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  1. #1

    Default Post Hole Digger without power down

    I have a need to set a bunch of fence post, and was thinking about getting a 3 pt post hole digger attachment. It seems there are a few made for smaller tractors (such as my Buck), however I was wondering if the lack of powered down on the Buck 3pt hydraulics would be a problem? There are a few brands out there that offer a power down accessory (Land Pride being one) and perhaps that would solve the issue.

    Just curious if other owners have had luck using PTO driven post hole diggers, and if they found they needed a power down for them.

  2. #2
    Elite Member whistlepig's Avatar
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    Preble County, Ohio
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    Kubota B7800 with FEL

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger without power down

    Power down depends on soil conditions. If it's good soft ground power down isn't required. If there is a lot of rock power down is a good choice. Best to buy a digger with the power down option and try it. If it doesn't work you can upgrade to power down option. Power down is expensive.
    I used to do the Hokey Pokey but I turned myself around.

  3. #3
    Super Member Gary Fowler's Avatar
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    Bismarck Arkansas
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    2009 Kubota RTV 900, 2009 Kubota B26 TLB & 2010 model LS P7010

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger without power down

    We have some pretty hard soil here when it gets hot and dry and also some rocks. I would think that if using power done and hit a big rock, all that would happen is something in the auger would break. It is hard to dig in the hard soil, but putting on a good cutting tool on the auger flights helps a lot. I would also consider hanging some weight on the 3PH, PHD (use the hook on the gearbox for this) would be cheaper than a power down system. I think that if I wanted a power down option, I would opt for a hydraulic powered digger and mount it on the FEL of the tractor. This would get you much better control for positioning and keeping the auger plumb plus allow you to control the down pressure easy.
    2010 LS P-7010C 20F/20R gear tractor & FEL, 2009 Kubota B 26 TLB, RTV 900 Kubota,17 foot Lund boat with 70HP motor, 2012-20 ft 12k GVW trailer, 2011- 52" Craftsman ZTR mower, 2013 Ferris Zero Turn, 3 weed whackers, pressure washer, leaf blowers, 7 foot bush hog, 8 foot landscape rake , 8 foot 3 PH disc, 2 row cultivator, 350 amp Miller AC/DC welding machine and all the tools needed to keep them all repaired and running.

  4. #4
    Super Member Gary Fowler's Avatar
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    2009 Kubota RTV 900, 2009 Kubota B26 TLB & 2010 model LS P7010

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger without power down

    One additional perk for a hydraulic powered unit is that you can reverse the rotation so that if you do happen to auger in and cant pull out the shaft, just reverse the hydraulics and unscrew the stuck auger. That would sure beat unscrewing one using a pipe wrench on the PTO shaft. It takes a lot of turns to get one back out of the ground when it auger in in soft soil. BTDT
    2010 LS P-7010C 20F/20R gear tractor & FEL, 2009 Kubota B 26 TLB, RTV 900 Kubota,17 foot Lund boat with 70HP motor, 2012-20 ft 12k GVW trailer, 2011- 52" Craftsman ZTR mower, 2013 Ferris Zero Turn, 3 weed whackers, pressure washer, leaf blowers, 7 foot bush hog, 8 foot landscape rake , 8 foot 3 PH disc, 2 row cultivator, 350 amp Miller AC/DC welding machine and all the tools needed to keep them all repaired and running.

  5. #5
    Super Member grsthegreat's Avatar
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    north idaho
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    dk45se hst cab

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger without power down

    ive have a 3 point mounted pto powered post hole digger for about 12 years. the best time to use it in out decomposed granite type soil in north idaho is in the spring and early summer.

    As the summer progressed, it was harder and harder to drill a hole. As i didnt do enough holes to justify the cost of a loader mounted unit, i simply added a hydraulic assist to my rear unit.

    Speeco sells such a unit. it adds about 250# of down pressure during the digging. its single acting valve so when you raise the 3 point, the hydraulic assist stops automatically.

    it works GREAT.
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    currently own
    2011 Kioti DK45SE HST CAB tractor/loader, Jimna 6" - 3 point wood chipper, 60" JD Brush Hog, JD 60" Rototiller, 3 point post hole digger with hydraulic assist, 3 point spring tooth rake, Fimco 55 gallon weed sprayer with 12 foot boom, 3 point hydraulic wood splitter (home built)
    Quick Attach 79" loader mount snowblower & rear powerpack
    Quick Attach 84" Snow Blade
    Quick Attach 42" pallet forks

  6. #6
    Gold Member
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    Tractors16-600hp Farm & Earthmoving Equip, Trucks etc.

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger without power down

    If you are only drilling a few holes it's hard to make a case for the power down option, & if you considering power down, a hyd digger makes for money better invested.
    In hard ground using a non-power down PTO digger back in the 70's before hyd units were readily available we used to chain a 40gal water drum onto the PTO digger, for added weight/downforce & also use a gravity hose from the water tank to help cool/ease the auger into hard ground - slow but it did the job in all but the most rocky ground & the water helped ease the hard dry material out of the hole...
    Now for our commerical farms I wouldn't use anything but a hyd driver/auger set up.....
    Last edited by MBTRAC; 11-12-2012 at 09:16 PM.

  7. #7
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    Satoh 650G

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger without power down

    I just finished installing about 25 posts in Northern VA, clay with small rocks, and rented a PTO post hole digger for the 3 pt hitch for my Satoh 650G (no power down). Seemed to work quite well, although if I hit a root I would have to either remove it or move over. I thought it would have a hard time in the clay but was suprised how well it worked. It also helps that we had a fair amount of rain not that long previously. I am sure the advice above is dead on: depends on your soil, how dry things are, and how much rock.

    I will say it wasn't the rocks that caused me the problem it was primarily the roots. That being said, there were a couple of places when I got down 30" that I came into contact with some really hard clay and decided I had gone deep enough!

    Robert

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