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Forums > Active Threads > General Tractor Discussions > Operating and Attachments

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Rock picker

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IHcubman
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 26 Warren, MA
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2002-08-29          41764


Does anyone make a rock picking attachment for compact tractors in the 30 hp range?

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Rock picker

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 5111 Northern Nevada
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2002-08-29          41768


Around my house that would be a good pair of gloves and a front-end loader. It is the way I learned to do it about 50 years ago, except now that I think about it we couldn't afford gloves and we used a trailer, not a FEL.
Are there no children to conscript or bribe?
Picking rocks is a great metaphor for life.
....

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Rock picker

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IHcubman
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 26 Warren, MA
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2002-08-29          41769


Mark - No children yet, I'm too busy picking rocks!
: )
I have been doing the FEL picking method but a 1/3 yard bucket gets full real fast! I have an old silage pit that I am trying to fill up and I have several acres of hay field to pick stones from. Sounds like the perfect set-up but the pit is at the furthest end of the property away from the hay fields (of course) so I fill a bucket, drive down to the pit, then go back to get more rocks. I've considered finding a 4-wheel trailer that I could load up just to cut down on trips even though it means more handling of the rocks on my part... ....

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Art White
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 6877 Waterville New York
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2002-08-29          41773


There are some manufacturers of stone buckets which are made from solid round steel tubes with a recess in the rear to hold the stones while picking more. The problem with them is the initial weight of them to begin with in the 500 to 600 lb range. They work excellent for the stone and work well for up rooting honeysuckle and the likes on hedge rows. ....

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Rock picker

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TomG
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 5406 Upper Ottawa Valley
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2002-08-30          41798


I think there were pictures and maybe links to a rock-bucket manufacturer in a fairly recent discussion. I've heard of an actual picker but the price would put off most people except for commercial or large-scale uses. ....

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Ted@Abbeywoods, LLC
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2002-08-30          41834


Both of my compacts have skid steer attachment adapters on the FEL. Both are plumbed at the front. I run a rental hydraulic tiller over the ground first, then hook up to a rented power landscape rake. The tiller helps fluff up the soil and pop up the rocks, the powered landscape rake levels, and sifts through the soil. It has a built-in dump compartment which holds only the hard debris and opens when ready to be dumped. It works kind of like an old Harley Rake but better because the debris just doesn't shoot out the back.

The downside is that these attachments use more GPM flow than most compacts have as standard equipment. I run a rear pto driven pump with aux tank because neither of my tractors has the required flow from their main charge.

One other method which has worked well on small jobs is after breaking the ground, I windrow the debris using a York rake. Then I use a mucking fork to pitch the rocks into the FEL bucket. The dirt falls away through the tines and only the rocks are left on the fork. ....

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Peters
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 3034 Northern AL
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2002-08-30          41850


It seems that we are talking about two different sizes of rocks here.
May I point out that the farmer did not pick up the rocks and place them on a trailer. He would use a stone boat so he did not have to pick them any up any higher than necessary. I have seen the old hood of a car used as an inexpensive boat. ....

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Rock picker

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 5111 Northern Nevada
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2002-08-31          41855


Eric, I may have been only six or seven, but I can still feel the humid heat of the day. I still remember my Grandma sending us out with a picnic jug of ice water. I still remember the shocking chill when the water hit my parched mouth. I can still hear the chug,chug,chug of that B model Deere. And I still remember the wheeled trailer it pulled. I don't remember how it was dumped. But a steep slope with a sh-- load of rock at the bottom is in the mix somewhere. Mark ....

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MRETHICS
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 190 Star City, Indiana
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2002-08-31          41859


Mark,

That is just the way I remember it also, we spent many a warm day out in the fields, my dad would adjust the idle speed on the "A" so slow you could almost count the strokes of the engine. It would be so slow, he would put the tractor in 1st gear and pick rocks with us kids while it chugged it's way across the field, every few yards he would walk up and move the steering wheel to keep it straight.

If we worked hard enough to suit him, at the end of the day, he would take us to town to the gas station and buy us a bottle of "Choc-ola", nector of the Gods to us young boys in those days.

Back on the true subject:

Later on, when us boys were old enough to have other responibilities,(chores, milking, chaseing girls), we had no time left for stone patrol, so my father purchased a "rock picking machine" it was made in Canada by a company called "Leon". It was pulled behind the tractor, and it worked very well. I've searched the web and could not find thier site, maybe they are no longer in opperation.

It was a two wheeled machine. In the front, there was a bucket made of rods to scoop up the rocks and let the dirt sift out, when you raised up the scoop completetly, it dumped the rock into a bucket at the rear of the machine.
When the storage bucket was full, you could back up to the rockpile and dump the stones out hydraulicly onto the pile, or on a wagon or truck if you needed to transport long distances. ....

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MRETICS
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2002-08-31          41860


Forgot to add some points. The rock picking machine attached to the drawbar of the tractor, we used a 1020 John Deere at that time. It was more than enough tractor so a 30 hp compact would have worked very well ....

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Peters
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 3034 Northern AL
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2002-08-31          41865


Again I am not sure the size of the stone he wants removed but the stones in the pasture in New England or Northern Ontario are a little big for children to remove. ....

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TomG
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 5406 Upper Ottawa Valley
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2002-09-05          42022


A web search should turn up a bunch of hits. Several are listed below.

http://www.abcoveyor.com/PFM/s500.html

http://www.dura-ind.com/ag/rock.picker.3106.html and

http://www.vermeerag.com/equip/rp6084.html

I think they are for farm tractors and very pricey but the pics illustrate how they work. Standard small size seems to weight about 4,000 lbs. and have 1.5 cubic yard hoppers. Minimum HP is around 60 HP and 9 gpm hydraulics with two remote outlets. They handle rocks from 2 to 20.

Another style, a Harley picker, can be seen at:

http://www.warockanddebrisremoval.com/Pages/Equipment.html

I don't know how something like a power rake might do for windrowing rocks but that might be manageable by a compact.
....

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BillMullens
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 649 Central West Virginia
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2002-09-05          42027


My Dad and I put them in a trailer. Those too big to lift got broken with a sledgehammer first. Those too big to break, we would upset with the tractor and prybars and then try again, or pull it out of the way with a chain. Too big for that, we left them. It's still about the same for me; the only difference is I upset the big ones with the backhoe, and later push them where I want with the rear scraper blade.
Bill ....

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IHcubman
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 26 Warren, MA
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2011-03-11          177336


Quote:
Originally Posted by MRETHICS | view 41859
my father purchased a "rock picking machine" it was made in Canada by a company called "Leon". It was pulled behind the tractor, and it worked very well. I've searched the web and could not find thier site, maybe they are no longer in opperation.It was a two wheeled machine. In the front, there was a bucket made of rods to scoop up the rocks and let the dirt sift out, when you raised up the scoop completetly, it dumped the rock into a bucket at the rear of the machine. When the storage bucket was full, you could back up to the rockpile and dump the stones out hydraulicly onto the pile, or on a wagon or truck if you needed to transport long distances.


So I am still looking for a better way after all these years. Did this machine you described work well? ....

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 5111 Northern Nevada
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2011-03-12          177357


This is a very old thread... nearly 9 years. Boy how time flies!

If memory serves me right Mrethics didn't score real high in the "plays well with others" catagory, so it is unlikely that he will respond.

Maybe other members can help, but for me I still use the gloves and FEL method. ....

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hardwood
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 3583 iowa
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2011-03-12          177360


We had one for several years, I have no memory of the brand name, but it did work well to pick up rocks from football size to maybe 20 inches in the longest dimension. It had a "Basket" on the back that held quite a load before you needed to hydraulicly dump it.
Ours was a smaller size, it required about a 60 - 70 HP tractor with two remote hydraulic circuts.
It worked best when the rocks were free standing above the soil, but could with a bit of operator practice bring some half buried ones up.
We bought ours used probably 25 years ago so I don't remember a cost, but as heavily built as they are and steel prices what they are I'm sure they are quite expensive by now.
I'm sure that most any full line farm equipment dealer could get you the information on one.
Frank. ....

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2011-03-13          177373


Bobcat brand makes a skid steer-mounted rock picker consisting of a bucket and "sweeper" all in one. They're about $4000.

I recently finish graded a lot for three baseball fields using my power rake aka harley rake. The backfill was composed of clay with rocks and boulders and concrete chunks and road base. I windrowed the debris in long rows then bobcatted all the rows and dumped it around the site filling in low spots. ....

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nvhorseman
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 3 Northern Nevada
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2013-08-11          187834


Go to www.everythingattachments.com and do a search for "small tractor accessories" or "attachments" ....

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nvhorseman
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 3 Northern Nevada
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2013-08-11          187835


Go to www.everythingattachments.com and do a search for small tractor accessories or attachments. ....

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