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Artillian Tractor, LLC
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone have a recommendation about 3pt hitch aerators? My concern is what happens out back when you turn the wheels out front? I would think it would leave a heck of a mess unless you pick it up when turning much at all.

We currently have a tow behind from our old 318 but I've never been impressed as it only punches about 2 inches into the soil, even with maximum weight plus on the tray.

I'm looking at this one right now:
 

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You have my interest. I will be waiting to see how this turns out for you. I think you are correct though on the turning issue, you'll be limited in your turning radii. The mess will not only be your lawn, but your aerator may not fair so well either. How do you load this one up?
 

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Our model helicopter club has one-a 72" Midwest (no longer made) but very simular to this one shown in this thread: http://www.greentractortalk.com/forums/showthread.php?1115-Aeration

You do indeed need to raise it before you turn. I filled 4 milk crates with concrete for added ballast and made a rack for the top to hold them. It works quite well, and my 4110 handled it nicely.
 

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Artillian Tractor, LLC
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So I went and looked at the aerator and couldn't resist. She's a beaut. It's not perfect, but seems to be built very solidly. After getting it home, I realized that the 3 point drag pins are 3/4" instead of the standard 7/8", strangely. I was fixing to chop them off and add the right one's, but I decided to just try some bushings first to make sure the machine works well for me and my land.

Also, I'm going to have to add some counterweights for down pressure. As you can see, there are holders for three 18 x 4 x 8" blocks. I might see if I can just grab something adequate at a masonry supply place, again, just to try the machine out to see if it's going to work on my soil. If I like it, I'll pour some robust concrete slabs or adapt it for some JD suitcases.

The spindles are tandem so there are 4 separate drums rotating on a single massive shaft, about 1-1/2" dia. The separate spindles may help just a little in gradual cornering as opposed to the single drum type.

The plug teeth are a little rusty, but it's just light surface rust from sitting unused for a while. At least they are replaceable, held on nicely by two simple bolts. All in all, I CAN'T WAIT to put it to work! When I do, I'll circle back with some more photos and maybe a video if I can manage it safely.
 

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Sounds like it was setup for CAT0 with the small pins, and it looks like the to link connection is short also. A little welding and you can have it iMatch compatible in no time.How wide is it? Looks about 48" or so?
 

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Artillian Tractor, LLC
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I thought the same thing but CAT 0 uses a 5/8" pin. I don't have a clue where the 3/4" came from.

The 3pt frame width is 26" (pin root to pin root), just like CAT 1.

The coverage width from center to center is 49". You guessed it right.
 

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Just a word on penatration as we live in the same area. With the heat we've recently you'll need to moisten the ground for best results. I don't care how heavy it is if the soil is too dry it's just going to make a mess. Best of luck with it.

Matt
 

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I can't believe people actually spend good money on things to make their grass grow.... If the wife would allow me I would spray gas on mine and light it. A nice brown lawn is the most attractive and sensible lawn in my books. I'm loving the hot weather, "De lawn, she is gone" my prayers have been answered....:laugh::laugh::laugh:
 

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Artillian Tractor, LLC
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Re: Moisture

Yes, I've noticed that there is a fine line between riding over the surface and slinging mud glops. It has been a while since I did it last, so thanks for the reminder!

Re: Growing Grass

In my case, grass is the only thing that keeps our soil from washing away due to highly graded land. In heavy rain storms of years past, and especially last year, yards of topsoil have gotten washed away. The thinnest grass areas are affected first, eroding away and flooding over the healthier grass, killing it. It is a compounding problem which I have to battle constantly to keep in check.

I notice our soil is quite compacted, though it seems to be an 'ok' mix of loam, clay, and sand. The Ph also seems correct so I don't think lime is going to help. The roots don't grow very deeply at all so my I'm hoping is that more/better aeration will avoid a total renovation. (If it isn't completely obvious, lawncare isn't my specialty, try as I might)
 

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At one time I ran a machine shop for a turf/golf power equipment manufacturer.
Spent lots of time out in the back yard trying to figure out how to make prototype equipment work like it should.

Yes you will be able to make gradual turns with that implement. Don't load it too heavy to try to plug full depth of the teeth.
I think you only need to go 2" maybe 3" at the most. Just do it a little more often. Water well before plugging.
The yard will look like helloooooo with all the dirt plugs lying around. Water well after plugging.
Be careful of where your TV cable, phone internet cable, etc are........... Don't ask how I know this.........
Replace plug teeth often. It appears that is a reasonably generic walk behind style tooth.

Enjoy
Wyo
 

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Artillian Tractor, LLC
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Yes, they are Toro 686 "spoons", readily available.

I don't have underground wiring to worry about nearly as much as large rocks which lie just visible or invisible throughout. They have beat the heck out of our tow behind aerator. At least with this 3 pt version I can lift it up when I know one is coming.

Thanks for the advice!
 

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Artillian Tractor, LLC
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hey all,

After a quick trial run using some suitcase weights, I decided it would be better to make some dedicated concrete weights for this aerator. I finally got a little window of time to whip up the blocks a week or so ago. I've since had a little time to make one sample drag and this aerator works great! I was pulling up nice 2-3" plugs, at least 5/8" diameter. And with the 180 lb of ballast it is giving the tractor a good workout. You can really feel it holding the machine back, which tells me that it's plunging in well. Also, I am surprised at the radius of turning I can do. I tried making a reasonable turn, around a 30 ft diameter, and had no problem.

That was the extent of the trial runs. Now I'm just waiting for a moderate rainstorm to moisten up the soil a bit and it'll be time to put it to work once and for all.
 

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Lookin' great Chris:good2:
 

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Pin size for give?

Maybe the pin size is for a little extra flex. And set your lift arms for max float if ground isn't level. [HR][/HR]
 

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So Chris, have you seen an improvement in the lawn? Is an aerator worth the time and money? I am seriously considering one.
 
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Artillian Tractor, LLC
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
So Chris, have you seen an improvement in the lawn? Is an aerator worth the time and money? I am seriously considering one.
Hey Randy,

I sold it off last fall. I found that our property is too convoluted for a 2520 to be stomping around with a rigid 3ph aerator. I'd probably have kept it and used it anyway but we're slowly eliminating lawn in favor of shrubs and gardens so it's getting even more and more diced up. If/when I should ever get some time to actually USE a tractor again, I'm planning to completely renovate our scape altogether and put in some retaining walls to create some plateaus. Given that, aerating the existing lawn makes about as much sense as giving filet mignon for a death row inmate's last meal.

Oh, and our constant supply of heaving rocks really did a number on the spoons too. Our soil here is very difficult. Yours is probably much the same if you are within the glacial soil region.
 

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Re: Moisture

Yes, I've noticed that there is a fine line between riding over the surface and slinging mud glops. It has been a while since I did it last, so thanks for the reminder!

Re: Growing Grass

In my case, grass is the only thing that keeps our soil from washing away due to highly graded land. In heavy rain storms of years past, and especially last year, yards of topsoil have gotten washed away. The thinnest grass areas are affected first, eroding away and flooding over the healthier grass, killing it. It is a compounding problem which I have to battle constantly to keep in check.

I notice our soil is quite compacted, though it seems to be an 'ok' mix of loam, clay, and sand. The Ph also seems correct so I don't think lime is going to help. The roots don't grow very deeply at all so my I'm hoping is that more/better aeration will avoid a total renovation. (If it isn't completely obvious, lawncare isn't my specialty, try as I might)
get some round bales and unroll them out across the contour lines.
 
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