Tech Review - Track Log LoadersBarko


The 595B Crawler is Barko’s largest and most powerful tracked log loader. Designed with precision in mind and built for serious work, this loader gets difficult jobs done with a load sensing hydraulic system tuned to perform efficiently and maximize loader production. Smooth controls improve performance and a large D7 undercarriage provides a stable footing. The enhanced operator cab features a spacious interior, premium seat and great visibility. It was created with input from experienced forestry professionals to help reduce operator fatigue and keep you working safely.

The Barko 595B Crawler is powered by a fuel-efficient 173 HP Cummins QSB6.7 Tier 4 Final diesel engine, which provides more than enough power for the task at hand while delivering superior fuel economy. With high-quality components from industry-leading suppliers, the 595B Crawler is designed to work under the toughest conditions. Easy-access service doors simplify regular maintenance and daily inspections, whether you’re at the shop, in the mill yard or working out in the woods. For customers looking for a smaller log loader the Barko 495B Crawler is a solid option. Additional Barko loader models are available in truck/trailer mount, mobile carriers, and stationary configurations along with Barko Strong-Arm Grapples.


Caterpillar offers a wide range of log loaders: the 538, 548, 558 and the 568.

The 538 weighs in at 69,401 pounds and is equipped with a 164 HP engine. Its maximum reach at reach at grapple mount on heel on ground level is 38’4”. Component layout and back-to-back main hydraulic control valve reduces oil flow restrictions and aids in great fuel economy.

The 548 is powered by a Cat C7.1 engine and has 204 HP. It has up to 19 percent high swing torque. That increase on General Forestry configuration provides added power to move trees. It also has a 989 L (261 gal) counterweigh fuel tank for extended machine operator and maximum uptime.

The 558 also has a Cat C7.1 engine, but has 239 HP. It has up to 35 percent higher swing torque and up to 12 percent more cooling capacity. Its heavy life mode features increased lift capacity to handle larger payloads with improved control.

The 568 is powered by a Cat C9.3 engine, and has a net flywheel power of 291 HP, and gross power of 319 HP. It offers the flexibility of running on either ultra-low-sulfur diesel (ULSD) fuel with 15 ppm of sulfur or less or bio diesel (B20) fuel blended with ULSD.


Doosan Infracore North America, LLC, offers the DX300LL-5 and DX380LL-5.

The DX300LL-5 log loader features a fully guarded, heavy-duty undercarriage and upper structure designed specifically for forestry applications. It’s equipped with high-walker undercarriage design. Tracks feature heavy-duty links with double grouser shoes and full-length track guiding guards. The DX300LL-5 has heavy-duty top rollers with special clean-out brackets.

To help save diesel fuel, auto-shutdown comes standard. When enabled, the feature will shut down the loader’s engine when the preset idle time is met. Operators can configure the idle time from 3 to 60 minutes.

The high-pressure common rail fuel injected engine teams with the EPOS (Electronic Power Optimizing System) for optimum power and fuel savings. The EPOS provides four work modes, auto-idle and machine diagnostics. It works more effectively with multiple operating modes, easy to read display and precise control levers.

Created to take on difficult terrain, the DX380LL-5 features a high and wide undercarriage design. The undercarriage allows the DX380LL-5 to clear stumps, branches and traverse small inclines while maximizing stability. The tracks feature durable links with double grouser shoes and full-length rock guards. The undercarriage also has heavy-duty top rollers with special clean-out brackets to reduce the risk of downtime while traveling on challenging terrain.

The DX380LL-5 offers high swing torque and long reach for quick picking, moving and placing of heavy loads. Like the DX380LL-3 the auto-shutdown turns off the engine during idle time reduce fuel.


ELTEC Log Loaders have been designed to simplify the daily foresters’ work. Combining advanced technical features, ELTEC Log Loaders offer a comfortable working environment, which allows moving to another level of performance in the forestry.

The load loaders are powered by a Cummins QSL9 T4 (or T3) diesel engine with 320 HP. They have a fuel capacity of 394 gallons and traction drive torque of 100,000 lbs./ft. Speed ranges from 1.4 to 2.5 mph, and they feature a side by side heavy-duty cooling system. They have a large capacity swing bearing of 61”, and continuous 8 rpm rotation.

The result of higher cooling capacity, a better operating environment, stronger undercarriage components and extremely efficient hydraulic circuits is higher production, uptime and fuel efficiency.


The Hitachi ZX310F-6 is a 249 HP log loader with a swing torque of 88,507 lb. ft. It has a drawbar pull of 66,910 lbs. and is powered by an Isuzu 6HK1 engine.

Available as a forestry excavator or log loader, the ZX310F-6 is purpose-built with productivity-boosting advantages, including a fuel-efficient Final Tier 4 Isuzu engine; no diesel particulate filer (DPF) needed. It features two newly designed operator stations with additional legroom, new ergonomic controls, a multi-language color LCD monitor that provides intuitive access to machine data and functions, and more. It also has ground level access to all filters and test ports, a completely revamped electrical system with 35 percent fewer components that increases system reliability, as well as a tough structure that is built to last.

deereJohn Deere

The G-Series Forestry Swing Machines, available in a log loader or forestry excavator configuration, are purpose-built with loggers’ needs in mind. On the log loader models, the rear-entry cab features floor-mounted windows, increasing visibility to the tracks. Other features in the quiet, climate-controlled cabs include ergonomic controls, outstanding window clarity, isolation mounting, and LED lighting.

Increasing stability, the 2656G and 2156G machines include a longer track option. Reducing downtime and maintenance life, the 2156G and 3156G are designed with larger lower rollers. Additionally, the 3156G and 3756G models are available with hydraulic plumbing for processing heads. The larger models feature a powerful 9.0-liter engine, while the smaller machines boast a 6.8-liter engine. The increased tractive effort on the 2156G and 2656G models helps with overcoming steep terrain and deep snowy conditions.

Convenient ground-level servicing, filters, fluid-fill locations, and grease points reduce daily checks and maintenance. The hinged AC condenser eases the cleanout of debris by swinging out along with the removable engine-compartment screen. A reduction in electrical components increases uptime, while the efficient hydraulic management systems increase airflow and lower operating temperatures. Service bays featuring drop-down work platforms and LED service lights improve long-term durability and increase uptime.


A new line-up specially equipped for forestry and hilly terrain work has been added to the SK excavator series famous for outstanding productivity and extremely low fuel consumption. The High & Wide Specification series have the generous ground clearance needed to penetrate sites littered with stumps or rocks. The extra crawler width ensures excellent stability, contributing to uninterrupted working and greater lifting capacity. Durability is significantly improved with full track guides and larger upper rollers for the crawlers, to prevent de-tracking. With double grouser shoes used for better grip, these machines are designed to work smoothly over the roughest ground.

The crawlers are designed to provide unbeatable durability to take on the harshest terrain. They feature full track guides to eliminate de-tracking concerns, a reinforced guide frame built to withstand heavy impact, and large, double-support, outer flanged upper rollers unfazed by powerful vibrations.


Komatsu America Corp’s PC290LL-11 is an extremely productive and versatile tracked carrier within the Komatsu log loader/forestry excavator/road builder product lineup. It features a 196-net HP, EPA Tier 4 Final, Komatsu SAA6D107E-3 engine, and is available with a 31’7” reach processing, 39’11” reach live heel log loader, or 34’6”-ft reach road builder configurations. Operating weights range from 82,410 lb. to 87,370 lb., depending on front/application.

The PC290LL-11 features include a high capacity cooling system, high drawbar pull, robust forestry-specific guarding, a narrow 11’7” transport width, modern cab with comfortable operator controls, and Komtrax 5.0 machine monitoring technology.

Powerful PC360-class final drives generate 64,250 lbs. of drawbar pull for excellent shovel logging and rough terrain performance. A rugged PC390-class swing motor and drive delivers high swing torque for superior log loading and road building performance.

The Komatsu OSHA certified forestry cab provides a spacious and comfortable working environment. The cab is available with a 48” hydraulic tilt or a 7” fixed cab riser. LED lighting provides brilliant illumination in low light working conditions for increased productivity.

Complimentary Komatsu CARE® program covers the machine for the first three years or 2000 hours, whichever comes first, including scheduled factory maintenance, inspections and more.

link beltLink-Belt

The new Link-Belt 40 Series Forestry machines are tough and dependable workhorses. They include the 3240 TL, 3740 TL, 4040 TL, 4640 TL and the 5040 TL. They feature powerful, fuel-efficient Final Tier 4 engines that don’t require a DPF, matched to a 55 percent larger fuel tank that keeps you working longer. 40-Series offers up to 12 percent improved cycle times, best-in-class swing torque, 17 percent draw bar pull increase and up to 10 percent better fuel economy.

Other features include a 7” high-definition color monitor, rear view camera and Oregon OSHA/WCB/ROPS compliant forestry cab. Easy maintenance and access with remote filters, convenient sampling ports and complimentary RemoteCARE® telematics included with no subscription fees.

The machines range from the 77,330 lb.160 hp 3240 TL to the 109,600 lb. 268 HP 5040 TL. Reaches range from 35’9” to 44’8”, and maximum lift capacity ranges from 26,900 lbs. to 39,400 lbs.


Maddill offers the 3000 and 4000 Log Loader. Madill’s purpose built 3000 weighs in at 95,000 lbs. and offers an excellent power to weight ratio which enables outstanding overall performance. With its Volvo TAD873VE 8 liter Tier 4 engine, the 3000 provides superior hydraulic flow for exceptional lift power, swing torque, and tractive effort, which results in high productivity capabilities. It has a 60” high capacity swing bearing, 102,000 ft. lbs. swing torque, and a lift capacity of 44,470 lbs. at 15 ft. Boom reach is BNT – 36’ and 40’6” heel.

Madill’s purpose built 4000 weighs 106,000 lbs. and also offers an excellent power to weight ratio for outstanding overall performance. It’s powered by a Volvo TAD1371VE 13 liter Tier 4 engine. It has a 67” high capacity swing bearing, 139,000 ft. lbs. swing torque, and a lift capacity of 49,930 lbs. at 20 ft. Boom reach is BNT – 39’ and 44’ heel.


Tigercat offers several options. First, the 875 Logger is an 80,000 lb. carrier with two boom options for loading or processing applications. It features the Tigercat FPT N67 engine, which is fully supported by Tigercat. Designed for extremely fuel efficient operation, the 875 is equipped with variable speed cooling and Tigercat’s unique closed loop energy recovery swing system.

The twin swing drive system provides powerful swing torque and reduced gear tooth loads. The F7-150 heavy duty forestry undercarriage provides a stable base of operations.

The 94,000 lb. Tigercat 880D Logger is a multi-purpose carrier designed for loading, shovel logging and processing. It is purpose-built to eliminate the design compromises found in excavator conversions.

The 880D can be configured as a loader with various power clam and butt-n-top grapple options. The boom geometry and cab positioning provide unmatched right-hand side visibility. Equipped with a live heel boom system, the 880D is a highly capable shovel logger with excellent stability, tractive effort and swing torque. It can also be configured as high capacity processor capable of running large harvesting heads in demanding duty cycles.

Weighing 105,000 lbs., the 890 is the largest, highest capacity machine in Tigercat’s purpose built logger product line. It can be configured for loading, shovel logging or processing. The Tigercat FPT C87 engine provides generous power. The large swing bearing provides increased capacity and swing torque. The twin swing drive system reduces gear tooth loads. A massive single-piece, forged pedestal strengthens the undercarriage and improves durability.

TimberWest November/December 2013
November/December 2020

On the Cover
Photo of ZB Cutting on a smoky morning - TimberPro feller buncher with Quadco head on the Archie Creek fire in Glide, Oregon.

Sawmilling in the Age of COVID
Steady log supply, innovative equipment upgrades, fluctuating lumber markets, personnel issues…sawmills have constant challenges. Now add COVID.

On the Cutting Edge
When Zach Brugnoli began researching tethering machines, efficiency and versatility were at the top of his list.

A Look Into Fire
August 14, 1933, a forest fire literally exploded into being near the coastal Northwest Oregon town of Tillamook. It was described as “holocaustic”.

The Great Outdoors - Gustafson’s Favorite Office
Gustafson says, “On the Oregon coast, we have new environments every five minutes. When it’s ugly, it’s ugly, but when it’s beautiful, it’s awesome.”

Emergent Technologies column
A look at monitoring, 3D surveys, and digital wildfire training.

Tech Review
A review of track log loaders currently on the market.

Guest Column
2020: A Year We Won’t Forget


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