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I'm a new member in the process of ordering my new 20205R with 270a and was hoping to get some real-world feedback related to bucket size on the tractor/backhoe combination. I plan to do a variety of tasks with my new backhoe: running 4" downspout pipe, digging out footers for new french drains, planting trees, removing stumps, and digging ditches. I living in SW PA where the soil has a high clay content.

My original thought was to get both the 16" and the 8" buckets. I'd use the 16" for tasks like planting and french drains, and the 8" for both increased power (stumps) and less soil disturbance (drain pipes). However, the JD salesman recommended just getting the 12" bucket on using it as a general purpose solution for everything. He was concerned that the 2025 is a bit under powered for the 16" bucket and might stop mid-scoop. I've found YouTube videos for the tractor/hoe, but no one is clear about which bucket they're using.

Does anyone have experience with the 16" bucket in similar soil conditions and for similar tasks? Do you experience any slow-down/stoppage as the salesman warned about.

Does anyone have thoughts in general about the single mid-sized vs both largest and smallest bucket ideas?
 

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I'd say you got some good advice. A 16" - 18" bucket on a smaller hoe is not going to do well in anything other than light, clean, sandy soil. 12" is a good all-around size for trenching, planting and digging. An 8" bucket is going to jam up and won't dump easily. I'd say go with a 12" bucket and possibly a ripper tooth if you're going to be digging stumps. I use an 18" bucket on my 485 backhoe. Had a 12" on my previous 46 which was OK for what it was and probably on par with the 270A.

Welcome aboard!!

:gtfam:
 

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Welcome to GTT heli.novice.
I've done a lot of BH digging, I ran a 16" bucket on our JD 650 for 20 years. Bought the 16" with our 2320 in 2008. Never wanted or thought about a smaller bucket.
 

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If it helps, keep in mind that changing buckets on these backhoes is not fun. They all have greased pins and thrust washers between all joints, which are hard to manage. They require bolts to be removed to unpin the bucket. The backhoes are usually covered with dirt which gets into all of the nooks and crannies of the linkage. That dirt defies any attempt to be hosed away and only gives up its grip at the exact moment when you are trying to reinsert the greased pins. It's very close to being either a two man job or maybe a one man job who has a healthy four letter word vocabulary and steel toed boots for kicking (Which always seems to take place right at the moment when your neighbor drops by to drop off some mis-delivered mail).

This is one place where it might be best to pick one size that will work best for your conditions and stick with it. :)
 

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Hey Superglidesport,

Thanks for the advice and welcome.
'18" bucket on my 485 backhoe' - Yeah, that's the size we have on the old Ford 4500 ... of course, the difference in dirt volume is way more than 2" would suggest1.
'Had a 12" on my previous 46 which was OK for what it was and probably on par with the 270A.' - I think you're right, the 270A similar to the 46. Your comment doesn't sound like a glowing endorsement of the smaller setup. I hope I'm not disappointed.
'possibly a ripper tooth if you're going to be digging stumps' - Hrm didn't know this option existed ... might be worth looking into.


Hi Gizmo2,

'Bought the 16" with our 2320 in 2008. Never wanted or thought about a smaller bucket.' - As I understand it, the 2320 is the exact same tractor I'm getting ... the 2025 is just a new model number for consistency across the entire product line, so I'm very interested to hear about your experience. What kind of tasks were you doing and in what soil conditions?


Hey Artillian,

'changing buckets on these backhoes is not fun' - I didn't think of that ... just looking at it sitting on the dealer's lot, two bolts and two pins didn't seem too bad. But I hadn't thought about what other little parts might be in there, nor the dirt that would get into every little place. I guess all of these same concerns would also apply with the ripper tooth Superglidesport mentioned?


Thanks again everyone!
 

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I'm a new member in the process of ordering my new 20205R with 270a and was hoping to get some real-world feedback related to bucket size on the tractor/backhoe combination. I plan to do a variety of tasks with my new backhoe: running 4" downspout pipe, digging out footers for new french drains, planting trees, removing stumps, and digging ditches. I living in SW PA where the soil has a high clay content.

My original thought was to get both the 16" and the 8" buckets. I'd use the 16" for tasks like planting and french drains, and the 8" for both increased power (stumps) and less soil disturbance (drain pipes). However, the JD salesman recommended just getting the 12" bucket on using it as a general purpose solution for everything. He was concerned that the 2025 is a bit under powered for the 16" bucket and might stop mid-scoop. I've found YouTube videos for the tractor/hoe, but no one is clear about which bucket they're using.

Does anyone have experience with the 16" bucket in similar soil conditions and for similar tasks? Do your xperience any slow-down/stoppage as the salesman warned about.

Does anyone have thoughts in general about the single mid-sized vs both largest and smallest bucket ideas?
I've got a whole buttload of clay on my place. I've got a 48 bh with 18" bucket on my 4510 and it will sometimes stop mix scoop. If you can get a hydraulic thumb for it, you should. A good investment.
 

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Hi Gizmo2,

'Bought the 16" with our 2320 in 2008. Never wanted or thought about a smaller bucket.' - As I understand it, the 2320 is the exact same tractor I'm getting ... the 2025 is just a new model number for consistency across the entire product line, so I'm very interested to hear about your experience. What kind of tasks were you doing and in what soil conditions?
It's very rocky here, here are a few...

Dug the footings for an addition on the house
Drainage ditches (many) and keeping them clean and or digging them again
Burying horses and other large animals (boy I hate digging these by hand)

Dug out a small pond
Dug out a small spring and set 2, 4ft round x 4ft high tiles to make a water holding tank for the barn.
Water lines (4 ft deep)
Septic leach fields
Post holes for my new deck (4 ft deep)
Dig out for Volleyball court
Set electric pole
Dig out for pole barn
Dig out for retaining walls
Dig out corner post holes for fencing
Dig out tree stumps
Dig out large rocks
Moving smaller trees (for the wife)

Electric lines
Rock garden (couple times, the first one is never right)

Finding septic tank lid
Dig out for Hot Tub

Setting Hot Tub

Dug out for an above ground pool (then gave the pool away and filled it in a few years later)
Backing into things
(don't ask)

Notes:
1) Keep in mind the reach on these BH's is really short and digging deep can be a PITA.
2) I have never had a smaller bucket on ours, so to say, flat out, the 16" bucket IS better would be completely wrong of me.
 

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Hey Artillian,

'changing buckets on these backhoes is not fun' - I didn't think of that ... just looking at it sitting on the dealer's lot, two bolts and two pins didn't seem too bad. But I hadn't thought about what other little parts might be in there, nor the dirt that would get into every little place. I guess all of these same concerns would also apply with the ripper tooth Superglidesport mentioned?
I can only speak for my own experience and observation, but having owned and used a ripper tooth, I have not found it to be worthwhile given the labor involved as described above. For the hydraulic pressure available in these systems, there is little noticeable difference in performance between using the ripper vs engaging the work with one single tooth on the backhoe bucket.

I'm sure there are applications where the ripper will shine but I haven't found it to do so in the jobs I was expecting it to happen, such as for stumping. I think it could be a good tool as a scarifier to break up soil or surface growth or to surgically extract heaving stones but that's the extent of my imagination. These days, the 13" bucket that came on the hoe stays on the hoe at all times.

There are times when I'd like a larger bucket for digging large holes but then there are times when I'd rather a narrower one for trenching. In the end, the 13" has been a fine compromise. Whatever you choose, you'll learn to live with. Enjoy your buying experience. :thumbup1gif:
 

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There are times when I'd like a larger bucket for digging large holes but then there are times when I'd rather a narrower one for trenching. In the end, the 13" has been a fine compromise. Whatever you choose, you'll learn to live with. Enjoy your buying experience. :thumbup1gif:
:good2:
Especially, "Whatever you choose, you'll learn to live with."
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks

Thanks for the feedback everyone. The argument against swapping buckets was enough for me ... compromised and went with the 12 inch. Now I just need to start learning to live with it. :) Thanks again for the different perspectives.
 
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