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I've searched for quite some time now looking for a thumb. I really wanted a Michigan Iron and Equipment, but they no longer make them. So that only leaves Bro-tek and Bxpanded. However, I was seriously considering a hydraulic thumb. Cons: ugly aftermarket hydraulic set-up, cost of set up and welding it on. Pros: it's hydraulic!, use the extra hydros for the hydraulic top link I want.

Am I missing any other options for a thumb?

Thought I'd throw a pic in for fun. I apologize for the clutter. The wife hasn't given me the go ahead for a secondary garage yet.
 

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I know nothing about the thumb you're looking for. But...... tell me about the backhoe dolly you are using :hi:
 
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I wish I was so disorganized!!!!! :lolol: Looks pretty organized to me. :good2: Nice!! and yes, nice Stihl stuff and John Deere also.

Concerning the thumb, I have no idea. I don't have one but think I could use one occasionally. So, I am going to watch this thread to see what others offer.
I think I would like a hydraulic actuated thumb but, as you said, you would need aux. rear hydraulics on your tractor. Because you have PB for the BH, you will need to go aftermarket for the rear hydraulics.
I know Fit Rite Hydraulics has a valve assembly set up for sub-compact tractors. If I install rear hydraulics on my 1025R, which I plan to do, I am going to use Fit Rites valve set up.
Fit Rite Hydraulics - fitritehydraulics.com
Top n Tilt for JD 1000 series
 
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I wish I was so disorganized!!!!! :lolol: Looks pretty organized to me. :good2: Nice!! and yes, nice Stihl stuff and John Deere also.
I have a friend who's OCD appears to be on the same level as the OP.... every time I'm in his garage, I'll move something intentionally...lol. It never gets by him. He usually puts it back immediately :laugh: In the OP's garage, I'd have to turn one of them stihls opposite, or swap a couple of those dewalts. The sneaky one would be moving one of those neatly stacked white packages on the upper shelving....lol.

Don't get me wrong, I wish I could be as organized as the OP. I try but, am just not capable....
 

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Thumb

I purchased the BXpanded thumb right after my tractor was delivered. It works great. It's one of those tools that when you need it, you need it. I don't use it constantly so I didn't go hydraulic. I have the TLB so if I were to add anything hydraulic, it would be on the back for a blade etc.... Using the backhoe loop. I feel that would be more worth while because it is something I would utilize so much more. Anyway, the thumb saves me from getting off the rig to reposition something to properly curl the bucket and grip, and grip things that a bucket only curl wouldn't achieve. Think of how your hand would work without a thumb ! If you choose to get a thumb you will be very happy. It's mounted once and it's always there to put in service.

Don
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Viper21....its made by Bxpanded and worth every penny!

I might be a little OCD, but I've been stuck in this garage for over a year now, since we moved. Going from 2 garages down to 1 hasn't been fun and extremely challenging.

I'm leaning towards the bxpanded thumb, but would really love the convenience of hydraulics. I know if I do the aftermarket set up it'll drive me crazy if it's not nice and neat and totally out of the way (shocking huh). Plus, I really would like to incorporate a button, pistol grip style grip to operate it and I'm having trouble finding what I have in my head.

My local JD dealer told me they could do an aftermarket install of all the hydros for $500- $1000, but stated "it won't look pretty" which was a deal breaker.
 
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Thought I'd throw a pic in for fun. I apologize for the clutter. The wife hasn't given me the go ahead for a secondary garage yet.
You call that CLUTTER? Wow... if you want to see a Jedi-clutter master stop by sometime. :)
 

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My local JD dealer told me they could do an aftermarket install of all the hydros for $500- $1000, but stated "it won't look pretty" which was a deal breaker.
The dealer told you up front that it "won't look pretty"? Wow... I would run, not walk to someone else to do the work. There is no reason that adding aux. hydraulics cannot be done correctly.
 

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Viper21....its made by Bxpanded and worth every penny!

I might be a little OCD, but I've been stuck in this garage for over a year now, since we moved. Going from 2 garages down to 1 hasn't been fun and extremely challenging.
Cool man. I wasn't sure if was the Bxpanded one or not. I've looked at theirs, & looks like a great dolly. I didn't want to spend the 2 bills on it so, I'm going the self fabrication route. Should have it rolling around my garage in the coming weeks... we'll see what happens.

I hear ya on the OCD, & garage shrink.... I laugh because I'm guilty as well just not as disciplined in my organization. When I was finally able to move from the city back to the boonies, I went from a 20' x 30' garage I had been in for 15yrs which was well utilized, organized, etc... to a tiny shed, & slightly smaller home. Fortunately, I'm mid way through building a new garage, & should have it finished, & in full use by late spring/early summer.
 

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Neat

The dealer told you up front that it "won't look pretty"? Wow... I would run, not walk to someone else to do the work. There is no reason that adding aux. hydraulics cannot be done correctly.
When I see things this neat and clean I want wonder how they are used. I have a neighbor who bought a 37 or 38 horse tractor with a loader. 4 years old now, with ALL the pain still on it. He will drive up to some thing dirt, rocks, logs and get off the tractor to hand load as to not damage the tractor because it coast so much. When he sees my 1025tlb with dings and paint knocked off he will almost cry. I've told he it's cheaper to put the tractor in the hospital than it is to put me back in for a hernia surgery again. I buy my tools to help me save time, not me spending time worshipping them.
 

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I have a Bro-Tec, simply because nobody else makes them for the 46BH. I do not have hydo's for the thumb but have found it to be quite useful for moving items. I do find it may get in the road if you are reaching out long distance with the hoe and want to dig in. It is really nice to use to pick up rocks that you uncover, no lifting or having to get off the tractor. I think you are going to find out that the additional hydro on the tractor will to be up to your likening. Look around on the site and you will see several setups that folks have put on their 1 series. Myself, I do not like the large control valves on the side of my tractor. Maybe some day I will have this, just not likely soon.
 

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I have a BXPanded. I like it and have used it EXTENSIVELY. Here it is picking up a huge rock. While the rock pile was mostly the result of excavation by a bobcat, the tractor with the thumb did it's share of the work. The excavation was for a 30x50x12 metal building. I will post that thread eventually.

I would pick up rocks with the backhoe and take them to the rock pile. While slow, it was about the only way to do it. They would not fit in the bucket. I do have pallet forks and that worked well too.

01d7ea3a977a99bd317c44646fda956563f150c746.jpg

Here is a picture of the rock pile. The pile is three times this size now.

01094607a4e6f301fa17e39631f2577c065d011e60.jpg
 

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Howdy Chief...:laugh: How long does it take you to switch back to the bucket
Looks like he has the BXpanded quick coupler too. So i would imagine only a few seconds.
That's on my to-buy list.:gizmo:
 

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I've searched for quite some time now looking for a thumb. I really wanted a Michigan Iron and Equipment, but they no longer make them. So that only leaves Bro-tek and Bxpanded. However, I was seriously considering a hydraulic thumb. Cons: ugly aftermarket hydraulic set-up, cost of set up and welding it on. Pros: it's hydraulic!, use the extra hydros for the hydraulic top link I want.

Am I missing any other options for a thumb?

Thought I'd throw a pic in for fun. I apologize for the clutter. The wife hasn't given me the go ahead for a secondary garage yet.
I think you may be Randy's long lost brother from another mother.:lol:
 

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Howdy Chief...:laugh: How long does it take you to switch back to the bucket
I have the single pin BXpanded change system - one pin. Not long at all to change and very little lifting. Seconds really, once you marshall all the equipment. It makes the BH implements "quick attach." Very useful. I also have the dolly, ripper, trenching bucket and obviously the thumb. All are very useful. Especially the ripper and trenching bucket. If you want to put in a drain, using the standard bucket means digging a 3 foot wide trench because of those big flat rocks in my picture. But with the ripper and the trencher, I can get that down to about 1 foot in most places. I slightly bent the ripper in the process.

Off the subject of thumbs - I recommend everyone get a dolly for the BH. In removing and attaching the BH, I have almost ripped a hose, bent the PTO cover, and finally, one bleak day, dumped the BH on it's side. After the dolly, no more problems.
 

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As a Dewalt, Stihl, and organization fan, I thought your shop was perfect. My wife however says the coolers are not arranged according to colour!


Last time I show her a great shop photo!!

=Grizzler
 
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1025r thumb option....

I've been considering the thumb attachment for my 1025r, as of now I have just been picking up the rocks, and squeezing them against the boom. Do to the limited size of my backhoe, I've decided to weld a 1/2 in plate to my lower boom, tapering the plate around the sides of the boom for added strength. In my opinion, I feel this is more suitable, won't interfere with the back hoe operation, and will look a lot cleaner. Just food for thought, simers
 
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