Monday, July 6, 2015

An Odds and Ends Day

It's been threatening to rain all day, so far it hasn't which is just fine by me but the temps have been climbing pretty much all day too as whatever storm is coming get's closer. I really should have started my mowing cycle again but I just knew once I did it would start raining so instead I went and looked at an old used hay rake I saw advertised.

I did manage to get an after picture of Garden Hive Row today though.

As you can see I added new brood chambers to the first three hives, moved the fourth Nuc up to a full hive and added a brood chamber to the second from the last hive. I also put a top entrance cover on the first hive and was going to add a pollen trap to the second hive but decided not to. There really isn't a whole lot of pollen coming in right now anyway.

After sneaking out to take the picture I headed off to take a look at the hay rake and ended up buying the thing. It's an old 60's era Ford ground driven model with the long round rubber belt. Some like that type, some don't, but I priced the belts and they are cheaper than new chain drives or gear boxes. I wouldn't say I got a deal on it as most of them I saw being sold online were about the same price but used hay rakes in Missouri are usually 25 to 50% higher here for some reason.

What sold me on it was the belt showed no wear at all and there was very little surface rust on the thing. The guy selling it said he has always had it in the shed and replaced the belt only two years ago. No weather cracks on the tires and all the pulleys and such worked along with all the teeth appeared almost new. My research says these rakes can have problems with extremely thick, wet hay but ours isn't all that wet usually. Except this year :)

Of course now I have to tow the thing behind my truck about 25 miles to get it home tomorrow morning. The tires on it looked good but my biggest fear is going to be a blow out between there and here on the trip back. That and I have to pass across a couple of narrow bridges on the way and go through a fairly large town as well. I am going to try and time it so I pass through after morning rush hour and before traffic starts to pick up at around 11AM. The narrow bridges and a blow out will be on my mind the whole trip. I plan on keeping my road speed under 40 or 45 MPH so it should take me about an hour to get her home with plenty of time built into that for waiting on traffic and that sort of thing.

Still I am going to be a nervous wreck until I get it here.

I will take some pics of the thing tomorrow.

Keep Prepping Everyone!!!!!


  1. Sounds like you got a pretty good deal. Good luck on the drive home!

    1. RP - Well I picked it up for 500. Most of the ones I saw on auction ont he internet were around that price up to 900 bucks. Here in Missouri though even old beatup rakes seem to go for 600+ so I am ok with the price. Not a great deal but fair for both of us I think.

  2. You will be fine but I am keeping things crossed for you, your hives are looking really good, need to go and see to ours but the weather hasnt been playing ball :-)

    1. Down - Thanks for your kind words and crossed fingers!!! It worked!!!

      I had one little scare at an off ramp with traffic trying to merge while both lanes were filled but otherwise no really frightening incidents :)

  3. PP,

    It sounds to me like you did find a good deal with the belt look really good and very little rust. Do you have a trailer you can use instead of towing it?
    Be safe and careful towing when towing. Drive slower than usual too!!!

    1. Sandy - No I don't have a trailer wide enough for it nor do I have a tractor big enough to get it off the trailer when I get it home. It's actually much heavier than I thought a rake would be. It's also about a foot wider than my truck so a trailer it was on would need a wide load sign.

      I got her home. Drove about 35 MPH the whole way and timed it right so there wasn't much traffic.


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