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Old 10-05-2010, 08:12 AM
~Stick/MIG~'s Avatar
~Stick/MIG~ ~Stick/MIG~ is offline
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Default Built A Thumb For My Backhoe!

Some members wanted to see some of my tractor projects...So here goes.


I've been wanting a thumb for a long time, and decided to build one.... First of all, I'm not happy at all with the design of it,...But, Happy with the results of what it can lift!!!

I wanted it to be a curved design, but didn't have metal wide enough to cut it out like that.... So I just used what I had.. I may build another one this winter, and buy some wide metal.

If I bought a thumb... They cost from $300 to $800, and that's for a manual thumb... Hydraulic thumbs cost more, But I can make this one a ''hydraulic thumb'' by adding a cylinder.

I made a pattern for the teeth out of wood.... Then marked the metal, and used a ''center punch'' to mark 3 times on each place that needed to be cut out.( That way my mark didn't get burned off!)... I used a Plasma Cutter to cut out the teeth.

Last edited by ~Stick/MIG~; 08-12-2011 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 10-05-2010, 08:19 AM
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~Stick/MIG~ ~Stick/MIG~ is offline
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Default I Made My Own Pins.

To make the pins I just drilled a hole in a piece of metal, and then held it on top so I could fill the hole full of weld.... Then used a grinder on the weld, and rounded the top off.

I saved about $10.00 on each pin by making them.

Last edited by ~Stick/MIG~; 08-12-2011 at 09:36 AM.
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  #3  
Old 10-05-2010, 08:27 AM
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Default I Made An Adjustable link.

I made an adjustable top-link, but only had one large threaded bolt to put on one end.... I have to ''pull a pin'' to adjust it... I took a piece of pipe and welded a large nut on one end, and a small piece of pipe welded on the threaded bolt.

I then welded a piece of pipe on each end for the pins to go through.... I also have a piece of ''square tubing'' to use instead of the ''top-link'' if I bent the large threaded bolt!

I saved around $30.00 by making this!

Last edited by ~Stick/MIG~; 08-12-2011 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 10-05-2010, 08:36 AM
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On the brackets.... I didn't like the ''weld bead'' on the side of the BH boom... So I build my weld up, and used a grinder to make the welds smooth like the boom is!

Also on the BH boom there is a weld ''down the center'' of the boom.... I didn't want to grind that down, so I made my brackets to fit on ''each side'' of the weld on the boom.

The thumb folds up in the brackets, and I have plenty of room.

Last edited by ~Stick/MIG~; 08-12-2011 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 10-05-2010, 08:40 AM
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The square tubing can also be used to lift ''large things'' instead of adjusting the link I made.

Last edited by ~Stick/MIG~; 08-12-2011 at 09:35 AM.
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Old 10-05-2010, 08:49 AM
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Talking The BIG Test!!!

First of all... The only money I have in this build is... Welding rods, MIG welder wire, 2 grinder wheels, 1 can of primer, 1 can of black paint, some left over green paint for the brackets.

So, I thought since I didn't have much money in it, That I would drive around and look for some very heavy things to lift.... If it broke in half, I really didn't care..... I would just build a much heavier thumb!!!.... I had to put it through a test!

I started out with the small piece of firewood to see what was the smallest piece I could pick up, and then moved up from there.

I said I didn't like the design of it.... But I'm very pleased with what it did lift!.... This is the first thumb I've ever used, and it was A LOT of fun to ''use''!

Last edited by ~Stick/MIG~; 08-12-2011 at 09:35 AM.
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  #7  
Old 10-05-2010, 09:24 AM
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Default

very cool,

and i like the standard of fit and finish.


that's not a real log in those pics though is it? bet it's made of wire mesh and papier mache
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Old 10-05-2010, 09:45 AM
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We call those a farmers thumb here. They are very useful. If you have a way to swing it back and latch to the stick you can leave it in place for regular digging.
Good work. I can see you are going to find alot of uses for it.
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  #9  
Old 10-05-2010, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnBoy View Post
very cool,

and i like the standard of fit and finish.


that's not a real log in those pics though is it? bet it's made of wire mesh and papier mache
And the rock is made from styrofoam. LOL

No, It's a real Maple.... I used it to put in my FEL for weight when I take the BH off, and pull logs with my log hitch when I'm working on firewood.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ironman View Post
We call those a farmers thumb here. They are very useful. If you have a way to swing it back and latch to the stick you can leave it in place for regular digging.
Good work. I can see you are going to find alot of uses for it.
Thanks!

I've left it folded up in the brackets to dig a couple ditches, and it works out great... Or I can pull 1 pin and take the thumb off.
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  #10  
Old 10-05-2010, 01:42 PM
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DrBob DrBob is offline
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Default Very Cool!

Very Cool S/M! I sure coulda used one of those when a recent storm blew down a tree in the back of my property. It took me two days to cut it up small enough that I could lift the logs and carry them into the woods. If I had your backhoe and thumb, I would've been done in 20 minutes.

I guess to use it, you position the thumb where you want it and then close the bucket under the load? Boy would a short video be nice (hint)!

Great work!

DrBob
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