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 03-18-2007, 23:24 Post: 140522
sesails



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 Suggested Implement



Does anyone have any suggestions on the best implement for picking up small sticks, branches and maybe a few larger branches throughout a 20 acre patch of ground? I have a FEL with teeth but there must be an easier way. Some sort of mobile rake might suffice but any ideas appreciated. I have a Kubota L3400 4W/D with HST.






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 03-19-2007, 00:14 Post: 140523
earthwrks

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It won't "pick it up" but that's what the FEL's for---but I use a box scraper pushed backward. It does a real nice job of floating over the ground just enough to push things into a pile without collecting a lot of dirt. I have a hydraulic top link which makes it nice to quickly change the attack angle to go from agreesive "dozing" to lightly rolling debris into a pile. I have moved 4-5 cubic yards of yard debris at a time this way just with a 6' box scraper. And the other benefit is the more you can push the better the effect of brooming and levelling.

As far as picking up the debris, consider a grapple attachment. Depending on the debris, there are flat, solid bottom ones aka "Industrial". And, others that are open or called "Root grapples". I have found that a root grapple works good for branches, but allows dirt and some debris to fall through the tines---that's easily remedied by temporarily installing a flat plate of steel over the tines. I use an Industrail grapple--It will pick up everything---from dirt to cars.






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 03-19-2007, 09:18 Post: 140535
kthompson



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 Suggested Implement

Could you possible use a rough cut mower (Bush Hog) or disk to cut up most of this and let it rot? For limbs of say 2 inches this probably would not work especially if dried hardwood. Often the small limbs that fall into fields here farmers just disk into the ground.

You may find a landscape rake works and might be better with some of the teeth removed. kt






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 03-19-2007, 09:50 Post: 140537
Murf



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First off, 20 acres is quite a bit of ground to clean up.

Depending on the type of ground it is, and what your end goal is, the method we use for clearing prior to hydro-seeding may be your best option. Get a 3pth like the old Case 100 series side delivery rakes, there's lots of them around, and go up and down moving all the twigs into rows. Then either break the rows into piles, or burn them just the way they are. When the fire is out, you can just turn the ash and any unburnt bits into the soil and go from there.

You can also use a landscape rake, or even a grapple on the FEL as suggested, but the grapple will be a really spendy method, the landscape rack will cost about the same as an old hay rake, but will be useable for other things later, but will also take a LOT longer to do this job.

Best of luck.






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 03-23-2007, 21:13 Post: 140689
bvinduck



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 Suggested Implement

I have a WR Long RGB 60 root grapple bucket. It does an awesome job of picking thing up- and I mean just about anything. It's probably been on of the best things that I have brought for my JD 4600.






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 05-22-2007, 18:49 Post: 142361
candoarms



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I spent 3 years working for a tree service company, in Augusta Georgia. This is the system we used, and it worked better than anything else we tried. I still use this technique when I trim the trees in my yard.

It takes some labor, and quite a bit of elbow grease, but this is the best method for moving large piles of branches in short order........especially when trying to preserve a nice lawn, where damage due to a tractor is a concern.

Using a cable with a hook on each end, pile your branches atop of the cable, using your loader bucket. Once you have a fairly large pile of branches stacked up on top of the cable, wrap the cable over the top of the pile and hook it onto itself on the other side.

You can now hook the loose end of the cable to your tractor hitch, and begin pulling. The hook will slip down the cable until it creates a very tight grip (slip knot) on the branches, allowing you to drag very large piles of branches and twigs without losing many in the process.

Once you get your branches into a location where they can be burned, simply unhook the cable from itself, then drag the cable out from under the branch pile, using your tractor.

Using this technique, I was able to move HUGE piles of branches in a very short amount of time, and with a minimum of tractor travel in the yard. Even the largest grapples will not move as many branches at one time as a cable can.

The longer the cable, the more branches that can be moved. However, you might want to start with a cable about 30 feet long, as this will allow you the most maneuverability with a full load. If your cable is too long, you won't be able to drag the branches around those trees that are still standing.

Of course, when handling a steel cable, be very careful. Wear good gloves, and never get in the habit of sliding your hand along the cable. I hate steel cables for this reason, but for some jobs there is simply nothing better.

Joel






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 05-22-2007, 21:05 Post: 142366
SG8NUC



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 Suggested Implement

Candoarms,

That is a very good method I have used it many times. I use three strand white nylon line. You can move large piles very easy. For the most part they just slip across the ground.






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 05-25-2007, 17:47 Post: 142457
candoarms



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SG8NUC,

A rope will work just fine for a few loads of branches, but it will wear out quite quickly from dragging it along the ground.

I use a small steel cable, about 5/16"in diameter and about 30 feet long, with a clevis hook on each end. I've been using the same cable for moving large piles of branches and trees for about 15 years.

Joel








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 05-25-2007, 19:36 Post: 142460
earthwrks

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SG you can also use a chain but it doesn't choke as well.

BTW, reminds me of kid in the neighborhood that kept pulling a chain around behind for hours on end. I stopped him after awhile and asked him why he was pulling the chain. He stopped and with a disgusted look on his face said, "Mister. You ever try pushing one?"

SG, that wasn't you was it?






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 05-28-2007, 10:51 Post: 142531
Murf



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We drag chains around in the dirt pretty regularly, best way ever to clean the surface rust off them, 500' of sand will make a chain look like brand new.

As for pulling branches with rope, we've never had any problem, the tension squeezes the pile enough the rope only touches the ground for the first few feet, after that the pinch in the bundle keeps them up clear of the ground, the branches themselves are the only thing on the ground.

If you make the pile such that the branches are lying in the direction of travel, then put the rope about 1/3rd of the way back, with a second loop aropund most of the butt ends, the pile slides a bunch easier too.

Best of luck.






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