This report concerns the North American market for backhoe loaders (also known as tractor loader backhoes) and is the first report on this subject published in OffHighway Research’s North American Service. The findings presented in this report are based on an extensive interview program undertaken with all major manufacturers and importers in the USA and Canada during Summer, and incorporates information from Off Highway Research’s North American Database.
The first backhoe loaders were developed from agricultural tractors immediately following the Second World War. The early pioneers of commercial production were JCB and Case.
The defining feature of a backhoe loader is that it has a loading bucket at the front and an excavator arm at the rear. Both are capable of accepting a wide range of attachments in addition to standard buckets. In standard configurations the front loader typically offers a maximum pin height of 3.3 m (11 ft) and the maximum digging depth at the rear is typically around 4.5 m (15ft). Many manufacturers offer front and rear options such as extended arms and sticks which can increase these working envelopes.
The excavator arm of North American backhoe loaders is typically mounted to a fixed point at the center of the rear chassis, called the center pivot or king post. This is a key difference to the preference in Europe, where the rear excavator tends to be mounted to an assembly which can be slid across the width of the rear of the machine, called the side shift.
Backhoe loaders typically have an operating weight of 7-11 tonnes (17,600-22,000 lbs). They most commonly have a small set of front tires and larger rear tires, and are generally four-wheel drive. Engine power typically ranges from 70-110 HP.
Variants with four equally sized tires are available, which offer four-wheel steering in greater flotation. This comes with a higher price, higher power requirement and generally greater overall machine weight
North America Equipment Analysis: Backhoe Loaders
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North America Equipment Analysis