Some years we have no other choice but to do tillage even when it’s wet. Having mud build up on the tractor tires is more than just frustrating—it can damage the rubber. When the mud between the tires and cab dries, it digs grooves in the tire sidewalls. I fabricated scrapers from 3⁄16" iron and secured them with self-tapping screws on the tractor in such a place that as the tire rotates, the scrapers knock off the mud.
Street Sweeper Scratch Bar
Every spring, when cattle start to shed their winter coats, they ruin the barbed-wire fence from scratching themselves. To build a dedicated scratch post, I picked up a discarded street sweeper brush at auction. I mounted it at an angle so when the cows and calves walk underneath, it not only makes contact with their backs but also their sides and heads. The wooden post that runs through the sweeper brush was a discarded support from an old pole building. To keep the scratching post stationary, I weigh down the frame with two large concrete blocks so not even the strongest bull can budge it.
Replacing and repairing the tires on our center pivots requires a lot of time and is hard on my back. Lifting each tire up in the back of the pickup is now easier with a pipe extension. I slipped a 2" pipe cut 2' long into the receiver hitch to help me easily roll the tire up onto the hitch extender and then into the truck bed. When I’m done, I just pull out the pipe and throw it in the truck bed until it’s needed again.
- Mid-February 2011