Building A Hydraulic Loader For A Lawn Tractor

Lawn tractors are a great way to mow a large yard or small paddock. They save you the effort of pushing a mower around and they’re fun to drive, to boot. However, they can be even more fun with the addition of some extra hardware. The hydraulic loader build from [Workshop from Scratch] demonstrates exactly how.

The build is based around a John Deere LX188 lawn tractor, which runs a 17 horsepower Kawasaki engine and features a hydrostatic transmission. It’s a perfectly fine way to mow a lawn. In this case, though, it’s given new abilities with the addition of a real working loader. It’s fabricated from raw steel from the arms right down to the bucket. It’s all run from a hydraulic pump, which is mounted to the engine via an electromagnetic clutch. The clutch can be engaged when it’s desired to use the hydraulics to actuate the loader.

As you might expect, the humble lawn tractor isn’t built for this kind of work. Thus, to support the extra equipment, the mower was also given some frame reinforcements and a wider track for stability.

If you’re trying to give your neighbours mower envy, this is how you do it. Or, you could go another route entirely. Video after the break.

9 thoughts on “Building A Hydraulic Loader For A Lawn Tractor

    1. Incredible craftsmanship. If I had the skills (I don’t), I’d turn the seat around and put the loader on the back. The bearing upgrade on the rear axle can easily take the extra load and the engine would make a free counterweight.

      1. It would help prevent flipping the thing when the bucket contents outweigh the tractor.

        Back of envelope calculations on bucket size vs WAG as to machine weight distribution would have me putting some weights on the back of that thing. Maybe he did…Watching the vid would encourage them.

        He should have the hydraulic pressure regulated to not do the catapult thing, but I doubt he does.

        Craftmanship? Hard to say. He’s good with a grinder. Good welders leave beautiful welds. Bad welders grind them all. I know, I’m a pretty bad welder.

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