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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been looking at buying a dozer and really don't know a whole lot about them. I've narrowed my search down to a 550H or a 450J deere dozer. Anything specifically someone should look for other than the undercarriage and typical leaks? TIA
 

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Don't know a whole lot myself, but I've seen a few sale, usually whoever is looking at it will dig the blade in as deep as it will go and see if their is slippage in the drivetrain.
 

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Send out oil samples. Saves a lot of guesswork. Only works I imagine if that haven't changed oil recently.
We recently bought an excavator, and tested hyd.& engine oils.
Both came back well with no abnormal amounts and currently have put on 400 hours with out an issue.
As you probably know, There are measurements you can apply to tracks and rollers to get exact % of life left underneath dozer. Probably get from dealer.
Once dozer warms up to operating tempature, assuming it's a power shift, see how she pushes into piles, and how each gear does under load. Watching for any slippage in gear. On a dozer that new, probably won't have any issues.

Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Send out oil samples. Saves a lot of guesswork. Only works I imagine if that haven't changed oil recently.
We recently bought an excavator, and tested hyd.& engine oils.
Both came back well with no abnormal amounts and currently have put on 400 hours with out an issue.
As you probably know, There are measurements you can apply to tracks and rollers to get exact % of life left underneath dozer. Probably get from dealer.
Once dozer warms up to operating tempature, assuming it's a power shift, see how she pushes into piles, and how each gear does under load. Watching for any slippage in gear. On a dozer that new, probably won't have any issues.

Good luck
I'm looking at ones new enough to avoid the poweshifts and clutches, they should be hydrostatic drive.

Thanks for the replys, working on dozers gets expensive in a hurry from what I can see and im trying to limit my risk by spending a little more upfront for a nicer machine instead of buying an old one and dumping cash in repairs. Problem I see is some machines with 3k hrs have recently had $25k in repairs then you talk to someone else with a 7k hr machine that has never spent a dime on it. This is pretty normal and I don't quite understand why.
 

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A lot can depend on how a machine was used. Stumping fields and heavy pushing is a lot harder on a machine than one that only leveled out top soil on a job site.

A friend of mine that builds logging roads said he will never own another J series again. He had a couple and went back to H machines after having all kinds of electrical issues that nobody could sold. He hunts far and wide for good clean low hour H machines when he needs something new.
 

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I've been in the business for 45 years, Deere wouldn't be my first choice, neither would Cat and I live between Moline and Peoria. People can give all the advice in the world and it's still a crap shoot but with that said; make sure all points that can be greased have been, should have a pretty good buildup, start it up and run it, then check the oils, don't want anything that looks like chocolate milk. You'll need to run it for about 3 hours to see if anything builds to much temperature, pushing dirt is just as hard on it as pushing trees, stay away from anything that was only used to pull an implement. Rails rollers and sprockets are the biggest consumables, dealer will have a figure for you, I'd stay away from anything less then 50%. Ask if you can demo it for a few days. I'll wish you good luck but sooner or later you'll join us in the $10,000 hat club.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I've been in the business for 45 years, Deere wouldn't be my first choice, neither would Cat and I live between Moline and Peoria. People can give all the advice in the world and it's still a crap shoot but with that said; make sure all points that can be greased have been, should have a pretty good buildup, start it up and run it, then check the oils, don't want anything that looks like chocolate milk. You'll need to run it for about 3 hours to see if anything builds to much temperature, pushing dirt is just as hard on it as pushing trees, stay away from anything that was only used to pull an implement. Rails rollers and sprockets are the biggest consumables, dealer will have a figure for you, I'd stay away from anything less then 50%. Ask if you can demo it for a few days. I'll wish you good luck but sooner or later you'll join us in the $10,000 hat club.
I'm not 100% locked on a Deere machine but that is gonna be my best dealer support in the area and with iron you don't know much about you gotta rely on them.
 

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I understand, Deere has the best network when you throw in the Ag side, I have a Deere scraper and before they changed the parts distribution around could get anything I wanted in 3hours. I'm not a fan of hydrostats, great in tractors with a constant load but not so much in the back and forth motion of a dozer.
 

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Yep, would like to have neighbours like them as well. What refers to the dozer, there are some essential criteria which you want to base on, according to the tasks which you are planning to do. Sometimes you just need raw power, other times you need mobility to be able to maneuver in small places and so on. Considering all these factors, you can decide which is the most important for you, and buy the dozer according to these requirements. Here is a good place https://www.machinerydealer.co.uk/ to check a lot of different models and find which one better suits for you.
 

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I've been looking at buying a dozer and really don't know a whole lot about them. I've narrowed my search down to a 550H or a 450J deere dozer. Anything specifically someone should look for other than the undercarriage and typical leaks? TIA
THOSE ARE BOTH GOOD MODELS. I WAS GOING TO SAY STAY WITH THE "H" SERSIES OR NEWER SO YOU HAVE HYDROSTATIC DRIVE. THE 450 IS A BIT SMALL, YOU COULD THE SAME WORK WITH A LARGE BOBCAT. UNDER CARRAGE IS THE BIGGEST THINK. GET THE UNIT HOT WHEN TEST DRIVING AND WORK IT IF POSSIBLE, MAKE SURE NO LEAKS AND NOTHING SLOWS DOWN. ALSO GREASE ZERKS MAKE SURE ALL TAKE. PLAY OR SLOP IN THE PUSH BLADE. AND ITS SHIFTS THROUGH ALL THE GEARS WHEN HOT. YES SERVICE RECORDS ARE NICE. BUT A GOOD LOOK OVER ON AN OLDER UNIT IS JUST AS GOOD.
 

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You may want to consider a large track skid steer with a 6-way blade. For the size you are looking at you can do about as much work and they are WAY more versatile because of their ability to use other attachments.
The exception would be if you had a specific job where steel tracks would be better.
 
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