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Tips and Tricks for Bobcat Yard Grading

Matt at Centex Excavation
Author: MattPublished: April 4, 2022 Updated: December 26, 2023 • Filed Under: Tips and How-Tos

Many people who work on construction sites use Bobcat skid steer loaders and posi-track loaders. They are multi-purpose machines with numerous attachment options and can finish tasks across various scales and difficulties. Whatever the scope of the job you are working on, there’s an appropriate loader. But what about using a Bobcat for yard grading?

These machines are incredibly versatile, ranging from 1.2-tonnes up to 4 tons. When you’re at a site for construction or planning to embark on an undertaking for yourself, Your life will be much easier with the help of a Bobcat loader that is available in skid-steer or the posi-track model.

To help you figure out how you can make the most of this machine, we’ve provided the essential information you must be aware of about Doosan’s renowned Bobcat loaders, which are commonly called Bobcats.

What is a Bobcat?

The Bobcat is an unloader that is part of the skid-steer and posi-track models. Over the years, Bobcat has long been known for its loaders, ranging from tiny to huge.

It’s the reason you’ll see these loaders being known as Bobcats.

Like Kleenex being a synonym for tissues, the word Bobcat is now synonymous with loaders. Because of their outstanding performance and popularity, many rental companies loan a selection of Bobcat loaders to assist DIYers and tradies in professionally completing their work.

How to prepare your yard before grading.

The cost of renting a Bobcat for yard grading is just one portion of the overall procedure. Suppose you’re planning to level your property legally and efficiently; there is much work to complete regarding preparation. This is what you’ll need to accomplish:

  • You Must Fence Off The Area You Intend To Dig: The majority of municipalities have safety regulations that require the installation of barriers in the area you are grading. This is typically accomplished using wooden posts as well as the fence is 3 feet high and constructed of silt fencing.
  • Begin Preparing The Soil That You’d Like Graded To Allow For Digging: Be sure that the lawn, the large stones, and the roots of plants are eliminated from the site. Remove the soil. Get rid of any stumps or trees present and any pavement in place. In and of its own is an entire project.
  • Make Arrangements For The Rental Of Bobcat As Well As Dump Truck Rentals: You must ensure that you have enough space to accommodate the extra soil and that you are in a position to have enough filler soil to cover any weak spots you find. It is possible to contact an expert for advice in this regard.
  • Order Topsoil: Topsoil may not constitute the sole soil you’ll need however it is a must for a healthy lawn and garden. Make sure you have two inches of topsoil for the grounds and eight inches for regular garden beds.

Getting started grading your soil.

You’re prepared to make your soil grade when you’ve got all the materials in hand. It’s a highly complex process when using a Bobcat for yard grading. Here’s how to do it:

  • Start By Putting Your Mark In A Relatively Good Place: The soil might not be perfectly level; however, there’s always an area or another flat. To achieve this, you will need to do something known as “cutting in the soil.” Start with the level spot, position the bucket parallel to the ground, and then position the bucket just a few inches above the ground. After that, you can begin scooping the high areas.
  • Cut The Grade Every Day Until You’ve Reached A Decent Surface Within Your Backyard: The soil left over should be placed in a pile of spoil close to an area in which your dump truck is in a position to collect it.
  • Continue To Work On This Rough Slope, Observing The Areas As You Proceed: You’ll need to clear your space fully on the first try.
  • Then, Take Pictures Of Grade Elevations And Place Measuring Sticks In The Rough Grading: It’s usually accomplished through a qualified surveyor, and, in truth, it’s the best way to measure. Mostly, municipalities will not tolerate those who make mistakes with elevation grades. It’s also a necessity for the layout of a pool.
  • Grading Can Be Used To Establish Benchmarks: Take soil off areas above the benchmark you have chosen and apply soil to low-lying areas. You can tamp down the ground with your Bobcat when the earth is even.

How to Operate on a Bobcat

The Wheels

The skid-steer, as well as the post-track loader, have two steering levers that control the undercarriage. If the unit is operating in normal mode and you want to move forward, the levers are pulled forward.

To move backward, both levers pull back. The wheels of the skid-steer loader may be locked mechanically in synchronization or operate at different speeds, which means that the right-side wheels can be independent of the left-side wheels and the reverse.

To turn or skid this machine, wheels run at different speeds, one being slower or in an exact orientation. The skidding movement allows the machine to remain in good shape when it turns and prevents damage to the frame that is part of it. Similar to the loader with the skid-steer mechanism, the posi-track loader can be tuned by altering its speed. This is accomplished by advancing one lever while maintaining the position of the other.

The Arms

Those arms on a skid steer and a posi-track loader can often be operated using foot pedals within the machine. However, it will vary based on the model and its configuration. The left pedal is used for revitalizing the attachment, and the right one is to tilt. It may be complicated at first if unfamiliar with heavy machinery, but most users can master it quickly. Be patient and take the time to take measurements of the work, as hurrying the work can destroy the machinery.

Operating Tips

  • Always be sure to remove the roll bar designed for security to the side while inside the cab.
  • Make sure to turn off the brake for parking before using the machine, and then turn it back on when you’re done (toggle the switch located in the left upper corner, switching it the two. This is usually an orange button).
  • Always take a good glance around before entering the cab. It isn’t easy to see in front of or behind the equipment when working.
  • Do not overfill the bucket. Always check the capacities of your bucket to prevent this mistake.
  • Be sure to distribute the load within the attachment to prevent tipping evenly.
  • Always keep the load as light as is possible when moving and turning. When a bucket full of weight is carried at a height that is too high or above the vehicle, the weight distribution can be uneven, and you are at risk of running danger of falling over the machine.
  • While you can turn 360 degrees, that does not mean that you must because skids can tear away the grass and soil that should have been smooth. Instead, try an angle of three points when you can.

Final thoughts on using your Bobcat.

Many people don’t realize how crucial it is to have a level lawn. That is until they have projects that require some leveling. If it’s installing pools or creating an improved driveway, there will be times that you have to grade your yard. A very sought-after tool for grading a yard is the Bobcat.

About the Author

Matt Avatar

Matt

Excavation Expert

Matt is a highly experienced heavy equipment operator with over two decades of experience in the construction industry. His expertise covers a wide range of machinery and project types, and he is known for his focus on safety, efficiency, and problem-solving. Matt's commitment to delivering high-quality work within deadlines and budgets has made him highly respected at Centex Excavation and the excavation industry.

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