Bobcat hire and the things you need to know!

  • By Search Marketing Specialists
  • 02 Feb, 2016
Skid steer loaders (colloquially known as bobcats) have probably helped more builders, developers and home owners with concrete slab preparation, garden makeovers, lawn preparation, and tidy ups than you would care to imagine but that’s not all they can do. Firstly though lets talk about the importance of access; with bobcats size does matter and while there are no hard and fast definitions, as a general rule there are micro bobcats, mini bobcats and standard bobcats.
Reversing 20m with less than 100 mm either side of the machine takes patience, practice and concentration.
Micro Bobcats tend to be less than 1300 mm wide, mini bobcats 1300 mm up to 1750 mm wide and the standard is usually anything wider than that. The larger bobcats can also be classified upon engine size and lift capacity. Although in Australia the average bobcat is about 1600mm wide and on average can lift about 800kg typically these are classified as mini machines.
yellow crane truck lifting mini bobcat
Sometimes there is no access on either side of a house so using a crane to get in and out is our only option.

So access is important, you must measure   the narrowest point   the machine has to get through, you need enough room to manoeuvre around down pipes, sewer inspection points, air conditioning units, meter boxes, taps and any other protrusions or obstacles potentially in the machines’ path, and don’t forget these machines are at least 1800mm high and 2.5 metres long so getting around corners, through doors, and under structures can be a challenge too.

Often smaller machines are quicker purely because they can manoeuvre around the yard, along fence lines, garden beds whilst carting dirt to and fro or removing waste. Many people forget why they are called ‘Skid Steers’; it’s because in order to steer they have to slide or skid; this creates a lot of friction and generally the tread of the tyres cause a ripping effect on grass and dislodges any loose surface such as soil or paving, it will leave rubber marks on concrete and tiled surfaces. We recommend laying sheets of plywood or hard plastic over any areas that you need to protect this also spreads out the weight of the machine eliminating compaction of the soil and leaving wheel ruts.

Skid Steers also have two distinct styles; ‘wheeled loaders’ and ‘tracked loaders’. The wheeled loader is by far the most common and has the ability to do most work put in front of it, however, the tracked loader can work on surfaces and terrain that would see its’ wheeled counterpart get bogged or slide off the side of a hill. The tracked loader presents much less ground pressure with the weight of the machine being spread over the length and width of the tracks, whereas the wheeled bobcat has all of its’ weight concentrated on the four points that are touching the ground.

Getting around tight corners without damaging the render or driving over the edge is part and parcel of what we do!

The tracked loader is invariably a much more expensive machine to buy and maintain, so you can expect to pay more to hire it. These machines travel easily over sand and soggy ground whereas the wheeled bobcat often buries itself or just sinks. The tracked machine will still have an impact on your lawn and will leave marks on concrete surfaces as it still has that ripping effect that comes with the skid steer principal of operation.

So when thinking about any earthworks it is important to have a plan, call ‘dial before you dig’ and expect that cables and services are often not where they are supposed to be. I can’t tell you how many times I have been told there is nothing in the area we are working in and we find a mains water line or cable hiding in the garden bed or stuck to the bottom of the concrete slab we’re pulling up.

This is why our operators are happy to come out, listen, look, provide advice and work out the best and most cost effective way to achieve your desired result. There is no point doing the front yard with gardens and turf then in 2 months time you want to do the backyard or dig a pool; as the machinery will damage all the new turf you have just put down.

white PT-60 micro excavator
The weight of a tracked loader is spread over the width and length of the tracks reducing the impact on the ground and allowing it to work in sand, mud and on steep slopes.
Aside from its’ four in one bucket, there are numerous attachments available for bobcats such as chain trenchers, spreaders, augers, sweepers and profilers, each one specifically designed to increase the versatility of these machines. For the average home-owner, the bobcat would be used to clear old plants/garden beds, rubbish and green waste to make way for home extensions or more modern landscaping. Bobcats are often used in conjunction with an excavator to remove concrete driveways and paths or to carry out spoil and load a truck. The bobcat operator is often tasked at getting the desired sub-grade millimetre perfect to attain correct fall or maintain a perfect level.

When all the digging, pushing, filling and leveling is done it’s often left to the bobcat to tidy up and ready the area for turf or fresh landscaping; Micro Excavations tracked loaders are fitted with tilt buckets to work on hill sides and maintain even the slightest grade.

Here’s a video of our PT30 Positrack (Tracked Loader) at work.

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The rock this bobcat unearthed weighs as much as the machine itself.
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For those that don’t know a Posi Track is basically a bobcat on tracks, like a snow mobile.

PT60 Posi Track Loader, a tracked bobcat able to work in sand, mud and snow.
Our PT60 has custom running gear to make it the narrowest it can possibly be and when fitted with pallet forks can lift up to 1 tonne

PT30 Posi Track
Posi Track Loaders are fast and maneuverable, the tracks spread the weight over a greater area, meaning less damage to lawns, paving and concrete

These are the PT60 and PT30 Posi Track we have on our fleet designed to move large amounts of material like sand, soil, mulch and bricks.

By Search Marketing Specialists 18 Oct, 2016
An excavator is usually on tracks and has a long arm to reach out and dig holes and trenches, such as the one above. A micro excavator is a smaller excavator usually used in tight spaces such as under houses, rooftops and backyards. These types of excavators are smaller and lighter than original excavators are and are built for confined spaces. Micro excavators range from 600mm-1000mm wide, and are used to dig holes for swimming pools, remove large rocks or stumps and dig trenches for sewer, storm water pipes, electrical, or communications conduits.
By Search Marketing Specialists 24 Aug, 2016

Yes that’s right! we now have red imported fire ants on the Gold Coast!

Yatala, Stapylton and Ormeau all became declared fire ant restricted zones on the 1st of July 2015.

So what does that mean for you?

Any site (Commercial or Domestic) where earthworks are to be undertaken in the restricted areas must be inspected for red imported fire ants within 28 days  prior to works being carried out. Inspections can only be undertaken by a person who has attended the fire ant identification course conducted by Bio-Security Queensland.
  • We have staff who are certified to do this for you at no charge.
Only businesses that have a Fire Ant Risk Management Plan (F.A.R.M.P) approved by Bio-Security Queensland are permitted to perform earthworks in the restricted zones.
  • Micro Excavations has an Approved Fire Ant Risk Management Plan (Approved Plan No: 6149).
No material (Soil, Sand, Mulch, Gravels, Road Base, Green Waste, Turf, Sleepers & Logs), can be transported out of the restricted zones.
  • If you do need material carted away, we have access to tip sites within the restricted zones.

Tamborine and North Tamborine were designated as restricted fire ant zones in 2014.

Heavy fines are in place (up to $1.1m ) for non-compliance for both individuals and companies alike.

More information is available from Bio-Security Queensland’s’ website at…

Micro Excavations

By Search Marketing Specialists 15 Feb, 2016

For those who didn’t know; we have red imported fire ants on the Gold Coast and they’re on the move!
As of 15 February 2016: Coomera, Upper Coomera and Willowvale which were previously free of restrictions are now considered to be low risk restricted areas.

Alberton, Beenleigh, Eagleby, Ormeau, Stapylton, Tamborine, and Yatala have now been declared  high risk restricted areas.

So why is this happening??

  • The greatest contribution to the movement and spread of red imported fire ants is human intervention.
By Search Marketing Specialists 12 Feb, 2016

The vast majority of skid steer loaders (bobcats) have what’s known as a 4 in 1 bucket, but why do we call it a 4 in 1 and what does it do that’s so special?

At Micro Excavations we also have 4 in 1 buckets on our excavators, increasing their versatility and improving their efficiency.

In the right hands a machine with a 4 in 1 can move more material and produce a better finish saving you time and money.

  • As a bucket – It can be operated as a normal loader bucket scooping and tipping out at the front, but it can also load over the sides of tall trucks and skips with ease, by emptying from the opening at the bottom.
  • As a grab – By opening at the bottom it can grasp and carry items as well as holding extra attachments such as cranes or spreader bars. Rather than driving into a pile of soil the operator can open the bucket to pick up the soil making less mess while putting less strain on his drive motors saving time, fuel, and maintenance.
  • As a blade – Opening the 4 in 1 into a pile pushes the load out easily, which not only increases the reach, it is ideal for backfilling trenches or spreading out the material at hand.
  • As a leveller – With the jaws open and with the open edges near to the ground the 4 in 1 bucket can be dragged forward and backward for levelling.

By Search Marketing Specialists 02 Feb, 2016
Skid steer loaders (colloquially known as bobcats) have probably helped more builders, developers and home owners with concrete slab preparation, garden makeovers, lawn preparation, and tidy ups than you would care to imagine but that’s not all they can do. Firstly though lets talk about the importance of access; with bobcats size does matter and while there are no hard and fast definitions, as a general rule there are micro bobcats, mini bobcats and standard bobcats.
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