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Skid Steer Brush Cutter vs. Tractor Brush Hog: Which Is Best?

Skid Steer Brush Cutter vs. Tractor Brush Hog: Which Is Best?

There are a lot of seemingly small details that go into making the most of a landscaping project. From the type of property you’re working on to its size and the equipment you use, each factor contributes to your overall efficiency and success. As such, it’s vital that you’re paying particular attention to the type of equipment you use for the job. After all, not all machines produce the same quality results, and you always want to ensure you’re giving yourself every possible advantage.

So, while many view skid steer brush cutters and tractor brush hogs as the same type of equipment, it’s important to recognize that they aren’t. In fact, one is actually significantly better than the other for landscaping tasks. Here’s what you need to know about skid steer brush cutters and tractor brush hogs to determine which is best.

The Importance of Making the Correct Choice

The equipment you choose for your landscaping endeavors might be at your personal discretion, but there’s always something that fares better for certain tasks. As such, there is a correct choice to make when it comes to picking between a skid steer brush cutter and a tractor brush hog. Skid steer brush cutters and tractor brush hogs are very different pieces of machinery and, as such, one will always be better than the other for certain jobs.

Because of this, understanding the differences and choosing the correct one for your application, or all-around-general use, will be the key to superior performance and reliability. So, make sure you take the time to consider your unique job at hand and weigh all the contributing factors before making your decision.

Key Performance Applications

There are several key performance applications that quality landscaping equipment must be able to accommodate. As such, skid steers brush cutters and tractor brush hogs are also held to these standards. Understanding these expectations is crucial to comparing the two machines and picking the one that best suits your job. Here's how cutters and hogs measure up to some of the most important performance expectations for landscaping.

Angled and Sloped Maneuvering

One of the first things to watch for is how well certain machines operate on angled or sloped terrain. Not every property you care for will have only flat land, and, as such, you’ll need to have something that can accommodate this potentially difficult challenge. It’s important to note here that you don't want to be on slopes and uneven ground on a tractor. This is because they can't sustain traction on steep slopes and are at a greater risk of tipping over should you drive up too steep of an incline.

Skid steers, on the other hand, can maneuver over steeper areas due to their larger track or tire size. The brush cutter is also positioned in the front and more controlled so you can better accommodate these patches of land. While skid steers aren’t generally the safest pieces of equipment, they are safer than alternatives when cutting on steep slopes due to their low center of gravity. This keeps them much more stable and better accommodating of sharper inclines.

Different Cutting Heights

You’ll also want to determine which equipment option is better for varying your cutting height. To start, tractors can’t lift their attachments, making it more difficult, or sometimes even impossible, to cut higher brush. Conversely, skid steer brush cutters can accommodate several different cutting heights since they’re attached to the machine’s lifting mechanism.

Likewise, the skid steer brush cutter is in front and cuts when you run into brush. While a tractor brush cutter is on the back, and you have to go over the brush to cut it. Because of this, skid steers are generally safer and more accommodating when cutting through tall grass and other debris.

Cutting Diversity

It’s important to note as well that skid steer brush cutters tend to have a greater diversity in what type of landscaping debris they can cut through. With the additional weight of the skid steer comes an increased amount of power that transitions into the brush cutter attachment. As such, it’s much easier for these devices to chop through thicker growth like weeds, tall grass, and smaller tree trunks.

Tractors are much lighter than skid steers, meaning that they have less power behind their movements. As a result, they have less available force to cut through undergrowth. This limits them to handling jobs with more grass and fewer patches of dense brush.

Accuracy and Control

Finding a machine with maximum accuracy and control is also important if you want to get the most out of your landscaping project. After all, it’s these factors that contribute to the quality of your finished product. Since, as stated previously, the skid steer brush cutter sits at the front of the machine, the operator can better see what they’re doing and how to best maneuver. This allows them the freedom to adjust their cutter height accordingly, and therefore yield more accurate results.

Tractor brush hog attachments don’t have as much opportunity for maintaining control. Because these attachment rest behind the operator’s seat, it’s much harder for workers to turn back to see what they’re doing. As such, you can’t control these attachments as easily, and you’re less likely to get the polished results you’re after.

Which Is Better for Landscaping Purposes?

So, as far as which is the best option between skid steer brush cutters and tractor brush hogs. Based on the previous expectations, it’s clear that skid steer brush cutters are the best alternative for landscaping work. This is especially the case for larger plots of land with varying types of terrain and several slopes to account for. They offer strength, control, accuracy, and reliability that tractor brush hogs can't. Because of this, if you're doing any intense land clearing work—especially on hilly terrain—the skid steer brush cutter is the better option.

If you’re interested in maximizing your efficiency, quality, and performance during your next landscaping job, McLaren Industries has just the equipment for you. Our line of premium skid steer brush cutters chop through thick undergrowth and smaller trees with ease, making it easy to gather debris for removal. They’re also incredibly reliable on even sloped ground and able to achieve more consistent results than other products on the market. Contact us here to learn more about these powerful skid steer attachments, or give us a call at 800-836-0040 with any questions. We’re always available to help!

Skid Steer Brush Cutter vs. Tractor Brush Hog: Which Is Best?