says.
  To double his low range ratio, he sent the transfer case to a company in Oregon that modifies cases for vehicles used for rock climbing.
  "I splurged on this, spending about $700. It was worth it," Weeks says. It gave him the power he needed. His only regret was that he had a manual transmission. An automatic transmission would have been smoother, he says.
  The bucket works with a two-spool control valve, and the dump is also hydraulic. With experience building firewood processors and working with hydraulics, Weeks engineered the loader to be simple in design.
  Besides the transfer case cost, Weeks spent about $1,200 for his Suzuki and bucket.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Jeff Weeks, Amherst Welding, 330 Harkness Rd., Amherst, Mass. 01002 (ph 413 253-4867).

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2008 - Volume #32, Issue #4