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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I’ve seen a few conversions on here and other websites where people have made their 45 loaders quick attach. I would love to do this to my 40 loader. If I bought one of these items in the links below, would one of you that has done yours be willing to make the pieces that go on the loader frame again and sell them to me?
I figured it can’t hurt to ask - don’t know where else to start.

These are the parts I could buy for the bucket or some forks someday:




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Just to clarify, I believe you are referring to a quick-attach bucket, not the loader itself (45 FEL is already quick-attach to the tractor, but the bucket is pin-on.)

I’ll be curious to hear if you get a favorable response. I would be very interested in doing same to my 45 FEL bucket.
 

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I am really surprised that Artillian, BXpanded, or Heavy Hitch haven’t come up with a retrofit kit for the 40/45 FEL buckets. Seems like this would be right up their alley.

There are a lot of these loaders out there, too. And once a retrofit kit was installed, there would be additional opportunities to sell other attachments like forks, grapnels, etc.
 

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@Timothy Lindblom - i don't know if the pin to cylinder spacing is the same on the 40 loader as it is on the 45 loader but if it is then you should be able adapt the loader arm side with factory JD parts and some bushings.


Here's a pretty detailed thread describing many methods: Converting 45 loader to JDQA......anyone done it?

I would take a look at post #124 as it it might be the easiest if it'll work on a 40 loader: Converting 45 loader to JDQA......anyone done it?

Several of us have 45 loaders and would be willing to do some measuring if you need us to. Looking forward to seeing more of your build.
 

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I had to hand load those logs on the forks. If I could pop a grapple on and off I'd of only been minutes getting those down to my splitting area. I took 11 loads like that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I actually just got my 40 loader delivered from NY about an hour ago and it’s not yet on the tractor so I haven’t made any measurements yet but I know it’s something I’ll want as I always did on my homemade loader and my LBL. I hope to buy or build some QA pallet forks. I think they would lift a lot more than forks attached to the bucket they’d be.
A grapple would be incredible but I’d need H3 which I don’t have yet. I hope to do a joystick as well but first on the list is the quick tach and then forks.
These things could be constantly being modified :)


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Honestly, how much time and effort does it take to pull four 3/32" hitch pins and pop four 5/8" diameter pivot pins, and then reinstall in a different attachment. It takes me about 3 minutes, and I don't lose payload capacity due to the heavy QA apparatus. These are GTs after all, with a payload capacity which is not all that great to begin with that 10 - 15% can be wasted on something that is only going to be used a few times each year, if that.

I have 3 buckets of various widths, a set of forks, and a T-bar high lift attachment that allows use of a 3' x 12' work platform over 9' above grade. On one project, I used four of those five attachments and switched about 15 times. With a QA, I could have saved about 30 minutes over the course of a year and a half, but it would have taken a concerted effort to fabricate the QA in several hours.

QAs are best reserved for commercial operations where time is money and the pins involved require sledge hammer work to extract and replace, not the heel of a boot.

If you have nothing better to do with your time, go for it! You'll have a project that you can be proud of! Just don't delude yourself into thinking that there is anything to be saved by making a QA for GT loader attachments.
 

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@TUDOR is not wrong, but still lots of people love having quick attach buckets. My CUT didn't come with one. It took me a decade of wanting one before I bought one, plus forks and a grapple. It is great. But, I do notice a drop in lift capacity. My QA weighs only 80lb and only extended the bucket out 4". But, it is noticable in lifting a full bucket, especially with rock.

So, I really am happy with my QA, but not so happy with losing some lift capacity. On a GT loader, the reduction will be even more noticeable. Make sure you are really good with that tradeoff and the money and time it will cost. I really like mine because it also has a 2" receiver in it and I have a sleeve hitch adapter. I use a ripper/middle buster as a front hoe. It's nowhere near as useful as a backhoe, but nowhere near as expensive either. I have also used my sleeve hitch landscape rake in front and it is quite nice. It was expensive, but I am really happy I purchased it.
 

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Tudor makes a good point on lift capacity.

I would even be darn happy if there was a simple pin-on pallet fork option. I know Alzwelding used to offer one, but Al has passed away, and I never see them advertised on the used market. I’m not aware of another option. Anybody else?
 

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I spent almost 6 months working on drawings and trying to come up with some way to make a QA for a 45 or 40 loader. In the end there are two major issues.

Problem 1: The system itself would have to be specific for the 40/45 loaders. I purchased a QA for a 1025R loader and worked with that some and you can make it work BUT the QA attachments are taller than the OEM 45 bucket from Deere. In other words, if you did use the OEM QA system the attachments you would have to buy are much heavier or over built for the 45 loader. When dealing with such limited lifting capacities this is something that is a much larger issues than most think. I was very lucky and found someone to build a set of forks for me many years ago and they have been a huge asset to my fleet. He spent a lot of time cutting weight on the forks and I've published with weights somewhere on MTF.

Problem 2: Its expensive. To make a bolt on or even weld on set of brackets for the tractor and attachments it would be in the neighborhood of $500-1000. Yes, individual brackets can be made cheaper BUT for an easy to use solution and all the associated CAD work and fabrication plus material it will be expensive. I've spent a lot of time studying these 45 loaders and unless I am missing something (which maybe I am) a QA system seems simple on the surface but a mass produced, easy to use system is a huge investment and I am not convinced that market has the appetite to spend the kind of coin required to make a QA system, especially without the properly sized attachments on the market. In talking with my fab shop I would easily have $3-5,000 wrapped up in the first 5 sets.

Lifting capacity vs time. I am going to respectfully disagree with Bob about the need for a QA on these smaller loaders. I switch back and forth between my bucket and forks 3-5 times per year. Each time I dread it. Average time frame is ~13 mins and I think I have done it enough to be competent with the change over. I will line up bucket projects for weeks prior to switching, switch, get all the projects done, and switch back to forks. The time savings would be huge for me, no longer delaying small projects plus the time savings of the switch, even saving 10 mins is huge to productivity. To provide context, on my CUT with the custom electric actuator for the skid steer plate I can switch between the bucket, snow pusher, and forks multiple times 30 mins during snow operations. Yesterday I swapped between the bucket and forks three times unloading and moving stuff. The QA system does add some weight to the loader, however with a roughly 600-900 lb capacity (depending on pressures and location of load) the ~30 lb QA system has a what I would classify as a marginal affect on lifting capacity. Distance from the pin should increase by 1-1.5" if my fab shop and I looked at everything correctly, so there is a location effect but the location of the load still has a greater bearing that distance from pin (particularly when using forks).
 

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Interesting comments, @mrbeef . I do think one aspect in our favor here is that the JD q/a system is not as heavy as the industry standard SSQA. At least, that is my impression.

So how many orders would you and your fab shop need to go forward with your design? And what exactly would your design be? A q/a pallet fork, or ??
 

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@mrbeef I’d be willing to pay $500+ for a kit to convert mine. (45 loader) Obviously I’d have to weld to the bucket but the bucket holders for this size are unobtainable. I’ve been researching options for a long time, and I know I’m not the only one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Good points @mrbeef. I’ve seen both of your videos about the quick attach and the problems you were having with the 1025R brackets. If I had something like the brackets you eventually got on your loader frame, couldn’t I buy these and weld them in the right places or would they still have to be farther apart than the bucket is tall?



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Interesting comments, @mrbeef . I do think one aspect in our favor here is that the JD q/a system is not as heavy as the industry standard SSQA. At least, that is my impression.

So how many orders would you and your fab shop need to go forward with your design? And what exactly would your design be? A q/a pallet fork, or ??
It not necessarily the order number that kills the momentum, it the outlay for the design and lack of proper attachments. There are no other properly sized attachments UNLESS someone heavily modifies an existing attachment. If I have some time tonight all rummage through all my old notebooks and dig up some data.
But a quick example, a set of Titan forks add ~280lbs to the front of the tractor, plus the modification of the fork frame to fit the redesigned QA brackets.
A 3000 lbs fork frame from Titan is 96lbs and 42 inch regular Class II forks are 180 lbs. https://www.palletforks.com/tractor...acity-fits-john-deere-tractors/JDFRLDREC.html

@mrbeef I’d be willing to pay $500+ for a kit to convert mine. (45 loader) Obviously I’d have to weld to the bucket but the bucket holders for this size are unobtainable. I’ve been researching options for a long time, and I know I’m not the only one.
Lots of folks have been searching, I think that was a driver behind the brackets posted. Great for the 1 series and up.... but nothing for the slightly smaller size of the 40/45.
Good points @mrbeef. I’ve seen both of your videos about the quick attach and the problems you were having with the 1025R brackets. If I had something like the brackets you eventually got on your loader frame, couldn’t I buy these and weld them in the right places or would they still have to be farther apart than the bucket is tall?

Correct, I will try and grab some pictures tonight. I currently have the bucket on the X748 so that might give some scale to the issue.

I do want to express that I am not saying it can't be done. But to commercially do it on the scale for the number of buyers that exist makes it extremely difficult to justify.
 

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@Timothy Lindblom - i don't know if the pin to cylinder spacing is the same on the 40 loader as it is on the 45 loader but if it is then you should be able adapt the loader arm side with factory JD parts and some bushings.


Here's a pretty detailed thread describing many methods: Converting 45 loader to JDQA......anyone done it?

I would take a look at post #124 as it it might be the easiest if it'll work on a 40 loader: Converting 45 loader to JDQA......anyone done it?

Several of us have 45 loaders and would be willing to do some measuring if you need us to. Looking forward to seeing more of your build.
Levi, the solution in post #124 that you linked to above, seems fairly straightforward (at least for a 45, but 40 should be similar.) What am I missing?

And as @mrbeef points out, there is a lack of appropriately-sized attachments. But @MattMan in post #124 seems to be using Artillian pallet forks? Or?
 

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There are two other choices for QA bucket/accessories.
  1. 2" receiver
  2. Mini-skidsteer
Someone here did a homemade loader with basically a 2" receiver connection. It is interesting, but unlikely to find any attachments that would fit.

The mini-skidsteer is the way I have been thinking. Someone else did a nice custom job with that here. There are some more reasonable size attachments available. But, Dingos actually have quite a bit more lift capacity, so you have to be careful.

I have been looking for a premade solution, but they are typically more than $1K for the machine end. I found this:

I have the single use one, which doesn't have the levers. I would have bought the one in the link, but it is not in stock. The single use one is just a hunk of metal. It is not light. It feels heavier than the 35lbs they say it is. It feels a little loose in the one attachment I have. Not sure if that is a hitch or attachment issue. For my need, it should be okay. The looseness might actually be an advantage.

Mini-skidsteer attachments are becoming more available, so buckets, forks, grapple are all available. That is probably the advantage, since pin-on stuff is not so available.

I have only used my actual forks a few times. They are custom and lightweight, but more than strong enough for my loader capabilities. The real advantage over bucket mounted ones is visibility. A couple of weeks ago I was able to unload a heavy pallet from the back of a semi-trailer. It was really easy to see, so I didn't look like a complete idiot unloading it. The driver even commented on it, and I don't think he was being sarcastic. I think I paid about $700 just for the forks and frame, so I am at $200 or so per use right now. Even if I never get it to $50/use or less, I am really glad I got them. I did save on shipping by getting them all at the same time (QA, grapple, forks). I got the QA because I REALLY wanted a grapple. I have only used the grapple a few times, but it enabled me to do things safely that I would not have been able to do at all without it. It did require extra hydraulics, so the total package has been very expensive in time and dollars. I spent a decade trying to come up with a cheap solution. I was never able to find one. I finally decided I was willing to pay the money and then I had a lot more capability with my tractor.
 

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I’ve done the conversion on my 45 using the 1 series brackets from JD and the Artillian weld on brackets for my bucket, I also have the Artillian fork frame and forks and love it. Pull two hitch pins, drop out from under the bucket and throw the frame and forks on… it is perfect? No.. for instance if I curl while between attachments they don’t cycle in tandem as they aren’t connected and I need to cycle fully to line them up, but way better than nothing. I’ve shimmed my X7 up to 1450, and tho you can find its limitations quick enough if you try, it does everything I need from it. I needed to get the proper sized bushing as the 1 series has a larger diameter, can’t quote the exact difference off the top of my head.. but otherwise a pretty painless swap.
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Luckily I had a friend that could weld the plates on the bucket.. Id imagine that if the 40 is the same width as the 45, it should work also.
 

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Levi, the solution in post #124 that you linked to above, seems fairly straightforward (at least for a 45, but 40 should be similar.) What am I missing?

And as @mrbeef points out, there is a lack of appropriately-sized attachments. But @MattMan in post #124 seems to be using Artillian pallet forks? Or?
I don't know that you're missing anything. I've not done the conversion b/c i can't bring myself to spend the money on the conversion. I kept the forum post handy in case i get brave with my wallet someday :) ; when i had looked a while back i think the price was around $200 for the brackets (new) and less than $100 for the bucket side plate - prices have increased significantly since then. There were comments about using the steel brackets instead of the cast ones as they're lighter and easier to modify.

Along with MattMan it appears that @FTWingRiders followed about the same recipe with great results so it can be done. Good luck and keep us posted.
 
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