It was going to cost a fortune to rent a skid steer loader long enough to complete Trinity Dome, let alone the other projects we have planned. So it seemed like a natural idea to go ahead and buy one.
After lot of shopping and consideration, we decided upon a Thomas 175 from Schuurmans Farm Supply instead of more mainstream brands (Deere, Bobcat, etc.). This was mostly due to the five year warranty and easier maintenance schedule.
It's a fairly basic machine without some of the fancy bells and whistles, but tough as nails — and at least it has a heated cab for our South Dakota winters. So far it looks like it will be a great tool that will last many years building domes!
Here's a shot of Grandpa Pat in the cab. As you can tell from the grin on his face — it's pretty fun to sit in the skid steer. And even more so to operate. For those of you with broadband, you can see a video of me running it here.