Bucket chain hooks?

pokey1416

Active member

Equipment
Grand L4060HSTC, BH92 Backhoe
Jun 24, 2020
130
101
43
SW Michigan
No, just galvanized. I took them off and put them in the toolbox till I need them. You can see my drill and hammer in the photo. I'd just finished mounting them when I took the pic, and did a trial fit with the clevises to make sure the bolts didn't interfere. If I put the bolts in with the nuts on the inside, they get in the way. They don't hit the ground and they're not visible turned the other way (unless I curl the bucket back and raise it up high).

Already had a few comments about getting some KO paint for the hooks. I don't mind keeping things looking nice, but I'm not sure that painting something with the sole purpose of suffering the abuse of a heavy chain is productive. They're zinc-chromate plated, so they won't rust for a little while. Two things I liked about those kits. 1. There's a backup plate the same size and thickness (3/8 plate) as the hook/d-ring mounting plate on the other side of the bucket. If you pull one off, you just ripped one hell of a hole in that bucket. You'll note that I mounted them near bends in the bucket. The strongest points that won't distort when I pull on something. I also tried to put them where they can be used only in tension mode on the bucket cylinders, or very little force on them. That should keep me from being stupid and breaking a bucket cylinder. 2. The mounting hardware included Nylock nuts, so even if they get loose, they're not coming off. I'll have time to see they're loose and take appropriate measures. I can still take them off to address any serious rust issues on the bucket if needed. I've already used them to move some pretty hefty water oak logs that I cut up for firewood. They were heavy enough to bounce the back of the tractor with the box blade on and ballast in the rear tires. Must have bigger ballast for that kind of work, or smaller logs. :)

Pretty much, I'm starting a new phase in my life trying to come up with enough things to keep busy after retirement. It's either that, or driving my wife nuts with my boredom. Annoying my wife could be hazardous to my health.
Very Nice and I agree about the retirement!
 

MNVikingsGuy

Member

Equipment
LX3310, FEL, 60" bucket, 60" grapple, 60" box blade, 60" flail, LX2980 blower,
Sep 7, 2020
88
46
18
Minnesota
Just installed mine from KennyD as well
To paint or not to paint -- that is the big question for me about the Ken's Bolt-ons I just got for my new LX3310. Choices, choices.
 
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Old_Paint

Active member

Equipment
LX2610HSDSU, LA535 FEL w/48" bucket, 48" LandPride (made for Kubota) box blade
Dec 5, 2020
108
40
28
AL
Here's what I did:

CFBV3950.JPG

The dealer's shop guy that delivered mine suggested this arrangement. With the bucket fully tipped, the d-rings inside the bucket are actually slightly behind the pivot pins for the bucket, which allows using the full lift capacity of the FEL without putting any significant forces on the bucket edges or wrapping any chain on my boom when using the D-rings. These are bolt-on, and come with a matching plate for backup on the opposite side of the bucket shell. I put the grab hooks on the top so I can chain things across the bucket in two places to keep them from twisting. I can roll the bucket back to tighten the chain on the load, and then just raise it enough to clear the ground and be on my way. I put the D-rings and grab-hooks as close to the centerline of the bucket pivots as possible to make sure I got the maximum strength area of the bucket shell, and also mounted them on the narrowest flat surface possible.

Now all I need is the Piranha tooth bar ....
 

Nicfin36

Active member

Equipment
L2501 HST, BH77 Backhoe, QA Loader
Jun 19, 2019
418
94
28
Decatur, AL
That looks good. I was about to say you need a tooth bar to top it off, but then I read your last line. :)

In contrast, I have the toothbar, but need to add the hooks.
 

Old_Paint

Active member

Equipment
LX2610HSDSU, LA535 FEL w/48" bucket, 48" LandPride (made for Kubota) box blade
Dec 5, 2020
108
40
28
AL
That looks good. I was about to say you need a tooth bar to top it off, but then I read your last line. :)

In contrast, I have the toothbar, but need to add the hooks.
Thanks. Took about an hour and a half to put all four on. If those pull out, I'm gonna need a new bucket. That one won't be reparable. They're yellow zinc galvanized, and I'm debating painting them. They look OK without paint, so I may leave them as is as long as they don't rust. If they rust, I'll snatch 'em off, sand-blast them, and paint 'em then. First thing I picked up with 'em was a couple logs (one at a time) from a green water oak my neighbor had cut, about 20 feet long, and 24 inches diameter at the butt end. That one had her back feet up on their tippy toes, but I dropped engine speed in low range, and put the logs where I wanted them, no problem. I'm relatively certain those logs were well over 1000 lbs each. There was at least a half-cord of firewood in the two, if not a full cord.

Tomorrow's supposed to be a nice day here, up around 58, so I might try to upgrade the toolbox and make a chain hauler, too after I get back from PT for my shoulders. If it's windy and 58, I may not be able to do much because both shoulders still cramp up and hurt really bad when I get cold. I had both rotator cuffs done last year, right one in June, and the left in October, and still have about 4 months to go for full recovery on the right one, and about 8 on the left. A long way from getting really rowdy out back with my new toy. Up right now because the left one's hurting.
 

Old_Paint

Active member

Equipment
LX2610HSDSU, LA535 FEL w/48" bucket, 48" LandPride (made for Kubota) box blade
Dec 5, 2020
108
40
28
AL
OP, be real careful with a shovel digging muck outta the bucket ! You WILL forget the D-rings are there, hit one and the shockwave will not be nice on your wrist.
Dunno if I have anything around here that will stick to the bucket that bad that I have to shovel it back out. I generally wash the bucket out with high pressure hose.
 

MNVikingsGuy

Member

Equipment
LX3310, FEL, 60" bucket, 60" grapple, 60" box blade, 60" flail, LX2980 blower,
Sep 7, 2020
88
46
18
Minnesota
Here's what I did:

View attachment 53411

The dealer's shop guy that delivered mine suggested this arrangement. With the bucket fully tipped, the d-rings inside the bucket are actually slightly behind the pivot pins for the bucket, which allows using the full lift capacity of the FEL without putting any significant forces on the bucket edges or wrapping any chain on my boom when using the D-rings. These are bolt-on, and come with a matching plate for backup on the opposite side of the bucket shell. I put the grab hooks on the top so I can chain things across the bucket in two places to keep them from twisting. I can roll the bucket back to tighten the chain on the load, and then just raise it enough to clear the ground and be on my way. I put the D-rings and grab-hooks as close to the centerline of the bucket pivots as possible to make sure I got the maximum strength area of the bucket shell, and also mounted them on the narrowest flat surface possible.

Now all I need is the Piranha tooth bar ....
I am a tractor newbie so take this for what it is worth, but my understanding is that it is best to avoid placing heavy loads on the FEL when the bucket is in the fully dumped/rolled position as the hydraulic cylinders are fully extended and at greatest risk of damage. Maybe I am off base on this but just floating the thought for consideration.
 

Henro

Active member

Equipment
B2910, BX2200, KX41-2V mini Ex.
May 24, 2019
808
112
43
North of Pittsburgh PA
I am a tractor newbie so take this for what it is worth, but my understanding is that it is best to avoid placing heavy loads on the FEL when the bucket is in the fully dumped/rolled position as the hydraulic cylinders are fully extended and at greatest risk of damage. Maybe I am off base on this but just floating the thought for consideration.
I would think the greatest risk to the cylinders would be if the bucket were in the full dump position, and you were back dragging. Chance of bending a cylinder rod if you hit something hard, since the force generated would tend to compress the cylinders.

I would GUESS that lifting with the cylinders fully extended would not be a great risk, as they would be in tension and not compression. The lift points being inside the bucket would be less stressful that the ones on the upper lip, when the bucket is in the dumped position I would think.
 
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Old_Paint

Active member

Equipment
LX2610HSDSU, LA535 FEL w/48" bucket, 48" LandPride (made for Kubota) box blade
Dec 5, 2020
108
40
28
AL
I am a tractor newbie so take this for what it is worth, but my understanding is that it is best to avoid placing heavy loads on the FEL when the bucket is in the fully dumped/rolled position as the hydraulic cylinders are fully extended and at greatest risk of damage. Maybe I am off base on this but just floating the thought for consideration.
Like Henro said, if you back drag, you are putting collapsing forces on the bucket curl cylinders (i.e. trying to roll the bucket up) against the unvented rod end. Hydraulic oil does not compress, and will be just as hard as steel when this happens. The bucket/SSQA pivot is a fairly long moment arm at a really severe angle at the cylinder rod knuckle when tilted forward and can create tremendous forces in the wrong directions. The mechanics of the bucket cylinders are designed to withstand the forces in a pulling mode, not pushing. In retracting (pulling) mode, a cylinder will typically develop only about half the amount of force as it will extending, depending on cylinder bore and rod diameter. E.G., you have 4 square inch bore cylinder with a rod that's 2 square inches, the force in the push direction (pressure at head end) is 4 x Pressure. In the retract mode, it's (4-2) x pressure, half as much. Length of stroke has very little to do with it, except in hybrid cylinders. The cylinder rod cross sectional area is subtracted from the the bore cross sectional area when pulling. This is why the mounts for the bucket cylinders are typically relatively small perches or even on cross members as compared with the mounts for the boom cylinders. With the bucket fully forward, the cylinders are also fully extended, making them prone to even the slightest radial force at the rod seal. Fully extended is simply not the best operating position for a cylinder for any reason. When I'm lifting with the bucket rolled forward, I'm not using the bucket cylinders at all. In fact, I'm intentionally avoiding most of the loading on the cylinders by letting my chain hang straight down from the d-rings. If I roll the bucket up, then yes, it's going to put some force on the cutting edge of the bucket with the chain, but remember, I'm pulling with those cylinders, not pushing. I'll hurt the bucket or SSQA before I hurt the cylinders. Again, the bucket curl cylinders will just simply stall (with a lot less force) if the pressure cannot retract the cylinders. When raising the load, all the force is supplied by the boom cylinders with that rigging, which are operating in push mode, or pressure at the head end, using the entire cross section of the bore.

Most modern tractors have a float function, though. This vents the head end to the rod end on the boom cylinder netting zero force in either direction and letting the boom effectively float with no up or down force on it other than gravity. This is very handy for back-dragging or skimming.

Overloading or improper rigging with the center of gravity forward of the bucket pivot pins or not in line with the centerline of the tractor (ergo the loader) it is entirely possible to twist the boom. There are two boom cylinders, so it's a good idea to use both of them by keeping the load between them. The boom can be overloaded while lifting, but typically it will just stall (pressure relief) and not lift the load any farther when the pressure relief on the pump bypasses. If it doesn't relieve (someone shimmed the pressure regulator too much, or the relief valve is stuck in an older machine), there is a possiblity of lifting too far out beyond the front wheels (especially with forks) exceeding the load rating of the boom, which will likely cause it to overcome ballast on the rear, and risk tipping the tractor because the front axel pivots at the center where the rear one does not. Cow tipping fun. Tractor tipping NOT. THAT is why rear ballast is very important when using the FEL. Keep the back feet on the ground, and get the load as close to the ground as it can be as soon as possible. Rule #1 of ANY lifting operation. Worst case, a line could rupture, and a catastrophic fall is going to happen.

Just be mindful of the limits of the equipment. I'm going through that mental exercise right now in anticipation of purchasing a heavy piece of equipment (chipper) that will have to be unloaded. I will know for certain that I can lift it with my loader before I have it delivered, or I'll have to result to different logistics. Center the weight as best possible with the tractor, and keep it as close as possible to the front wheels, and you should be OK if you have sufficient ballast. My oversized R14's are glycol filled, and I intend to hitch up my box blade to add that little bit more. Might even stack some blocks on the box blade for even more insurance. I've stalled the bucket and the boom several times trying to scratch stumps out of the ground, so I already know the boom will not lift the back of the tractor from ground level. That's a completely different story from lifting a load off a freight trailer, though.

There are plenty great videos about FEL use. That's one of the ways I've learned a lot about my little orange buddy, and then a lot of experimentation with very gentle movements.
 
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