Fork Frame Sizing

   / Fork Frame Sizing #1  

KennyG

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2011
Messages
4,323
Location
SW Michigan
Tractor
John Deere 2320
I finally found a good deal on some used forklift forks. Now I have to build a frame for my JD 200CX loader. I don't have much experience with forklifts and I would like to confirm how the rails should be sized.

From the hooks on the forks, it looks like the rails should be 16 inches from the top of the top rail to the bottom of the bottom rail. The hooks seem to be about 1/2" wide at the root of the slot. Should the rail be about 3/8" thick to allow the forks to slide easily?

Also, is there some standard spacing for the notches for the fork locks?
 
   / Fork Frame Sizing #2  
I finally found a good deal on some used forklift forks. Now I have to build a frame for my JD 200CX loader. I don't have much experience with forklifts and I would like to confirm how the rails should be sized.

From the hooks on the forks, it looks like the rails should be 16 inches from the top of the top rail to the bottom of the bottom rail. The hooks seem to be about 1/2" wide at the root of the slot. Should the rail be about 3/8" thick to allow the forks to slide easily?

Also, is there some standard spacing for the notches for the fork locks?

Hi Kenny,
There are quite a few types of forks. Please post a picture if you want some well informed advice. Going to use them on the front or 3PT.

My front bucket is quick disconnect. I built the frame out 1/4" 2x3" angle iron. Close up is the back side after mounting the pintle hitch.

Hope pictures give you some ideas.
 

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   / Fork Frame Sizing
  • Thread Starter
#3  
They look like these. As noted, the space between the attaching hooks is 16 inches and the root of the hook is about 1/2". I intend to make a frame that these will hang on and set it up to mount on the quick attach on my JD loader. If I get ambitious, I might try to make is so it will also hook to the 3 point, but the real goal is to get them on the loader.

forks.jpg
 
   / Fork Frame Sizing #4  
They look like these. As noted, the space between the attaching hooks is 16 inches and the root of the hook is about 1/2". I intend to make a frame that these will hang on and set it up to mount on the quick attach on my JD loader. If I get ambitious, I might try to make is so it will also hook to the 3 point, but the real goal is to get them on the loader.

View attachment 262074

I still have to make assumptions.
The top post should have a notch in it that fits over a 1/2" top plate??? 3/8" is too thin for much of a load.

On the fork lift the top plate was notched. With the forks in the notch the bottom peg fits under a bottom plate. The top notches on the plate lock the fork at a certain spacing and with the bottom peg under its place they lock into that spacing.

Standard spacing is no big deal in your case and cutting a bunch of notches in a 1/2" plate will be a pain.

Weld a couple of tabs on the forks where they rest on the lower plate. Drill or burn some holes about 1/2" in diameter a few places across the lower plate & tabs. The bolts will do 2 things, maintain spacing and even more important in my case, that lets me push down with the forks. A little side benefit is when going over rough terrain the don't bounce up all the time.
 
   / Fork Frame Sizing #5  
You'll want to use 1/2" rails for the forks and space them 16". Standard fork brackets are positioned & clearanced to work on those measurements. Here's a good source for the rails (thanks to contributors on TractoByNet!):

Skid Steer Attachments Pallet Forks Hay Spears Bobcat Cat John Deere Mount Plate

I used a set of their rails and quick attach frame to construct the fork carriage shown on my Massey. I used 2" x 2" (top) and 3" x 3" (bottom) square tubing to back the rails and made triangular end plates to match the angle on the back of my bucket. If you don't angle the QA plate, you might not be able to tilt the forks back. I plan to add a cat 3 hitch receiver and chain hooks - and someday maybe some grapple arms for brush work.
 

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   / Fork Frame Sizing
  • Thread Starter
#6  
The Skid Steer Attachment rails seem to be exactly what I need. The web site doesn't show a price for rails only so I've e-mailed them for a price, but it appears that will better than building them.

I was going to mount the rails on rectangular tubing, top and bottom, but I like the idea of making the bottom tube larger than the top, since there should be more force on the bottom.

Thanks for the help.
 
 
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