This month we interviewed Bill Curtis, a.k.a. wdchyd about his tractors, family, lifestyle and more!
Full Name: Bill Curtis
Post Count: 2,018 (#224 of all-time!)
Location: Hooksett, NH
How long have you been a member of TractorByNet.com?
I’ve been a member since April 2010. I found TBN while searching info on a Long tractor that a neighbor was selling. I soon realized that buying a used tractor was not in my best interest and the quest for the right machine was more important.
What do you like best about TractorByNet.com?
I really like the helpful solutions and expert advice given to members freely.
TBN members have an endless wealth of knowledge and experiences, even though we all come from different backgrounds, parts of the world, religions, career fields, and different ages, we all share the love of tractors.
What type of tractor do you own?
Kubota B2320 TLB
How long have you owned or operated tractors?
I’ve been operating and repairing tractors since I was a young adult, but my first purchase was 1 ½ years ago. So basically, I’m a newbie to the tractor world.
What do you enjoy most about tractors?
I enjoy the diversity of the different makes and models of older equipment. Antique tractors and old engine designs have always sparked my interest.
How often do you use your tractor?
A few times a month I have projects of my own and neighbors.
Tell us about your property.
My wife and I have lived in our single family home for 29 years, and we have a commercial building for the family business at a different location.
Tell us about your vehicles.
My favorite vehicles are boats. I love being out on both big and small bodies of water.
I also use a 16’ double-axle flatbed trailer to move my tractor and for others, a 5×8 custom shop-made I use for hauling firewood, construction debris and odd moving tasks.
Do you have any pets?
Yes, we have four dogs at home, two mini Daschounds inside and two Beagles outside. Magnum and Gurdy are my two Beagles. They are the single best thing that I have done for my health and frame of mind. On weekends I take them out hunting for Snowshoe Hare up north in the wilderness. They live out in a pen I constructed with chain-link fencing, patio block floors, insulated dog-house and heated water bowl. Every night we go out for a two mile walk. Rain or snow doesn’t slow us down because they really look forward to their walk. It gives us quality time
What sort of tools, attachments or equipment do you use with your tractor on a regular basis?
I use a custom set of forks for firewood handling, a box blade for snow & ice removal, and a backhoe for digging ditches, stumps, and rocks.
What do you mainly use your tractor for?
I had an incident back in 2010 where we lost some large Pine trees in the yard due to a major windstorm. That decision to purchase a tractor to help clean up the mess was the first task at hand. Logging, stumping and grading for a future garage was most of the seat time. Snow removal, moving trailers, and handling firewood are most of the tasks during the winter months.
What do you like or dislike about the area you live in?
I love the New England area. We have an hour drive to the ocean, one hour to the lakes region, one hour to Boston, and two hours to the White Mountains Region.
The change of the seasons is by far the best thing I enjoy about the area I live in: from hunting season to fishing season, then hunting season to fishing season.
What sort of terrain is common in your area?
Mostly forested, rolling hills and plenty of New Hampshire potatoes (rocks).
What sort of trees and vegetation are common in your area?
There’s a good variation of woodlands here, both softwoods and hardwoods. Great deer habitat.
What’s something most TractorByNet members don’t know about you?
My wife and I own and manage a thriving, successful hydraulic repair shop called Curtis Hydraulics. We’ve been in business since 1978. It all started out of my love of the hydraulics trade, but I didn’t like the management of my employer then (long since gone out of business in the eighties). My wife did the books and I worked in the shop alone for the first eight years in the back of my in-laws sheet metal business.
Machining and welding skills pretty much came from the school of hard knocks but I came through the tough times and we now have two full-time and two part-time employees. Hydraulic cylinders large and small have been the backbone of our work but pumps, valves, hoses, tubing, troubleshooting , odd machine and welding jobs fill our day. Other than doing the boss thing, I’m the machinist and welder of the group. Custom made tools and equipment are a necessary part of the hydraulics trade and having the expertise to fabricate these is the difference between a good repair shop or a great repair shop.
Having a great family (my wife and two boys) and having a job where I love my work and getting the weekends off to have fun in the outdoors helps me to keep my sanity.