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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Posts
    709
    Location
    Saint Hedwig, TX
    Tractor
    TC29D, 8n, 9n

    Default Post Hole Diggers

    After I got my tractor, one of my first additions was a post hole digger. Like most people , I guess, I don't use it much, but when needed it comes in really handy. Not knowing much about them I went to the dealer, and he suggested the Land Pride PD 15, He mentioned the down pressure kit, but with the cost of that and adding on rear hydraulic couplings, no more than I would be using it, he didn't think the kit was necessary. Well I've had a chance to use it a few times and seem to have a problem. Here on my ground I have a layer of sand that runs about 12 to 24 inches in most places. Then you hit a layer of clay that is very compacted. when it get to the clay, the downward movment all but stops. I've left it running for about an hour and it only went down about 1/4 to 1/2 in. I've tried adding a little downward pressure in various ways , which helps, but is not that effective. The tip of the auger looks like it can be changed, would that help? Can these tips be sharpened? I'm open to any other ideas.


  2. #2
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Posts
    465
    Location
    Middle Tennessee
    Tractor
    Kubota M5700 4 WD w/ FEL, Kubota B2910, 21' Flatbed Gooseneck Trlr.

    Default Re: Post Hole Diggers

    Know whut ya mean. I have Bush Hog brand digger with 9" & 12" auger. Very poor performance at times depending on soil condition. We have some clay in Mid TN. too. I took 2 old Allis Chalmers rear wheel weights (115# each) and mounted them on a crossbar I welded on the backbone of digger. Welded it right where the top of the arch is. Helped a lot. $2 worth steel, $30 (old, used)worth weights. Of course keeping the point sharp and those bolt on digger,breaker up thingies at the end of flutes in good shape is a must.

    I have heard of a lot of people having the same poor performance and applying down pressure by some other means as you mention. How did you do it. Just know diggers are VERY DANGEROUS. They can grab your clothing and wrap you up in an instant. Ripping off hands, feet, arms,legs, etc. before a cat can lick his uhhhh well.

    I have lusted after the hydraulic down pressure diggers but have not priced them. I believe I know what the answer is. $$$$$$$ You be careful I hear horror stories each year about digger accidents.


  3. #3

    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Posts
    709
    Location
    Saint Hedwig, TX
    Tractor
    TC29D, 8n, 9n

    Default Re: Post Hole Diggers

    Wow, I was beganing to think I was the only person on here with a post hole digger, or at least the only one with hard soil. Things I've tried. Once I needed a hole near two mesquite trees. I hooked a come along to the base of one tree ran the cable thru the yoke thing on top of the gear box(not sure what the name for that is) and then down to the base of the other tree. As it dug I cranked down on the come along. Worked great, but most times two trees are not available. Another trick was using a heavy digging bar with a flat end that I would stick in the yoke thing, then just sit down on the bar. It helps but not all that much.
    I like the wheel weight idea. Do You have any trouble hooking up or unhooking? Do you do the sharping Yourself?
    I looked at one hydraulic type that looked like a stand with an auger thru the center. You just drop the thing down and bingo, you get a straight hole every time. Price tag was 2 to 3 Gs.
    Yea, they are a dangerous device, which I guess is what started me to wondering how others deal with the problem. One story I've heard is that somehow the thing swings over and comes down on the operator seat and consequently the operator if he's seated there. I don't see how this could happen but it's what I've heard. Anyway thanks for the comments and idea.
    ErnieB


  4. #4
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Posts
    3,239
    Location
    Eastern Virginia
    Tractor
    EarthForce EF-5 mini-TLB (2001)

    Default Re: Post Hole Diggers

    I just got a hydraulic downforce kit for my Danuser F8. It's supposed to put 500 lb of downforce on the auger. I haven't installed it yet, but hope to try it out on a big project I've got coming up next week. I'll let you know. Cost was about $450.

    Do you remember where you saw the hydraulic auger you mentioned? I've seen hydraulic augers before, but not like the one you described.

    I've heard all kinds of stories about accidents with augers and even met a man who lost both arms to an auger accident, but I've never heard of one coming back on the operator sitting in the seat. I don't really see how that could happen, either.

    MarkC


  5. #5

    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Posts
    709
    Location
    Saint Hedwig, TX
    Tractor
    TC29D, 8n, 9n

    Default Re: Post Hole Diggers

    MarkC, for the down pressure kit and the rear couplings my dealer told me it would run about $500. According to Land pride it suppose to put 500 lbs down. So do let me know how it works, I'd really like your opinion.
    I don't recall the name of the thing, but it was at Greater Southwest Equipment in San Antonio. they handle kubota, Case/IH, MF, and several diferent brands of equipment. They seem to be geared to the commercial/contractor market.
    ErnieB


  6. #6
    Veteran Member gerard's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Posts
    1,681
    Location
    Syracuse NY
    Tractor
    Kubota L2500DT w/FEL

    Default Re: Post Hole Diggers

    I use a 3pt auger w/o downpressure. Yes the cutting tips can and should be kept sharp but not like a knife edge, more like the rotary cutter blade. One thing I did find out if going through grass before you hit the dirt is the grass winds around the auger tip and GREATLY reduces the effectiveness. the longer the grass the worse it is. If you're going through grass first as soon as you hit dirt bring the auger back up and remove all the grass from the auger, then drop back into the hole. Makes a world of difference. The only thing I could see a down kit needed for is rocky soil. The auger should bite right through hard clay. Are you sure you don't have some rocks down there too?? I've done some holes in less than 5 minutes (9 inch auger 3 ft deep) and others I had to move the hole due to the rocks being to big.


  7. #7

    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Posts
    709
    Location
    Saint Hedwig, TX
    Tractor
    TC29D, 8n, 9n

    Default Re: Post Hole Diggers

    Gerard, there is a little sandstone scattered around, but it's not much and it's pretty soft. I've started some holes that went about 12 inches of sand and then about 12 inches of clay, and filled the holes with water and let them sit overnight. The next morning, the water had penetrated about 3 inches. Another thing, the material coming out of the hole, is very fine, like brown talcum powder in fact. So I wonder if the tip is my problem. I've put in T posts without trouble. And just as a note, A lot of people around me just dig through the sand to put a post in. Yep, there is alot of fence falling down around here[img]/w3tcompact/icons/wink.gif[/img].
    ErnieB


  8. #8

    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Posts
    92
    Location
    Northeast, Texas USA
    Tractor
    TC35D, IH2444, 9N

    Default Re: Post Hole Diggers

    Ernie:
    I bought my 9" Posthole digger used and it had been modified to leverage the digger into the ground. A 12" piece of 3.5" heavy wall pipe has been welded to the topside of the Top-Link Arm that holds the Gearbox. A second person inserts a 10-Foot of 2.25" pipe into this and pulls down while running the auger. I recently drilled 10 holes in this Texas (Concrete) clay in about 5 Minutes each. By the way the tip can be removed and sharpened, I did this with a 4.5" Grinder.

    Chuck


    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1>Edited by chuckp on 10/9/00 00:40 AM.</FONT></P>

  9. #9
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Posts
    39,197
    Location
    Texas

    Default Re: Post Hole Diggers

    chuckp, I helped a neighbor do the same thing to his old posthole digger. And if you don't have a second person to get on the end of the pipe, he has two 75# sash weights he can hang out on the end of the pipe. Works great.

    Bird

  10. #10
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Posts
    8,238
    Location
    Shingle Springs California
    Tractor
    New Holland TC40D

    Default Re: Post Hole Diggers

    Our ground is hard clay, with a fair amount of rock thrown in for bad measure.

    I have found it is most helpful to have a jack hammer around to supplement a auger. I have used Makita and Bosch electric units with good success. When we put in a fenced yard for my son, out of 18 holes, 9 of them would only auger about 3" deep. Another trip to the rental yard for a jack hammer...

    RobertN in Shingle Springs Calif

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