Bigger’s better, right? That may sound strange coming from a magazine dedicated to small machinery, but when it comes to our annual Spec Guide, we’re always upping the ante and cramming in as much equipment as we can. Case in point: This year, we’re tackling compact wheel loaders — making them the seventh category in this issue. But before we dive into the new addition, we must say thank you to all the manufacturers that participated in this year’s guide. This 136-page canon (no, that’s not a typo — 136!) of compact machinery required a lot of research, and a lot of that legwork came from the equipment manufacturers who provided us the information. We couldn’t do it without the help of the manufacturers, and they certainly deserve the credit.
Back to our newbie category, compact wheel loaders. My Publisher’s Message last year hinted that we may add wheel loaders, and luckily, we made it happen. Compact wheel loaders are popping up on jobsites all across the country and providing operators with muscle, reach and versatility. We’ve covered wheel loaders in CE over the years, so we’re excited to include them in our Spec Guide. Thirteen wheel loader manufacturers are highlighted in the section (starting on page 112), with entries from the likes of Cat, John Deere, Kawasaki and SDLG, to name a few.
Now, the spec guide overall is divided into seven main sections: 1) skid steers; 2) compact track loaders; 3) compact excavators; 4) compact tractors; 5) utility vehicles; 6) compact tool carriers; and 7) compact wheel loaders. Each listing has a product summary, photo and list of essential model specifications (everything from bucket breakout force and boom lift orientation to engine power and operating weight). Contact information is provided for each listing as well, so you can continue your journey over the phone, online or with your local dealer.
There are a ton of brands on the market, so these posts should be a great reference point to begin to compare model to model. Of course, the dealer is an invaluable resource for researching and test driving compact machinery, but before you go, ensure you bulk up on the brands, technologies and specifications with Compact Equipment’s 2017 Spec Guide.
Keith Gribbins | Associate Publisher