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3 years ago

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We need to build some improvements on our land and pastures, and I could use some work for the team. I do not have a tractor or skid steer, so if I can use the team, it means I don't have to hire the jobs done. One of the big projects is dragging the earth around and building up some berms and swales. Is there any way horses can do this? I have a forecart with a plow blade, and I have a toothed grader that rips into about anything (down a few inches at a time anyway). I'm just trying to get creative here, and thought I would check with you all.

vince mautino says 2015-12-30 12:01:21 (CST)

They can sure do the work. It would be easier if you had what we refer to as a tumble bucket ( others might have different name for it). It is a scoop type affair that digs the dirt . Then you drag it to your destination and it tips over front wards to dump the dirt. What you have now will not dig dirt to any amount. mostly just scrape the top off. Some type of plow or middle buster would help in breaking up the soil first.

There are various sizes and shapes,but they look some thing like this. UNCLE JOE's NOTE: Vince posted some links to photobucket in the manner we used to do with the old site. It won't work like that here. On the new site, you can just upload them with your message. Joe

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Uncle Joe says 2015-12-30 14:25:36 (CST)

Here are a couple scrapers that we featured in the December 2014/January 2015 issue of RH. I don't know if they are like what Vince was talking about.


3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

vince mautino says 2015-12-30 16:40:03 (CST)

The one I tried to post was about the same, maybe older ,or a different model, but they did the same.

With that plow behind the forecart you have, you should be able to bust up the dirt and move it, if you can find oneof these

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Neal in Iowa says 2015-12-30 22:21:34 (CST)

Depending on how far you need to move soil, you might be able to modify the grader into a box scraper. Remove the teeth and add sides on both ends and maybe a top. This will move soil a short way and works for leveling than the plain grader blade.

Multiple passes with a plow can build a berm or a road (lots of passes for a road. There are several videos on utube. If I can find the pamphlet SCS put out in the late 30's or early 40's on-line I will post that link.


3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Redgate says 2015-12-31 08:51:38 (CST)

It sounds like the best approach for us might be to use a sulky plow to loosen up the hard clay soils around the pasture, and then maybe I could use the regular plow blade (like for plowing snow) to move the loosened soil down the row, depositing as I go. That almost seems too simple.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

vince mautino says 2015-12-31 08:54:16 (CST)

Would there be a possibility of renting a box scraper to pull be hind the forecart you have.Usually they hook to a three pointhitch,but a little bit of ingenuity could have it hooked to thef orecart if you have some steel and a welder.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Dan in Illinois says 2015-12-31 18:47:41 (CST)

I have a slip scraper like Vinces photo. They were used in years past for all kinds of excavating. Several basements and ditches dug in this area with one of these. Mine can be for sale.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Redgate says 2015-12-31 20:42:17 (CST)

Vince, we don't weld yet, so anything with a 3 point hitch won't work around at this time. It's a in the future plans. Dan, I might be interested. E-mail me some details, and where exactly you are in IL. Maybe when our flood waters recede a bit, we can pursue buying yours. I'd be interested in photos, dimensions, etc. Send to

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

Dan in Illinois says 2016-01-01 20:22:23 (CST)

I will try to get photos tomorrow and measure it.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

K.C. Fox says 2016-01-02 11:35:34 (CST)

Yes it is all possible It takes a lot of time, compared to hiring it done with a machine it cost alot of money. With a team it takes time and horse feed your labor. The 2 pictures show a team of mules with a Fresno, a team of horses with what we called a slip. dams have been built wit ether one of those and time. your team will be better for all the use & you will be in better physical for doing the work of following them at work. I have a 1 yard scraper on rubber that hook's behind a hydraulic forecart. and one on steel that is manually operated. If you do the work take plenty of pictures as all of us on here would like to see them. Mabie there are some more people in your area that would like to help you with there teams if they knew about what you are going to do, like a work day in the dirt?

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

K.C. Fox says 2016-01-03 23:18:59 (CST)

I forgot to tell you to try this. I didn't think anyone in this area would want to work teams. Told one or two people about having a hay day they talked to others and I found out there is 5 or more that would bring teams. I don't know how many would come just to watch now I will have to try an put the day together there waiting on me to do a hay day this summer. So if you talk to some people you might get some help kind of like a picnic work day. It is worth a try what can you loose? nothing ventured nothing gained might find friends you never knew that you had.

3 years ago via Forums | Front Porch Forum

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