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Thread: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

  1. #561
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Wait,( puts on wistful Gandalf face, places fingers against temples) is that profanity I hear in the background.....it seems to be coming from the north..no , northeast...

  2. #562
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by John B View Post
    We've got rabbits, and.....
    No that's it.

    Here's the highly technical and time consuming tow hitch arrangement on the good ship corona.
    After much consideration I chose a 40mm holesaw and drilled three holes. Naturally I drilled one right through so spent time removing the hole/positive from the holesaw. Took an age.
    Attachment 61455
    And threading the chain...don't get me started.
    Yawl remember this from about this time 2 years ago..

    Same spot now. Look at me bananas! Julian and Reuben are 12 ft tall now. We carved those as pups off Jo and Steve( guess who gave them to us) which are planted in another location . The pups planted sometime in 20... well after I'd cleared out the ginger and junk from the spot.
    Fruit next summer I hope. They like it there, very soggy beside the pond ,and sheltered from the worst of the wind.
    20220610_105016.jpg
    Last edited by John B; 06-09-2022 at 06:37 PM.

  3. #563
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    I've never seen work on a baler go without profanity. Often copious quantities of qualified profanity.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  4. #564
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    julian and reuben look fabananabalous.

    alfalfa yesterday noon, before the profanity started, hitting the bottle, the lil rascal

    DABFED6A-9E79-4DE3-A36D-7BB31C0A7C91.jpg

  5. #565
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    John, your countryside is amazing.

  6. #566
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    julian and reuben look fabananabalous.

    alfalfa yesterday noon, before the profanity started, hitting the bottle, the lil rascal

    DABFED6A-9E79-4DE3-A36D-7BB31C0A7C91.jpg
    You're going to have to keep that beast. Call him a bellwether or sumpin, let him lead the others , listen to his economic advice....stuff like that.

  7. #567
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by LeeG View Post
    John, your countryside is amazing.
    It's wet and cold ,Lee, but as I've said many times, getting out of that city was a great move for us.

    Gratuitous pic of the abysmally small truncated bunch of the first / second bananas off Steve or Jo. I matured the very first lot and I can tell you a banana has never tasted so good.
    20220610_144636.jpg
    Last edited by John B; 06-09-2022 at 09:51 PM.

  8. #568
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    I can’t imagine a place that can grow bananas as being cold. How cold does it get?

  9. #569
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    oh you have a banana opener.

    i could use one of those, i often struggle.

  10. #570
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by LeeG View Post
    I can’t imagine a place that can grow bananas as being cold. How cold does it get?
    Northland is the top third of the North Island, Lee. Statistics say one thing...say a low 7C or 8 here or Auckland but in reality it's noticeable that in any given month it would be a couple of degrees warmer up here. Often I'll leave in a T shirt in spring or autumn and need a sweatshirt in Auckland.

    Just looked it up and it says a winter low average of 9C here.(48F) It's a heavily cropped region... Mostly Kiwifruit seems to be where the money is now, avocado here and further North. Historical orange groves etc.
    I didn't want to live in those crop areas , being out on this peninsular is a bit insulated from that. Catch our own water etc so not drinking from the water table.

  11. #571
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    oh you have a banana opener.

    i could use one of those, i often struggle.
    I put Grandads lady there for scale and also because I hoped someone would notice her. But what a terrific idea, give it a week or so and...

  12. #572
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by LeeG View Post
    John, your countryside is amazing.
    Yes it is & he's also done a lot with it.

    Mr. Baxter's (above) ain't too shabby neither.
    "If it ain't broke, you're not trying." - Red Green

  13. #573
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    i have heard that the great apes open their bananas from the butt end, not the stem. but i feel like that's a rumor started by chimps to prank the hairless ones.

    the knotted up baler pick was wednesday at 1pm. part of an attempt to make hay during a wet spring, in a tight weather window. backtracking a bit, Monday, mid-morning:

    8659FCF1-D46D-4C4A-B780-0E156CC184C5.jpg

    tuesday afternoon, second raking into double windrows, looking promising. a little andrew wyeth treatment in editor:

    F789CC6F-15EA-46EB-9AB6-4C05F9354D78.jpg

  14. #574
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    the baler troubles started with a broken shear bolt, on the inside sprocket in the background, in a location where i was not previously aware of a shear bolt's existence. thankfully a piece was left in place to provide clues.

    89A859C2-1725-47A2-9204-2E7AC3B547ED.jpg

    requiring re-timing the knotters. convenient little cotter pin for disassembling chain

    80AD4CE0-F723-4862-AE7C-D32042503A6D.jpg

    things went downhill after that and i stopped taking pictures. in the process of timing knotters i took off the main drive chain and got plunger and feeder tines out of time and had to do that timing as well. as the baler is rusty and worn, no timing position marks were visible. even youtube failed to privide a tutorial for my particular baler. the whole ordeal required me re-learning things i knew, and learning new things about baler operation. after a couple hours in the sun searching for pieces in the grass, on the advice of counsel, i packed up and morosely drug back to the climate controlled shop for further mechanicking. time to wash my face and re-set, like jackie gleason in the hustler.

    B278480C-1B3C-4DB6-B188-ED839C2F4E4D.jpg

  15. #575
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    eight hours after the broken shear bolt, i managed to make a row of bales by moonrise. by then the damp was setting in and more baling would have to wait.

    by yesterday noon i did manage to bale the dry half of the field. you can actually see the line right down the middle between browning and lusher green. likely an artifact of an earlier cultivation, as the drier side had a higher density of foxtail grass, which matures and dries earlier in spring.

    737DE05E-D77C-4988-A92E-5B86D45F88DE.jpg

    speaking of being "a bit sore today", i managed to load the ~5 tons i had baled into the loft before the rain set in in the late afternoon. about a half ton at a time.

    786FCC5C-A24C-4298-9ACD-51193F96A0F0.jpg

  16. #576
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    eight hours after the broken shear bolt, i managed to make a row of bales by moonrise. by then the damp was setting in and more baling would have to wait.

    by yesterday noon i did manage to bale the dry half of the field. you can actually see the line right down the middle between browning and lusher green. likely an artifact of an earlier cultivation, as the drier side had a higher density of foxtail grass, which matures and dries earlier in spring.

    737DE05E-D77C-4988-A92E-5B86D45F88DE.jpg

    speaking of being "a bit sore today", i managed to load the ~5 tons i had baled into the loft before the rain set in in the late afternoon. about a half ton at a time.

    786FCC5C-A24C-4298-9ACD-51193F96A0F0.jpg
    L.W., I can 'feel your pain' - when we were boarding / breeding horses ( 22 on the property ) , I used to have to load 500 small square bales at a time into the hay loft - Gym membership ? - who needs a gym membership ? ! !


    Rick
    Charter Member - - Professional Procrastinators Association of America - - putting things off since 1965 " I'll get around to it tomorrow, .... maybe "

  17. #577
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Bale accumulator/grapples are wonderful things.

    L.W., how much per ton are small squares of grass hay going for out there in The Land of Milk and Honey? Looks like it's going to be at least $300/T this year here in western MT. I have a call into my hay guy to put in an order but haven't heard back yet. Cool, wet spring here and the grass is lush. Thinking I'll buy two years supply but don't have the covered storage for all of it. Shed building time I suppose.

  18. #578
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    jp, a neighbor (crazy horse lady) stopped to chat yesterday along the road. she had just bought her horse hay for the equivalent of $400/ton. $10/50lb bale, no bulk discount. she claimed it was locally made but i suspect it was trucked over from eastern oregon. has been next to impossible to make quality hay locally so far this spring. lots of cuttings getting rained on. my few acres of nice orchard grass and fescue that i cut but didn't manage to bale included.

  19. #579
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    i would like a bale stackwagon and to stop using the stock barn loft. shed building time for me as well.

    but i better finish the house first. starting another structure might make for a tense situation.

  20. #580
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by L.W. Baxter View Post
    but i better finish the house first. starting another structure might make for a tense situation.
    Thanks for the reminder. Good luck getting your hay put up.

  21. #581
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Make hay while the sun shines.....Yep, sum total of my farming knowledge right there. Seems a very strategic occupation.
    That's very impressive Lee, what a nice patch of land ,as far as the eye can see.

  22. #582
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Garret View Post
    Yes it is & he's also done a lot with it.

    Mr. Baxter's (above) ain't too shabby neither.
    My little plot is pretty messy although we've done a lot of that tree work over the lockdowns. I think 90 ' big ones' was the last figure we got to over the last 2 years, another 7 or so awkward or difficult ones left. Make 1 at a time the project instead of that 12 or that 30 like last year.
    JB big one qualifier. Will it kill or alter quality of life if it goes wrong? No= little one. Yes= big one.
    And it's not that dinner party /cafe type conversation " o we built a new house, cleared that hill ,we felled all those trees" where what is meant is" we paid for it to be done". One man, one woman, one tractor, the lot.
    What a learning curve. I dunno how to build stuff though, that'll be coming up. I have to deal with my anti local govt/ compliance busy body interference issues somehow, maybe there's a group.
    And speaking of groups... this is a great group, I appreciate the diversity and aspirational stuff you guys post here and on the forum in general. It's an eye opener.

    But the countryside is nice here, I like the undulating aspect and of course, proximity to the water. It's temperate although currently very wet.
    Dam birds make a racket.
    Last edited by John B; 06-10-2022 at 03:50 PM.

  23. #583
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    My father owned one of these Minneapolis-Moline "Bale-O-Matic". That was one of the happiest days of my youth when he sold it. We pulled it with a Case tractor that was old then. There is still part of a roll of baling wire on the place. Found these pics online.




  24. #584
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    I'm happy that I've never seen the innards of a bailer,except here.
    I did spent about 7 hours on the receiving end of one in 1982.
    I think it paid about $25
    R
    Sleep with one eye open.

  25. #585
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Seems like a lot of danger potential, more than chainsaws and motorbikes and spindle molders anyway.

  26. #586
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    We just got home from the street parade for the Henry Lawson Festival here in Gulgong. One of the best turnouts of old to ancient tractors rattlin and rollin up the main street that they've ever had. I said to the missus- You gonna take any photos of these? She said Didn't bring my phone. This isn't going to look good on her monthly report card. JayInOz

  27. #587
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    My grand dad Carl never put money in a baler on his retirement farm of eight Jersey and Gurnsey cows.
    Back in the early 60's one year only. Grandad contracted his neighbor Dunn Stoddard to bale his hay with the new fangled AC round baler. Cutting the hay was a team job. Grandpa Peterson on the AC WD pulling what was a horse drawn sickle bar mower. A Short History of the Horse-Drawn Mower – Small Farmer's Journal (smallfarmersjournal.com) Me on the mower seat. You all may think it is funny as Ag is so vastly changed.
    Only had Dunn bale hay one year. But haying was different that year. Ontario, Wisconsin is in the Driftless area.
    Instead of following the baler, lifting and stacking hay bales on a wagon. The hay field was on a 20 degree pitch.
    We quickly discovered kicking round bales down to the flat saved a whole lot of walking. AC round balers soon got a bad rep. .Not properly cross tided as bales settled could blow out a hay mow.

    Still trying to figure out why you cut your hay so high L.W.
    Fescue don't like a tight cut? Round Rubicon the factory farms mow to the ground. I'm sure you know.
    I hate shear bolts. They are but why? Cheap back in the day?

    Tom

  28. #588
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Lee, you could probably train Alfalfa to power one of these. No knotters to time.

    haybaler.jpg

  29. #589
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom from Rubicon View Post
    My grand dad Carl never put money in a baler on his retirement farm of eight Jersey and Gurnsey cows.
    Back in the early 60's one year only. Grandad contracted his neighbor Dunn Stoddard to bale his hay with the new fangled AC round baler. Cutting the hay was a team job. Grandpa Peterson on the AC WD pulling what was a horse drawn sickle bar mower. A Short History of the Horse-Drawn Mower – Small Farmer's Journal (smallfarmersjournal.com) Me on the mower seat. You all may think it is funny as Ag is so vastly changed.
    Only had Dunn bale hay one year. But haying was different that year. Ontario, Wisconsin is in the Driftless area.
    Instead of following the baler, lifting and stacking hay bales on a wagon. The hay field was on a 20 degree pitch.
    We quickly discovered kicking round bales down to the flat saved a whole lot of walking. AC round balers soon got a bad rep. .Not properly cross tided as bales settled could blow out a hay mow.

    Still trying to figure out why you cut your hay so high L.W.
    Fescue don't like a tight cut? Round Rubicon the factory farms mow to the ground. I'm sure you know.

    I hate shear bolts. They are but why? Cheap back in the day?

    Tom
    tom, your factory farms would be maximizing yields by pouring money on the ground. chemical fertilizer and herbicides. possibly killing and planting every year, depending on crop. "you gotta spend money to make money" sort of thing.

    my scheme is no chemical fertilizer, limited herbicide, developing long term mixed grass pasture fertilized by manure, and preserving the stand by modest harvest.

    i tried to leave 6"+ to maximize the survival of the grass, and limit the need to spray.

    the stalk stores sugars so the grass can grow right back. and new weeds are shaded out...theoretically. the dog fennel will be coming on shortly, we shall see.

  30. #590
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy W View Post
    Lee, you could probably train Alfalfa to power one of these. No knotters to time.
    you are not the first to suggest i train alfalfa to pull something! he follows me better than any dog ever did. fergus i'm looking at you.

  31. #591
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Lee, Dairy around here don't spray nuthin but liquid manure.
    Don't know why, but it is hard to find an aphid round here. Grande cheese factory here in Rubicon, all their whey gets sprayed on the alfalfa fields.

    Tom

  32. #592
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    is their nutrient loop really closed though, tom?

    my understanding is that a commercially viable rate of extraction (in the case you mention, in the form of tankers full of milk) is basically impossible without outside nutrient input. perhaps in the form of purchased grain for hog or cow feed, which goes to the liquified manure pond.

    my little operation is not now and won't be commercially viable because of scale. there is no point in trying to maximize productivity, that's just more work and still no money. low productivity and relatively low extraction can be sustained in a closed loop. no outside feed, no fertilizer.

    an independently wealthy landowner could even go back to draft animals and cut out most of the fuel inputs. not viable as a living, i'm afraid.

    one method i am employing is rotating the cultivation of pastures with inoculated clover, which fixes nitrogen from the air. this has already had a noticeable positive effect on the first enclosure i planted this way. the downside is that with clover, spraying for broadleaf weeds (with 2,4d) is impossible. you can see the radish flower in the photo of my bottle calf above. the only control i have while the clover is at work is to top with the mower after grazing.

    eventually, the unpalatable weeds become such a high proportion of the pasture that one needs to spray it down to grass. or plough it and start over. or, if you have no concern whasoever for productivity or quality of farm product, force your livestock to graze the weed down. which will mean perpetual overgrazing, and hardpan pastures. or, one more alternative, a very low density of grazing animals.

  33. #593
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    I often visit “Eat yer heart out ..,” just for the pictures.
    ITS CHAOS, BE KIND

  34. #594
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    I come here to do the comedy and try not to cut the grass too short.

  35. #595
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    Default Re: Eat yer heart out, tractor man.....

    Still reeling from the strategic chess game playing out in rural Oregon, I'm looking at me pics to find something simple to calm my oscilloscope thoughts.
    Oh yeah.. tractor.
    20220605_134803.jpg
    I cut a track because of what tractor school didn't tell me.
    Here it is , get prepared now, this is big.

    In winter tractors destroy the lawn. Yup. John make track through to save lawn.
    Last edited by John B; 06-11-2022 at 07:04 PM.

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