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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Saguache,Colorado,usa
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    117

    Default Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    So there is an old post about the two but I want to know what people think today. I have been looking at the new swingers and like what I see. Of course I like joysticks but no one else wants them so it is a $1000 option. Honestly would with the new models what is everyone's opinion.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Jamestown, North Dakota, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    I went through this for a year before I bought a new Hummerbee this past October. Both are nice machines and both will move pallets around as we do when keeping bees. I know a fellow out west who has both and says he doesn't like the Swinger because it is larger and clunkier to drive. I can't speak to that but the Swinger is a larger and heavier machine. The main reason I went with the Hummerbee was because they offer a variety of attachments that fit the forks; just run the forks in, attach a chain to the mast and 2 quick couplers and you're ready to go. I bought the bush hog (and a snow blower) and it takes all of 2-3 minutes to switch from using the pallets to mowing grass and brush. The Swinger offers a universal connection that you can attach essentially any attachment or a Bobcat or whatever to so it has many more potential attachmemts than are currently offered for the Hummerbee. The problem is that the mast on the Swinger has to be taken off and replaced with the universal adapter (I forget what they call it but it was very expensive) and then you can mount the attachment of choice. Lots of work and not easy to switch from moving bees to mowing grass or whatever. You might be able to use the A&O attachments on a Swinger but you'd need to check to make sure you have enough hydraulic flow and you'd need half inch hydraulic quick couplers for it to work. I also liked the soft cab option for the Hummerbee to keep me warm when blowing snow in winter but being able to take it off in summer when doing bee work. Swinger says they offer an all-season cab but they weren't making it the last I checked. If it is ever offered, it looks like it will be a hard cab and my style of beekeeping would wear the door hinges off as much as I get in and out. The Swinger has a larger engine but it didn't look like there was a significant difference in the weight they lifted or in ground speed. The Hummerbee has lots of options to dampen vibrations for the operator (get the best seat if you go Hummer--well worth the cost of the option) and also a dampening mechanism for the mast to cushion the bees; they also have hive clamps but I don't recall if Swinger had them or not. Finally, there was a difference in price. Swinger offered a discount off MSRP but they were still more expensive than the Hummerbees. The folks at A&O also offer great service; I've ordered parts for my old Swinger 100 from them for years and they're always willing to talk you through a problem--plus, they get parts to you very quickly. I don't have any experience with the Swinger plant in WI so can't comment on their service, etc. Good Luck.

    Chip Euliss

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Solano, California, USA
    Posts
    1,313

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    That's a tough one. Beeks on both side of the aisle whom I greatly respect love both machines.

    FYI I bought an old re-power Swinger from Dean and Company (A&O) a 18 years back. Still "humming" with lots of love over the years . Gone through 2 motors and just put about 4 k into replacing a bunch of worn out parts.

    If your decision comes down to the fact that both machines are equally great and all you are really looking for is the company with the superior service I would go with the Hummerbee. Dean and co are the best. In 18 years of needing "parts" they have been extremely helpful, priced right, gave great advice, as well got me on the road again ASAP.

    In December and January when I decided to do a major rework underneath (New transfer case, ring and pinions in the rear end) I checked with both A and O as well as with the Swinger folks in Wisconsin. A and O were right on the ball as ussual and got me going again while the parts guy at NMC never even called me back after I spoke with him about what I needed. Not sure if he didn't care or if they decided they might sell a new one. If I was to rate them both on service A and O would get an A+ while the parts guys, aka "shmucks" at NMC/Wollard would get an F- if I could give them one. I have tried getting service out of both many times. Only A and O has come through time after time while the "other guys" dropped the ball every time I've tried"

    Best wishes with your decision as you will be sitting on it a long time. Hopefully your reflections will not include regrets about a purchase followed up with bad service. If you deal with A and O I doubt you will be sitting on a "dead" machine wondering what you'll do about parts. If you buy from the other guys it might be the case that the honeyflow or the pollination check might have to wait till next year. Never know if they are on another extended coffee break once again while your getting nervous about a bad purchase.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
    Posts
    3,166

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    I have a swinger 1K loader. Wouldn't trade it for anything else.
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Montgomery County, NY
    Posts
    1,701

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    So what is the new price tag of both machines? No extras just plain lifts.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Saguache,Colorado,usa
    Posts
    117

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    don't take my word for it but I think swinger quoted me $31,480 for a base model. It has been a while since I priced the hummerbee. I am thinking I will go with the swinger mainly because I got approved for financing with a company NMC-Wollard works with.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Jamestown, North Dakota, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    I tossed the quote from Swinger but my recollection is that it was 3 or 4 K more than the Hummerbee. I bought the XL model and it was right at 30 K for the basic machine with no options.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
    Posts
    3,166

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    I just bought a 1k about two months ago, I think I paid 30,300.
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Jamestown, North Dakota, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Jarrett View Post
    I just bought a 1k about two months ago, I think I paid 30,300.
    Definitely better than the quote they gave me and that was about a year ago. I like the looks of the new Swinger but really enjoy the cab and snow blower on the Hummer. I bought mine after the "bee season" but did load 3 semi-loads of bees with it this fall. I'm happy with it! I sold my old Swinger to an outfit in California and I'm sure it will run for many years.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Montgomery County, NY
    Posts
    1,701

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    I thought there were around 30k. I'm thinking about maybe buying a hummerbee myself. I have been using a JD 320 but I really liked using the Hummerbee in the past. I also used a swinger 1600 in the past but it seems to me hummerbee had better options like the lid holder on the top. Of course that option sucks when you are not used to it. I watched a buddy knock 1/2 a stack off a semi cause he forgot to lift it after moving a lower stack. OOPS.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
    Posts
    3,166

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    Hey guys, the swinger have hold down clamps too and any attachment a bobcat can run the swinger can run. They have a quick connect for attachments. Call Mark Brown at swinger.

    The 1k swinger is twice the machine.
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Jamestown, North Dakota, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Jarrett View Post
    Hey guys, the swinger have hold down clamps too and any attachment a bobcat can run the swinger can run. They have a quick connect for attachments. Call Mark Brown at swinger.

    The 1k swinger is twice the machine.
    Twice is a lot but maybe you saw something that I didn't. I looked into the feature on the Swinger for attachments but it requires another part (they call it a universal quick attach mount) that was about a 4K option according to the Swinger price sheet. I don't remember the salesman I talked to at Swinger but it could have been Mark; he told me you had to take the mast off and then the universal quick attach mount replaces it if I remember correctly. I believe that is also the part you need to attach the front-end loader they picture in their ads and their advertisement sheet says it takes 45 minutes to install. The cool thing about the Swinger is that once you have the universal quick attach mount in place, you can use any attachment for a Bobcat as you said and there's always a bunch of options on the used market. Not true with the Hummerbee since the attachments are fairly new, so you'd have a hard time finding used attachments right now. The Swinger system seemed pretty complicated relative to the Hummer to me but it's not an issue if you only use the machine as a forklift. Both machines are rated to lift 1600 pounds but the turbo Hummer is rated at 1800 according to their brochure. I somehow remembered the Swinger advertising a higher lift capacity but I just checked it and it is the same rating as the XL Hummerbee. All that said, we've probably derailed the thread but both are good machines and take a lot of work out of keeping bees. I can't imagine being without a forklift!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Solano, California, USA
    Posts
    1,313

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    Keith,

    Time to get from under all those sky-blue soapbox(s), jump on top of a pallet and provide us some details behind your reasoning.

    I and many others here respect your opinion. Fire away.

    Be a salesman for Swinger and give us the details as to why the 1K is 2x the machine as the competition and how you came to your conclusion.

    What drawbacks, if any, do you see with the new Swinger?


  14. #14

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    twice the Machine or Twice the weight Keith? lol. If I had to buy a new one I would still buy a Hummerbee. Reason. We were supposed to get demo Swinger unit a long time ago in the summer. It never came. They got busy with their other contracts for the other equipment they build. Time they finnnally had a machine available all our bees were in California. I just dont think the customer service will be there ever. I would Go with HUMMERBEE....Sorry Keith.
    Columbia City, Indiana

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
    Posts
    3,166

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    Quote Originally Posted by Honey-4-All View Post
    give us the details as to why the 1K is 2x the machine as the competition and how you came to your conclusion.
    OK, Phil.

    First, the motor, Non turbo cummings, more hp than hummer. Lifts 3700lb, runs full hdy @ half throdel so is very quite machine. Massive front artic joint,(won't wear out like hummers do) and really smooooooth. Oil is easy to change, all filters are EASY to get to,can't say that about hummer. The only draw back that I can see is the weight of the machine. IMHO, for the beekeeper swinger is the way to go.

    Better built by far, smoooth machine, & I think cheaper.
    Keith
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
    Posts
    3,166

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    Quote Originally Posted by greenbeekeeping View Post
    Reason. We were supposed to get demo Swinger unit a long time ago in the summer. It never came. They got busy with their other contracts for the other equipment they build. Time they finnnally had a machine available all our bees were in California. I just dont think the customer service will be there ever. I would Go with HUMMERBEE....Sorry Keith.
    That's your only reason Matt, because they didn't drop off a free machine at your place to drive around for a two week free ride ?
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  17. #17

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    It wasn't a free ride Keith. Don't forget we did go over there to check out there foot peddle redesign. Also they told us the would drop one off in a few weeks. Months later they never even called. I would have drove over just to see the brand new one instead of the old model they had retrofitted the foot peddle on. The only way I heard they had one for us to drive was through you. Don't get me wrong Kieth I think it is built very well compared to the Hummerbee. Its actually overbuilt. Which is a good thing. I must say the old one I did drive around was smooth as I am sure the new one is too. My impression is though that I just don't think they will have the customer service that A@O does and that would be the only reason that I would go with AandO.
    Columbia City, Indiana

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Jamestown, North Dakota, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    Does the new machine really lift 3700 lbs Keith? Their website says l 1,600 lbs. SAE lift. 10’/12’ mast which is the same as the non-turbo Hummer. Maybe they've made some improvements since they published the brochure? If true, the extra capacity would be a plus, especially lifting full totes of syrup.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    One of the reasons the loader is so heavy is so that it can lift full totes of Syrup. At least that is what I have heard.
    Columbia City, Indiana

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Jamestown, North Dakota, USA
    Posts
    128

    Default Re: Swinger vs. Hummerbee II

    Makes sense. I haven't lifted more than 3 stacks of doubles with the new machine but my old Swinger couldn't do it. I remember my nose tipping forward with the old machine when I tried to lift too much Not a good feeling but it does teach you to lower the load real quick!

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