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How to use a Bobcat Attachment on your Caterpillar

Posted by Robert Leib on

This is such a common question that I have decided to devote a blog post to it.  You can easily convert Bobcat brand attachments to run on any skid steer loader including Caterpillar, John Deere, New Holland, Kubota, Gehl, Mustang, Takeuchi and others. 

The main thing you are trying to defeat is the Bobcat 7 Pin CanBus controller that has been installed in every attachment since 2000.  This interrupts the operation on any machine but a Bobcat.  You must find this box and remove it for anything to work.  Then follow the following steps. 

  • Swap the hydraulic hose ends because Bobcat attachments run in reverse to most major brands.  If the flow is going the wrong way, most times nothing will work properly.
  • Determine the electrical controls required.  How many solenoids? What do they do?
  • Check out our cable kit section and pick out the cables that you will require.  If in doubt, give us a call.  We do this every day.
  • Receive our kit and pin out to match your machine using our easy to follow color coded instructions.
  • Plug the kit in and familiarize yourself with how the controls should work.

The last line is very important because Bobcat attachments are plumbed and wired very differently from most other manufacturers attachments.  Here is an example.

Bobcat Branded Dozer Blade.  Most other manufacturers use a single open solenoid to control a 6 way blade.  With no power applied, the hydraulic circuit is open to the angle cylinders.  Move your pump control forward and the blade angles left.  Move it in reverse and the blade angles right.  To add tilt, push an electrical control to trigger the solenoid and then use your pump control to tilt the blade left and right.

This is not true with Bobcat.  You have to apply hydraulics and lock them in the forward position only.  You have four solenoids to control the functions.  Left/Right & Tilt Left/Right.  This means you will need 4 active control buttons to have a fully functioning 6 way blade.  Some machines do not have this so you will require additional controls to be added.  If you have them, then you just need a harness to bypass the Bobcat 7 pin controller and you will be good to go.

Here are things that currently do not work.  We are working diligently on solutions and would love to collaborate with companies that can produce some of the components that we need.

Bobcat Grader - Manual control - Yes.

Bobcat Grader - Laser control - No. Requires using a new control head because the Apache/Spectra's are made specifically for Bobcat CanBus controls.  We need a supplier for these.  We could easily offer customers a swap out solution.

Bobcat Concrete Pump - No - Requires CanBus 2 way communications.

Bobcat Chipper - No & Yes.  No in is current format.  Strip all of the wiring and controls out and it will work as a stand alone attachment.  You will lose the two way Bobcat integration.

We hope that you find this information valuable and will frequent our site for the most up to date electrical solutions found anywhere.  Drop us a line if you want us to post anything that you may be interested in.

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