Mini Skid Steer Grapples
Mini skid steers are becoming increasingly popular among contractors and landscapers for their versatility and maneuverability. A grapple is one of the most valuable attachments for a mini skid steer.
Grapples allow operators to pick up and move various materials, including logs, rocks, debris, etc. This blog will take a closer look at the different types of mini skid steer grapples available on the market, their features, and how to choose the right one for your specific needs.
How To Choose a Mini Skid Steer Grapple
There are several factors to consider when buying a mini skid steer grapple bucket. Here are some of the most important things to look for when purchasing a mini skid steer grapple bucket:
Bucket Size and Capacity
The size and capacity of the bucket will depend on the type of material you will be moving and the host machine. If you are dealing with larger logs and debris, you will need a larger bucket. On the other hand, if you move smaller materials, a smaller bucket will suffice.
The width of your mini skid steer grapple should cover the track base of your hose machine. For example, a Ditch Witch SK800 mini skid steer has a 43" track base, meaning a 48" grapple bucket would be suitable. Common widths of mini skid steer grapple buckets range from 36" to 50" wide, with 36", 42", and 48" is the most common.
The weight of the grapple should be considered to respect the lifting capacity of your mini skid steer. 250 to 450-pound grapples are common.
Material and Construction
The material and construction of the bucket are essential factors to consider. Look for a bucket that is made of durable steel, as it will be able to withstand heavy use and abuse.
A high-quality mini skid steer grapple will have grease zerks to keep pivoting joints lubricated and clean. Picking a model with covers over hydraulic cylinders is also a good idea to prevent damage and scarring to cylinders while handling debris.
An interesting design feature many high-quality mini skid steer grapple will have is removable side plates. Removable side plates allow your grapple to adapt easily to wider loads, such as logs.
The grapple arms are important to consider as they are responsible for gripping and moving the material. Look for grapple arms made of durable steel that can open and close quickly.
Dual grapple arms with independent hydraulic cylinders allow you to move uneven loads easily.
Make sure your grapple bucket is compatible with your mini skid steer. This should include the attachment plate as well as the hydraulics. Most grapples can be fitted with a mini universal quick attach or Bobcat MTL attachment plate to accommodate all machine types.
A mini skid steer grapple uses hydraulic power from the mini track loader to operate the grapple; therefore, your mini skid steer needs an auxiliary hydraulic system. The most common hydraulic couplers on a grapple are 1/2" flat-face couplers, but the couplers can be changed out easily to suit your machine.
Consider the reputation of the manufacturer. Choosing a reputable brand with a good track record of producing high-quality equipment is important.
We always recommend sticking with an American manufacturer with a 6 to 12-month warranty. Examples of this include Blue Diamond, Star Industries, and Berlon.
Types Of Mini Skid Steer Grapples
Grapple buckets come in a few different variations. Some are built specifically for clearing debris, some are better at clearing brush, and others are designed for moving palletized material.
Mini Root Grapples
A mini root grapple bucket is a specialized attachment designed to remove tree roots, logs, brush, and other large debris. It features a series of tines arranged in a claw-like configuration, allowing it to effectively grasp objects while letting loose debris fall through the grapple.
The tines are typically made of durable steel, typically 5/16" thick, and are spaced around 8" apart to provide a secure grip on the materials while letting loose debris fall through.
Mini Root Grapple Recommendation - Berlon Mini Root Grapple
3/8" Tine Thickness
6.5" Tine spacing
41" Grapple opening
36", 42", and 48" widths are available
Mini Rake Grapples
Mini skid steer rake grapples are specifically designed for raking and moving debris, such as leaves, brush, and other yard waste. Much like the root grapple, these attachments have a series of tines arranged in a rake-like configuration, allowing them to collect and move debris effectively.
Mini Rake Grapple Recommendation - Blue Diamond Mini Rake Grapple
9" Tine Spacing
32.5" Grapple opening
42", 48" and 60" Widths available
Mini Pallet Fork Grapples
A mini pallet fork grapple is designed to securely lift pallets, large bags, or other similar items using pallet fork tines and jaws.
These jaws can be opened and closed to grasp and securely hold the item being lifted. Pallet fork grapples are commonly used in warehouse, manufacturing, and construction environments to move heavy or bulky items easily. They are also helpful in recycling and waste management operations.
Mini Pallet Fork Grapple Recommendation - Blue Diamond Mini Pallet Fork Grapple
36" and 42" Tine lengths available
36" Top clamp
In conclusion, mini skid steer grapples are a versatile and essential attachment for small, compact mini skid steer loaders. They come in various designs and types, each with its unique set of features and capabilities.
To learn more about mini skid steer grapples, call our team today!