What is the best woodyard and firewood loader?

What is the best woodyard and firewood loader?

The right equipment makes a huge difference for firewood operations. An essential piece of equipment for a woodyard is a loader, or at least some kind of equipment to move logs and firewood around with. Many woodyard owners run skidsteers or compact tractors, as these loaders are widely available and affordable. However, skidsteers tear up the yard and compact tractors are limited when it comes to what they can lift. Fortunately there is a ‘new kid on the block’; the Intrepid articulating loader does everything a firewood processing company needs, and more! The Intrepid loader is shown to be best firewood loader out there, and Dan from Back 40 Firewood shows why.

In three videos, Dan shows us how he uses the Intrepid KM130 Tele articulating loader in a firewood/woodyard application. Whereas he normally uses a Kioti tractor, the Intrepid loader performed all tasks better than the compact tractor. Think of driving around the yard without leaving skid marks or ruts; the articulating loader is much easier on the surface it drives. Check out Back 40 Firewood’s first video on the articulating loader:

Another advantage of the Intrepid loader is shown through the wide variety of attachments it can take. With a universal mount plate, Dan shows how he uses the loader with a flat bottom grapple bucket in the first video, a Branch Manager Beak (pallet fork + grapple) in the second, and a TNA power rotation grapple in the third video.

Articulating loader with grapple in woodyard

Dan operating the Intrepid articulating loader with flat bottom grapple bucket. This attachment allowed him to scoop up and clamp down on finished firewood. Also, it’s a great attachment for cleaning up debris on the woodyard, clearing mulch, dirt and snow.

In his second video shown below, Back 40 Firewood runs the Intrepid loader with the pallet fork + beak. He is able to move full totes of firewood effortlessly. The articulating loader is then able to position them all the way back in the shed using the reach of the telescopic boom. The compact tractor is unable to complete this task as the tires sit too wide and a tractor is not fitted with a telescopic boom.

Another characteristic making the Intrepid the ultimate firewood loader is its impressive lifting capacity. (Small) articulating loaders lift more relative to their weight when compared to skidsteers and tractors. The Intrepid KM130 Tele shown in Dan’s videos boasts a lifting capacity of 2000 lbs. This is more than enough to handle the large logs that are lifted, moved, and cut into a smaller pieces while the loader is used to hold them up in the air.

Articulating loaders also feature better all-round visibility from the operator station. Skidsteers have poor all-round visibility due to the enclosed ROPS/FOPS frame around the operators, and tractors have poor visibility to the front. The articulating loader provides excellent 360 degree visibility, including a good view of the attachment.

Using a (powered) knock-around grapple, you can easily pick up, move and place logs the way you want. The knock-around grapple is a tool regularly used by tree care business to move debris and feed chippers. They serve an excellent purpose for woodyards, where it can be used to move hard-to-handle logs, or to keep them up from the ground to be cut into smaller pieces. This attachment works perfect with the Intrepid loader.

Small articulating loader with TNA grapple used as firewood loader

In his last video, Dan shows use the versatility of the TNA knock-around grapple. Another feature making the Intrepid the best firewood loader is its ability to ‘snake’ through the junkpile of logs that arborists leave for him. The Intrepid is able to move through and around logs using its articulated steering.

To summarize why an articulating loader like an Intrepid is the better firewood loader:

  • Higher lifting capacity relative to its weight
  • Better operator visibility
  • Auxiliary hydraulics on the boom, universal mount make it an all-round toolcarrier suitable for snow removal, property maintanance and material handling.
  • Nimble and maneuverable; ‘snake’ through tight spots using articulated steering.
  • No more ruts and and marks on the yard; the Intrepid loader minimizes surface impact.