Following a tradition of engineering excellence German engineers have produced a top quality, well built, robust front end loader – the Schaffer loader.
Schaffer Loaders says its aim was to produce articulated, compact loaders for people involved in agriculture, horticulture, construction, mining, landscape gardening and building.
Schaffer Loaders' engineers have developed front end loaders that offer maximum performance in small spaces, while also providing superior ergonomics and comfort for operators.
Schaffer loaders are compact, with a small turning circle. Schaffer loaders provide optimum stability while working in confined spaces.
One of Schaffer Loaders' first customers in Australia was NS Flowers, of Oakford, a southern suburb of Perth.
NS Flowers, run by Neil and Sonia Reid, produces cut flowers for florists at its 6000 square metre nursery, including roses, gerberas and gypsophilas.
The roses and gerberas are produced in heated plastic tunnel houses, while other flowers are raised in shade houses.
The Reids needed a front end loader to take the hard work out of moving bags of fertiliser and potting mix, as well as shovelling coal into the hopper for the water heater and removing the ashes.
Neil explains: “I borrowed my father-in-law’s machine initially, a front end loader on a tractor. But I needed a narrower front end loader to use in the nursery. Our central path is only 1.6 metres wide. We don’t need a wide path because we would lose growing area."
However, Schaffer Loaders soon arranged for a demonstration of their front end loader at the nursery, and it didn’t take Neil and Sonia long to decide that Schaffer loaders 3033S model would best suit their needs.
Since they received their Schaffer loader in February 2005, they have found it to be ideal for their operation.
“We’ve been very happy with our Schaffer loader,” Neil says. “It’s compact and manoeuvrable, with good power and lifting capacity. We’ve set the machine’s width at 1400cm. The width of Schaffer Loaders can be varied, depending on the wheel offset and the tyres.”
Neil says Schaffer Loaders 3033 is very strong and very well built. “The weight/power ratio is right for me,” he says. “The schaffer loader is very well balanced. It has good hydraulics and a very good Kubota engine.”
He says another feature of schaffer loaders is the extra cooling fan, controlled by a thermostat, to help keep the engine oil and hydraulics cool on hot days. “And it’s very user friendly,” he says. "All of the controls can be used with one hand.”
Neil uses his schaffer loader either with the bucket attachment to move coal or ashes, or the fork attachment to lift and move pallets of fertiliser or potting mix.
The articulated loader has a safety roll frame, which can be folded down when it is working in the shed or nursery.