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Bobcatalog 2012

New M-Series loader gives Ohio dairy farm a productivity boost

An S750 is one of several Bobcat skid-steer loaders needed to maintain daily schedule for 700-head cow herd

Joel Steiner

Joel Steiner, Pine Tree Dairy

A third-generation family dairy farm in northeastern Ohio is benefiting from the addition of a new series of Bobcat® skid-steer loaders.

For 15 years, the Steiner family — owners of Pine Tree Dairy — have relied on Bobcat loaders to handle feed and manure. Their newest machine, an S750, rates high in dependability just like all the other Bobcat loaders on the farm. This M-Series loader, however, has numerous features that make it a perfect machine for many agricultural applications:

  • - Cab-forward design and excellent visibility in all directions
  • - Enhanced comfort features, including a pressurized cab
  • - Stronger hydraulics and improved attachment performance
  • - Uptime protection such as protected hydraulic quick couplers
  • - More efficient cooling system

“Our new S750 is a very good machine,” says Joel Steiner, one of the partners in the dairy farm. “Everyone who operates it likes the extra features, including an enclosed cab with heat and air conditioning that makes it more comfortable and the operators more productive.”

Never-ending improvements
As the Steiners replace their older loaders, they are taking full advantage of Bobcat product improvements. For example, the S750 is equipped with optional ride control. This feature provides a smoother ride, reduces operator fatigue and limits bucket spillage.

“Bobcat loaders have worked well for us,” Joel says. “As we continue to invest in new Bobcat equipment with more comfort features, productivity keeps getting better.”

Ease of service is one of the reasons the Steiners originally switched to Bobcat loaders.

“The ability to service Bobcat loaders daily is far superior to the other brand we operated,” Joel says. “The large, swing-open tailgate enables us to conveniently access routine maintenance points. That’s an important consideration when the loaders are handling feed and manure all day.”

Pine Tree Dairy, started by Alvin Steiner, has been a fixture in the Rittman, Ohio, dairy community for decades. Alvin’s son, Matt, manages the business today. Matt is in partnership with most of his 11 children.

The Steiners and their employees milk Holstein cows, distributed among three locations. One farm is 35 miles west of Rittman; the other 35 miles south.

“That’s why we have multiple Bobcat skid-steer loaders,” Joel says. “We use them for two critical functions — moving feed and manure — 365 days a year, so dependable performance is very important to us.”

Loading feed
Three machines — the new S750 and two S185s — are dedicated to loading the feed mixers at each of the farms. The S185 has the two-speed option that enables it to travel up to 11.1 mph, a valuable option when loading a mixer. The S750 has sufficient reach for the 9-foot-tall mixer. The other mixers are slightly shorter.

“When loading the mixer, we need machines that can move around quickly in order to keep up with the cows,” Joel says. “These three loaders are more than capable.”

Scraping manure
Four other Bobcat loaders scrape manure, another daily chore that requires dependability. All the loaders were purchased from Bobcat of Wooster (Ohio).

“We don’t like to use a feeding machine for handling manure or vice versa,” Joel says. “Keeping the functions separate works best for us.”

The Steiners are optimistic about the future of the dairy business.

“It doesn’t pay to think otherwise,” Joel says. “One factor that really makes it great is working together with the family.”