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  1. #1
    Super Member
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    Dec 2007
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    5,251
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    Ohio
    Tractor
    JD 5520, 790 TLB-- Kub L4300, B7800, MX5100

    Default Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    I have a JD 790 with JD7 backhoe and mostly use a 17 inch bucket that works great. I would like to get a 9" bucket to use digging around trees before transplant and for pipes and wires but was told this size bucket would plug with my clay soil because it is too narrow.
    Since I would dig mostly in dry conditions--but midwest clay--I wonder if anyone has any experience regarding this 9" bucket issue?
    Any advice appreciated.
    ******

    May I be the kind of person my dogs think I am,

  2. #2
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    96
    Location
    Brandon, MS
    Tractor
    Kubota L3400

    Default Re: Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    I have a Woods BH on my L3400 with a 9" bucket. I have a sandy clay soil here in MS and have never had a problem even when the stuff was saturated with water. If its wet it will come out as one solid piece sometimes though. I told my wife that we ought to fire one and sell it at the flea market I have a 24" bucket also and I seem to do more stuff with the 9". I almost never attach the bigger bucket unless I have a big hole to dig.

  3. #3
    Super Member
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    Sep 2000
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    6,548

    Default Re: Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    no 9" exp, but my 12" clogs up fast if I dig most clay.

    It goes, scoop with BH, shovel out bucket , scoop with bh, shovel out bucket....makes for a long day.

    jb

  4. #4
    Super Member Farmwithjunk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
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    7,514
    Location
    Mt Washington, Kentucky
    Tractor
    Where do I begin.....

    Default Re: Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    If I had a picture, I'd post it, but no such luck. The general contractor I work for has several back hoes. Even the bigger buckets (24", 30") will pack full of wet clay mud at times. We weld a short length of 3/8" chain, about 16" to 18", in the inside of the bucket, in the deepest part of the bucket. It works!
    There are three kinds of men;
    1.) The ones that learn by reading
    2.) The few who learn by observation
    3.) The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.

  5. #5
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    3,603
    Location
    Ohio
    Tractor
    GC2310,

    Default Re: Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    Anything smaller than 12" tends to plug up easily. I have a 6" bucket, (with chain, and air hole, and dual taper design, and tried spraying it with various things from silicone to Pam), and it is useless in clay soil.

  6. #6
    Veteran Member mikim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Posts
    2,253
    Location
    Paige Texas
    Tractor
    NH TC45

    Default Re: Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    I have a 9" that I have dug clay with .... how well it works all depends on the moisture content of the clay -- too dry or too wet and it just doesn't.....Even when it's right you still have to develop a technique for getting it out. I found that back dragging the bucket (reverse curl) gets it out fairly well...and tapping it on the ground sometimes helps too. Digging clay is just no fun regardless of bucket size. But it beats doing it by hand.
    Mike


  7. #7
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
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    112
    Location
    Lawrence Co. Indiana
    Tractor
    06 Kubota 3830 HST,. 07 Kubota 1100RTV, 02 Kawasaki 650

    Default Re: Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    I have a BH90 on my kubota 3830 and bought a 12" bucket to install 4" Drain Tile... I also have a 24" that came with the hoe. After I installed the tile I have never put the 12" back on... I live in Southern Indiana and we have allot of clay... it worked well for the job it was intended for however, I did spend allot of time shaking the bucket and this was in failry dry conditions...
    Just my $0.02
    Good luck..
    Kevin
    Last edited by kbiddle; 05-09-2008 at 09:04 AM.
    Kevin Biddle
    06 Kubota 3830 07 RTV1100
    If you are not working to protect hunting, then you are working to end it... - Fred Bear

  8. #8
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    83

    Default Re: Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    Quote Originally Posted by mikim
    I have a 9" that I have dug clay with .... how well it works all depends on the moisture content of the clay -- too dry or too wet and it just doesn't.....Even when it's right you still have to develop a technique for getting it out. I found that back dragging the bucket (reverse curl) gets it out fairly well...and tapping it on the ground sometimes helps too. Digging clay is just no fun regardless of bucket size. But it beats doing it by hand.

    Very good, real world advice. Adhesion has to be your friend,try not to mash full bucket/w/heaping load hard against hole/ditch,(seems like the harder you mash against the stuff the better it sticks) try to use cut action-rather than normal dig action. After diging the stuff,I wondered if God made the stuff as a joke of some sort? It's a mess to fool with. Also a bigger bucket will increase digging force/stress on undercarrage frame/tractor. Don't damage your tractor.


    I keep waiting for someone to build Ice-cream-scoop proto-type and post pic's on TBN?




    We weld a short length of 3/8" chain, about 16" to 18", in the inside of the bucket, in the deepest part of the bucket. It works![/QUOTE] GOOD IDEA Farmwithjunk.
    Last edited by YM-135trac; 05-09-2008 at 10:11 AM.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
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    2,438
    Location
    20 mi SE of Sacramento, CA-rural
    Tractor
    Kubota BX2200

    Default Re: Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    Our clay sits atop hardpan on flat ground. It can get so wet and soupy that it won't adhere. Totally dry does not adhere, but most anything between totally dry and hypersaturated sticks better than most any mortar available.

    Quote Originally Posted by YM-135trac
    I keep waiting for someone to build Ice-cream-scoop proto-type and post pic's on TBN?
    That makes a lot of sense.

    Too bad teflon gets abraided off so easily.

    I think part of the reason the stuff sticks so well is that a vacuum forms at the bottom of the bucket. Air can't get into the space between the clay and the metal. Too bad there isn't a way to have a high pressure air line going to the center of the bucket such that a big shot of air injected there would eject the material. A hose to the back of the bucket would not work 'cause it would get knocked apart while digging. The only thing I can envision would be to cast the steel bucket with an internal channel, much the way an intake manifold is cast for an engine. The high pressure air could be forced through that to the bottom inside of the bucket. Obviously this system would be so expensive that it would only make sense to use it in conjunction with a high grade commercial tractor that is in use all the time.

  10. #10
    Platinum Member brandoro's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    656
    Location
    Central Saskatchewan
    Tractor
    Kubota B3030 HSTC

    Default Re: Will clay soil plug up a 9" backhoe bucket?

    My BH has a 10" bucket. Lots of different soils around where I live and I am on the lake so the moisture content varies a lot depending where you are digging. Some places I can dig quite a bit without ever getting off the tractor to clean the bucket, other places I am on and off steady. My best digging experience was digging a trench for a drain tile for my neighbour. He stood off to the side, if the bucket emptied, great, if it didn't he would poke the dirt out with a small spade.
    The BH is a great tool, sure beats digging by hand but, if the dirt is sticking in the bucket it sure makes for a long day. Having a helper with a spade that fits in the bucket is the best solution I have found so far. I'm intrigued with the compressed air idea though...
    Rod.
    B3030HSDC, LA403 FEL, B2782A front blower, B5320 ballast box, Landpride-BH, RFM, tiller, FM2060 flail, GS1572 grader/scraper, BX42 chipper, PTO generator, homebuilt splitter and 3pt carry all.

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