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In another thread, I’m learning about diverters and FEL mounted snow plows.

The topic of grapples came up.

My game plan for next winter is a FEL-mounted plow with manual angle and the ability to receive a hydraulic angling kit in the future. For a variety of reasons too lengthy to get into now, I’m ok with a manual angle plow for a bit.

The thread conversation has me thinking of all I can do with a grapple.

Notably, remove sectioned trees I’ve dropped and piles of brush.

I’m thinking as an interim, a set of forks will be more efficient at moving those types of things than a FEL bucket, yes?

And once I have a diverter and grapple, I’m sure there’s plenty for the forks to do....?

Am I thinking in the right direction here?
 

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Yes
776184
 

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Since I cannot afford a grapple, I use my forks for such tasks. The bucket has different tasks.

Dave
 

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I bought a set of forks when I purchased my 1025R with every intention of going the grapple route as well. But after using the forks for a season, I figured I could do without the grapple and have happily used the forks for everything ever since. Go figure.
 

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I have used a set of pallet forks for move probably dozens if not a hundred or more piles of brush and when I mean a pile of brush, i mean a pile of brush. This is a limb.....
limb1.jpg



This is a pile of brush. This is average, or maybe even a little below average. This is a beginner pile.

brushpile.jpg


Here is a "KBar" sized load, you know, a Man's Man pallet fork full of ..................stuff..Using the forks to support a HD tarp full of yard waste and pine needles.

This tarp carried what 2 or more heaping bucket would. Pallet forks can also carry pallets, if you happen to have them.

Personally, I would go light weight, with the back stop / headache rack or whatever one wants to call the part that protects your tractors face. Unnecessary fork weight consumes capacity.

That's a good policy to always follow. Don't fork around and waste space and lifting capacity. Some day, you just might need to lift a pizza oven and then what?

palforkbag.jpg
 

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Now, don't get me wrong, Grapples are GREAT. But not all of us have the "Grapple Cash" so we use the "Poor Man's Grapple", pallet forks.

In a perfect world, you would have a Grapple and some good forks. I have started with the forks. One day I might add a Grapple. Need to save my money and maybe figure out a way to have the grapple pay for itself. That's always a good idea also.............

If you are cutting something up or handling the brush, the trick to a well balanced pile to carry on your forks is to keep alternating how you stack the brush. Trunk left, trunk right, trunk left, trunk right. You do that and the pile will lift and stay balanced on the forks. If you stack with all cut ends to one side, the pile won't stay on the forks and you will be playing stick pick up all day.

If you are cleaning up downed stuff, the grapple is great because you can "grap" the pile and go, no need to worry about how its stacked.

Also, you can add a hydraulic thumb or two to pallet forks also, to hold the piles. Lots of options.
 
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If you think a grapple is in your future, do yourself a huge favor and look really hard at the Artilian system built off their fork frame. Get the frame, and their forks as an interim step if you choose, and later if you want the grapple, than you can get that. It is lighter weight than most and so you have more lift capacity, and it is top notch quality.
 

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I also use my forks to haul logs and brush. I used to get off the tractor and stack the brush on the forks and haul it off. I finally figured I could just drive in a scoop the brush up and haul it off. You don’t get as much but it’s less work and faster.
 
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I went the opposite path. Grapple/3SCV first and now I'm shopping for pallet forks. Two things that the grapple is great for (opposed to using forks) is for ripping stuff out by the roots,
776205

and being able to compress a pile of stuff and grab and move it in one fell swoop.

776206


That's a pile of blackberry cuttings after mowing them down with a brush cutter blade and raking them into a pile.
 

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I agree with everyone else. I should have gotten them sooner. Come spring, I'll drop the bucket, and use the forks 10x more than the bucket.
 

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I agree with everyone else. I should have gotten them sooner. Come spring, I'll drop the bucket, and use the forks 10x more than the bucket.
I use the grapple to carry the bucket to where I'm working. Nice to have the option for both wherever I may be.
 

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I use the forks to carry the bucket to wherever I will be working so I can have both.

Dave
 

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I use the grapple to carry the bucket to where I'm working. Nice to have the option for both wherever I may be.
I use the forks for the same purpose, however, I don't have a grapple... Yet..
 

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Everyone so far has the right mind set; use what you have. Once you learn how to work with your attachment things will work out. I bought a set of forks first and they work great. Then I went with a 3rd function valve and a EA Grapple. The Grapple stays on the tractor most of the time, but it will come off when a pallet needs moving or a bucket is needed. Only problem I have is the bucket will not hold enough leaves to move to the burn pile. I am working on a fixture to extend the carrying capacity of my bucket. So work with what you have and plan on moving up.
 

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Everyone so far has the right mind set; use what you have. Once you learn how to work with your attachment things will work out. I bought a set of forks first and they work great. Then I went with a 3rd function valve and a EA Grapple. The Grapple stays on the tractor most of the time, but it will come off when a pallet needs moving or a bucket is needed. Only problem I have is the bucket will not hold enough leaves to move to the burn pile. I am working on a fixture to extend the carrying capacity of my bucket. So work with what you have and plan on moving up.
At most if not all my sites the guys make a trash bin for their forklift. I want to make something similar for my leaves having the same issues as you. Looks like this and they just drill holes in the back and chain it to the forklift frame

776242

For brush I put on my homemade comb
776243

It can actually carry logs
776244

And scoop up brush pretty good
But they are not pallet forks which can do this
776245
 

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I went the cheaper route already had the forks use the forks like I always have when dealing with trees, now I can push into piles and grab a lot more or grab the trunk and clamp and cut it up without bending down.

Doug image000007.jpg
 
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