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Safety Cage Slips Over Lip Of Bucket
Tony Negen knew standing in his loader bucket wasn’t safe, so he fabricated a safety cage that slips over the bucket lip. Based in part on a story he once saw in FARM SHOW, Negen used salvaged materials, including an old pig sorting gate.
“The base is designed to slip onto forks, but I added heavy wall, steel tubing so it can also simply slip over the lip of the bucket,” says Negen. “With the fork sleeves still in place, I also have the option of using forks with the safety cage.”
Negen welded scraps of steel between the 2 by 5-in. fork sleeves and the 2-in. steel tubing to create a 3/4-in. gap to match the bucket cutting edge. “The gap needs to be 1/8 to 1/4-in. bigger than the cutting edge of the bucket,” says Negen. “This is a critical part of the cage framing, as it has to hold the weight of the man and the equipment as he is leaning forward to reach and cut tree limbs. It has to do that without bending open or breaking off.”
“I made it 23 1/2 by 60 in., which is what the base was,” says Negen. “The depth is adequate and keeps the weight closer to the lift points on the loader than if it was deeper. I’ve used it on both a 47-in. and a 60-in. bucket.”
Negen made the sides of the safety cage and one end by cutting down a 16-ft. gate he once used to sort pigs. The gate had been built with 1-in. sq. steel tubing welded to 35-in. high by 16-ft. hog panel.
When in place with a person in the cage, Negen usually slides a couple of 2 by 2-in. boards across the open end for safety. The floorboard is 1/2-in. plywood he had on hand.
“With the cross members on the base, the 1/2 in. is fine, but you might want to go heavier if you use fewer cross members,” says Negen.
When using the cage, Negen runs a chain around it and the loader as an extra safety measure. With it in place, he feels much more secure than with his old open bucket and not just for himself.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Anthony Negen, 88504 200th St., Sacred Heart, Minn. 56285 (ph 320 444-0723; 1944deerelover@gmail.com).

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2021 - Volume #45, Issue #5