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I am designing a grapple for my 3320 and 300cx loader. I have an initial design (still needs top cylinder and top lid cylinder mount) and am looking for opinions on what you do and do not like about your grapples or what you see maybe wrong with my initial design.


Complete Grapple.JPG
 

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I am designing a grapple for my 3320 and 300cx loader. I have an initial design (still needs top cylinder and top lid cylinder mount) and am looking for opinions on what you do and do not like about your grapples or what you see maybe wrong with my initial design.


View attachment 136657
Do a search for a thread from JKR. He built a beautiful grapple.:bigthumb:

This is the rock bucket that he added the grapple(both built by JKR) http://www.greentractortalk.com/forums/implements-attachments/14431-my-homemade-rock-bucket-my-1025r.html
 

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I really like the V gusset in between the teeth on my Alitec grapple. It works well for grabbing in trees as I push them over. I actually wish it was a little sharper so it'd bite harder, but it's not a flaw that it's blunt.

Cross bracing is what's lacking in every grapple design out there right now. They're all braced up front to back, but not side to side for "racking". The Alitec isn't super horrible in that aspect either, but that they didn't use tubing across the back bottom does allow it to twist a little more than I'd prefer when pushing or lifting from the sides (which I do often).
 

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Here is my grapple building thread. Since yours is for a 3 series I don't know how wide it needs to be. Mine is for a 5055E and wound up being 80" wide. I made it from grossly overkill heavyweight materials and is 750lb+. But I haven't torn it up and I've had little mercy on it while clearing my land. Gotta use lotsa rear ballast.

Aside from the extreme weight, the thing I'd change first if I did it over would be to make the lower tines longer for better digging/uprooting ability. The 2-3/8" pipe I used is set about 2" too far forward. Also the upward sweep of the lower tines causes me to have to tilt the grapple too far forward/downward when I use the tines for a root rake. It does OK, but it could be improved on. Yours look to be straight on top so that would be better. I would definitely consider some SMALL 60* gussets where the tines meet the pipe (in front) to guard against side stress on the tines. MY gussets are 45* and they also contribute to the lack of good digging ability. I'm thinking of putting a 45* edge on the front of my gussets to aid in cutting roots etc.

http://www.greentractortalk.com/forums/metalworking-fabrication/16716-my-grapple-project.html
 

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Have you noticed that the gussets do not let you dig down into the ground very well?
They allow digging quite well, but not with the motion Ted with EA seems to like. What I do for root raking is put the tines down below the surface and pass the front support through the ground scooping everything through the slats on the implement. It doesn't slice them, it excavates them up and out which helps in locating where the bigger roots originate for further removal.

The tines are heavily supported with that design, so I can ram trees and not worry about bending them at all. EA's design looks nice, but it's trying to be a drag harrow - 6" depth doesn't get you to below a maple or aspen's roots. Scraping off the top layer only gets you so far. With that big tube in the way, you can't use my technique to burrow under all of it. My grapple only has about 1/2" of frontal surface edge to push through - cuts like a knife.
 
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