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I admit I didnt get all the way through, so you might have answered this question.

Which didnt “ditched” less. In referring to at the end of the row when you raise the tiller, there is usually a large ditch.
 

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That is a really fair comparison of the two tillers. I too think I would go with the forward rotating one.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I admit I didnt get all the way through, so you might have answered this question.

Which didnt “ditched” less. In referring to at the end of the row when you raise the tiller, there is usually a large ditch.
Sorry. We got a bit too long winded in ‘Round #1’.
I put chapters in to allow folks To easily advance to the next rounds.

I think the ‘ditching’ you talk about is worse with reverse rotation, as not only do you have a ditch, you also have a pile of dirt in front of that.
 

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I was actually surprised at the outcome. I was leaning toward getting the reverse rotation, but your video has convinced me otherwise, and I believe I will now go with the forward rotation. For my main purpose of tilling up and re-grading about 2 1/2 acres I think it will suit me better without having to deal with the trash piling up. If I were strictly tilling a garden, I would probably go with the reverse rotation.

Thanks for the content you create!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I was actually surprised at the outcome. I was leaning toward getting the reverse rotation, but your video has convinced me otherwise, and I believe I will now go with the forward rotation. For my main purpose of tilling up and re-grading about 2 1/2 acres I think it will suit me better without having to deal with the trash piling up. If I were strictly tilling a garden, I would probably go with the reverse rotation.

Thanks for the content you create!
We were a bit surprised too. I didn’t care which one ‘won’. So no motive at all to make one look better than the other. Overall, I found the reverse rotation more difficult to handle with very little tangible benefits.
 

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I run a Frontier 6' forward rotation tiller which I bought in 2007 at the same time I bought my 5225 cab tractor. The Frontier is simply a rebranded Maschio tiller. Shortly after I bought my tiller my neighbor bought a Maschio reverse rotation tiller. Where we live we seem to have all the rocks left over when the earth was formed.
I can't put a number on the acres I have used my tiller on but it's a lot of them and I know my neighbor has used his tiller probably close to as much as I have used mine. Both tillers do a good job tilling especially when you turn around and 1/2 lap over your first pass. Like your video shows the reverse tine tiller does tend to carry trash in front of it including rocks. While my tiller tends to spit the trash out behind it my neighbor has to stop on occasion and clean trash out of the tines. Tomato plants, pumpkin and squash vines love to get tangled up in the reverse tine tiler while I may have a few hang in there they don't collect like the reverse tine tiller gathers them up. Small roots from bushes in newly cleared areas can be problematic also. Generally I would recommend those areas be disked before using a tiller on them. I have the luxury of having both in my equipment pool.
I have replaced a total of six tines since I have had my tiller. In talking with my neighbor he has replaced over twenty tines on his tiller and has broken several bolts which hold the tines in place. My tiller tends to ride over something before it will break anything.
Another benefit I see with the forward rotation is in dry soil conditions you get less dust thrown toward the tractor which can make breathing a little difficult if you are using an open station tractor. I have both a cab tractor and open station tractors. I prefer the cab tractor for most jobs for obvious reasons especially on breezy days. I have run my tiller behind my open station tractors including my Ford 2110 4 WD 38 HP and the tractor runs it handily with no bogging down at any time. I'm of the belief the forward rotation tillers require less HP to operate and are easier on the tractor used to run them.
Any new ground we break up up here is an occasion for a rock picking party after the soil is worked up.
 

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I haven't watched the video yet but to me the comparison would be moot. I have a forward tiller RT1157 and at this size I doubt it would make a lot of difference in my use. At the moment I am tending the gardens, not breaking new ground.
I do have a lot of experience with Tilly, my Cub Cadet forward/reverse rear tine tiller. We have churned up the gardens from scratch and uncovered a lot of rocks and buried trash from long ago. It got so we could tell the rough size and depth of a rock and if more than one just by feel. In one garden we had to haul some of the rocks out with the truck (didn't have tractor George yet).
For the walk behind tiller, initial ground breaking is best done with reverse which tends to scoop up rocks (if possible) and break the hard surface from below. Forward is best to crumble the dirt finer, push the grass and such below ground, and smooth the path. It is more likely to climb over bigger rocks but also spits out the smaller ones to the rear and sides. I have stalled out Tilly in both directions and had to replace shear bolts in the tires several times. Funny, only had to replace shear pins in the tines twice.
One odd thing I have noticed with Tilly each year. We get out all the rocks we can find with several passes in spring, then next year there is a new crop of them. Must be good rock seeds there that grow over the winter. When I make a spring pass with the RT1157 I don't find any rocks to speak of, but it is so big I can't feel them like I do with Tilly.
 
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I was going to make a post about this very topic. I have the 60" CountyLine (Tarter) for my 1r (which I love.) I immediately switched in to reverse, thinking that's what I wanted. After using it a couple of years, I decided to switch it back this past weekend. I concur with the results. I think it does a better job forward cutting up and burying the "trash", doesn't throw dirt all over the tractor (and me) and seems to take a little bit less horsepower. Overall, I'm glad I switched it back.
 

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If you have ever watched a reverse rotation tiller hit a rock or stone and try to dig under it you would understand where some of your H P is getting used up. The forward rotation tiller will tend to climb over a rock. Tillers aren't designed to be rock pickers. As far as pushing rocks ahead of the tiller with reverse rotation this might be true if you're tilling strips of 5' or less, otherwise the rocks get pushed aside the same as a forward rotation tiller would do. I'd prefer to have rocks thrown out the back than forward where they can damage something.
My first tiller was a 4' China made Reverse rotation tiller I ran behind a Ford 601 tractor. It wasn't long before I sold that tiller and bought a 4', again China made, forward rotation tiller. I could work and breathe at the same time. I used that tiller after I traded the 601 in on my Ford / NH 2110 then sold that tiller when I bought my Frontier RT1170 in 2007 the same time I bought my 5225 Cab tractor. I have never regretted buying the Frontier. If I needed a part my dealer was 2 1/2 miles away from home and if they didn't have what I needed in stock they could have it the next day. Unfortunately my dealer has recently built a new facility which is 9 miles away from home now but a neighbor and friend of mine works there so parts are delivered for the cost of a cold PBR.
 

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I admit I didnt get all the way through, so you might have answered this question.

Which didnt “ditched” less. In referring to at the end of the row when you raise the tiller, there is usually a large ditch.
I have been doing a lot of tilling lately with my forward rotating Chinese tiller. I have learned to raise and lower the tiller while I'm moving to eliminate the ditch effect.

Today I lowered the tiller on a second pass. At the end of the row the tractor started to slow and I notice the front tires spinning. I looked back and realized I forgot to engage the PTO and was just dragging the tiller along not spinning. It had a big ol pile of grass and dirt in front of it. :) I don't normally turn the PTO off when I raise and lower the tiller so after stopping for a moment it slipped my mind.
 

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Sorry. We got a bit too long winded in ‘Round #1’.
I put chapters in to allow folks To easily advance to the next rounds.

I think the ‘ditching’ you talk about is worse with reverse rotation, as not only do you have a ditch, you also have a pile of dirt in front of that.
No dont apologize, I had to go to work hahahahaha! Im the boss, and me sitting in my office watching youtube isnt the best message ha!
 

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Tilling gardens, food plots or whatever year after year you need to be aware after a while you are going to create a "Hardpan" at the bottom of where the tiller cuts from the rotating blades. This needs to be broken up so deeper rooted plants can establish roots or the plants just won't grow well if at all.
 

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Tractor George and the RT1157 make tilling the established gardens so easy. I really have to finish doing the offset right this year, needed because they added wheel spacers to accomodate snow chains but didn't resize my tiller when I bought it. If I knew then what I know now...........
If I were to till new ground here I know I will get significant rocks. I've been digging out the ones I find at the surface. The ones I call mower killers. Some start as 2" above ground and turn into 4' monsters. A little much to task a tiller with.
Don't have a plow at the moment but I do have a subsoiler. I would use it to break up the ground a bit and look for the bigger rocks. Dig out the rocks then I would till. Little walk behind Tilly is mostly in retirement now and is brought out for special needs. I would think a pass with a plow blade or something would help with roots and rock detections.
Whenever I till I go as deep as I can. May not need to every year, but it keeps the rocks down. It also spreads the compost deeper.
I have 2 acres in the back I might till if I can figure out what I might want to plant.
 

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I'd like to see a video of how both handle roots and rocks.
I don't have a video, but I can tell you how each type behaves in rocky soil or lots of roots. My experience comes with using a forward rotation tiller for about ten years, and a reverse rotation model for the last 12 years. First, with either one, you MUST have a properly functioning slip clutch in the driveline.
Rocks:
The forward rotation , when it hits a big rock, will bounce, sometimes completely out of the dirt. It may break the rock, or break it free of the surrounding dirt, or may not budge it at all. The clutch probably won't engage because the tractor is moving the same direction as the tines and the tiller will bounce out of the way. Small rocks get broken up and/or kicked out the back of the tiller, where they lay until you pick them up, or till over them again the next time around
The reverse rotation tiller hits the big rock, and will most times dislodge it. If big enough, it may jam the tines, in which case the clutch will engage to save the driveline. Stopping the tiller and disengaging the drive usually allows the rock to drop free. Small rocks tend to get herded forward to the end of the row, where they can be picked up, and you don't dig them up again next year. It's also easier to control your ground speed, because the reverse rotation tiller isn't trying to push you forward.

Roots:
Forward rotation hits the root, and either bounces over it if a large one, or cuts it if small enough, and may get caught in it, in which case the clutch saves the driveline.
Reverse rotation does pretty much the same thing, except it doesn't bounce over the root as often. Both types can wind stringy roots around their tine shaft.

Tim's video was pretty good, but with the years I've used both types, I like the reverse rotation better; it pulverizes better, IMO, because it is running counter to the direction of travel, and digs better. It's also "reprocessing" dirt it has already dug up, where the forward rotating tiller just throws it out the back. In unprepared soil that hasn't been tilled before, I don't think there's much difference between the two types, really; in a prepared plot that has been tilled yearly, the reverse till wins out. I think, because each year the ground is cleaner than the year before, of stones at least. The trash that gets pulled forward is easy to deal with, either raise the tiller and move over it at a shallower depth, or raise the rear shield and go backwards a short distance with the tiller buried. I'll not go back to a forward rotation tiller.

As far as that goes, just raise the rear shield and till in reverse, if you have a standard rotation tiller. You'll see just what a reverse rotation tiller does, but your tracks won't get covered.
 

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I have a 5-ft reverse tine tiller from woods.
I have never owned a forward time tiller except for a walk behind one which just beat you to death. Then I bought a reverse time tiller walk behind model. It works so much better than the forward one for walk behind. So that impacted my decision when I bought the 5-ft one for the tractor. It doesn't disappoint, it's eating up everything and it's path that I put it through. I live in Arkansas with lots of rocks and red clay. Never has bogged down. The reverse tine seems to pull it into the dirt and till deeper. The forward one on the tractor I don't know if it's like the walk behind one but my forward one would always bounce a lot before it dug into the ground. But I can't complain about the decision I made with the woods 5 ft reverse tine tiller. It has done everything I've asked it to do and more.

Of course I usually make two passes. I don't go down deep the first time. I only go down half the way. Then the second pass I go down deeper. But then the years after that you only have to till the first 6-in of soil you never have to go down deep again unless the soil gets compacted and doesn't drain freely.
Hope this helps with your decision.
 

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Once I have initially tilled a plot and have planted it I never deep till it again. Two to three inches deep is adequate for replanting. If you continue to till deeply all you are doing is bringing weed seed which has been buried for hundreds or thousands of years to the surface where it can germinate and grow.
My agent from our County Extension Service calls repeated deep tilling "Recreational Tilling".
 

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I was going to make a post about this very topic. I have the 60" CountyLine (Tarter) for my 1r (which I love.) I immediately switched in to reverse, thinking that's what I wanted. After using it a couple of years, I decided to switch it back this past weekend. I concur with the results. I think it does a better job forward cutting up and burying the "trash", doesn't throw dirt all over the tractor (and me) and seems to take a little bit less horsepower. Overall, I'm glad I switched it back.
How did you switch it? Take the PTO gear box apart and move the driven gear to the opposite side?
Did you have to change anything else? Tines?
 
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