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  1. #1

    Default Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    I'm new to the world of tractors - but have just purchased a home (new construction) out in the countryside. My problem - when I bought the home there was snow on the ground. Now that the snow has gone I see that a small section around the house was nicely levelled and seeded, but the rest is rough pasture complete with deep ruts from construction vehicles.

    I'm currently looking at garden tractors (20hp and up) and implements. The lot is only 3 acres, so I can't justify a compact. Any ideas on what would be a good combination of garden tractor and implement(s)?



  2. #2

    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Posts
    50
    Location
    Iowa
    Tractor
    Kubota B2910

    Default Re: Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    RPM,

    Congratulations on your new home. I hope to be in a similiar situation when we build our home on 15 acres (see Learning how / field preparation for some of my ideas - in this forum). Last summer we had a bulldozer level off our home site, build up and smooth the drive, and take out some fences. When he was done, I got to experiment with some borrowed tractors as I smoothed out the bdozer track marks. I really got it pretty smooth and then seeded in the fall.

    IMHO, I think you'd be pretty happy with the kubota BX series. If your property is flat, you could probably manage with a larger garden tractor (I've used a JD 430 with no complaints), but if there are hills or inclines or if you have much snow to move then you'll be very happy you have 4wd (BX's also allow front end loaders which are invaluable).

    To take out the ruts - a rototiller would sure work well followed by dragging and seeding. Remember, most garden tractors don't have 3 pt hitches which also favors a small compact. Tillers are kinda expensive if you don't have any other uses so maybe a rental would suffice. If the ruts aren't too deep, then you could just try dragging something heavy like an " I " beam back and forth. Also a box scraper on a 3ph would probably smooth them out well. (Perhaps a back blade would work well also). I think there are lots of ways to do it - it kinda depends on what tractor you have, what other uses you'll have for implements, and what the budget allows.

    Most people on this forum will say - "figure out what you need then buy something a little bigger".

    Enjoy yourself,

    Leef


  3. #3
    Super Member RobS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
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    6,234
    Location
    SW Michigan
    Tractor
    John Deere 790

    Default Re: Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    RPM, I had a similar situation as well as a friend of mine. I used a disc behind my compact and went in two different directions, then winter came. This spring I'll pull a drag across it to get it nice and smooth. My friend has a garden tractor and he had success pulling a spring tooth harrow section (4 feet wide). He had some tire spinning (turf tires), but said it worked OK overall. Had to make a lot of passes and it took longer than a bigger tractor but that'll always be the case. You can pick up all sorts of old drags and harrows at used farm stores and auctions. I got mine from another friend who found it in an old fencerow. It's pretty rusty, and may have originally been pulled by horses, but the price was perfect [img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img]


  4. #4
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
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    1,344
    Location
    West Virginia (Eastern Panhandle)
    Tractor
    '78 Kubota B6100DT

    Default Re: Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    RPM:

    I have exactly the same situation as you. 3.75 Acres ex-pasture land. We moved in to our new home 2 years ago and I found the construction vehicle ruts when out mowing on the garden tractor.

    This year, I got the kubota (14HP B6100). When I was clearing some areas of sod for gardens, I took the sod with the FEL and dumped it in the ruts. Initially, I cut the sod to the width of the ruts and layered it in 'til it was level. But that was a lot of non-tractor work. So I then just dumped the sod into the ruts then ran the rototiller over it in multiple passes along the length of the ruts. This broke up the sod and worked it in to the soil around the ruts. That was in the fall. I'll see if/how this worked in the spring when the ground un-frezes.

    I know you say "The lot is only 3 acres, so I can't justify a compact." But if think of the things you WILL want to do (clearing/tilling a garden, landscaping, etc. etc.). I found out that although they're advertised to handle "ground-engaging implements", Garden tractors just don't have the weight necessary to translate their horsepower into traction. And the biggest drawback is that a garden tractor doesn't have a FEL - the most useful tractor tool on the planet (IMHO).

    I encourage you to take the $2000 - $3000 you would put into a garden "tractor" and put it instead into a compact tractor.


  5. #5
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
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    6,737
    Tractor
    JD 8320 MFWD, JD 6415 MFWD, FEL, and cab, John Deere MFWD 4600, John Deere 4020, John Deere 4430, John Deere 455 mower, Deutz, and Gehl 4610 perkins skidsteer

    Default Re: Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    Bill,
    2-3k? Try 4-8k for a garden tractor! I just bought a new one last year and mine is an LX279, not even the big one and it was $4200 and I got a big discount from list.


  6. #6
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
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    1,344
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    West Virginia (Eastern Panhandle)
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    '78 Kubota B6100DT

    Default Re: Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    Richard,

    Whew! Prices have really gone up in the three years since I bought my garden tractor!

    - Even more justifcation for a compact [img]/w3tcompact/icons/wink.gif[/img].

    Plus the fact that the compact will hold much of it's value. I don't think the same can be said for the re-sale or trade-in value of a garden tractor.


  7. #7
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
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    176
    Location
    I live in the state of Delaware in New Castle County ,USA
    Tractor
    New Holland 1030

    Default Re: Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    The kubota BX 22 series is a nice piece and so is the new I believe B7500(Power Steering) unit. I owned a B7100 for six years and I have a Landscape company in Delaware. The compact tractor served me very well with a 42 inch Befco tiller. I did the finish work for a local builder and never had a problem using the B7100. I also had a Woods DuAll loader, york rake and box scraper to help with the jobs. Do yourself a favor and don't build up your arms like Popeye turning the non power steering tractors with a load in the bucket. The New Holland 21 hp Boomer is a good unit as is the B2400 Kubota. You will be happy in the long run if you get the compact believe me. You may also want to rent a implement called a pacer box to level your property after you get the ground worked up with a tiller. These work very well for their intended use, but you need a bit of *** to your tractor to pull a full load of dirt with the teeth in the ground. So look at the compacts they are worth the investment. Check your local papers and bargin papers these can produce many a nice sale. We just had a Cub Cadet with loader and 60" belly mower around 27 H.P for around $8.500. You should be able to get a good unit this time of year for a good dollar amount. By the way where are you in P.A.? If your local to my area I would be happy to help you in your quest, I do have alot of great contacts in the P.A. Delaware and N.J. areas and I could even help you pick it up if your close. Just thought you might need the help getting a unit home if you buy used. Good luck and you won't find a better bunch of people then the ones on this board, always ask for help there's nothing wrong with learning a new subject. And just by chance you'll become as crazy for equipment as we are. You didn't say if you are married but try to involve the little woman if you can, makes future buys alittle easier for them to handle. We all know how far power steering goes in getting the grass cut when your busy doing HoneyDo work. By the way I now own a TC33D Boomer (New Holland) with a whole new set of equipment to use in my business and it seems to be a great tractor no problems at all in almost two years. Good luck! Scaper


  8. #8
    Silver Member
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    Jan 2001
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    176
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    I live in the state of Delaware in New Castle County ,USA
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    New Holland 1030

    Default Re: Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    I ment to say one more thing. I had a friend named Robert Paul Malloy "RPM" that used to or still does as far as I know race motorcycles. So if it's you reds call big Mark thats who Scaper is.


  9. #9

    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Posts
    101
    Location
    Will County,IL
    Tractor
    Kabota L3000DT, 1944 Farmall M, JD345

    Default Re: Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    I have four acres and purchased a JD 345. It is a garden tractor. They call it that because all you can do with it is drive by your garden while doing the lawn. Don't ge me wrong, I love it... for cutting grass, blowing snow and pulling a trailer. Thats it. Go for the compact.

    <font color=green>Mark</font color=green>

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
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    41
    Location
    Virginia
    Tractor
    Kubota B7200 HSTD

    Default Re: Smoothing rough pasture w/deep wheel-ruts

    RPM,

    At first I thought a compact was overkill on my 2 acres, but at ~$6k total investment for a used B7200HST 4WD w/ FEL, rear blade and rake, now it seems like a far better value than a garden tractor would have been. Has paid for itself doing jobs that would have been tough or impossible with a garden tractor. IMHO the 17HP diesel will both outwork and outlast a 20+HP gas engine, too.

    Best regards, Jim


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