I am looking to make my 2425 front end loader (OE) operate much smoother than it currently does.
I need the loader to load, unload and move around working bee colonies. The hives are 4 to a small pallet (2'x3') and, as you can imagine, it is imperative that they be handled with utmost care and smoothness, more for not disturbing them than about me getting stung (that happens anyway).
I tried a home made set of forks attached to my loader bucket. No go. The forks sticking out that far in front of the pivot points of the bucket, along with the jerkiness of the oe loader valves made it impossible to use for this purpose.
What I am asking is for some input from some of you who have gone the replacement valve route. I understand the aftermarket valves are much better than originals but wonder if they would operate in the tiny movements I need sometimes for maneuvering these colonies around. It has to be very smooth operation and capable of very small movements.
I am thinking I would remove the bucket completely and make a set of forks that attach just like the bucket does.
I have found several places to get aftermarket valves:
$219 for just the valve or...
Jinma Loader Valve
$600 for everything needed for complete replacement
I am open to any and all suggestions. Thanks.