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Whatever the type or scope of your project is, knowing the right choice of equipment is crucial to a seamless completion. In this article, we will discuss the various buckets of excavators or loaders suitable for your project.

How does an overly small or big bucket affect your machine and cost?

Avoid using buckets that are considerably larger than the shovel. It does not matter if your excavator offers sufficient force to bear the weight, the idea is clearly disabling. Also, do not cut down on the number of loading cycles of your bucket – longer cycles. The ideal option is to use the right bucket size in line with your mini excavator or shovel’s tonnage.

What determines the lifetime of a bucket is the reinforcements and how it is used

The ideal parts to reinforce your buckets include the part connecting the headband and the blade, the outer bottom of the bucket, the blade, and all other parts prone to wear and tear. Caterpillar tends to divide the reinforced buckets based on the abrasion due to the ground and the specific application.

Here are the common types of reinforcement – from the least to the most reinforced;

  • General Duty – Considering their excellent capacity and strength, general duty buckets are ideal for excavation sites. For the best results, use on low-impact and low-abrasive floors.
  • Heavy Duty – This is a reinforced bucket suitable for iron ore, clay, sand, and other slightly abrasive materials.
  • Severe Duty – The extra protections included in this bucket makes it ideal for quarrying, especially in working limestone and rock.
  • Extreme Duty – This bucket is the best for the most abrasive materials with a considerable impact, e.g., rocks, basalt, and quartz.

Repeated friction leads to a certain type of wear called abrasion. The significance of abrasion depends on the type of soil in question. Also, impact is best described as the shock between the bucket and the ground. The strongest impacts come from the hardest grounds. 

Ditching Bucket

Ditching buckets find the most important application in cleaning the soil. With a well-rounded shape, these buckets are well built to help with building ditches and roadside slopes. If you are leveling, the flat-bottomed cleaning buckets work better. You can mount these buckets on mini excavators or excavators, depending on the weight of the bucket. You may go for tillable cleaning buckets, they usually come with a cylinder, which makes it easy to tilt them and combine them with an auxiliary hydraulic line. For additional protection of the base blade, introduce a bolted counter-blade or a blade with teeth.

Excavator Bucket

Excavator buckets are great for earth moving, alongside mini excavators and shovels. It is ideal backfilling, clearing, and material extraction.

Loader Bucket

Considering their large size, you may want to use the loader buckets by mounting it on wheel loaders or tracks. It is designed to increase in size and accommodate more piles.

Trapezoidal Bucket

These buckets are trapezoidal in shape; hence, they are ideal for making ditches at road edges.

Multi-purpose Bucket

You can do a whole lot with these buckets – pinching, backfilling, leveling, pushing, and cutting.

High dump Bucket

They come in very large volumes. You can either place them on wheel loaders or for loading cereals and similar materials of large volumes.

Trenching Bucket

The narrow radius of trenching buckets makes them ideal for digging trenches, especially in road and cable projects.

More on blade and teeth…

The normal bucket blade is straight; hence, it is perfect for clearing. If you want to use your buckets in quarries, opt for those with a delta or V-blade – they penetrate the soil better.

Teeth-wise, you have a couple of options for various purposes. What determines the choice is the number of teeth. The most effective penetration in a quarry application requires a few teeth. If you want to keep the most material, opt for more teeth and reduce the space in-between.

Introduce a counter blade if you want to protect the base blade.

Other Bucket Types You Should Know

Demolition Buckets

Buckets are also used in demolitions – they are called crusher buckets. They can take in more solid materials from within and crush them into smaller pieces.

Grapple Buckets

The closing clamps in the grapple bucket are designed to catch the blocks and move them. You may not easily find them around, considering there are several other handling equipment options.

Screening Bucket

If you need to screen and sort the materials, go for the screening bucket.


Article by KEP, suppliers of Caterpillar spare parts in the North East UK


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