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  1. #1
    Elite Member KentT's Avatar
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    Mar 2005
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    Sevierville, TN
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    1993 Power Trac 1430 w/Kubota diesel engine

    Default If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    Got my old PT 1430 back from the welder on Tuesday evening, with the added brackets on the arms for plumbing in the T8 QA system, a couple of custom adapter plates (one for the old PT 3 pin and one for a 2" receiver) and a QA plate added to my new Everything Attachments 5ft Land Shark Land Plane. Though he sprayed primer over his welds, I couldn't wait to spray it with paint (Kubota orange) before trying it out. The T8 QA is not "plumbed" yet -- that begins today -- so I simply used a hammer to tap the locks/dogs and lock it on.

    Wow! This works so, so much better than a box blade and is so easy to use. Set it down, level it with the tilt/curl and drag it in float.

    If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane-grader1-jpg

    I only did about 4 complete passes, backing up and down my driveway, with the "short" side to the outside. Most of my driveway is not designed to have a crown, but to have the full width drain to one side or the other. So, I didn't bother to try to crown it in those areas where a crown would be appropriate.
    If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane-grader2-jpg

    It slices and fills quickly and the material flows nicely -- even though the driveway was baked hard and packed after the third hottest/driest summer in recorded history.

    If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane-grader3-jpg

    It is difficult to see, and the debris (leaves and grass) also obscures it, but it brought gravel back to the surface and smoothed it, in areas where it looked like there was no gravel before. I told my wife after using it that it paid for itself the first time I used it. I had gotten an estimate to tail-gate spread 2'-3" of new crusher run at a cost of $1600-1800. Makes this $1000+ investment worthwhile...

    If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane-grader4-jpg

    FYI. We welded on the QA plate vertical, with a continuous bead top and bottom, to the cross-bar that holds the rippers, flush to the bottom of it. We added a vertical 3/8'x3" vertical bar to each side of the frame for the 3pt toplink, with a continuous weld on each side of them, to the QA plate. This leaves the Cat 1 3pt hitch points fully functional, with the T-8 QA plate simply underneath it, and back out of the way. Using my PT's solid toplink set to the longest length, like I use for bucket work, the range of the tilt/curl work just fine. There was no need to angle it. I think this also reduces the tendency to "climb onto" the attachment when pushing, though I didn't try much of that...

    This thing is far, far better than a box blade for this type of work, and much, much easier to use. Set, forget, and drive for the most part. But the 5ft was all my 1430 wanted to pull up my steep driveway, when filled with material. With the QA plate added, it is right at 500lbs plus the weight of the material. I don't know if 4ft ones are available for the 422/425 guys. Even the 1445 guys should stick to a 6ft at most, IMO. With two blades cutting, and the box filled with material, it gives the PT a workout...
    Power Trac PT-1430 w/Kubota diesel engine & numerous attachments
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  2. #2
    Super Member woodlandfarms's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
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    5,108
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    Los Angeles / SW Washington
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    PowerTrac 1850

    Default Re: If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    Glad to hear that this is working for you. You are pulling, correct? So going in reverse? How long is your driveway? I have been jonesing to get one or build one but I have a york rake (8ft) that allows me to drive forward and in the end probably does the same quality of job as if I had a landscape plane. I probably need a couple of additional passes.

    So what I have learned is that you do this right after it rains. Doing it dry is hard on the gear, the rain will soften the road a bit and then will pack down tighter. Doing ti when dry is not terrible, just not ideal.
    Power-Trac 1850, grapple, hoe, 90" mower, 72" box blade

  3. #3
    Elite Member KentT's Avatar
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    1993 Power Trac 1430 w/Kubota diesel engine

    Default Re: If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    Quote Originally Posted by woodlandfarms View Post
    Glad to hear that this is working for you. You are pulling, correct? So going in reverse? How long is your driveway? I have been jonesing to get one or build one but I have a york rake (8ft) that allows me to drive forward and in the end probably does the same quality of job as if I had a landscape plane. I probably need a couple of additional passes.

    So what I have learned is that you do this right after it rains. Doing it dry is hard on the gear, the rain will soften the road a bit and then will pack down tighter. Doing ti when dry is not terrible, just not ideal.
    I was pulling, in reverse. My driveway is between 1/8 and 1/4 mile. I had a Howse landscape rake with gauge wheels, that I tried both pulling and pushing. I also had a King Kutter 48" box blade. I would sometimes back drag with my 5ft snow/dirt blade. My driveway is steep in some spots, and VERY prone to washboarding.

    What this does that the other attachments did not is that it cleanly slices off the tops of the high spots and moving/filling in the low spots -- without much operator attention needed. The landscape rake would redistribute the loose gravel -- this thing slices and makes its own loose gravel. It is long enough that it bridges the washboards while the box blade would not -- so it only cuts the high spots and does not disturb the base in the low spots. The box blade, in comparison, would try to cut everywhere, and if I weren't careful I could end up with more loose material and "damage" to the base than I wanted.

    I understand that you don't want to use this when it really damp, because you want the loose dirt/dust to "flow freely" and settle out quickly, while the larger gravel remains on top. If it is not totally dry, there's less dust and easier to cut/slice, but you don't that loose dust and dirt to clump together, you want it to fall out and settle quickly.

    Ever shaken a jar of sand or dirt to watch the fine stuff move to the bottom, while the larger stuff moves to the top? That's what you're trying for...
    Power Trac PT-1430 w/Kubota diesel engine & numerous attachments
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  4. #4
    Veteran Member RedNeckGeek's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
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    1,924
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    Butte County, California
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    Kubota L3240D HST, RTV900

    Default Re: If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    Quote Originally Posted by KentT View Post
    Ever shaken a jar of sand or dirt to watch the fine stuff move to the bottom, while the larger stuff moves to the top? That's what you're trying for...
    My understanding is that the fines should be mixed with the gravel to form a matrix that binds the rock in place. Using that landplane on a washboarded gravel road should do this, as the mix rolls off the blades and the fines mix with the gravel. Then wheel roll it to compact it, and when it's dry it should be a lot more resistant to wheel spin, which is what's causing the washboard. But then climbing the hill in 4WD being careful not to spin the tires will also help prevent washboard, but then some people just can't be taught to do that, can they?

  5. #5
    Elite Member KentT's Avatar
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    1993 Power Trac 1430 w/Kubota diesel engine

    Default Re: If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    I don't disagree. It mixes it all, and the fine stuff mixed with gravel helps rebuild a smooth base in the low spots while cutting off the tops of the high spots. I suspect that with regular use the base will get much smoother.

    My driveway is VERY well packed - I had a garage built over a year ago, and they hauled in 15 drop-axle tandem loads of stone and gravel just for that, plus three cement truck loads. Those loaded trucks pushed much of my gravel down into the spring-time, dampened clay. The driveway, itself, was redone four-plus years ago when I bought the place. They ditched it, dug up one clogged culvert and cleared it, added another culvert, and spread and packed 132 tons of "pug mix". I haven't added gravel since, but until I tried this land plane, I thought I needed to... This recovered a lot of gravel that had been mashed down.

  6. #6
    Super Star Member
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    Feb 2008
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    somewhere usa
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    Deere 110tlb, 4520, x749, L130

    Default Re: If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    Quote Originally Posted by KentT View Post
    I don't disagree. It mixes it all, and the fine stuff mixed with gravel helps rebuild a smooth base in the low spots while cutting off the tops of the high spots. I suspect that with regular use the base will get much smoother.

    My driveway is VERY well packed - I had a garage built over a year ago, and they hauled in 15 drop-axle tandem loads of stone and gravel just for that, plus three cement truck loads. Those loaded trucks pushed much of my gravel down into the spring-time, dampened clay. The driveway, itself, was redone four-plus years ago when I bought the place. They ditched it, dug up one clogged culvert and cleared it, added another culvert, and spread and packed 132 tons of "pug mix". I haven't added gravel since, but until I tried this land plane, I thought I needed to... This recovered a lot of gravel that had been mashed down.
    I understand what you are saying about the recovered gravel but if you find it gets mashed down again I would add a thin layer of clean rock. Ideally the fines should be about half way up the top layer of rock for best traction. I have added heavy or coarse sand over gravel that was too thick. That eliminates the vehicles from plowing and helps reduce dust problems too.

  7. #7
    Member
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    Sep 2014
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    Southeast TN
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    2016 Power Trac PT-425

    Default Re: If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    Glad it's working well for you. I thought your driveway looked pretty good already given how steep it is.

    Mine is about 600 ft and not nearly as steep, but I've had some issues. Had it redone about 2 years ago and bought one of those DR power graders to pull behind my ATV to maintain it. It is very similar to a land plane but not as heavy duty. It is not nearly as maneuverable, though, which is a big negative.

  8. #8
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
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    South Bend, Indiana (near)
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    Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year

    Default Re: If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    Looks good!
    MossRoad

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    Of It In Action!!!


  9. #9
    Veteran Member Sawyer Rob's Avatar
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    Upper Mid West
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    several brands

    Default Re: If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    I just turn my back blade around, and pull it backwards... It works perfectly on my drive and I already own a couple back blades.

    To take washboards out, I angle the blade a little...

    SR

  10. #10
    Elite Member KentT's Avatar
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    1993 Power Trac 1430 w/Kubota diesel engine

    Default Re: If you have a long gravel driveway to maintain, you should consider a land plane

    These articulated loaders/tool carriers do not have a rear 3-point hitch for a back blade. They do offer (and many have) a front, hydraulic-angled snow/dirt blade, with caster wheels. I've tried both pushing and back-dragging with mine. It simply doesn't compare to the job this land plane does. The length of the frame sides bridge the washboards, and the two cutting blades are about one inch (adjustable) below the level of the runners on those sides. Each pass with the land plane then shaves off about one inch off only the high spots, without disturbing the base in the low spots. The low spots are filled with the dirt and gravel shaved off the high spots, with the dirt falling down around the gravel to reestablish the base. Some of the coarser gravel remains on top.
    Power Trac PT-1430 w/Kubota diesel engine & numerous attachments
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