That time of year when........

Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by Thunder5Ranch, Oct 8, 2018.

  1. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    The cords of firewood get topped off.

    The hogs get moved to do their fertilizing and tilling it in.
    Anticipation of the first hard frost arriving so the tasty persimmon harvest can commence.

    Repairs are made to the market and vending equipment as the market season winds down and things are shifted from the trailers and trucks to the storage building.

    The cattle manure is scraped into a pile to compost down for next years gardens.

    And a list of about 200 other things to check or do. LOL not been a great year for me obviously but I have earned the right to survive another winter...... at least in my preparations to be ready for winter. My world is one of natural consequences and I survive, get by, or thrive by my own choices and work. I much prefer to rig the system through good choices and work so the natural consequences are positive and comfortable, rather than negative and miserable. Been a bit on the difficult side with the health issues this year, but I chip away at the task a bit at time and they have gotten done....... if not done quickly :)
  2. oil pan 4

    oil pan 4 Monkey+++

    I don't think that cow wants any one touching it's crap pile.
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  3. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

  4. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    @Motomom34 "would you please cut open one of your persimmons and let me know what you see...says that persimmons can predict the coming winter."
    Now, that's interesting! We got some but not sure where they came from, probably outside of the country, so doubt they would work.

    @Thunder5Ranch We are doing the same but have no where near the amount of work you do, but, also no where near the machines you have to help do it! LOL! We got all the wood cut and as much wood as we can store split and stacked. Wife has garden in and we blew out all the garden water line. Canning is completed. On and on and on... I am now looking at someone building me some sort of shed that where can store more firewood and a tractor. I guess I will go ahead and purchase a tractor as got to have a way to move snow which it can do among many other things...the problem is, I know about tractors about as much as I know about brain surgery...
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2018
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  5. Gator 45/70

    Gator 45/70 Monkey+++

    Buy orange as in Kubota!
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  6. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    Hey my newest tractor is a 1976 massey 285 bucket tractor that I paid $4500 for and been running it daily for 16 years now. Takes a little more maint. and repair than a new tractor but nowhere near the big price tags for even a compact modern tractor. The bucket is just a not optional tool here between manure, moving compost, skidding logs out of the woods, getting them to the mill and the junk and slabs to the cut it up pile, like it or not animals die and it digs a nice hole for a dead cow or big pig, snow removal with the bucket beats the blade, grading the gravel road and drives the back blade wins. A really good older model tractor are the Ford 9N's and there are a lot of them out there from $1000-$3,000 that run great and have been converted to 12V alternators. 40HP of tractor for a few thousand is not bad, however they usually won't have hydraulic remotes or modern buckets and rarely if one does have a bucket it is a old trip bucket and those can be more than a little dangerous in inexperienced hands. Used to have 2 compact kubota BX22s with bucket, belly mower and backhoes great little tractors with a $22,000 price tag each when I bought the, last new ones I looked at were pushing $30,000 each now days. Wish I had kept one but when I sold the Landscape Company they went with it in the sale. Old tractors are EASY to work on and maintain and are simple systems that don't require a engineering and computer science degree to work on :)

    I split 36 open every October from 36 different persimmon trees. It ain't looking purdy for Southern IL. out of 36 .............. 34 were spoons and 2 were knives, no forks at all :( Luck of the draw or a sign? I am planning for a lot of snow since the persimmon seeds jive with the other signs........ Like the squirrels have already stripped every hickory nut and pecan from every tree. Hogs are packing on fat about 1.5x faster than they do most years. oddly enough an insane amount of grasshoppers this year, typically a heavy hopper year is followed by a long cold winter. Not going to say 100% I am right but I would rather hedge my bets and have more than I need of everything rather than not have enough of something. The late ice storm of 2009 left us stuck out here for close to 5 weeks with no way to get out........... I ran out of Beer! Just can't repeat the horror of that!!!
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  7. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    I never shed my firewood, just stack it in 6' tall 60' long rows and put cheap tarps on the top and bunji them down. Then untarp one section at a time as needed and put the tarp back on if it is looking like rain ice or snow. Just having the it tarped on top and a foot or two down the side keeps the whole stack dry most of the way down.

    ALso side note on tractors, if you get a older one with remotes 3point log splitters are great and scratch a gas engine off of the keep maintained list. And are a whole lot cheaper than buying one like in my picture. Only reason I have that one is I picked it up for like $500 because someone stripped the spark plug threads and either didn't know how to rethread or was too lazy to. So I have a 35ton gas engine splitter that I am kind of getting attached to.
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2018
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  8. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    @Thunder5Ranch "I never shed my firewood, just stack it in 6' tall 60' long rows and put cheap tarps on the top and bunji them down."
    I do that with my rounds (guess I should show photos) but split and stack the wood into 2 each 10' X 16' hoop houses which hold a hell'va lot of wood but, I have a hell'va lot more that I need to cut and split...and these hoop houses were never suppose to be a permanent solution. I am not sure how much snow you get but we get a bunch and once it starts it stays all winter so not sure stacking it outside would work, no else I know around here stacks outside. I'm not sure how much snow we get (this will only be my 4th winter) but it's at least 3'-5' per year.

    I got a new 25 ton Black Diamond wood splitter, extremely good motor, does have an annoying design flaw, but seems to be a good machine. Time will tell...

    Tractors... I missed the boat on a well maintained older Ford tractor which came with a snow blower for $8000, still kicking myself, but didn't have any covered parking for it and still don't so trying to remedy this now or early Spring. I cannot continue to stay here without more covered storage for vehicles and I need vehicles to perform work around the property so wish me luck I can find a good contractor...

    For giggles, I am going to look at a new Kubota and a New Holland sometime this week. I don't suppose you could recommend a model? Or, any recommendations for that matter? I know I want 4WD but other than that - no clue. I heard they make an accessory so it will accept Bobcat attachments which would be cool. I'd love a backhoe but... Anyway, going to take a look on Craigslist again, maybe I'll get lucky.

    EDIT: Google just told me New Holland is made by FIAT in India. I had a run-in with FIAT years ago and want nothing to do with them ever again.
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  9. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    I like both NH and Kubota and the Kioti (Generic Kubotas) seem to hold up well neighbor has one and been running 7-8 years now problem free. I have been looking at the compact Massey's and liking them. As far as size and model it really depends on what you are going to be doing with it. Small kubota with a 20-24hp engine can do a lot more work than a 96hp in the long run but is worthless if you need to lift 1500 pound round bales or 2000 pound bulk bags of feed. A mid size 40-50hp with a bucket can cover a lot of work in both areas and is probably best all around for a small farm or homestead. Weight of the tractor is something to consider as well if you are going to transport it anywhere. My old MF285 weighs 12,900 pounds if I need to take to a job or the shop, it requires a good gooseneck trailer. The little 22 hp kubotas I had I pulled on a light duty 16' utility trailer....... My old Oliver 1855 (96 hp) weighs 6,900 pounds and equal to the MF285 in hp and really a superior tractor in every way except, it does not have a bucket and when it comes to dragging big logs that extra 6,000 pounds of steel in the MF makes a big difference, LOL also lifting a ton bulk bag of hog feed with the Oliver would stand it on its nose if it did have a bucket. Also have a old AC7060 Black Belly that back in its prime was a damn big tractor at 165HP and dual rear wheels, course it gives me a stroke every time I start it and think about all the fuel flowing through a line as big around as my thumb, but some jobs here like pulling the big disc or dragging 50"+ diameter logs out of the woods require its services. And to be honest I just like my old tractors and dinking around with them, so it is more of a hobby playing mechanic and maintaining them.

    Best advice make a list of everything you plan on using the tractor for then add everything you are actually likely to use it for and go to a dealer and show the list and say I need a tractor that can do this. Yep they are going to try and sell you a tractor :) But they are damn good at sizing tractor for the job. You then have the basic specs for what you need for that particular brand. A lot of differences between brands in some areas. Pretty much all of the new compact and mid size tractors are 4wd............. LOL trust me you can get a 4wd buried to the frame real fast :) It really all comes down to what you want pull, push and lift. It is also always better to over estimate those things a bit than under estimate. Sucks when you don't have enough tractor for the job. Sucks even more and this is really common on new tractors now days, you have your first major breakdown the day or week after the warranty expires :) Even on a compact you can get into a couple thousand or more replacing a hydraulic pump.
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  10. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    I am in Southern IL. most I have seen at one time was 17 inches and it is gone in two weeks tops. Last winter we got maybe two inches total between 7-8 dustings. It does get as cold as -10 to -15 but rarely more than a day or two. January and February are typically our coldest two months where 10-15 degrees are common and 20s are more likely. Ice Storms are much more common than snow.

    The one I mention probably to often that hit in 2009 left a layer of 6-8 inches of solid ice on everything and was a real good lesson in what SHTF would look like locally. Lots of buildings collapsed under the weight, gas stations could not pump gas, the State and Counties were bringing in tanker trucks of gas and diesel to keep their emergency services fueled up. Giant old oak trees that you would never think would fall, toppled over roads and power lines every where. Every unprepared idiot hit the roads on sheets of ice to get to Marion, Mt Vernon or Carbondale to buy a generator from lowes or menards to find they were sold out and the ones that did manage to get one found there was no gas to be had to run their new generator.

    I was still totally off grid back then on the farm. My electric was all solar, wind, a couple of gas generators and a 20,000KW PTO Generator that any of the tractors could run. And my Dodge Diesel with its two alternators could and still can be jumped to the solar/wind battery bank. I wired in a whole 12v system of lights and fans beside the 120 system that runs solely off the battery bank and slapped a 5000w inverter on that went to a couple of 120 outlets to power things like TV and computers. Have a 50amp pig tail that comes out of the 120 breaker box that plugs into the 12500 gas generator or the 20,000kw pto generator. I also keep 1000 gallons of diesel and 500 gallons of gas in the farm bulk tanks so fuel was not a issue and their pumps are old hand crank wheel pumps. So 5 weeks stuck back here was not all that uncomfortable.

    The only reason I broke down and went on grid on the farm was because of that ice storm. I had a building in town where I kept my freezers, walk in freezer and cooler. It was without power for 2 of those 5 weeks and there was 18,000 pounds give or take of beef, pork, and poultry in the frozen and 800 dozen eggs in the cooler. And when the power did come back on there the surge blew the old main bar fuse and left that stuff un frozen for 3 weeks. LOL I am at the end of a mile and half gravel road that has a heavy tree canopy over most of it and good number of those trees were laying across the road. It took a whole lot of time and more work to get the road cleared out to the state highway. LOL even harder since the tractor could not pull or push big logs, it just sat and spun the tires on the sheet of ice, even with the chains on the tires. So when I finally got to town, I walked in 18,000 pounds of stinking mess. Decided right then and there I would spend the $20,000 getting the electric ran down the road underground and in 2010 put in three 200amp electric services and added 3 12x32 portable buildings that became the warehouses one and half for the chest freezers and walk in freezer, and one for the refrigerated stuff and vegetable cooler....... the other half building became the on farm store........ and since then became the inspected commercial kitchen with a lot of modification. The important thing is I WILL NEVER LOSE 18,000 pounds of meat again from a power outage! All of the freezers and refrigerators can run off of a 50 amp cable running from the generator building to the breaker box in each building with the flip of a few switches. Don;t particularly like paying $160 base every month just to have three 200 amp services + whatever electric I use, I do kind of like having a 200 amp service each for the house, the barns and shops and the Commercial buildings and having them right here instead of 7 miles away in town. I did make an attempt at riding one of the horses..... actually a mule into town to check the building but wrote that off as a really bad idea in the first 50 feet of her slipping and sliding around...... About all I could see accomplishing there was her breaking a leg and me crashing hard.

    And now that I have diverged miles away from where I started I think I shall stop :)
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  11. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    @Thunder5Ranch Well, I made my list, as you suggested, and I'm going into town to talk to the dealer today. I won't be buying today but sort of feeling things out, looking, listening and asking a lot of questions. Mostly, it will be used for clearing snow, pushing/haul dirt, and help me cut trees, haul brush, logs and bucket loads of firewood...damn tired of pushing wheel barrel loads of firewood around 5 acres. I would like a backhoe also, certainly would be handy, but...can't really justify the cost.

    'I like both NH and Kubota and the Kioti (Generic Kubotas) seem to hold up well neighbor has one..."
    hmm...You like New Holland tractors? Okay, I will check them out also...but I did read on Google they are own by FIAT and my experience with Fiat products was a nightmare; however, these are made in India so perhaps their product is much better. There is a Kioti dealer in the area also and I have heard some good things about them. I need to Google them also...
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  12. Thunder5Ranch

    Thunder5Ranch Monkey+++

    NH is what it is :) TBH none of the newer tractors compare to older tractors in durability and ease to work on. They do have more bells and whistles and sensors and computer chips and wiring. What I like about NH is they are very common, parts are easy to get, and there seems to be a dealer on every corner. Course now days there is a Kubota Dealer on every corner as well and the parts are a lot easier to get than they were 20 years ago. Can use the dealer specs to search out a good used one if you don't want to spend new price. Usually good selection on ironsearch LOL I have been debating this little BX2370 on there and probably will keep the debate up until it is gone :( 2014 Kubota BX2370 Tractor for sale in Urbana, IL | IronSearch
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