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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all! I’m new to modern tractors, and am getting ready to purchase a JD 3R series tractor from a dealer. I own 6 acres of recently cleared and stumped land, which I am going to turn into a home site / mini farm. The land was rough graded by a bulldozer, but is in need of fine grading and filling in a few low areas. I will also have a 250 foot driveway to maintain (with ditches), and possibly 1/3 mile of dirt road (if the county won’t do it in a timely manner). I’m hoping to purchase a few implements with my tractor purchase. I have access to an OLD HEAVY 6 foot 3 point scrape blade, but it’s pretty worn out and difficult to use. I’ve heard a lot of talk about box blades and recently learned about land planes. Which would yall recommend for my tasks at need? Thanks!
 

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Box blades are excellent for moving dirt, leveling, etc. land plane is great for finish grading and regular driveway maintenance. I Land Plane my drive and the big gravel area between the shop and house About once a month. Keeps the nice gravel on top and the weeds down
 
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Use a box blade.
 

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If the material is generally in the right area but just not smooth a land plane works best. If you need to pull a large amount of material to a new location a box blade will do that quicker. A land plane will move material but it will take more passes. The land plane is also easier for a new user to get comfortable with. Whichever way you go get scarifiers.

With the info you have provided I'd say the land plane is probably going to work out better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hmm. Sounds like in the long run, I’m gonna need both. I failed to mention that I will be getting a loader with the tractor. Perhaps that would help with moving the large amounts of dirt?
 

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The loader won’t work as well as a box blade. The loader is good for dumping piles.
 

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Check out some Tractor Time with Tim videos on YouTube.

Tim has a video of his land plane on the family farm driveway and videos of working with a box blade at a horse farm and other locations.

I went with a box blade for my short gravel driveway.
 

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Box blade is going to give you more versatility like moving material long distances and good weight for the scarifiers. It also grades just fine. I put down 4 loads of gravel and graded it out nicely on my first day using a box blade. I was amazed how well it spread out material also. I was able to do cuts and fills as far as a couple hundred feet. There are a couple good videos on YouTube showing tricks and methods for efficient use of it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Ive watched a ton of videos on YouTube! Tractor Time With Tim, Good Works Tractors, Stoney Ridge Farmer, Tractor Mike, just to name a few! Lots of good info. Sounds like I need the box blade first. And maybe put the plane on a wish list in the future.
 

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Yeah, I was going to say that from your description you would probably be best served with a box blade. I own both; they each have their place. Once everything is established, you could add a land plane as they are a bit easier to use. But for moving lots of material, the box blade will serve you better.
 
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In the case of grading blades for the back of the tractor, the more versatile the tool the more skill it takes.

A pull behind angle adjustable blade is the most versatile. It can do everything the others can do and then some. But it is also the most difficult to use.

A box blade is very useful and does almost as much as an angle adjustable blade but is much easier to use. I think that it is the best compromise.

A land plane is the easiest to use of them all. It is much harder to make a mess with one. But it also does not have the versatility.

I have an angle blade and a box blade. I hardly ever use the angle blade. The box blade gets used for almost everything.

That being said don't underestimate what you can do with the loader. The road in the picture was cut with only a loader. My box blade was not available at the time so I made due with the loader. You can do a lot with a loader if that is all you have!

779930
 

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In the case of grading blades for the back of the tractor, the more versatile the tool the more skill it takes.

A pull behind angle adjustable blade is the most versatile. It can do everything the others can do and then some. But it is also the most difficult to use.

A box blade is very useful and does almost as much as an angle adjustable blade but is much easier to use. I think that it is the best compromise.

A land plane is the easiest to use of them all. It is much harder to make a mess with one. But it also does not have the versatility.

I have an angle blade and a box blade. I hardly ever use the angle blade. The box blade gets used for almost everything.

That being said don't underestimate what you can do with the loader. The road in the picture was cut with only a loader. My box blade was not available at the time so I made due with the loader. You can do a lot with a loader if that is all you have!

View attachment 779930
Just curious, how did you get and keep the loader level cutting that road? It looks like at some point the tractor would have been at an angle equal to the slope.

Sent from my SM-G998U1 using Tapatalk
 

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Just curious, how did you get and keep the loader level cutting that road? It looks like at some point the tractor would have been at an angle equal to the slope.

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I'm not sure exactly how he did it, but you could approach from down-slope and clear a level pad, then cut the road in from the pad.
 

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I had a lot of room at the entrance of the road (where the tractor is in the picture) and was able to approach it from different angles to make a level pad with the loader by cutting and back dragging.

From there I did it one bucket load at a time. I would run the bucket forward cutting the up hill and then dump it. I built a pile in front of the tractor. Once I had a pile built up in front of the tractor I just kept moving the pile forward cutting and filling as I went. I literally cut that road 2 feet at a time.

It seems like a lot of work, but it went much faster than you think.

I have since gone back in and cleaned it up with the box scraper.
 

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There are 4 attachments that are must have to me.

1. Front end loader and bucket with a ballast box

2. A good grapple like the AV20F

3. A good box blade

4. And in my part of the world, a good snow blade with hydraulics
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
There are 4 attachments that are must have to me.

1. Front end loader and bucket with a ballast box

2. A good grapple like the AV20F

3. A good box blade

4. And in my part of the world, a good snow blade with hydraulics
Well BOBL, I’ve got a 3039R open station on order. With a 320R loader, 3rd SCV, and CID grapple rake. Prolly gonna go with the box blade in with the package. Dealer said they would fill the tires as part of the deal. But I haven’t figured in any sort of ballast box or weights. Suggestions?????
 

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A hydraulic top link would be a suggestion with a box blade so you can adjust on the fly. Little changes can make it do different things like you'll find out. I'd go with a box blade first and then se if you think you'll need the land plane.
 

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Well BOBL, I’ve got a 3039R open station on order. With a 320R loader, 3rd SCV, and CID grapple rake. Prolly gonna go with the box blade in with the package. Dealer said they would fill the tires as part of the deal. But I haven’t figured in any sort of ballast box or weights. Suggestions?????
I use a ballast box with 32lb cement blocks from Home Depot. The blocks are very dense, don't chip, and I can move them if needed. PLUS, HD will deliver them to the house or farm for you. They cost $1.65 ea.., so less than $6 per 96lbs .

4 in. x 8 in. x 16 in. Solid Concrete Block-30168621 - The Home Depot
 
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