Balance question?Berta Rotary/853

   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853 #1  


New member
Dec 26, 2012
louisville ky
I purchased the single Berta Rotary Plow late in the season last year to go with my 853 that has the 11hp Kohler Lombardhi diesel and the larger wheels. I didn't get to put a lot of time on the setup but my gut feeling is that I might need more extension (or weight) on the plow. I do have the quick couplings which add some length.

Does anyone have this same setup, and have you added an extender to help hold the plow in the ground? I know this would result in more strain in lifting the plow for the turnaround on the row ends but it seems like a valid tradeoff.

Thanks, Ray
   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853 #2  
Hey Ray,

Have you mounted the plow yet to see where it balances? Mount it now, tip the machine so the engine is tipped forward. If it comes back to the plow, it should be close to perfect - just a little weight to the attachment side. If it tips to its nose, you may want to consider an extension. Just keep in mind that an extension gets the plow that much closer to your toes!

I have the double plow with the 11 hp Lombardini on a BCS 850, and I need to put 50 pounds of weight on the engine side to balance it.
   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853
  • Thread Starter
Farmerboybill: Thanks for the feedback. The ground I was breaking had very thick turf and has not been plowed for decades. I wanted it to work like this
but it sure wasn't happening! I had to raise the handlebars and push downward on them the entire row. The ground must be softer in Italy LOL. I did find a big part of the process is getting the first pass correct regardless of how much time it takes, because any discrepancies (left/right or having the plow come up out of the ground) gets transmitted to every following pass. The times I tried the plow in previously plowed went much better.

You had a good point about the extension putting the plow closer to your feet. I really hadn't thought that part through. I will probably just figure out a way to hang some weight on the plow if I think I need it.
   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853 #4  
Sorry, I misunderstood. I didn't realize you had tried it already.

The biggest thing you need when plowing is adequate soil moisture. It will dig through powder dry soil with a lot of work, but it will do MUCH better with the soil moist, but not wet. I attached pics of some jobs I did with mine. The ground was in good condition with adequate moisture, but by no means perfect ground. The first pics shows my F-I-L's place. This was next to a building that had been a farm implement dealership in the 50's-70's and was where customers parked. There were spots near the building that were 80% gravel covered with grass. The second job was a sandy area where a bunch of junk trees had taken over. The trees had been grubbed out, but there were plenty of roots and sandstone rocks left over. I hit a few that killed the KD440 diesel engine, but did no damage to the attachment. The rotary plow is an amazing attachment.

Another thing to be sure of is the track width of your tractor. You technically only need to change the in-furrow wheel, but most change both. You really want the furrow wheel to be 9 inches from the center of the tractor to the inside of the wheel. More, and you take too big of a bite. Less, and you take too little of a bite.

I recommend you go an soak the ground with a garden hose if mother nature doesn't cooperate. Give it a day to dry out after the soaking. You'll find the results more to your liking.

   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853 #5  
Great job adding the weight to the front of your tractor Bill. Looks like it sits just right.

   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853 #6  
Take a close look at FarmboyBill's pictures. Is not that a beautiful sight? I have a double Berta and agree with Bill's comments. You would think someone would make a three point hitch version with two, three, four Berta rotary plows with a trailing power harrow for four wheeled tractors. No plow sole hard pan and ready to plant in one pass.
Bill in NC
   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853 #7  
Hi Bill :)

Someone actually did make a bigger version of the rotary plow!

In the late 1960th or 1970th, the German company Raussendorf manufactured the "Kreiselpflug" (rotary plow) for 2 and 3 furrows (see pictures below).

The company wanted to construct a plow that needed less traction than a conventional plow, but in total it needed more power from the tractor due to the revolving drums. As Raussendorf used parts from Class in the construction of their plow, it is often mistakenly called a Class plow.

There are a few nice videos showing the 3 furrow Kreiselpflug in action:

Kreiselpflug Claas 1 - YouTube

Kreiselpflug Claas - YouTube

The rotary plow was never successful, as it was more expensive than a conventional plow due to its complexity. It was best suited for light sandy soil, and also more sensitive to rocks and stones than a conventional plow.

Best regards

   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853 #8  
Thanks for the information and the videos. Beautiful soil preparation in one pass. The Kreiselpflug provides power to the top of the plow axle well above the soil working zone. The Berta has a horizontal drive shaft that sits just above the soil working zone. My Berta sheds most stones large and small and only occassionally jams a stone between the rotating plow assembly and the horizontal drive shaft. It would seem the Kreiselpflug would be less prone to stone jams. The Berta rotates above a bottom point and thus makes only a narrow soil hard pan footprint. The Kreiselpflug looks like it has about a 75 - 100 mm (3" to 4") flat bottom rotation zone.

It looks like a product that was ahead of its time. Imagine making a ready to plant large garden in 15 minutes with a compact 4 wheel tractor and a two plow Kreiselpflug rotary plow.
Bill in NC
   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853 #9  
These pictures show the coulter and stationary plow section of a Kreiselpflug. I now see how stones would jam the Kreiselpflug as a large stone carried around would jam into the coulter or stationary plow sections. The stationary plow section was to aid in keeping the plow going in a straight line, yes? If the stationary plow and coulter could be moved forward, it would seem the potential for stone jamming would decrease, yes?
Kreiselpflug | Seite 1 | Identifizierung | Deutz Forum
   / Balance question?Berta Rotary/853 #10  
Looking closer at the Berta and Kreiselpflug units, the Berta is tilted at a angle and thus throws the dirt away without requiring a front foot. The Berta rotates clockwise with the left edge intercepting the incoming unworked soil. I may be viewing the Kreiselpflug incorrectly, but it appears to be rotating counter-clockwise with the stationary plow point first intercepting the incoming unworked soil and the rotating elements throwing the soil right-ward away from the furrow. The Berta's novel tilt and larger wing structure appears to have eliminated the stationary front plow point. I am amazed at how only the small point sections wear on my Berta while there is is still untouched paint on the rotating wings.

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Bill in NC