A lot of producers are tired of handling those large sprayer and tractor tires every time they need to be changed.
Alberta entrepreneur Darcy Goossen may have the tool farmers need to avoid all that sweat and back strain.
The Tire Grabber is an attachment for a skid steer or ordinary front-end loader that can grab, lift and place tires into a variety of positions.
Goossen said the Tire Grabber was created to fill need on his farm, and it has since developed into a side business producing and selling them.
“We started building this thing on our farm because it was a necessity,” he said in June.
“Necessity is the mother of invention. We had these big tires to change. They were big, awkward, hard to lift up, lay down and install. So we built this three-armed unit to grab the tires, pick them up and rotate them.”
The Tire Grabber has three extendable arms that grasp a tire and hold it, adjust its position and rotate it so the loader arms can lift and position it during a removal or installation, or just when moving tires around the farmyard.
“We build them with a connecting link on the back,” he said. “All three arms move together at the same time. The tire is always centred on your main pivot point, so it doesn’t flop from one side to the other. It’s multi use. So you can use it on a skid steer. There’s a plate on the back. (It will fit) anything that has a hydraulic source. It will fit on front-end loaders.”
Since building his first prototype, Goossen has evolved the design and now produces different models capable of lifting tires that weigh from 2,500 to 4,000-lbs.
“I started off with a 3,300-lb. model. We advanced and made a couple of models, heavier and lighter,” he said. “Most of them are built out of heavy spring steel. The most popular model we have is 88 inches, which handles 95 per cent of most farm tires. The load rating is 2,500 to 4,000 lb., depending on the model.
“I also have what is going to be a 3,000-lb. model,” he said. “A lighter duty one that is more for a (typical) farmer, not for everyday use.”
Prices for the Tire Grabber models range from $7,500 to $11,000.