1st Bobcat Skid Steer
Apr 19, 2018
Only a very rare few brand names become synonymous with what they are. Say "Kleenex" and we all know you could mean tissue.
Same with Bobcat.
Quite a fascinating story with the development of the skid steer loader, which Bobcat of course pioneered and the term "Bobcat" came to mean "skid steer" to many folks, even to this day. Got thinking about Bobcat this afternoon when I was sent this picture from the showroom floor of Lano Equipment (http://www.lanoequip.com), a Bobcat dealer in Norwood, MN...picture of a restored 1960 Bobcat M400, 1 of only 200 made, technically the 1st production model skid steer ever made:
Now you may recall a blog I wrote last year that was titled "The 1st Skid Steer Loader". Actually that 1958 farmer invented machine wasn't technically a full fledged "skid steer" yet. Farmer brothers Cyril "Cy" and Louis Keller from Rothsay, MN made their "Powered Scoop Shovel" for local turkey farmer Eddie Velo who had been complaining about his trouble cleaning his turkey barns. So here's what the Keller brothers invented:
Here's link to that blog I wrote about this "Powered Scoop Shovel" the Keller brothers invented: https://www.machinerypete.com/media_posts/the-1st-skid-steer-loader
Back to the restored 1960 Bobcat M400 in the showroom at Lano Equipment in Norwood, MN...I got poking around Bobcat skid steer history and found a very cool, insightful blog from Bobcat itself, talking about the history of the skid steer. The blog said it wasn't until 1960 when the company added a rear drive axle and created the four-wheel drive M400 could the machine now be called a "skid steer". I found this Bobcat blog to be a fascinating walk through time, here's a link to read it yourself, trust me, you'll enjoy it: https://blog.bobcat.com/2016/03/m440-was-first-bobcat-loader-in-1962/
Here are a few more pictures of the restored 1960 Bobcat M400 skid steer in the showroom of Lano Equipment in Norwood, MN: