Lift allows one person to get job done safely

FARGO, N.D. — Skid-Lift from Fargo, North Dakota, has developed a scissor-lift that attaches to a tractor’s three-point hitch or to a skid steer.

“For people skittish about heights, this is very nice because I’m always attached to a skid steer or a tractor. So it gives me a lot of comfort that I have a big, wide base. I have a lot of counter weight down there,” said Paul Wick, sales manager at Skid-Lift.

The lift also works with forklifts that have external hydraulic hook-ups.

Three models of the Skid-Lift are available with lift ranging between 15 to 22 feet.

“They’re great for the ag market for people working around pole buildings, to clean gutters, change lights, that kind of thing,” Wick said.

There’s a dual attach option, where the lift can be attached at either its end or side.

“The one on the end is really nice if you want to drive straight down a pole barn without having to reposition. It’s very easy to switch back from one to the other,” Wick said.

The lift comes equipped with base legs that offer extra stability and a level bubble to help set it down on the level.

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Simplicity is a major advantage to the lift.

“It’s an attachment, so you really have a lot of advantages with reducing a lot of components in there, which eliminates a lot of the maintenance issues. We don’t have batteries, we don’t have separate engines,” Wick said.

If a grower has both a skid steer and a three-point hitch on a tractor they can use either to run the skid-lift, once they buy the three-point hitch adaptor plate.

A centre pivot is available on some models, which allows a four-degree forward and back pitch.

“It allows you to get closer to your work. So when you’re up top 20 feet, you literally can boom over about two feet,” Wick said.

Three hoses need to be connected between the lift and the tractor or skid steer: a feed line, a return line and a case drain.

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There are two emergency bypass safety valves that can lower the platform if the machine has problems.

“There are safeties at two places, up at the top and also down on the base. So that at any time, even when the skid steer is not running, just crack a valve and it will bring it down very nice and slowly,” he said.

The main controls for the lift are up in the basket, but the controls on the base help raise the lift for maintenance. The unit works doesn’t require a second person to run it from the ground.

High hydraulic flow is not required and the lift can be powered from idle on most tractors and skid steers.

“We actually have a restrictor in the line, it uses very little oil. It’s not about the power, it’s more about the lift capacity. This unit is 2,100 pounds, and our other two units are smaller, they go down to about 1,500 lb. So you really want to look at the capacity of your unit,” Wick said.

The price for the three Skid-Lift models ranges from US$10,000 to US$17,000.

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