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Old 12-22-2011, 09:33 AM   #1
Gardener Bob
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Default Digging in frozen ground?

Greetings,

I'm the proud new owner of a BX25 as of about 24 hours ago. SO much fun! I have some stumps I've been eager to dig out, but here in Maine the top inch or so of soil is frozen. Is it asking too much of my backhoe to deal with this layer of frozen soil? Thanks!
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Old 12-22-2011, 10:03 AM   #2
Stumpy
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Default Re: Digging in frozen ground?

Depends on how frozen it is. Try it in a spot you won't see. That itty bitty backhoe doesn't have the brute force a larger unit does so you might not be able to break through. In Alaska with several inches of permafrost they actually have to thaw the ground with heating coils before digging otherwise it's like trying to dig concrete. If it's not completely frozen, as in a little wet you oughta be able to break through it to unfrozen soil with a little effort.
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Old 12-22-2011, 11:57 AM   #3
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Default Re: Digging in frozen ground?

Im the wrong one to say, digging in something frozen adds up to getting a frozen beer mug out of the frezzer , I farm in Ca its 72 here today. be safe in the cold country.....Dan, and its time for a beer
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Old 12-22-2011, 01:38 PM   #4
hodge

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Default Re: Digging in frozen ground?

If it's only an inch or so, I can't imagine that you wouldn't be able to break through that. The only thing to do is give it a try. Either it will, or it won't- it won't hurt anything.
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Old 12-22-2011, 04:37 PM   #5
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Default Re: Digging in frozen ground?

congrats on the purchase i have about 150 hrs on mine bought in june what a nice machine stumps Hmmmm brings back lovely memories this is before and after
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Old 12-22-2011, 05:39 PM   #6
Gardener Bob
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Default Re: Digging in frozen ground?

Wow, Humpheydo, that's an inspirational before and after! Look great. And Bcbull, it's cruel to talk about 72 degrees in December (actually, we hit 50 in Maine today -- what a "winter"!). Thanks for the replies -- my backhoe can definitely cut through the frozen layer of soil, but I was afraid I might be overworking my machine. On the other hand, the guy from the dealership who delivered it said I should "drive it like I stole it", so he was encouraging me to just go for it and not baby the machine.
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Old 12-22-2011, 08:56 PM   #7
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Default Re: Digging in frozen ground?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gardener Bob View Post
On the other hand, the guy from the dealership who delivered it said I should "drive it like I stole it", so he was encouraging me to just go for it and not baby the machine.
Ummmm.....I bet if you take a look at the owners manual it says something to the effect "Treat her nice now and she will give you what you want later" There is a reason for the 50 hour service that is about the time it takes to break her in. "Drive it like you stole it" is a recipe for troubles later.
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Old 12-23-2011, 01:29 AM   #8
Stumpy
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Default Re: Digging in frozen ground?

Ahh break in on the motor, that's a different story. I have no idea I've never used a real tractor with less than three dozen seasons on it.

From what I know about breaking in engines it's a balance between generating enough cylinder pressure to seat the rings without overheating them. In a rebuilt car engine that means you idle it about 15 minutes, let it cool off, run it gently til it comes up to temperature, let it cool off, then alternate between loading it and costing or driving at low speeds (>50mph) gradually increasing the throttle setting and max rpm in different driving sessions, again letting it cool off between runs. Once you've used full throttle a few times change the oil/filter then you can drive normally up 500-1000miles with the exception that you shouldn't use the same power setting for long periods of time (don't run at the same speed on the freeway). I'll usually change the oil/filter again about this time but that's me, after this point the rings are mostly seated and overheating them is no longer easy to do. That's how I was taught to do it.

Now most auto manufactures (and motorcycle) these days do the preliminary break it at the factory so I'll seat the rings a few times myself with full throttle and then drive it upto the 500-1000 mile mark, change the oil and drive normal. Whether Kubota does that I don't know. In your shoes I'd work it a bit but take care not to let the engine run hard for longer than a couple of seconds and give it a few to cool off between loadings. That's just edjumacted guessing, someone with more direct experience will likely chime in.
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Old 12-23-2011, 04:48 AM   #9
Gardener Bob
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Default Re: Digging in frozen ground?

Great info about breaking in the engine, thanks. And yes, the manual does say to avoid running the tractor at full speed (which I assume to mean full throttle/rpms) for the first 50 hours, and to generally take it easy on the machine. So what do people do for 50 hours? Drive the tractor around the fields at different speeds until that 50 hour mark? Seems like a long time! (I understand from the manual that the investment of care during the early break-in period will result in longer/better tractor life, so I do get that. Still, 50 hours of break-in seems like a long stretch before you can do any 'real' work with the tractor!). Thanks for all the responses.

Bob
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Old 12-23-2011, 08:20 AM   #10
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Default Re: Digging in frozen ground?

GB thatís mostly product liability stuff use the damn thing work her just donít get nutz is all, and don't get cocky and try to use it beyond what it was meant for cut your grass dig your holes just work at it easy till ya get your hours up. CHANGE EVERYTHING oils, filters, EVERY THING do the front end make sure thatís drained and refilled,, and then run it like ya stole it,, ya either have a garage queen or a work horse and once you figure out how much it will do,,, Bubba you will wonder how you got along this far with out the little orange thing in the barn.

The above desecration is that of the writers opinion , and not that of the manufacturer
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