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  1. #1
    Veteran Member easygo's Avatar
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    Mar 2007
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    1,402
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    Eddington, Maine
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    Kubota B7800

    Default Used Rorotiller - what should I check?

    Hi all,
    I'm considering buying a used 42" Howard tiller. I don't know anything about 3ph tillers so I would need some pointers what to check on it. Unfortunately the ground here is frozen solid so a "test drive" is not possible. I read that it is a reliable brand, but how do I check it for wear&tear? The owner said that it is probably over 10 yrs old, but he is uncertain of it's age. Anyone have a picture or past experience with these?
    Thanks
    Easygo
    It's the going that counts not the distance!

  2. #2
    Veteran Member Hooked_on_HP's Avatar
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    Dec 2005
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    Location
    Coal City IL
    Tractor
    Ford 1900 FWD Kubota F2100E

    Default Re: Used Rorotiller - what should I check?

    I don't know about the Howard, but some .things to look for on any tiller are, does it have a slip clutch are the tines worn,does it look abused.turn the pto shaft back and forth to see if there is much slack in the chain or gears
    Bill

  3. #3
    Super Member flusher's Avatar
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    Jun 2005
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    6,516
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    Northern California-Tehama Co.
    Tractor
    2008 Mahindra 5525, 1964 MF-135 diesel, 1951 Farmall Super A, 1951 Minneapolis Moline BF, 1945 Oliver 60 Row Crop, 1949 JD B widefront

    Default Re: Used Rorotiller - what should I check?

    Quote Originally Posted by easygo View Post
    Hi all,
    I'm considering buying a used 42" Howard tiller. I don't know anything about 3ph tillers so I would need some pointers what to check on it. Unfortunately the ground here is frozen solid so a "test drive" is not possible. I read that it is a reliable brand, but how do I check it for wear&tear? The owner said that it is probably over 10 yrs old, but he is uncertain of it's age. Anyone have a picture or past experience with these?
    Thanks
    Easygo
    Don't own a Howard. My rototiller is a used 48" Yanmar RS-1200 that I bought in 05 for $300.

    Solex is the local distributer around here

    Our Products - Howard - HR7 Rotavator

    The Howards look good. Spare parts appear to be available.

  4. #4
    Veteran Member easygo's Avatar
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    Mar 2007
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    1,402
    Location
    Eddington, Maine
    Tractor
    Kubota B7800

    Default Re: Used Rorotiller - what should I check?

    Thank you for the suggestions.

    Hooked-on-hp:
    I may not have the option to hook it up to the tractor so the idea of checking the play in shaft is helpful. It does have a slip clutch.

    Flusher:
    I would love to get any tiller but most used ones that come up for sale in this area are way too big for my tractor and my wallet. This would just cover the tracks of my rear wheels and I read here that it is an important consideration.
    It's the going that counts not the distance!

  5. #5
    Veteran Member pitt_md's Avatar
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    Apr 2008
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    Location
    Pine Island, MN
    Tractor
    Kubota MX5000

    Default Re: Used Rorotiller - what should I check?

    check the bearings on the main shaft. There should be no play when you push/pull on the main shaft that the tines ride on. a lot of tillers use a chain drive system. I would not be afraid to open it up and see what condition the chain and sprockets are in. If it has offset ability make sure it can be moved to offset position. Check the depth adjustment (if any)

  6. #6
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    322
    Location
    Rochester,NY
    Tractor
    Kioti CK20HST

    Default Re: Used Rorotiller - what should I check?

    all these checks are done with out running, but will be easier if you can mount on 3pt hitch and pick it up
    1. check for slop in u joints
    2. just observe slip clutch for signs of burning or other abuse, if you buy it you can disassemble and setup per the manual later.
    3.how much wear on tines, if about 2/3 worn they will need replacement.
    4. check for main shaft bearing wear, up/down , end to end, 1/8"+ will need to replace.
    5. drain gear or chain case and look for filings and metal in oil and bottom of drain pan
    6. open case or look into case thru plugs etc.
    A.if gears look for grooving,scratches etc. on drive side of tooth face, if flat surface on top of tooth is no longer visible (ie; just a point and not flat) gears are shot and will need replacement unless you only going to use for just a garden once or twice a year.
    B.if chain look at sprocket teeth, if drive side of tooth is convex on the drive side and looks like the back side (or slack side)they are ok, if they are starting to take on a concave hooklike to the face and the chain is very sloppy and has no more adjustment, then you will need to replace chain and sprockets. Always replace the chain and sprockets together or the new part will have a much shorter life.
    Good luck.

  7. #7
    Veteran Member easygo's Avatar
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    Eddington, Maine
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    Kubota B7800

    Default Re: Used Rorotiller - what should I check?

    Joe,
    Thank you for the detailed descriptions. I will do my best to check it out hopefully this weekend.
    It would be used on the occasional bases for ever increasing home garden, so slightly scary looking piece would probably still serve me for years and years.
    It's the going that counts not the distance!

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