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  1. #1
    Gold Member The Gardener's Avatar
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    Default Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    I was wondering how do you escape a difficult scenario should a PTO powered, Post Hole Digger get stuck in the hole? Is there anything that can be done other than a hand shovel solution?

    If it drilled into clay or somehow lodged itself within a collection of smaller rocks, I am unsure how you would free it.

    What prevents a tractor PTO from having a reverse? Is it simply impossible to design? I ask because that would certainly eliminate most of the concerns regarding a Post Hole Digger becoming stuck.

    Thanks,
    The Gardener

  2. #2
    Banned shvl73's Avatar
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    Nov 2003
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    NH
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    Mahindra 2810HST

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    Throw the pto lever off so it will free spin, turn the tractor off, then use a pipe wrench to turn the auger in reverse. It should free it so you can lift it back out with the tractor 3pt. It has worked for me.

  3. #3
    Gold Member The Gardener's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    Excellent. Thank You.

  4. #4
    Super Member ovrszd's Avatar
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    May 2006
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    Missouri
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    Kubota M9540, Ford 3910FWD, JD2210

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    Quote Originally Posted by shvl73
    Throw the pto lever off so it will free spin, turn the tractor off, then use a pipe wrench to turn the auger in reverse. It should free it so you can lift it back out with the tractor 3pt. It has worked for me.
    Yep, that's the only way I know of too. Really sucks!!! Teaches you real quick to not do that again!!!
    Richard

    "Happiness isn't having everything you want, it's wanting everything you have."

  5. #5
    Gold Member The Gardener's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    My friend dug his PHD out with a spade shovel. That sounds awful.

    Does anyone know why a PTO cannot have a reverse speed? That would solve this problem and perhaps other attachment issues as well.

  6. #6
    Veteran Member Charlesaf3's Avatar
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    Aug 2006
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    1,964
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    Richmond VA & Martha's Vineyard, People's Republik of Massachusetts
    Tractor
    Kubota B3030, Kubota M59 TLB

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    I avoided the problem by getting a QA posthole digger that runs off tractor Hydraulics. Not even that much more expensive than a good hole digger, and the QA makes it much easier to deal with.

    Of course, I haven't had a chance to play with it yet..
    ----------------------------------------
    Charles

    Kubota B3030
    Kubota M59 w/hydro thumb
    Neat stuff - ATI Preseeder, Hydraulic PHD, Wallenstein BX62r Chipper, Millonzi Grapple, CA 4n1 Bucket. Delta Hook Rear QA system.
    Too many other random attachments to list (or to own, per my wife) and a really bad tool addiction. But at least I haven't bought a dump truck or bulldozer. Yet.

  7. #7
    Veteran Member ccsial's Avatar
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    Jun 2005
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    NorthWest Illinois
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    (Kuboto L3400) (Ford 1910 4WD w/FEL) (Deere X748SE) All bought new

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    Quote Originally Posted by The Gardener
    My friend dug his PHD out with a spade shovel. That sounds awful.

    Does anyone know why a PTO cannot have a reverse speed? That would solve this problem and perhaps other attachment issues as well.
    It would make the tractor more expensive for a seldom used feature.
    Kubota L3400-HST, Ford 1910-Gear FEL, John Deere X748SE

  8. #8
    Elite Member sandman2234's Avatar
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    Dec 2005
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    Jacksonville, Florida
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    JD2555 and a few Allis Chalmers

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    I used one that a friend borrowed to dig some post holes for him. I got it stuck and it lifted the front end of the tractor up, so I pushed the clutch in and let the tractor down, rather hard bounce. I tried it again, and it lifted the tractor again, so I tried to catch the tractor as it came down the next time.

    BIG MISTAKE!!!

    When I let the clutch out to stop the downward motion of the tractor, it twisted the splined shaft in the tractor that raises and lowers the arms(lower links). Cost of replacing that shaft was almost as high as a muffler (see post on Gold Muffler) so it never got done. New owner knows about it, and hopes it doesn't break because then he will have to convince me into making him a new shaft.
    David from jax

  9. #9
    Gold Member The Gardener's Avatar
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    Default Re: Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    Quote Originally Posted by ccsial
    It would make the tractor more expensive for a seldom used feature.
    I understand because it does seem to be an isolated, PHD need.

    Could it be an add-on feature like remote hydraulics? I am speaking with zero understanding about PTO gearing and what is involved in adding a reverse gear. Maybe it is impossible to add it on once the tractor is assembled. If so, could a reverse gear be incorporated into the design of the PHD itself?

    ------------

    Based on the nightmare that [Sandman2234] just described, my friend's back breaking effort to hand dig his auger out of the ground after it lifted his tractor off the ground, and the others who have also experienced a snag in the ground, I think people who saw a PHD in their future would be willing to pay for a reverse gear on their PTO. I certainly would.

    The PHD is one of the most significant attachments that we want for our future projects. It's the driving force behind our plans to budget another tractor purchase. But, I am certainly concerned about these stories that others have shared.

    As a guess, how much would a reverse gear on the PTO cost?

    Of course, it all comes down to sales. I think the simple answer lies in the popularity of the PHD. If those sales are strong, then a reverse gear might be worth adding to the PTO design.

    The Gardener

  10. #10
    Veteran Member
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    Kansas
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    Kubota L3000DT

    Default Re: Post Hole Digger - if stuck

    It comes down to experience. After you've dug a few holes and got stuck once or twice, you learn how often you must retract the phd to clear itself.

    From then on, you will seldom if ever get stuck so the reversing PTO is moot.
    Meetings: If more than two people are there, at least one's time is being wasted.

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