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Posted: 5/18/2005 5:34:12 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/21/2005 4:54:08 PM EDT by Blue84S10]
I'm looking to rototill my back yard and I don't want to rent one because I have family that could use it too. I see a bunch of them for sale locally for under $100. I'm planning on picking something up that is at least 5hp. I looked at one today that was real clean and was practically brand new but it was 3hp. I had to pass because I think it may be too small. My back yard isnt big but the dirt SUCKS. It's real hard clay. Would a 3hp motor be too small or should I keep looking for something bigger?
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 5:36:22 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 5:39:16 PM EDT
I've got a 5 hp front tine - It takes a while to get to full depth in clay. IMHO go for 5 or larger - and if you can go rear tine it will be nicer in the long haul. We do the family share thing here - so it gets plenty of use each season and it's going on 30 years old Buy a reputable brand name not one of the WalMart store brands or what not.

Good luck!
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 5:41:06 PM EDT
rear tine reverse rotation. any thing smaller is just for light garden use
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 5:42:14 PM EDT
I'm not sure I understand the definition of a rototiller...but I purchased an Echo TC-210 Tiller/Cultivator last month. It has a 2 stroke 21.2cc engine.

We have a small backyard that needs some frequent tilling to loosen up the soil so the grass runners will start rooting. It's small, but powerful. My wife loves the little Echo, it's easy for her to use.

I think the little tiller will chew up the clay soil in your yard. Good luck!
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 5:45:24 PM EDT
3 HP? Forget it. Get at least an 8 to 10 HP REAR TINE tiller, don't touch a front tine as they are crap and will beat the hell out of you. I use a 60s? Arians Rocket, with an 8HP [original was a 7 HP now rebuilt] even troy bilts look like toys next to the "beast" I can run it with one finger as it is counterweighted in the front.
Anyways get a good rear tine, and make sure the tines are reasonably sharp, if they are dull it will be more work. Run over it several times, each time going a bit deeper. You'll do a better job.
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 5:52:44 PM EDT
If you cheap out you will be sorry.
Rent or buy a
good one or have someone till the plot
for you.
I've done a quarter acre garden plus other
odd tilling jobs for (19) years. Good equipment
is essential.
I use and recommend TroyBilt. You can't get a
better walk behind tiller.
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 5:54:12 PM EDT
Even those little Mantis ones beat the piss out of you..
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 5:58:54 PM EDT
My dad has an 8hp tiller but he lent it to a friend and that friend died. He's too afraid to call the guys wife to ask for it back. I wonder if I should just go over there and talk with her. Damnit I hate yard work.
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 6:01:56 PM EDT

Originally Posted By gmtmaster:
Even those little Mantis ones beat the piss out of you..



+1

Check Out Troy Built. New or good used.

Ours is 20+ years old.

Danny
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 6:02:51 PM EDT
If you have clay you're in for a workout. They recommend rear tine and I'd go over 5hp.
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 6:05:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By nightstalker:
If you have clay you're in for a workout. They recommend rear tine and I'd go over 5hp.


Eh I do manual labor for a living I'm not worried about the work out. I'm just tired of walking around on dirt and mud back there I want some damned grass!
Link Posted: 5/18/2005 6:19:17 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:

Originally Posted By nightstalker:
If you have clay you're in for a workout. They recommend rear tine and I'd go over 5hp.


Eh I do manual labor for a living I'm not worried about the work out. I'm just tired of walking around on dirt and mud back there I want some damned grass!



Know anyone who has a tractor mounted 3-point hitch tiller? A friend of a friend? They could come and break it up and be gone with little cost. If you know someone.

Danny

Link Posted: 5/18/2005 6:30:57 PM EDT
I use to roto my father's property when I was a teenager. It was mostly adobe clay and it was tough with a 12hp tiller. Very tough for the first couple of years until the soil is worked. I strongly recommend that you hire a pro with a tractor for the first few times. Unless, of course, you have some teenage boys
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 4:22:10 PM EDT
This blows, I went to a lawnmower shop and picked up a real clean Craftsman with a 5hp Briggs front tine tiller for $175. Guy at the shop fired it up, and it started first pull and didn't smoke at all. Ran real nice. So I get home, fire the fucker up and run it for no more than a minute in a half two minutes tops and the thing makes this ticking noise for about 3 seconds and I reach over to shut it off and the damned thing beat me to it. So I call the guy at the shop and he was real apologetic about the whole thing and said he'd take care of it. So tomorrow I've got to drive 150+ miles round trip to get this taken care of. Why isn't anything ever easy?
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 4:27:48 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:
This blows, I went to a lawnmower shop and picked up a real clean Craftsman with a 5hp Briggs front tine tiller for $175. Guy at the shop fired it up, and it started first pull and didn't smoke at all. Ran real nice. So I get home, fire the fucker up and run it for no more than a minute in a half two minutes tops and the thing makes this ticking noise for about 3 seconds and I reach over to shut it off and the damned thing beat me to it. So I call the guy at the shop and he was real apologetic about the whole thing and said he'd take care of it. So tomorrow I've got to drive 150+ miles round trip to get this taken care of. Why isn't anything ever easy?


Yeah, it didn't smoke cause there was not any oil in it.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 4:29:40 PM EDT

Originally Posted By fxntime:

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:
This blows, I went to a lawnmower shop and picked up a real clean Craftsman with a 5hp Briggs front tine tiller for $175. Guy at the shop fired it up, and it started first pull and didn't smoke at all. Ran real nice. So I get home, fire the fucker up and run it for no more than a minute in a half two minutes tops and the thing makes this ticking noise for about 3 seconds and I reach over to shut it off and the damned thing beat me to it. So I call the guy at the shop and he was real apologetic about the whole thing and said he'd take care of it. So tomorrow I've got to drive 150+ miles round trip to get this taken care of. Why isn't anything ever easy?


Yeah, it didn't smoke cause there was not any oil in it.



That's what I'm thinking. There's no dipstick on it but I did open up the oil fill plug and put my finger in it. I had to lean it back to get any oil on my finger. I'm betting it was just real low and thats why it fried. I didn't even think to check the oil because I bought it from a legit shop and not just some guys garage.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 4:39:47 PM EDT
Sorry to hear about your misfortune.

I rototill, plow snow, blow snow and cut the lawn with a 1971 Gravely Commercial 12 and various attachments. A nice one can be expensive but it's a lot less than having an engine driven machine for each task. A Gravely also consolidates your maintenance...if you've tuned up and changed the oil in your lawnmower you've also done most of the work on your rototiller, snowblower, etc.

Ebay is great for looking at the different models and attachments.

This is what it looks like as a moster tiller <rotoary plow>.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 4:53:43 PM EDT
Well its pretty bad, here's the damage
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 4:59:57 PM EDT
Looks like the rod or crank bearing gave way and busted the caseing. Sucks, hopefully they will take care of you...
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 5:02:27 PM EDT
Nice con rod. Sell it on E bay as slightly used.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 5:05:46 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:
Well its pretty bad, here's the damage www.regionofdoomforum.com/Upload/userfiles/blue84s10/karl%20work%20038.jpg?PHPSESSID=a1b8284a2cd54ecbefbab43910d54cc9



Ouch...
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 5:07:44 PM EDT

Originally Posted By IamtheNRA:

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:
Well its pretty bad, here's the damage www.regionofdoomforum.com/Upload/userfiles/blue84s10/karl%20work%20038.jpg?PHPSESSID=a1b8284a2cd54ecbefbab43910d54cc9



Ouch...



YUP. I was stoked about tillin up the whole back yard till this happend
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 5:14:40 PM EDT
These things don't have gear oil anywhere in them do they? I went up to take a close look of that hole in the front of it and it stinks BAD of gear oil right where the rod went thru the case.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 5:17:07 PM EDT
I've been wanting one for awhile. I have an acre I want to plow up, kinda rocky though.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 5:36:03 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 5:47:14 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:
These things don't have gear oil anywhere in them do they? I went up to take a close look of that hole in the front of it and it stinks BAD of gear oil right where the rod went thru the case.


Nope, no gear oil at all. What you are probably smelling is burnt oil and overheated metal. Hate to say it but a old trick was to put just a small amount of oil in the case when the engine rings were gone so it would not smoke. Sell it fast and make dumb if it blew. Some DID mix a bit of gear oil in as it was a lot thicker and would not mist as much. People do not sell tillers and such usually unless something is wrong. BTW Craftsman tillers are pretty poor quality as are most of their gasoline using products.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 7:16:28 PM EDT

Originally Posted By fxntime:

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:
These things don't have gear oil anywhere in them do they? I went up to take a close look of that hole in the front of it and it stinks BAD of gear oil right where the rod went thru the case.


Nope, no gear oil at all. What you are probably smelling is burnt oil and overheated metal. Hate to say it but a old trick was to put just a small amount of oil in the case when the engine rings were gone so it would not smoke. Sell it fast and make dumb if it blew. Some DID mix a bit of gear oil in as it was a lot thicker and would not mist as much. People do not sell tillers and such usually unless something is wrong. BTW Craftsman tillers are pretty poor quality as are most of their gasoline using products.



I'm pretty sure this one might have a separate case with gear oil in it. It's got a drain plug in the front and back, and its got an oil filler in the front, and back. The oil in the rear is regular motor oil and the stuff in the front is gear oil. It's weird cause its just one whole case thats got two separate oil reserves in it and doesnt look like anything else hooks up to it.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 8:09:26 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:

Originally Posted By fxntime:

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:
These things don't have gear oil anywhere in them do they? I went up to take a close look of that hole in the front of it and it stinks BAD of gear oil right where the rod went thru the case.


Nope, no gear oil at all. What you are probably smelling is burnt oil and overheated metal. Hate to say it but a old trick was to put just a small amount of oil in the case when the engine rings were gone so it would not smoke. Sell it fast and make dumb if it blew. Some DID mix a bit of gear oil in as it was a lot thicker and would not mist as much. People do not sell tillers and such usually unless something is wrong. BTW Craftsman tillers are pretty poor quality as are most of their gasoline using products.



I'm pretty sure this one might have a separate case with gear oil in it. It's got a drain plug in the front and back, and its got an oil filler in the front, and back. The oil in the rear is regular motor oil and the stuff in the front is gear oil. It's weird cause its just one whole case thats got two separate oil reserves in it and doesnt look like anything else hooks up to it.


That does not sound right. If it is the engine case and not part of the tine drive there should be NO gear oil in the motor anywhere. Lots of small engines have 2 drains and 2 fillers, it is a lot easier and cheaper to make one block that will work/fit in as many configurations as possible. Does the tiller have a belt drive that runs off a pulley mounted on the crank? If so no gear oil should be present, the lower unit should be a seperate unit altogether.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 8:23:18 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/21/2005 8:29:25 PM EDT by Jerret]
*mess up
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 8:28:23 PM EDT

BTW Craftsman tillers are pretty poor quality as are most of their gasoline using products.


Ours still runs but barely. It's over 15 years old used each year. It smokes pretty good, keeps the flies away. I wouldnt buy one personally, though ours has lasted way beyond expectations. For a tiller there's these Italian made ones that are blue color, I think the company is BCS. They can take other attachments. Pretty damn nice casted parts instead of stamped liek the troy-bilts.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 10:30:34 PM EDT

Originally Posted By fxntime:
That does not sound right. If it is the engine case and not part of the tine drive there should be NO gear oil in the motor anywhere. Lots of small engines have 2 drains and 2 fillers, it is a lot easier and cheaper to make one block that will work/fit in as many configurations as possible. Does the tiller have a belt drive that runs off a pulley mounted on the crank? If so no gear oil should be present, the lower unit should be a seperate unit altogether.


I don't know, I double checked and one sump has regular motor oil in it and the other one has gear oil in it. It's not mixed together anywhere.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 10:55:17 PM EDT
I got a Troybilt Super Bronco a year ago.
They don't call it a super bronco for nuthin. If I hit a rock, it picks the wheels off the ground and heads straight into the air. Power enough, but you need to be sure you don't set the tines too deep.
Link Posted: 5/21/2005 11:01:51 PM EDT
Here you go:



Link Posted: 5/22/2005 2:13:32 PM EDT
Well, I got my money back but not without him giving me some shit. Oh well I'm just happy that I lost out on only a tank of gas and not a whole tiller.
Link Posted: 5/22/2005 4:27:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Blue84S10:
I'm looking to rototill my back yard and I don't want to rent one because I have family that could use it too. I see a bunch of them for sale locally for under $100. I'm planning on picking something up that is at least 5hp. I looked at one today that was real clean and was practically brand new but it was 3hp. I had to pass because I think it may be too small. My back yard isnt big but the dirt SUCKS. It's real hard clay. Would a 3hp motor be too small or should I keep looking for something bigger?




You do not necessarily need a rototiller, you need TOPSOIL. If as you say it is nothing but clay, tilling it up will not get things to grow. It will eventually revert back to what you have now, hard clay. I know, I am in the construction business and deal with clay on a daily basis. You need ORGANIC material to get things to grow and clay ain't it. Clay does not hold moisture and compacts too easily and will not support anything growing on it unless you keep it watered and fertilized continually. Find some topsoil and add at least 4"-6" and then you can think of growing some grass or whatever.
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