How to choose a skid steer or compact track loader?

May 31st, 2024


  Skid steer loaders and compact track loaders are becoming increasingly popular due to their versatility in narrow job sites, uneven terrain, and changing work requirements. They eliminate the need for multiple specific equipment, reducing asset wastage and idle time while increasing return on investment. With their unique structure, mobility, and various attachments, skid steer loaders are suitable for a wide range of applications such as infrastructure construction, industrial use, dock loading and unloading, urban streets, residential areas, barns, livestock shelters, airport runways, and as auxiliary equipment for large construction projects. Skid steer loaders come in two types: wheeled and tracked.


  So, how do you choose between a wheeled skid steer loader and a tracked skid steer loader?


  In addition to considering the appearance and driving mode of the skid steer itself, it is important to clearly understand the job site requirements.

(1) Characteristics of wheeled skid steers.

  The main differences between crawler and wheeled skid steers are: crawler steers have strong off-road capabilities, large climbing ability, are not easy to sink or slip on wet, muddy or soft soil, are less affected by terrain, have good passability, and can cope with more complex working conditions. Wheeled loaders have strong maneuverability and flexible steering, but they exert greater ground pressure than crawler loaders. They are prone to getting stuck or slipping on wet, muddy or soft soil. They are more suitable for working on hard ground. If they are working on normal roads, you can choose standard vacuum tires; if they are working in a high temperature environment, you can choose solid tires.


(2) Characteristics of crawler skid steer loaders

  When working on soft ground such as mud, crawler loaders can evenly disperse the pressure of the body, bring less pressure to the surface, have a lower ground contact ratio, and have more outstanding mud operation performance. The ATLAPEX skid steer loader adopts a sturdy chassis design, good off-road performance, low ground contact pressure, better stability, traction and driving force, and is ideal for residential construction and gardening applications.

  In terms of the choice of working conditions, wheeled skid steer loaders have faster travel speeds, are more stable when working on hard ground, and are efficient and comfortable, making them the first choice for applications such as demolition, snow removal, and sweeping. The compact crawler skid steer loader has a larger contact surface with the ground, a smaller ground pressure, and can provide greater thrust and digging force, so it is more suitable for operations under soft ground conditions such as gardens and farms.

  Due to the different characteristics of the two, they are selected differently in different occasions. On a flat site, the skid steer loader moves faster and is more convenient to operate, while in a heavy industrial environment, the crawler loader is more stable and suitable for complex terrains such as mud, mountain roads and slopes.

  Skid steer loaders and crawler loaders are widely used in coal mining, metallurgy, construction, water conservancy projects, forest logging, landscaping and sanitation cleaning. In these fields, loaders are indispensable mechanical equipment that can effectively improve work efficiency and reduce work difficulty.

  In summary, skid steer loaders and crawler loaders each have their own application advantages, and which one to choose depends on the use environment and work requirements. When choosing a loader, you should choose according to specific needs in order to achieve the best work effect.