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“Poor Man’s” Grapples Do The Job
Quinton Tschetter’s five-tine passive grapples drop in place when he tips his loader bucket. Raising them is as simple as pulling on a rope. He says the Poor Man’s Grapples work even better than his first brush grabber (Vol. 45, No. 3) that used a length of railroad rail on chains to retain material in his 4-ft. wide loader bucket. These grapples are lightweight dump rake tines.
“I tried them out on a bunch of branches the first time I used them, and they worked better than I expected,” says Tschetter. “When I tip the bucket forward, they fall down over the material in the bucket.”
Tschetter slipped the roughly 3-in. dia. rounded ends of the tines over a 2 1/2-in. O.D. pipe that was fitted with two slightly larger pipe sleeves. He welded five tines to the pipe to fix them in place and welded a length of steel strap to each sleeve to serve as a flange. The flanges bolt to the top edge of his Kubota loader. A piece of angle iron welded to the right end of the pipe limits the amount the grapples can tip back towards the tractor.
He attached a notched pulley to the left end of the grapple pipe. The notch acts as a stop for the grapples as they fall forward. The idea was to fix a rope to the pulley and lift the grapples by pulling on the rope.
“I found I needed more leverage, so I added a lever to the pulley and ran the rope over it,” says Tschetter. “Then I realized that all I needed was the lever, so I plan to remove the pulley and weld the lever to the pipe.”
Tschetter added a length of greenhouse wiggle wire at the midpoint of the tines to give them added rigidity. He notes that the tines are fairly rigid in their own right.
Currently, the tines fall 8 to 10 in. ahead of the bucket edge. Tschetter plans to add removable teeth to extend the bucket’s reach.
“I’m using leaf springs from a semi to make three 18-in. long, 3-in. wide teeth that I’ll bolt to the bucket,” he says. “This will make more efficient use of the grapples and the bucket when picking up brush.”
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Quinton Tschetter, 2379 Hwy. 92, Oskaloosa, Iowa 52577 (ph 641-660-9765; qct1944@gmail.com).

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2023 - Volume #47, Issue #3