Recommend a 4wd digger.

blue5th

Member
Lads I'm looking for a cheapish, €5-10k 4wd digger. It will be used mostly for feeding, lifting bales etc. with a bit of back actor work too. Needs to be easy enough to service and get parts for. Any recommendations for what to get or avoid? I prefer to hear from people who have owned or driven one, Thanks.
 

Mike

Member
At your budget, maybe something from the Ford stable, even at €10k, its going to be on the rougher side
You will get a tidier MF or Ford than a 3cx for your money though.
 

MeathMassey3

Well-Known Member
Lads I'm looking for a cheapish, €5-10k 4wd digger. It will be used mostly for feeding, lifting bales etc. with a bit of back actor work too. Needs to be easy enough to service and get parts for. Any recommendations for what to get or avoid? I prefer to hear from people who have owned or driven one, Thanks.
a 3cx would be the only one I'd have any experience with, parts are plenty full but dear. They can take a good bit of abuse too, they're also simple enough machines to work on. I'm guessing if the mf diggers are anything like the tractors parts are plentiful and most importantly cheap for them. Couldn't tell you anything about reliability on them though.
 

MF30

Well-Known Member
Lads I'm looking for a cheapish, €5-10k 4wd digger. It will be used mostly for feeding, lifting bales etc. with a bit of back actor work too. Needs to be easy enough to service and get parts for. Any recommendations for what to get or avoid? I prefer to hear from people who have owned or driven one, Thanks.
A grey cab 3cx from the era of 1987 to 1990 with extra dig and 4 in 1 bucket should be got for €10k or less.
 

avent

Well-Known Member
you would probably get a grey cab 3cx at about 8 to 10,000, but they are getting harder to get. There is nothing really to complicated in them, the main thing to look for is play in the king post, can be expensive to put right. Pins and bushes in the back actor, weeping ram seals, all fairly simple stuff and not to expensive to fix. If you can get one in fairly good order it will be a yoke that will do what you to do for years
 

MeathMassey3

Well-Known Member
you would probably get a grey cab 3cx at about 8 to 10,000, but they are getting harder to get. There is nothing really to complicated in them, the main thing to look for is play in the king post, can be expensive to put right. Pins and bushes in the back actor, weeping ram seals, all fairly simple stuff and not to expensive to fix. If you can get one in fairly good order it will be a yoke that will do what you to do for years
The ram in the back actor is a fair pain to do the seals in. Have to dig a hole to put the boom sitting horizontal to take it in and out, also have to kind of shimmy it up back into place with a lump of timber getting it back in. It would definitely be one of the more difficult jobs to do. You would want at least 1 extra lad there to give you a hand.
 

Vry

Well-Known Member
No need for any holes or the like. It's heavy alright but easily removed. Have done all the cylinders on my grey cab on my own. The seals start to weep with age and a seal kit isn't expensive. The genuine kits are best.
 

MF30

Well-Known Member
That’s a nice spec JCB, battery shouldn’t be there though, it’s a fire hazard like that. It belongs under the bonnet in front of the diesel filler. Wonder why it has a new battery, starter and alternator, it might have had starting or engine compression issues in the past. It’s unlikely for these three components to fail at the same time. Ideal first digger for the yard or field.
 

Vry

Well-Known Member
That's some job with the battery and wiring looks like siht. The battery tray has probably rotted out.
 

avent

Well-Known Member
That’s a nice spec JCB, battery shouldn’t be there though, it’s a fire hazard like that. It belongs under the bonnet in front of the diesel filler. Wonder why it has a new battery, starter and alternator, it might have had starting or engine compression issues in the past. It’s unlikely for these three components to fail at the same time. Ideal first digger for the yard or field.
a fire hazard and a trip hazard, they are hard enough get out of without having to step on a battery as well. Five stud back axle the last of them generation 3cx
 

Funkeyfarmer

Well-Known Member
Battery job looks shite alright. Wouldn't be surprised if the was slow to start they put a new battery in when that didn't sort it or only started it when charged they thought the problem was it wasn't charging properly, only to find the real problem was the starter I wouldn't be surprised if it was a geared starter. I've the same issue here with the mf and fermec my father always just wants to change the battery which works for a while but the issue is usually the standard starter is on its limit to start the engine. I've seen the issue with a lot of older machines with perkins engines manitu fermec mf diggers mf tractors and im 90% sure the jcb has a perkins engine too
 

MF30

Well-Known Member
Battery job looks shite alright. Wouldn't be surprised if the was slow to start they put a new battery in when that didn't sort it or only started it when charged they thought the problem was it wasn't charging properly, only to find the real problem was the starter I wouldn't be surprised if it was a geared starter. I've the same issue here with the mf and fermec my father always just wants to change the battery which works for a while but the issue is usually the standard starter is on its limit to start the engine. I've seen the issue with a lot of older machines with perkins engines manitu fermec mf diggers mf tractors and im 90% sure the jcb has a perkins engine too
That JCB has the 4/236 Perkins engine that starts straight away as long as it’s in good health. The Project 8 Jcb 3cx that came next has the 1000/4 Perkins engine which is a better engine that will start at minus ten degrees without heat when in good health. A geared starter on a 4/236 is usually a sign of a worn engine as it’s not a difficult engine to turn over in general.
 

Vry

Well-Known Member
1004 in my 1990 grey cab. On the one here I have fitted better/ bigger battery cables when I fitted the isolator switch and it makes a big difference to starting . Have done the same on the 2 fords as the originals were no bigger than boot laces.
 
Lads I'm looking for a cheapish, €5-10k 4wd digger. It will be used mostly for feeding, lifting bales etc. with a bit of back actor work too. Needs to be easy enough to service and get parts for. Any recommendations for what to get or avoid? I prefer to hear from people who have owned or driven one, Thanks.
I’d say the budget is weak unless you’re willing to tidy something up yourself. Any old heap of shite will export for that kind of money I’d imagine.

You’d get a decent backhoe in the €15k - €20k bracket.
 

MeathMassey3

Well-Known Member
I’d say the budget is weak unless you’re willing to tidy something up yourself. Any old heap of shite will export for that kind of money I’d imagine.

You’d get a decent backhoe in the €15k - €20k bracket.
You'd pick up a decent enough 3cx for 8k to 10k. You would get more money for certain machines by exporting them than if you were to sell them on in their home market.
 

blue5th

Member
Yeah CH I would be willing to work on it myself over time. I'm just wondering why Fords seem to be cheaper, is it because they are harder to work on or are parts more expensive?
 
Yeah CH I would be willing to work on it myself over time. I'm just wondering why Fords seem to be cheaper, is it because they are harder to work on or are parts more expensive?
They are fine machines, any CNH dealer should be able to get you parts.

JCB are the name in Backhoes so lads think they’re the only yoke to sell. Personally I’d be looking at a Fermec if I was spending my own money.

Just remember these style machines would have a mountain of work done, don’t believe the small hours hype.
 
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