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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I was looking through my steel pile today and trying to figure out the best way to make a small 3 pt seed roller. Thinking about a double roller setup similar to a pulverizer. I have a new piece of 6" pipe with about 5/16 or 3/8" wall thickness that is 8' long that I can use. I have plenty of tubing to build a sturdy frame so material isn't a problem.

Questions,
Is a 6" roller large enough in diameter to work?
I think two smooth rollers with scraper bars will work best any other ideas?
How heavy should something like this be to make good ground contact for the seed.

I plan on using the new pine needle rake to cover the seed then use the roller to pack and smooth this out.

Most of the soil in my area is considered a sandy clay loam.
 

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I wonder if 6" diameter is enough to roll without having some teeth to make it bite?? I'd just worry that it'll skid and ruin your seedbed, especially if it hits a rock or root. A set 2" of spikes sure would be the end of the world, and would keep it rolling.

-Jer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Jer,
That is a concern I have, six inches isn't very much diameter for rolling and the teeth leave the ground disturbed and is the opposite of what I am trying to accomplish.

I should add that this would be clean ground that has been tilled and raked clean.

Would use sealed roller bearings to reduce the rolling resisitance of these drums.

Also have considered running a fluted roller in front with a smooth roller following up the rear, could use chain and sprockets to connect and sync the two rollers together.
 

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true....

You sure you want it to be on your 3 pt?? Turning will cause problems if it's rigidly mounted...

-Jer.
 

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Just curious, why a seed roller over say a drop or broadcast?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Jer,
I can pick it up and turn or position it.



Randy,
Using the roller to get good contact with the soil, firm up the top after putting out seeds and covering them. Right now I have the larger 3 pt spin spreader and 8' 3pt harrow for pastures. For lawns and smaller areas I use a combination of Deere spiked tooth drop seeder, pull type spin spreader and hand seeders. I cover the lawns with the harrow and roll with a small pull type roller.

I am looking for a roller that compacts the soil a little more and one that I can back in between the trees easily to position it.

Maybe I should take the lawn roller I have and make it a 3pt lift type but was hoping to keep it intact as is.
 

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I would try to find something larger than 6". I agree with Jer that it might not turn and drag under the right circumstances.
 

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Two stupid questions derived from on thought:

When I've put down seed I just drive the 318 over the area to compact it, due to width of tractor/size of tires it's only three passes. Is the goal here to get additional smoothing that you would not get like this?

Are the rollers at Northern Tool not suited for this?

The single thought is this: One of the advantages of the smaller tractors (be they 2000 series or garden tractors) is that all of the mass marketed implements can be used. So the stuff at Northern and TSC is OK for horse powers of 25 and under. I'm wondering if you're caught in a big tractor mindset of building the right stuff when you could buy it.

Keep in mind this is from someone who generally speaking would build just about anything electronic-based rather than buy something just because I can...

The seed spreader I got sucks. It clogs on grass seed! I'll be making the holes bigger so it works, will post a thread on it someyear. I point this out so everyone will know that I do understand that just because it's common, available, and sized for smaller tractors doesn't mean it's done right.

Pete
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Went out to measure the distance betwen the tires and so on. My existing roller may be wide enough to work better with the new 749 as is. Since the HDAP tires are 12" wide then I should get good coverage with my present setup. I will try this out before building something else.

All I really need to do is roll in the seed in a four ft width, for most lawns this makes it a quick process. I recall reading other posts where people used the four wheelers to accomplish this task with good results. If this works satisfactorily then I will revert to my original use for the 6" pipe. I planned to add it to the rear of my landplane/grader with short 1" spike teeth. Allowing it to float up and down about 2 inches.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for all the feedback guys, I may be reinventing the wheel (or roller) with this hairbrain idea. For the small setup I guess I will stick with the water filled roller I have, 18" diameter and 24" width just barely covers the span between the tires.

Might be interested in a common cultipacker for the 4520 later on but would depend on if I get larger jobs.
 

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I'm gonna agree with Ken, a Cultipacker is probably the perfect tool for the job..

On the other hand, I'm all about "using what you got"...IMO on a prepared seedbed the 6" pipe (is it pipe or tubing) it shouldnt be a problem..A prepared seedbed should already be pretty smooth. The guys have a good point on the drum possibly not turning though...to combat that, I'd probably weld something like 3/4" Jam nuts or something to that effect on the drum, give the drum some "bite" on the ground and from what I've read a dimpled seedbed is preferred...
Just a few ideas...
 

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I'm liking this thread because I'm ready to seed part of the finish landscaping between the house and tractor garage. I've got about 18" of gravel fill going in today to bring the gravel up to the level of the house garage apron. I've built up the ground around the area.

I packed dirt left over from the foundation in, then about 6" of topsoil that I've turned twice in the last year. I till the top soil, then carry it to this area. Now it's time for seed. After I put the seed down, I'll drag my chain harrow over it, then pack it with the 318 and cover with hay.

Steve, I'm guessing this is the sort of "close in" landscaping work you're trying to get better set up to do, though I post the pic, describe my process, and see if y'all can teach me something.

Also have bad stitch picture of the entire area. I've still go the big areas around the tractor garage I have to till, level, and re-seed.

Pete
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Guys, I bought the 6" pipe last year to make a roller with short teeth similar to what is used on the pulverizers. At the time I was thinking teeth about 1" long and 1/2" diameter. My plan was to add this to the rear of the landplane at the extreme end of the skids and allow it to travel up and down by a few inches. The idea being that the landplane does loosen the surface alot with repeated passes and this was to compensate some by packing it down to a degree. One of my concerns with this is even if this is following the plane I might be better off with segments instead of one long roller.

Monday afternoon I did get to try out the new pine straw rake, it is 6' wide and the tines are about 5/16" diameter on 2" spacings. This worked great for the pine needles and gave me a chance to play with the new mower and hitch. More importantly though I want to try this out for covering the seed, it may work better than the harrow if the seedbed is clear of any trash.

The purpose of the roller or rolling by alternate means is two fold, first is to insure good ground contact with the seed, second is to smooth out the small furrows left from the harrow teeth. While these are no problem in a pasture they can be unsightly and irritating in a lawn. The pine needle rake would not make near as much of this tracking as the harrow teeth but the ground has to be super clean to prevent gathering trash which will flow thru the harrow.

The roller I have been using is 18" diameter filled with water this is a large enough diameter that it rides over these furrows without knocking them down. This is the reason for wanting something that will work better to flatten and smooth the seedbed after covering the seed.

Obviously I can buy a piece of pipe in just about any diameter, question is which size would be best? I need to limit the weight of the 4' unit to something the 749 can deal with, a larger 6' or 8' model of this can be used behind the larger tractors in the open areas if needed. Practically speaking this is one task that the smaller equipment should be able to deal with quickly. I should be able to roll 1.5 to 2.0 acres in an hour one pass. with the 749. A typical lawn might be much smaller than that.

To sum it up I am looking for the best way to cover seed about 1/2" deep and keep the ground smooth. It could be that I might be better off building a combination tool, something with the smaller tine teeth staggered similar to the harrow with a rear roller to cover and compress the ground.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Pete,
One thing I suggest is to seed it heavy, that makes a big difference. When I seed new ground for the first time I use about 350 lbs of fescue per acre. Typically this doesn't leave many spots to fill in.

Did you perform a soil analysis on the topsoil?
 

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Pete,
One thing I suggest is to seed it heavy, that makes a big difference. When I seed new ground for the first time I use about 350 lbs of fescue per acre.
I've always gone heavy on the seed since it works better. Some have given me grief about it around here in NC... When the contractor for the fire station that was built in 2007 put down seed, he said it was "to state specifications". To me it looked like no seed at all, and now the area is pretty much "weeds with a few blades of grass".

Tnx for the 350#/ac figure, I was just winging it.

Did you perform a soil analysis on the topsoil?
Nope. But I will... :grin:

Pete
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Ken,
A lot depends on the seed used but thick lawns that are kept short relative to pasture grasses need to be seeded heavily.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Went by the Deere dealer today while in town and my rep there and I talked about the seeder roller/covering tool. He suggested a common rake tooth mounted ahead of the roller in staggered rows. These were double tined jobs that sell for about 2.20 each, seems like $60 bucks worth of these would do the trick covering the seed. He felt the 6" pipe roller would work in my case as my seedbeds that he has seen are as smooth as a pool table. With rough terrain he felt a larger diameter roller would be more suitable.

This brings me to my next question, how much will an X749 pickup? Assume it has enough front weight to counterbalance. I haven't found this in the Deere manual, maybe I missed it.
 
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