When a heavy equipment operator can say they know how to run a skid steer loader, they are saying they can do a lot of amazing things in a small machine. The size and versatility of skid steer loaders make them very valuable on a construction or logging site because the loader can operate in a small space but do big, big jobs.
In order to do those big jobs, the operator needs to be able to understand exactly how the skid loader works and manipulate the controls without stalling. Some skid steer loaders have been designed to eliminate this problem but not all have done so. The skid steer loader can turn in its own footprint and maneuver in tight situations if the operator is experienced.
During training at ATS Heavy Equipment Operator Training School there will be in-the-seat training in a variety of pieces of equipment and they will be challenging at first. The skid steer loader doesn’t maneuver like the bulldozer, for instance. It also isn’t at all like driving a dump truck. Each type of heavy equipment is slightly different to operate because it has been designed for specific tasks.
Skid steer loaders are able to be outfitted with a variety of tools on the arms:
- various buckets: dirt, utility, multi-purpose, grapple
- various forks: pallet, utility, industrial grapple
- angle blade
- cold planer
- hydraulic hammer
- landscape rake & tillers
- material handling arm
- stump grinder
- vibratory compactor
This versatility makes the skid steer loader one of those machines that challenge an operator because every type of tool will take a slightly different technique to perfect. But it also means the operator who can meet the challenge of the skid steer loader is somebody in demand on the work site.