The demand for new housing across the south keeps Lloyd Landry busy year-round. His company, Lloyd Landry, LLC, provides dirt work and several other services for some of the largest residential contractors in Baton Rouge, LA. As the firm’s owner-operator, he has steadily built his business and its reputation since launching in 2007.
“I grew up in the ag industry; my grandpa was a dairy farmer. I worked on a cattle farm for years and in the sugar-cane industry for a while. I learned how to operate equipment as soon as I could stand up on the transmission of a tractor,” recalled Landry. “In ’07, I decided to use one of our old tractors and try my hand at some local grade work. I ran into a lot of muddy conditions and decided to rent an ASV Posi-Track machine. After that, I didn’t have to worry about fighting through the mud, and the business took off from there.”
Impressed with the performance of the rental unit, Landry bought an ASV PT-60 for his young business. He eventually acquired a PT-80 before purchasing an RT-75 HD compact track loader, with a rated operating capacity of 2,650 lbs., in 2018.
Today, Landry works on nearly 400 residential lots annually, with the goal of completing the grading work on multiple properties per day. He also moves limestone and construction debris, handles other construction-related tasks and assists with storm cleanup throughout the state. Landry is a one-person operation and also keeps his calendar booked by caring for and maintaining trees as a licensed arborist.
As the volume of his dirt work has increased, the often muddy conditions within a few miles of the Mississippi River where he operates remain a challenge. When the river level is high, the water table is typically right under the surface on jobsites. To stay efficient, Landry uses his latest compact track loader, which helps him to stay two steps ahead of the competition.
Time Equals Money
The RT-75 HD has a ground pressure of 3.8 psi, enabling operators like Landry to start work earlier and stay on task longer in soft terrain.
“After it’s rained, I won’t leave a track with the machine, but will sink to my ankles when I get out to walk around,” Landry notes. “The RT-75 HD allows me to push some borderline conditions, and I can get back to moving dirt at least a day or two earlier than with a competitive machine. My schedule doesn’t allow me to take any days off, and the RT-75 HD is the difference between getting a paycheck or not.”
When trying to complete the dirt work for multiple homes every day, time is of the essence. The 9,650-lb. loader's Posi-Track undercarriage technology is designed to provide greater traction and speed in a variety of working conditions, allowing for a top speed of 9.3 mph. For Landry, greater speed means taking care of more work in less time.
“I really respect the speed and cycle times... because time is money,” notes Landry. “The machine I previously had topped out at 7 mph, and I'm moving 40 to 60 yds. at a house. That 2-mph increase with the ASV loader has a large impact as I’m tracking back and forth throughout the day.”
Landry selected the heavy-duty RT-75 because of its brush guard features, which are well-suited for his arborist-related work. With a Cummins 2.8-liter turbocharged diesel engine generating 75 hp and 221 ft.-lbs. of torque, the compact track loader ensures maximum power for forestry jobs.
“Now and then I contract some brush cutting. The extra guarding is a plus when you are going around trees and backing over brush. It saves your radiator, air conditioner and lights,” says Landry.
A hydraulically driven, auto-reversing fan blows debris out of the engine compartment screens. Easier maintenance and the extra protection from the brush guard features equates to Landry spending more of his work week in the cab meeting the needs of his customers.
Details Make the Difference
Long days working in the Louisiana heat and humidity can take a toll on an operator, that’s why Landry appreciates the amenities in the cab of his loader. “The comfort level is high with the air conditioning,” he states. “I don’t run it much over the first setting. Even in the heat of the day at 93° F with a heat index of 105° F, I don’t go past level two.”
The all-weather cab is also pressurized to ensure a cleaner environment, and the HD model comes with heat, a Lexan door and an AM/FM/MP3 system. A seasoned operator, Landry is a fan of the intuitive standard joystick controls on his compact track loader.
“I learned on excavators and old-school dozers where there’s ‘feel’ in your control. This machine has hydraulic-over-hydraulic controls compared to most others with electric-over-hydraulics. The RT-75 helps with the whole grading operation because I can kind of feel it in the sticks,” Laundry explains.
Whenever Landry has a question about his track loader or requires service, he knows he can count on his local ASV rep to respond quickly. Beyond those immediate needs, he also appreciates that his rep touches base with him on a regular basis.
“It’s a breath of fresh air,” says Landry. “Instead of having to call three or four times, my dealer checks up on me, just to make sure everything’s going well. That’s unheard of, and I really appreciate it.”