Home' Smart Farmer : May 2011 Contents May 2011
By JOHN HUGHES
HERE is a lot of uneven
ground out there and there are
a number of implements that
can be used with a small acreage
tractor to level things out. Here are a
THESE blades are a good general
purpose implement. They are quite
versatile because the blade can be
manually angled and tilted. They are
great for reconditioning driveways,
cutting drains and for small areas of
Basically, you have a blade that
can scrape a small amount of mater-
ial with each pass. On soft ground or
loose gravel they work very well. If
the ground is very hard or the grav-
el is quite compacted the blade
tends to skip over the top, rather
than cut in.
The rippers on grader blades are
made of mild steel and more than
adequate for your average lifestyle
farmer to keep the driveway in
order. However, with extended use,
they will eventually wear out. They
can be replaced but the entire tyne
needs to be replaced.
The best models have an offset
blade which means that grader blade
can be used on either side of the
This is great for applications along
side walls or fencelines.
They are better at tackling larger
bumps and hollows than grader
blades. The box shape is more suit-
ed to moving larger amounts of soil
once it has been broken up. This
makes the box blade ideal for a task
such as levelling out market garden
You can also move the soil larger
distances unlike a grader blade
where it will pass out to the side
Box blades with rippers are fitted
with hardened wear boots that can
be replaced as they wear out. This
means it is not necessary to replace
the complete tynes.
If you don't have a 4-in-1 bucket,
a box blade is a pretty handy tool to
have in the shed.
If you are fortunate enough to
acquire a 4-in-1 bucket then you
will have a very versatile imple-
ment. It has all sorts of uses in addi-
tion to levelling, but we will concen-
trate on that here. The best way to
level is to open the bucket -- the
front jaw has a cutting edge facing to
the front of the bucket. This is used
for light grading and pushing of
loose material. The tractor is driven
forward to use this cutting edge.
Some cutting edges are hardened --
check with the dealer if you are buy-
ing one as they will last much
Remember this is not a bulldozer.
It is designed for pushing or spread-
ing material that has already been
excavated. If you need to break soil
up use a ripper or backhoe on the
rear of the tractor.
This is a handy add on to a 4-in-1
bucket. It is simply grabbed by the
bucket and ready to go. The advan-
tage of the levelling bar over just
using the bucket is it enables you to
smudge out larger areas faster and
even a novice can achieve a very
smooth tidy finish.
These harrows are good for rough-
ly levelling off small bumps in a larg-
er area. A good use is tidying up a
piece of ground that has been
pugged up by cattle once it has dried
out, or to smooth out ground that
has been turned by discs.
Grader blades keep
even surfaces flat
Box blades are better at tackling larger humps and hollows.
Better grader blades come with
Some cutting edges are hardened
Six-way option gives precise
A levelling bar provides a smooth and tidy finish, even with a novice operator.
A dozer blade makes the going easy.
Crawler tractor with dozer blade
Finally, we will look at the crawler
tractor. These can come factory fit-
ted with a six-way dozer blade. This
is the ultimate machine for the small
acreage farmer to push or cut the
maximum amount of soil when
combined with rippers fitted to the
rear of the crawler tractor. It is great
for levelling out very rough ground
or cutting a level pad into a slope.
The hydraulically-controlled six-
way blade gives you precise control.
An easy-to-use joystick enables you
to lift the blade up and down to con-
trol how much material you cut or
push at a time. Pushing the blade
out to the left or right enables you to
doze material out to either side
while driving in a straight line.
And being able to tilt the blade
down to either the left or right
enables the ground to be cut on an
angle which is perfect for cutting
drains or putting a slope on a drive-
• Safety is always the highest priority.
Always use a tractor that complies
with Australian Standards including
Roll over Protective Structure, seat
belt and protective covers. Only take
on tasks within the capability of the
machine and operator. Follow all
relevant safety warnings, instructions
and regulations. Wear appropriate
safety equipment and use common
This article is a general guide only.
Conditions vary from site to site.
Judgement relating to your individual
conditions must be exercised.
East Wind tractors and Hanmey
implements feature in this article. For
more information visit
eastwind.com.au or hanmey.com.au or
ring 1300 TRACTOR (1300 87 22 86).
"No Service Costs"
FREECALL 1800 633 995
9 Drury Terrace, Clovelly Park SA 5042
*Delivery charges may apply to some areas. Prices do not include fascia's & level gauge as shown
DURABLE - RELIABLE - AFFORDABLE
Galvanised Z450 coated!
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