SALE PRICES & FREE SHIPPING (Lower 48 States Only) on select items. Ends May 31, 2024

How To Choose the Best Forestry Mulcher For Your Skid Steer?

Table of Contents:

1. Factors to Look at While Choosing Mulchers for a Skid Steer
2. Disc Mulcher or Drum Mulcher - Which One Should I Choose?

Anyone who has ever had to cut trees, brush, and clear vegetation knows that the best piece of equipment to use is a forestry mulcher. To be more precise, a skid steer with a mulcher attachment. If you have never used this attachment for land clearing, and are looking to purchase this piece of equipment, we are here to help you choose the correct mulcher for your application.

Factors to Look at While Choosing Mulchers for a Skid Steer

There are several factors and features you should pay attention to while buying a skid steer mulcher attachment. They consist of equipment build quality and its capabilities. The most important include:

Cutting Capacity

Cut capacity is the largest size material you will need to cut through. Not all mulchers are built to cut thick trees. Make sure you purchase the mulcher skid steer attachment that is suitable for your application. In most cases, using a high-flow skid steer running between 27-45 GPM will give you the best performance when cutting 8-inch or larger diameter trees. If you have already purchased a forestry attachment and you notice that it is either underpowered or not giving you the performance desired, check to make sure the attachment motor matches the hydraulics on your skid steer. In many cases, especially in the used market, operators purchase the equipment without knowing the specifications of the flow and pressure required.

Clearing Methods

Lot and land clearing can be accomplished in several different ways. The quickest and most effective way is with either a disc or drum mulcher attachment. The disc mulcher will ultimately get the job done faster; however, the drum mulcher will mulch the material up into finer material. Whichever you choose, make sure the attachment includes a high-end radial piston driven motor. The proprietary piston driven motor used in our mulcher attachments are 97% efficient and will get that job done faster.


One capability that some disc and drum mulchers have that others don’t is cutting below ground level. This is very important when deciding on which brand attachment to go with. Some do not recommend this. However, in order to do the job right and clear debris such as stumps it is necessary for your mulcher to have the option.

Residue Material

A big difference between a disc mulcher and a drum mulcher attachment is the size of the mulching debris left behind. The disc mulcher attachment will leave larger mulch debris behind. A drum mulcher will leave fine, much smaller mulch behind.

Maneuverability and Visibility

Deciding on the right size mulcher attachment for your machine, you must think about the visibility of the operator. Some larger mulcher attachments may overwhelm not only the machine but also the operator. Even though your machine has the hydraulics to run the unit, doesn’t mean it is the best size attachment for the job. Remember that you must always put safety above productivity.

Hydraulic Horsepower

What produces the power of the disc or drum mulcher attachment. Most operators think just because they have a high horsepower skid steer, they can effectively run a mulcher. However, without a strong hydraulic pump generating enough gallons per minute and higher pressure, your machine will not have the ability to power this attachment. When deciding on the correct model mulching attachment for your skid steer, make sure the flow rate of the hydraulic motor on the attachment matches the flow rate on your skid steer. The higher the flow and pressure allowed to run the unit the more torque and speed the mulcher will produce.

Skid Steer Weight vs Mulcher's Weight

Always check your skid steers lift capacity and skid steer’s operating weight before choosing a mulcher. When doing forestry work, you will be working on uneven and steep terrain, so you will want to make sure the attachment's weight will not negatively impact the stability of the machine and risk the operator's safety.

Cutting Width

Width of the mulching head can make a big difference in many applications. Having a wider cut is always nice for getting the job done quicker, however you must have a larger machine to get the most out of the mulcher. This may cause issues when working in tight (narrow) areas. In many cases, the mulching head will most likely be narrower than your machine. They typically come in 44" or 60" sizes.

Carbide Teeth vs Chipping Teeth

Determining the right style of teeth for your skid steer mulching head is simple. In most cases you will want to choose the chipping teeth. The chipping teeth are more effective at mulching than carbide teeth. The carbide teeth tend to pound the material more than chip away at the material. Chipping teeth are more available and much less pricey than carbide teeth. However, when working in rocky terrain, chipping teeth will not hold up and wear quickly. The only solution is to use carbide teeth. They can stand up to rocky terrain while still giving good productivity.

Disc Mulcher or Drum Mulcher - Which One Should I Choose?

Land clearing is a demanding job and skid steer mulchers are specifically built for such work. However, there are multiple mulching applications. That is why there are also different types of mulcher attachments. Two of the most sought-after are disc mulchers and drum mulchers. Have a look below to see a quick comparison of the functions they offer:

Disc Mulcher Features

- have a cut capacity of 14-inch material
- has large push bar for tipping large trees away from operator
- allows for a quicker work
- leaves larger mulch behind
- a less expensive piece of machinery
- maybe a bit more uncomfortable for the operator

Drum Mulcher Features

- have the capacity between 8 inch and 12-inch material
- can mulch below ground level
- leaves smaller mulch behind
- optional gate kit to limit debris field
- greater safety in urban applications (material is pushed to the ground)
- comfortable for the operator to operate
- more visibility and maneuverability

Ready to choose which mulcher fits your needs? Browse through our drum mulchers or disc mulchers attachments online!