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Author Topic: Telehandler. What to look for?  (Read 2147 times)

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Offline caveman

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Telehandler. What to look for?
« on: October 19, 2021, 10:17:34 PM »
We are going to look at a used Lull on Thursday afternoon.  It evidently got a new crate Cummins 4BT a year ago.  I know  many of you have a lot more experience with construction equipment than we do.  Which things would you consider to be deal breakers on a used machine and what things would you expect would be tolerable repairs?  We plan to use it to move logs and stacks of wood in our part time sawing.  Thank you for your input.
Caveman

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2021, 10:25:09 PM »
Which model is it and how old is it?  Overall condition?  I have a 644 and just bought a 1044 that will be a bit of a project.  The 644 did take some work to make it correct, but I knew that when I bought her. Both are from the 90's and are actually pretty easy to work on, but some parts can be hard to source. Tires are not cheap, you want them loaded for sure and that adds to the cost.  

I did build a quick tack / skid steer for mine that makes swapping forks, bucket, bale squeeze, a breeze and put fluid power to the front as well so I can run low flow skid steer attachments on it too.  
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2021, 10:56:42 PM »
How many spools of hose did that take jim?  



Biggest thing that gets neglected on any wheeled iron is brakes.  Be sure it can be parked without rolling down into the woods.  We had a really ancient lull but i doubt youre looking at one of that vintage.  4bt is an exceptional engine. 
Isaiah 63:10

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2021, 11:38:51 PM »
Oh she has used plenty of hose. Got real good at rebuilding cylinders along the way too. The brakes on those are internal and a real pain to repair. Adding a hydraulic caliper to the parking disc will be my solution when and if it becomes necessary. 
Franklin buncher and skidder
JD Processor
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Offline Don P

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2021, 01:58:33 AM »
Hmm, lots of stuff. Planetaries in the hubs, fluid, growl. The tranny is a 3 or 4 speed gearbox with a torque converter and automatic parts, I'd check level and smell. Those Funk tranny's are built to shift under full power, I don't but I might to check one. Pick up a load, boom it out and back and notice the extend/retract is running true, slide the carriage fore and aft, fore gives good engine bay access on our old 644. There are welds where someone must have tried to blow that sliding carriage out the rear. Tilt to the side with the load up and shut down, does everything hold, tight cylinder packings and functioning counterbalance (load check) valves. Look at it from a distance, has it rolled.

This 644 has disc brakes on the driveshafts front and rear with a second manually operated caliper on the fronts for parking. Single bowl master cylinder with the cap on the floorboard between my feet, that's dead simple on an old '80's machine but leaves a lot to be desired as far as braking force.

Then I'd start looking for cracks near cylinders.
The future is a foreign country, they will do things differently there - Simon Winchester

Offline caveman

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #5 on: October 20, 2021, 05:33:06 AM »
I'm not sure of the year or the model but it is a n 8k machine.  It is only 20 minutes away so it should be worth a look.  Most of what we've been seeing over the past six months is out of our price range.  Thank you for all of the tips for checking out this machine.  

I'm a little apprehensive about buying an older machine with as many hydraulic parts as a telehandler but I would like to stay away from the newer diesels.


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Offline customsawyer

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #6 on: October 20, 2021, 06:35:37 AM »
I've had a few repairs on my machine. One of the worst was when one of the side tilt cylinders came unthreaded inside while I had a load up clearing a log truck. No way to check that unless you take the cylinders apart. They aren't that much different then most any other kind of machine. Look at the overall maintenance of the machine and it will tell you if it was taken care of. 
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Offline moodnacreek

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #7 on: October 20, 2021, 08:53:15 AM »
I never had the yard space for a telehandler. The best sawmill machine would be an articulated; forks/bucket. After that big wheel forklifts can be good.

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2021, 09:03:44 AM »
Once you can stretch out over a stack of lumber or two and grab one behind it you never look back at a wheel loader.  
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Offline Dave Shepard

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2021, 09:22:26 AM »
I've used most of the options at a mill for log and lumber handling, and a Lull is easily my favorite. A Lull will move where a payloader won't. 
Wood-Mizer LT40HDD51-WR Wireless, Kubota L48, Honda Rincon 650, TJ208 G-S, and a 60"LogRite!

Online hedgerow

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #10 on: October 20, 2021, 09:40:50 AM »
A telehandler is a nice piece of equipment to have around. In my area most of the older ones have been rode hard and put up wet. Had a buddy bought a old Lull five or six years ago to help put up a couple all steel buildings on his farm. He looked and looked for a nice older model and just didn't find much. Finally bought one off a estate sale. He has ended up with a fair amount of money in it and should have just spend more up front and bought a newer one. He now has so much money in it he couldn't sell it and come out. Which was he plan in the start to get the buildings up and sell it. 

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #11 on: October 20, 2021, 11:29:51 AM »
sorry doug but im in camp telehandler for small places. i have owned 4 wheel steer and articulated.  the yard must be designed for a wheel loader.  the yard that isnt designed at all, is for a lull.  we had one in a residential backyard and it was like an elephant in a broom closet but always got in and out with ease.  same at the junkyard.. the zoomboom went where the wheel loader couldnt.  didnt pick the same weight, but in that application getting to the junk someone is standing there wanting to buy thats 6 pallets deep without moving them all was what counted.  
Isaiah 63:10

Offline caveman

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #12 on: October 20, 2021, 04:26:15 PM »
I stopped by and took a look at the Lull on the way home.  It turned out to be at a repair yard.  The owner had another guy put it on CL.  The repair yard folks offered me a cold water and told me the owner evidently was not too interested in fixing it properly.  The repair yard folks have been using it.  In its day I'm sure it was a great machine and with some work it could be again but we have enough projects.  We may go to Homosassa and look at a smaller JCB that is supposed to have low hours and be in really good shape.  The smaller one should fit on my bumper pull trailer and get around in tighter spots but won't lift like the Lull or extend nearly as far.

pics of the Lull  
nice tires, boom seems to work well


 
tilt cylinder leaks and upper bushing is worn
 
McGyver had been into the wiring.  It starts with a screwdriver jumping across the solinoid and the hour meter continuously ticks on
 

 
the rear drive shaft was absent, the transmission didn not have third gear (supposedly a solenoid issue), and the pinion shaft/seal seemed to need some love 
 

I can tolerate a few leaks and drips (I have several old Broncos) but this one seems to need more work than we have time to put into it for the asking price.

Thank you to all who have provided guidance and I'm open to opinions on the smaller 2009 JCB 520-40 with a Perkins 50 hp (2300 hours), with bucket, forks, all steering functions but no frame tilt.  

I've absorbed my quota of conditioned air and need to go sticker stack pine that a customer did not pick up.

 
Caveman

Offline ljohnsaw

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2021, 05:02:52 PM »
but no frame tilt
I have an old (1986?) SkyTrak 9038.  Rode hard, put up wet.  I use the crap out of it doing dirt and rock work so it's taken a hard beating from me as well.  Love the side/frame tilt on my steep land.  Its just a reflex with me to level my seat.  I just got a Ford 545D FEL so life will get easier for the SkyTrak.  Driving the FEL around I reach for the non-existent lever all the time.  I feel like I'm about to roll the tractor all the time - very unnerving!
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Just North-East of Sacramento...

SkyTrak 9038, Ford 545D FEL, Davis Little Monster backhoe, Case 16+4 Trencher, Home Built 42" capacity/32" cut Bandmill up to 54' long - using it all to build a timber frame cabin.

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #14 on: October 20, 2021, 05:45:18 PM »
Thing to remember about telehandlers is that a steer knuckle is a steer knuckle and those booms are a lot of leverage on a front steer knuckle .  So if you need a big one get a big one.  A wheel loader has a straight steel axle tube in a straight steel frame.  You can bounce them down the staircase with a load that makes the rears float and theyll be fine so small and mid size ones can generally do more than you think without breaking hard parts. 
Isaiah 63:10

Offline Resonator

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #15 on: October 20, 2021, 05:46:32 PM »
So major pieces are missing, and someone else's dirty hands have tried to fix it in creative ways, and the owner doesn't think it's worth the cost to repair it properly. Hmm... that's when I would get back in the truck, close the door, start the motor, and wave bye - bye. smiley_wavy
Under bark there's boards and beams, somewhere in between.
Cuttin' while its green, through a steady sawdust stream.
I'm chasing the sawdust dream.

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Offline stavebuyer

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #16 on: October 20, 2021, 06:54:23 PM »
I never had the yard space for a telehandler. The best sawmill machine would be an articulated; forks/bucket. After that big wheel forklifts can be good.
I really don't understand why so many want to keep trying to re-invent the wheel by insisting that a telehandler/skid-steer, or backhoe is the ideal sawmill loader. Most full time sawmills have those machines for odd jobs but I have yet to see a full time commercial sawmill that didn't rely on articulated wheel loaders.

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #17 on: October 20, 2021, 07:38:55 PM »
I would agree that for a mill that moves logs all day long and has ample space then a big wheel loader is the ticket. That same mill likely also has a separate off road fork truck for moving lumber stacks. But for the guy with less space and or wants one machine to do it all you just can't beat a telehandler. 

I have used farm tractors, my Lull, and had a 250 Komatsu loader for a couple of years. That was a sweet machine, but like a T Rex, strong with short arms. Ride control was amazing, no wheel hop at all, until one day the nitrogen cartridge failed at 25 MPH. That was a ride.

@caveman just curious what was the guy asking for it? 
Franklin buncher and skidder
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Offline caveman

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #18 on: October 20, 2021, 08:30:17 PM »
$16k, but my plan was to take a pocketful of green dollars and try to deal if it was what we were looking for. 
Caveman

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Re: Telehandler. What to look for?
« Reply #19 on: October 20, 2021, 08:46:57 PM »
I would be apprehensive with a JCB machine personally. I have a powershift from a small telehandler torn down currently and some parts for an 8 year old machine are unavailable or not serviced separately. The dealer insists the only way to fix it is buy a reman from them and use this as a core. At the cost of their reman transmission it puts the machine at the tipping point as far as scrap.

Edit: should add this isn't the first time I've had issues with JCB parts, from unavailability to long wait times.


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