Week 8 Winners
James Judisch II
Judisch and Judisch Enterprises, Inc.
Bobcat Unleashed Me
“After renting Bobcat® skid-steer loaders for years, we finally bought a Bobcat 763 skid-steer loader four years ago. Since then, it has made our lives easier and made our company look more professional. We primarily use our Bobcat skid-steer loader to unload pallets from trucks, do dirt work on large outdoor electrical projects, and to help maintain our office and personal properties. I cannot remember how we used to accomplish everything without the 763; all I know for sure is that it was all done by hand. The best part about our 763 is that we use it all the time to fix problems that we never knew we had. We have used it to build roads on recreational land, assist in logging operations, fix slope and drainage issues, backfill walls and help dig out foundations.
“Our 763 is also used as a “goodwill ambassador.” Our business is located in a residential part of town, so every time we get a good snowfall, we use it to plow driveways for people who live nearby. During the warm months, we use it to help those same people with various projects. It is great to know that we can make people happy, and that we often save them hundreds of dollars by donating just a few minutes of our time. Our Bobcat skid-steer loader has become an integral part of our business; we can't imagine life without one.
“Ron Fritcher of United Rentals in Rochester, Minn., has done a great job of helping us get Bobcat attachments. The good people at Lano Equipment, Inc., and Rochester Chain Drive have given us the parts and information we need to keep our 763 running smoothly.
“Our Bobcat machine has also been used the last few years to help during times of emergency. We have had some bad storms and flooding in southeastern Minnesota. Our Bobcat 763 helped clear trees and debris off roads. It was used to help rebuild temporary roads when storms washed them out. It also got a good workout helping people clean up mudslides and excavate collapsed hills on their properties. The Bobcat 763 is truly a multi-purpose vehicle, and it has changed our lives for the better. We only have one problem with our Bobcat skid-steer loader — we need a bigger one!”
Hyde Brothers General Contractors, LLC
Bobcat Unleashed Me
“Bobcat has turned Hyde Brothers General Contractors, LLC, into one of New England’s largest installers of above-ground pools. Our pool work began when my brother started working for a pool company back in 1988. He worked for that company for more than10 years, and I would also occasionally work for them. Every pool project depended upon how well the machine operator leveled the ground. The better the dig, the faster and easier the day went. The levels that I remember were not within two inches of, but usually within three to four. Sometimes, a three- or four-man crew would take four hours to finish the level.
“My brother and I decided to start our own business in March of 2004. Our first project was a NAMCO oval-shaped 16-foot by 33-foot pool. We rented a 2002 Bobcat® S175 skid-steer loader from the local rental shop and showed up at the house. I'll never forget that first day, because neither of us had ever driven a Bobcat machine. Eventually, I got in and started up the hill to the backyard, which was on slope. It only took about an hour to get acclimated to the foot controls. I couldn't believe how easy the S175 was to operate and how much power it had.
“In June of 2004, we bought our own Bobcat S185 Turbo with hand and foot controls, AC and heat from Bobcat of New Hampshire. It has saved us thousands of dollars by reducing labor cost and time, thanks to its speed at leveling. The hand controls allow me to level a 21-foot by 40-foot area within an inch. Because of their reliability, visibility, versatility, power, size, ease of maintenance and endless attachments, Hyde Brothers will always buy Bobcat products.”
Bobcat Unleashed Me
“In May 2007, I ordered 80 yards of mulch for my backyard. To show my strength, I got a mulching fork, my riding tractor and a wagon out of my shed. About 10 tiny loads and two hours later, I decided to use my brain instead of my muscle. I rented a Bobcat® skid-steer loader to move the mulch. Three hours later, the remaining 79 yards of mulch was moved to the mulch beds. My father always said, ‘Use the proper tool for the proper job,’ and ‘Sometimes, one needs to make a mistake in life in order to learn in life.’ I learned those two lessons in one day.
“Having learned those lessons, there was no doubt in my mind what I was going to do when my wife decided it was time to finally clear the half-acre of brush, dying trees, living wild grape and good old poison ivy on our property last fall. I had dreaded this job for a long time — I had been in and out of that brush with an axe and brush killer in the past. However, I was now a wiser man. I rented a Bobcat skid-steer loader and a forestry cutter attachment. Not only was it really fun to cut down everything out there, I saved loads of time and got more mulch!
“Needless to say, since that trial run, I’ve used the forestry cutter attachment on numerous jobs with continued success. I completed all of this work with just some help from my wife and father. That is the beauty of a well-built, reliable machine — it saves you time, saves you money and does the job right.”
Bobcat Unleashed Me
“I owned and operated a small landscaping business for years after graduating from high school. It was difficult to make money and not very interesting to mow or do other types of maintenance work. So, I tried to specialize in walks, patios, and new lawn and bed installations. When I started, I hired all my buddies to help out. This system seemed to work well at the time, but I ran into the normal problems associated with personnel who weren’t as vested in the business as I was. The projects also seemed to go on forever. My first summer, I managed to do three jobs over the course of the summer on top of my regular mowing. The days were long and we even worked some Saturdays. The money was okay, but clearly I needed to do better.
“Ten years later, I only had a handful of mowing accounts but I put in 12 new lawns, complete with walks, patios and beds. I was also contracted to do site work for barns, garages and sheds. Work came to me every day and it was very rewarding. What made the difference for my business was that instead of having top-of-the-line mowing equipment and the personnel to run it, I used a Bobcat® 763 with a backhoe, forks and bucket. I bought it with 1,100 hours on it; I later sold the 763 with 7,000 hours on it for only about 10 percent less money than I bought it for. Over the course of the 10 years, I ran my business this way and doubled my revenue.
“Having only one piece of equipment as my flagship and only one assistant allowed me to save a lot of money and time. The work was more enjoyable and I was able to complete jobs in a fraction of the time. For the work I was doing, I can say that my Bobcat machine was more effective than four or five employees. It also never showed up late, filed a workman’s comp claim or called me from jail needing to be bailed out!
“A couple of years ago, I took a management job at a ski resort. I sold my business to pursue this opportunity. Most every department here has a skid-steer loader parked near by. I am glad for the changes I made, because it has brought me to a beautiful rural setting in Vermont. But every day, I see someone operating a skid-steer loader and think to myself how much I would like to operate my own business here with a Bobcat machine as my partner.”
K&L Contractors, Inc.
Elkgrove Village, Ill.
Bobcat Unleashed Me
“The family business is celebrating 20 years this year. From the first year, Bobcat® machines have been part of it. It all started on a drain tile job where we did all the work by shovel and wheelbarrow. After some long days, my brother got a trencher at the local rental house, but we still backfilled and cleaned up by hand. The rental store, Route 12 Rental, suggested a Bobcat 743 skid-steer loader. We rented it, and I’ll never forget the first day with it. The machine was awesome! I thought to myself that I would never have to shovel or wheelbarrow again! Talk about unleashing — we started to pick up work like crazy, knowing we could do much more.
“As our business started to do more and grow, so did our Bobcat machines. We started to rent an 843 loader regularly. After renting for long periods we finally bought an 853 and then an 853H a year later. As Bobcat machines got bigger and better, we traded in the 853 for an 863. We still have that machine. I didn’t think Bobcat machines could get any better — and then we bought an S300H loader.
“Our company primarily handles commercial and industrial asphalt paving. It is very common to install tons of gravel on grade with our S300H one day, and pave the next day. We also have several attachments to go with our Bobcat machines. I have yet to find a job they can’t handle. We’re not a big company, but because of Bobcat machines, we can work like a big company. When I look back and think about what my life would have been like without Bobcat machines, I am sure glad I discovered them some 20 years ago. Thank you, Bobcat — you changed my life!”