A skid steer grapple is a useful attachment intended to help carry construction items and refuse effectively. The tool is perfect for moving oddly shaped materials such as logs, rocks, and concrete bits. While you could use a bucket attachment to carry these objects, a grapple gives the operator much more control. What’s more, you’ll find different types of grapple attachments that are perfectly suited for specialized jobs.
What Are Skid Steer Grapples Made From?
When it comes to designing these tools, you’ll find the majority of the grapples use robust materials. Manufacturers mainly use high-quality steel for the bucket and forks to decrease the chances of the attachment breaking under pressure.
There’s also a hydraulic system in place to give the operator control of the attachment. More advanced models also feature electronics giving you more maneuverable options.
How Does a Skid Steer Grapple Work?
A grapple uses two main parts for it to work correctly, the lower bucket and the upper forks, also known as tines. The bucket allows you to easily scoop and pick up loose construction debris such as rocks, sand, and concrete.
The tines at the top of the tool allow you to grip and hold larger objects safely. It maintains pressure between the two parts through a hydraulic system allowing the upper forks to move.
What Are the Different Types?
There are a variety of different grapple types available on the market today. Each attachment allows the operator to perform specific tasks depending on their line of work. However, to make things more simple, we can separate these tools into two main categories. These are solid and skeleton bottom attachments.
Skeleton buckets resemble something similar to a rack, allowing small materials to fall through the gaps. This design is brilliant for brush and rock grapples as it sifts through dirt, only removing the unwanted debris.
Solid buckets have no gaps, meaning material can’t fall through. This allows you to pick up materials such as sand or leftover concrete, completely removing the debris from your site.
What to Consider When Buying a Skid Steer Grapple
Like all construction tools, you need to consider what you intend to use the tool for before buying the equipment. What’s more, most manufacturers state that their product uses the highest quality materials, making it hard to determine an option on quality alone.
The first aspect to consider is the attachment’s yield strength. This indicates the amount of stress the tool can withstand before the steel begins to deform or bend. The higher this value, the better, but generally, you shouldn’t go below 50,000 psi.
Next is the size of the tool and its compatibility with your skid steer. You’ll need to confirm that the attachment fits your vehicle and that it can maintain an efficient load capacity. The size of the bucket needs to be big enough to carry the debris you plan to move. The smaller the bucket, the more trips you’ll need to make.
Finally, take into consideration the manufacturer's brand and if that company is a dependable dealer. This is crucial as the last thing you want is to struggle to get a replacement if you come across a faulty part.