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We have been offered some 3x4x6 foot bales of excellent hay. He was unable to sell them due to their size, and has offered to give them to us. We would love to take them. He can load them into our truck, and we can *probably* get them out, but then what? Like everyone that wouldn't buy them, we don't have a tractor to move them around or lift them. Is there another way? We currently roll large rounds (for cows) by hand, onto the stone boat, and then the horses pull it to where we want it, then we roll it off. We use small squares for horses. I can't roll a large square. I'm wondering if it's worth the effort to just break them up piece wise to load? Thoughts?

NoraWI says 2015-11-30 07:10:01 (CST)

My pasture renter brought me some of those huge square bales last year. Even the slices were too big and too heavy and almost impossible to feed out. He brought them to me on a flatbed along with his own skidsteer, which he used to load them into my barn atop some pallets. I was glad when that hay ran out. One suggestion someone gave me was to chainsaw the bales in half. The big squares are held by 4 very long strings and cutting the bales between strings in half should yield slices only half the size. Haven't done that and still see the difficulty of moving them for you. Also see the danger of fire from a spark while chainsawing.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Klaus Karbaumer says 2015-11-30 08:01:00 (CST)

I move large round bales by slinging a chain around them and with the team pull them wherever I want them. Should work with square bales, too, especially if you wait till you have some snow or at least frozen ground.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

vince mautino says 2015-11-30 09:26:55 (CST)

Why not rent a skid loader or fork lift with forks on it. The forks are not as handy as hay spears, but it will get the job done. Since the hay is free, it would be worth $100 for the rental.
Around here, that would be the cost of one bale.

I buy 3x3 x8 ft bales and a friend brings his skid loader over to off load them. This year I borrowed a neighbors tractor but it could only move one at a time.

I use a 22' bar on my chain saw after I have the big bales in my barn to cut them long ways so I can feed easier. The 36" x 18" x 3-4' flake is just right for one feeding for each of my mules.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Todd NE WY says 2015-11-30 12:11:25 (CST)

Might have to get creative. If you have a flatbed trailer or truck and he will load them, have him load them on top of about 4 round posts laid across the flatbed, once you get them home just use the horses to pull them off. You might not get them exactly where you want them but then you can pull them with the horses or break them up and feed them that way. If it is really good hay its worth the effort to figure out how to get it home. If I can get good hay all I use is the 3X3X8 or 3X4X8's. Around here I haven't been able to find good quality round bales and I am too old for 20 tons of small squares.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Klaus Karbaumer says 2015-11-30 12:18:52 (CST)

Nora, I cut big round bales last winter with the chainsaw into pie slices without any problems. Had to remove the shield, though, to avoid plugging.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

So. Oh. Bill says 2015-11-30 13:28:54 (CST)

I would be hard pressed to turn down good hay at those prices!!! If you have some round post or poles, Lay some boards across them and drop the bales on that, then try pulling the bales onto your stone boat. It's time to do some creative thinking. It's hard to beat FREE !!! What's life without a challenge?

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Wes Lupher says 2015-11-30 19:35:11 (CST)

Just put a stout rope or chain around and pull them off. If it's a long drop use a ramp. Should only weigh 5-600# so a single would work.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

vince mautino says 2015-11-30 21:39:56 (CST)

I have probably cut at least 200 each 3x3x8 bales with a chain saw without problems. I guess a spark could happen, but so far I sure haven't seen it.

If a 73 old gimpy cripple can move a 36' x18"x 4" flake, I am sure you can. When I am out of town hunting, I set them out and my wife forks them in and she don't weigh but a 100 pounds I bet.

I can skid 3x3's around with my little Ford *N , but it works at it . They run about 800 pounds so they are a little harder to move than round bales

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

K.C. Fox says 2015-11-30 23:02:06 (CST)

I would use a team or single to roll them onto the stone boat, just hook a chain over the other side of the bale. use a big pin or big hook to hook the chain to. Harder to describe than to do. For the price of the hay I wouldn't turn it down . As others said you could saw them length wise, Ive sawed several round bales into quarters have not started a fire yet, If you saw you need to remove the cover to prevent plugging the saw. Have fun whatever you do

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Dan in Illinois says 2015-12-01 12:08:45 (CST)

If you have 3 horses roll off with 1 and pull with the team near feeding area. Free hay could afford cheap tarp to cover . Or better yet hook me up with free hay (Joke).

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Jonathan Shively says 2015-12-01 12:45:59 (CST)

Quality hay, free, I'd be done already getting it! Is part of the problem you can't figure out how to get it in the haymow? Worst case scenario, get some pallets, pull them off of the truck onto the pallets. I used the team to pull them off of my trailer one year when I couldn't find anything else. Then throw a tarp or two over them and tie it down securely. Feed these bales first. Open a bale and put the big flakes on your mud boat and get them to the barn. If you have a lower haymow, back up to it and cut the bale and throw/drag/push/pull the flakes into the mow. Do you need to take all of them at one time? If not, get one in your stock trailer (if you have one) and then feed out of that. Plenty of ways if you want to do a little different work. Now if it is marginal hay, it might not be worth the effort.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

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