Draft Animal Power – Draft animals and sustainable land stewardship › Forum › Draft Animal Power › Working with Draft Animals › Long term goal- Finally mowing
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- June 15, 2014 at 7:58 am #83604
or barely mowing, but we got a start. I have spent 2 winters repairing this machine- a 1939 John Deere #3. With a lot of help and advice from Jay Bailey, the machine’s going pretty good. The horses don’t mind the sound too bad. We did expose them to it by driving them in the forecart while someone pulled the mower with an ATV. It seems that the draft varies in dense cutting vs light, and that’s throwing the horses off. We need to work on finding and keeping an even pace. There are lots of pastures to clip though, so practice we will get. I’m headed out in just a few minutes for some more.
It’s very satisfying to see this come together to the goal I’d set. Any advice from folks on here is greatly appreciated. It’ll be a while before I’m cutting anything as important as hay.
- This topic was modified 3 years, 8 months ago by LongViewFarm.
Attachments:You must be logged in to view attached files.June 15, 2014 at 10:01 am #83610
I can’t tell you much about the mower, but those horses look much more relaxed than the last time I saw them on a mower. Good work achieving your goal, best wishes fine tuning the team and mower. Time and steady leadership should make them a solid team to mow with.
June 16, 2014 at 6:28 am #83621
- This reply was modified 3 years, 8 months ago by dominiquer60.
Looking good Jay, this gives me inspiration to get going on mine.
EdJune 16, 2014 at 7:59 am #83625
Can I try pulling a tedder for you Ed? Something that won’t endanger your harvest?June 17, 2014 at 6:38 pm #83633
I didn’t think it was possible, but I have even more respect now than I did before for you guys who can mow well. I am glad to be practicing in the pasture. My lines look my plow furrows- crooked.
Spent 1/2 hour tonight just getting my young horse settled in to pull even with his brother, but then we cut for 4 good passes around a 6 acre field, with breaks. They were working well so we stopped on a good note. It is humid and they were sweating lots.
I wonder how best to reduce pole weight on their collars, besides me gaining weight ;). I feel the weight of the pole when hitching them, and see that it is causing pressure on the britchen at rest. I use a sidebacker harness.
I am thinking about using a D-Ring harness or trying to figure out the dolly wheel apparatus.
Any thoughts? Thanks.
Does anybody have an extra rod to hold the bar in the upright position? I’d like to find one, or I’ll make one from rebar.
Happy mowing.June 19, 2014 at 10:51 am #83638
To get some of the weight off their collars, you can hang some weight under the seat of the mower.June 19, 2014 at 10:53 am #83639
Pressure on the britchen is okay, so long as there’s no welts or chafes.June 21, 2014 at 8:11 pm #83658
I switched from a No. 9 mower with a dolly wheel to one with just a straight tongue. It seemed the mower was designed to not need the extra wheel, so I thought I’d give it a try. Lynn Miller in his hay mower book said tongue weight should be minimal if it’s set up properly. After mowing for 8 acres or so this summer one horse developed a sore on top of her neck. I considered going back to the dolly wheel setup, but then decided to try adding weight to the seat instead. I attached a 40 pound weight, which was actually a small flywheel from an old bale thrower that I’d been storing for years for some unknown reason, to the bottom of the seat. I had to extend the seat support to the rear to make room for it. Now when the horses are mowing, since the doubletree is below the tongue, the upward force takes almost all the weight off their necks. The tongue nearly floats in the neck-yoke ring. I weigh 145 pounds, so the mower must be designed for someone in the 185 pound range for it to work right. You need a weight to match the operator. I suppose if you’re heavier than 185 pounds, you could add weight to the tongue. Anyway, the weight is cheaper than a dolly wheel. One added benefit is that the mower is more pleasant to ride on this way. You avoid the sudden lurches caused by that little wheel falling into a hole or hitting a rock. I think I’ve attached a picture of the weight.
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