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Stephen Blair

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2 hours ago, LGP Eddie said:

One for those that fancy following Stephen down the Backhoe route?


4cx with the fat tyres, apparently bi directional pipework which is obviously ideal for a Shear, plus the powered side shift which saves much messing about to slide the back actor across.


Seller is Ross, top guy.




JCB 4 CX AEC - the United Kingdom - Jcb 4cx AEC Contractor 81kw engine 4 speed powershift...






Great looking machine Eddie!

  Apart from larger wheels,rear hydraulics  what are the advantages of the 4cx?

  There’s nothing I’ve not tackled that the 3cx hasn’t coped with ease, I’m the weak link every time until I find the best way to do it.  The joys of self teaching!

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Where do you start with that as everyone will have a different take on it, and a lot depends on the actual build spec of the machine.


The one in the image is pretty comprehensive spec, but the 4cx does have many many options.


Obviously equal wheels brings traction and floatation, better balance and extra steering modes.

Should have more engine hp, bigger pumps, longer reach if specced over a standard 3cx.


They are popular in applications that demand a lot of off road use, will perform better as a loader, and generally provide a very stable platform.


Trade off is obviously more cumbersome and cost.


I did 8 years straight on Backhoe’s back when they were the main site machine and was never lucky enough to get a full shift in a 4cx.


I have a massive soft spot for the new 3cx Compact, so much potential in that machine waiting to be unlocked.




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Great reply, I use my 3cx for doing stuff rather than making money if that makes sense.

  The more I use it the less I feel the need for grabs and shears.

  The power and design just means I can do whatever I need to, I feel a JCB brain doesn’t come naturally to me but I’m catching on.  

  20 odd years ago when I worked alongside a 3cx there was never a thought on attachments, the driver could do anything we needed, I was lucky to work with an amazing operator who could make her dance!


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Theres a reasonably tidy Ford 675D come up for sale. It’s definitely older then I’d ideally like and would probably prefers servos rather than sticks, but given that I’m just dipping a toe into the backhoe route ATM I wonder if it’s worth going for as I doubt I’d loose more than a grand or two if I wanted to shift it on/didn’t work out for me. I’d just want a hydraulic thumb on it I think- if it’s all a success then perhaps look at 4cx further down the line. Have you ever had much to do with these old Fords Eddie? Or should I avoid on the basis that it might put me off backhoes altogether!




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Sorry no Fords apart from a demo at the old SED show.

Plenty of owner ops had them and I don’t foresee any issues if it’s all there.


All depends on budget, but a Volvo BL71 are well worth finding if they haven’t all been exported.




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Yeah the Volvo BL71 looks like a nice machine with the wider front tyres and servo controls- but finding one seems to be a bit  of a hens teeth scenario. That Ford is £8k which wouldn’t go far on a more modern machine- but might be a good exercise in seeing if backhoes work out for my needs and wouldn’t think I’d loose much on it. Got no 3rd service on the backactor so not sure what might be involved in fitting one for the hydraulic thumb- perhaps a diverter on the extending dipper?

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