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wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 09:51 AM
Some of us look at our tractors as friends, even family. Sorta kinda like the way we look at our pets.

Others have employees. They can be like family too. But more of the in-law kind.

And tractors like pets can have distinct and unique personalities. Not unlike their owners is a common observation.

Iris my JCB 165HF is a good example.

The other day a bud came by and his dog was showing off by attempting hand stands. Bigger than heck the next day Iris tried it too.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 09:55 AM
Iris is a squatty body. Squatty bodies don't do gymnastics very gracefully. Well, they don't appear to do gymnastics gracefully.

Tigerotor77W
01-20-2005, 10:01 AM
Is that thing suck as well as tipped?

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:01 AM
Now it would have been better if she'd let me know what she had in mind before she pulled this almosto endo. One minute I'm cleaning up where the 416B had rutted up the area because it's sandy soil and the water table is about three feet down. And the next I'm laughing like crazy at her antics.

Of course inbetween the calm and the giggles was this heart in the throat and fifty year flashback event. BTW the only regrets from my recall was recent. I'm not the repenting type.

Lucky the Cat was close and after some justly deserved name calling about skid steers lent a hand.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:13 AM
I wish I could say that's the only time Iris's antics have gotten us in trouble. It isn't. But with talent comes opportunity. And with opportunity comes risk. And risk is that board you walk across to get the other side of the waterfalls for reward.

Iris likes to lift things. It's sorta like the way a retriever goes after sticks or a pit wants to hold on when in a fight.

The other day she want after a forty foot telephone pole.

Yup, standing up too.

DUSTYCEDAR
01-20-2005, 10:17 AM
funny stuff i like it more tricks :waving:

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:19 AM
She isn't stupid, just talented.

So she did wait until after the power company had removed their stuff. And she did drill a sixteen inch hole seven feet deep besides the challenging chunk of wood.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:21 AM
Biting off more than you can chew is almost as awkward as grabbing almost more than you can carry.

Even for tractor tricking one oh one.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:24 AM
The true judge of talent is when one can fix what one broke. Or put up what one took down.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:26 AM
If it was easy or simple anyone could do it. Right?

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:39 AM
I know. You're thinking it isn't fair to compare others to Iris because she's got the advantage of attachments.

You might be right. She comes into my world with only one arm and with the attitude that isn't a handicap but an advantage. That attitude is contagious.

Here all the rest of the skid steers of the world have two arms and she's got a door instead. Being old school, "you do the work with the tractor you have not the one you want" as some really stupid politician once said we adjusted to Iris's advantages.

But she does have a thing about pulling wood posts, got to be in the genes I think.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:41 AM
A wolf huffs and puffs. Iris shakes and the lifts. Nuttin' to it.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:43 AM
Ahhhh, tooth picks where an old fence once stood. And yours truly doesn't have to have a helper nor use the door.

Gotta love talent.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:47 AM
She's not a one trick pony. She really can dig being a genuine multitasker in today's single use tools going away faster'n donuts at a cop convention.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:49 AM
No.

That isn't her nose to the grindstone.

She's going after that last inch in a twenty four inch hole eleven feet deep.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:00 AM
Some people dig deep holes for their gate posts. And there's some who dig really deep holes for gate posts.

Iris is one of the latter.

Sad to say this particular post has got be pulled and replaced. A redimix truck driver did an "oops". A very very expensive "oops". Iris will there in a supervising capacity when that happens. She's smart enough to know her limits.

Here she's supervising some rock management techniques.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:04 AM
She insisted that it be done right. After all her reputation is on the line. She's going to get credit for the installation.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:09 AM
I've got to get out there and get after it. But the above samples are but a drop in Iris' bucket.


And I'll put her pound for pound against just about anything for utility and versatility. Excluding a pocket on a shirt of course.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:26 AM
Heck, time is money. At this time I'm spending both.

Iris has taken to fencing like frosting to cake. She digs the holes, hauls the concrete from the mixer to the holes, puts the concrete in the holes and helps lay out the other materials.

She's even taken to handling the wire.

Here she is loading a two hundred pound plus roll of 58" V Mesh for me.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:28 AM
She can put the wire on the inside of the fence, the outside of the fence, and she can lift it around obstacles like trees and stuff.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:30 AM
Can I take back that comment about a pocket on a shirt?

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:52 AM
When I put the post puller on her bucket the first thing she did was go play with telephone poles.

Makes it handy as heck loading them into a trailer.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:57 AM
Here's the concrete bucket waiting for the next nine cubic feet from the mixer.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:07 PM
Here's she's digging post holes.

Maybe it's time to define a post hole. One, it's wide. Two, it's deep. If it isn't the combination of those it isn't a post hole for a fence.

My standard hole is twelve inches by three and a half feet. A lot of concrete I know. But a man is known by the kind of work he does.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:13 PM
This is where we separate the men from the boys. Setting a radius for prewelded panels. This means the posts are set for spacing, height, and line, all by eye without a helper. The post closest to the camera was set the next day.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:33 PM
This is the way we usually set up. The aggregate comes as "re-mix". That's where they take concrete sand and three quarter rock and remix it before they put it in the truck for delivery.

That's a nine cubic foot mixer. They also call it a sacker. The reason they call it a sacker is you put one sack of portland cement into a mixer load. The way we do it is we put in ten gallons of water. Then we toss in a whole bag of portland, ninety four pound toss so that it breaks open on a blade in the barrel. Then using a square point we add aggregate until it gets right.

It's really a nice system. The hardest part is mixing the first load and then following it immediately with the second one. After that it's all about pacing oneself. While the second load is mixing the first one is dispensed into postholes. It usually works where a mixer load does three post holes. Then it's back to the mixer and picking up the second load. Toss in the third load and while it's mixing go dispense the second.

About every fourth load I'll sight in the posts for height and line. Posts are eight feet apart so it moves pretty quick.

I used to use wheelbarrows. That made it hard. Now I use the concrete bucket. It's a handy a tool as I've come up with. A lot of times I'll have to set up some distance away from the fence work. Tomorrow I have forty holes to do. The redimix and mixer is twelve hundred feet from the fence location. The holes will all be oversize. We've had rain and even though I pumped the water out of the holes the other day the sides still caved in a bit. So I'll go clean them out with the auger and then start setting them.

It'll be a long day for a fifty six year old. But there is the bright side. I know a lot of twenty somethings that can't do what I do. And almost as many of them that won't. So I count my blessings and reach down for a lower gear when the day gets tough.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:42 PM
Did I mention she has her own backhoe attachment.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:47 PM
In a trade I came up with an mini excavator bucket. Then I saw a picture of a skid steer digging like a hoe. One thing led to another and now she's a getter.

This is north Texas gumbo. It's like this. California's got their earthquakes to keep the weak of heart away. Midwest has their tornados. Northerners got that winter. And down on the southern coast they've got hurricanes. Here in north Texas we've got gumbo clay. And I promise you. If my ship ever comes in and doesn't destroy the harbor there will be no gumbo ports in my life.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:51 PM
Beats the heck out of a sharpshooter and a roundpoint. I've got what it takes but there's no sense in taking what I got just to get the job done.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 10:59 PM
A lot easier.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:09 PM
This is a better shot of the concrete bucket.

What's happening here is we had one survey. It didn't look right but the customer said to go ahead. Then the surveyors came back and corrected it. I had to pull posts. So instead of changing attachments I just used the concrete bucket and a chain.

It wasn't easy. Even though the concrete had been set late in the afternoon and this was early the next morning it was still tough.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:16 PM
The work is hard.

But the rewards make it all worth it.

Look down this line. It was set by eye with the posts pre notched. And the customer figured he'd lose one or both of those trees.

The fun is building the fence and using everything available to make it special. The trees become an accent instead of an obstacle.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:20 PM
Different angle and after it was welded up.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:22 PM
Iris removing overhead off of trailer.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:26 PM
Iris lifting overhead into place. The strange fella in Iris happens to be the father of my newest grandson. It's one of the miracles of nature. Grandkids coming from son in laws. Just doesn't make sense.

wroughtn_harv
01-20-2005, 11:29 PM
Then it's time for me and the hot glue gun to do our thing.

wroughtn_harv
01-21-2005, 08:52 AM
Iris getting ready to install the star stone in the overhead.

wroughtn_harv
01-21-2005, 08:54 AM
She is handy. Not only does the heavy lifting but she gives me a platform to work on.

wroughtn_harv
01-21-2005, 08:58 AM
Ah yes.

The hole in the bottom of the star is for a camera. It worked great too. That is until the concrete truck backed into the overhead taking out the stone along with the camera.

Customer was sitting in his office and watched it happen, until the camera went blank.

wroughtn_harv
01-21-2005, 09:03 AM
After some paint and camera installation.

wroughtn_harv
01-21-2005, 09:09 AM
Here's a couple of Iris's post pulling buddies. They work like a hose directing water for pulling pipe posts.

wroughtn_harv
01-21-2005, 09:12 AM
It can be like fishing. Sometimes what you're after isn't all you get.

wroughtn_harv
01-21-2005, 09:15 AM
As in fishing, to the victor goes the spoils......

jreiff
01-21-2005, 09:41 AM
Gret pics wroughtn_harv, you do great work. Love the narrating. Keep up the good work...

jreiff
01-21-2005, 09:49 AM
Would love to see more pictures if you have any. Also if you have any pictures of all of your attachments that you have and what you design and made for attachments... Thanks

wroughtn_harv
01-21-2005, 03:29 PM
Would love to see more pictures if you have any. Also if you have any pictures of all of your attachments that you have and what you design and made for attachments... Thanks

I'm glad you like the work and pictures. Since I'm a weldor and fabricator I build the stuff as I need it the way I think it should be done.

I do believe the skid steer is the greatest machine mankind has ever made.

I've got more pictures and if the moderators don't decide to toss me for talking too much with pictures we'll see about putting more up. I've been without a camera for awhile because my trusty Sony finally got fed up with being treated like a hammer or a screwdriver as the situation required. It's in the hospital and hopefully will return just as capable as before.

Thanks again for the kind words.

D Felix
01-21-2005, 03:57 PM
I've got more pictures and if the moderators don't decide to toss me for talking too muchI wouldn't worry about that too much, bobbygedd has yet to be banned, and he's said a lot more than you have!:laugh::laugh::laugh:

I enjoy the narration as well as the pics.:)


Dan

wroughtn_harv
01-21-2005, 10:03 PM
I wouldn't worry about that too much, bobbygedd has yet to be banned, and he's said a lot more than you have!:laugh::laugh::laugh:

I enjoy the narration as well as the pics.:)


Dan

But he's been here longer, right? :rolleyes:

Cruising through these forums I see a lot of young guys wanting to do things. I like that. What would be fun would be to pass on the mistakes I've made so they get to start where I've finished. No sense in them making my mistakes all over again.

I think that's the way it's supposed to be isn't it?

wroughtn_harv
01-24-2005, 10:08 PM
This weekend I helped a bud thin out a thicket next to a pond. I operated Ford 555 loader backhoe and he held on for dear life in Iris. I'd pull the trees and he'd hustle them to the brush pile. He also culled for firewood.

About lunch time yesterday he told me he wanted to light the fire. He poured diesel on it. He poured gas on it. He'd light it and it would flash up then die away. Off and on for a couple of hours he tried to get it going.

Finally I told him to let it be because it'd start up good while we were working in town today.

He called this evening. I ran out to the country to get pictures of Iris stoking the fire.

Kids. It don't matter if they're a seven year old kid steer or a forty one year old too tall. They still like playing with a fire.

wroughtn_harv
01-24-2005, 10:12 PM
That brush pile started out about the size of a tract house. At this time it was down to about the size of Cavalier with four flat tires. When the wind came up early afternoon I guess it took off. There'll probably be coals until tomorrow evening.

wroughtn_harv
01-24-2005, 10:15 PM
I finally picked up a new camera, got tired of waiting on the other one getting fixed.

Here's what's left of where the star stone used to live.

wroughtn_harv
01-24-2005, 10:17 PM
That old red i mix truck did a number on the whole thing. Note the lean.

Enough to make a grown man shake his head in disgust and bring a young man to tears.

wroughtn_harv
01-24-2005, 10:21 PM
Especially when there's this construction entrance about fifty feet away from the main entrance. It was open too. In fact about fifteen out of sixteen drivers used it that morning.

PLM-1
01-25-2005, 12:14 AM
I have had a brush pile at a house that i've been trying to get rid of for over 2 months. I have used sooo much diesel and gas i could have filled my truck up 5 times. The damn thing just won't get goin...last weekend I hauled it off...that took about forever!

wroughtn_harv
01-25-2005, 07:53 AM
It's like a poster on another site said, "diesel and a fan will burn anything."

The wind came up yesterday and that's all it took. Next time you have that situation set up a generator and a fan to turbocharge the diesel, give it some umph.

jreiff
01-25-2005, 02:50 PM
Do you have to go back and fix what the redi mix driver wrecked?

wroughtn_harv
01-25-2005, 10:26 PM
Do you have to go back and fix what the redi mix driver wrecked?

Yes.

It was a very expensive mistake they made. We've come to terms on what I'm going to do and how much it will probably cost. There will be a supplemental charge for the security company's work and we've agreed there might be an additional charge if the old posts don't come as easy or as cleanly as planned.

Since the overhead was unique there wasn't any competing bids for the repair. :rolleyes:

D Felix
01-26-2005, 02:42 PM
Next time you have that situation set up a generator and a fan to turbocharge the diesel, give it some umph.The same thing can be obtained with a leaf blower.:)

One other thing you might try is to mix your gas and diesel before dumping it on the pile. The gas burns hot and fast, the diesel burns for much longer, but takes a higher ignition temperature.

The DNR uses a ratio of 3:1 or 4:1 diesel/gas in their drip torches when they do prescription burns. Even a 1:1 would work fine for burn piles, but the higher the diesel content, the better it will get going.


Dan

Up North
01-26-2005, 04:36 PM
wroughtn_harv,
I just got done going thru all 6 pages of Iris and her accomplishments. Tell her she & her best friend made me chuckle through this entire thread. Great stuff man, that is classic.

Buck

DUSTYCEDAR
01-27-2005, 07:07 PM
U SHOULD MAKE IT INTO A KIDS BOOK
u could sell a lot of them its a good read lol
keep the pics commin

badranman
01-27-2005, 09:44 PM
Wroughtn Harv, how many hours you got on her? How's the maintenance? Loved your pictures as well as the stories behind them all.

wroughtn_harv
01-27-2005, 11:30 PM
I'm glad ya'll like Iris. She's a sweetheart.

One of the good things about life is we age. And that's a good thing. Being young is fun but it gets old.

You take Iris. She's a 98 model. I bought her as aged inventory in 01, seven hours on her clock. Now she's got nine hundred and thirty something and it surprises me. I guess my heart has her in a time lock back in 2001. Not unlike the one I share with my wife. Sometimes the love glasses will slip and out of the corner of my eye I'll see this elderly woman who looks a lot like my wife's mother. I'll do a double take and the glasses will slip back into place and it's my wife. She isn't elderly and she really doesn't favor her mother.

Iris got a workout yesterday. If you look to the left of this fence you'll see a a concrete mixer. And back about a thousand feet behind the mixer is where we, her and me, put forty posts and six plus yards of concrete yesterday afternoon.

wroughtn_harv
01-27-2005, 11:36 PM
This is the concrete bucket full of mud (concrete). It's a third of a yard. She hauled about twenty of these down from the mixer and put in the post holes.

I got to feed the mixer. That's a lot of sand and gravel to shovel into the mixer. I'm glad for square point shovels. A round point would have wore me out.

wroughtn_harv
01-27-2005, 11:39 PM
Here's what one line looked like when we started.
And yes, those posts are eight feet long. They're just playing shy right now.

wroughtn_harv
01-27-2005, 11:45 PM
And here's what it looked like when we got them all in a line and made them stand up straight and tall. The holes due to being redug after a rain were three and a half to four plus feet deep. The fence will be five and a half feet high.

The posts were notched before being placed in the holes. So when we set them we did it by eye for height and line.

wroughtn_harv
01-29-2005, 09:57 PM
This is Iris's root rake-scarifier-rippers attachment. It comes in handy when you want to cut down only so far like removing grass for a slab or you want to dig and want to loosen stuff up.

wroughtn_harv
01-29-2005, 09:59 PM
Here I was changing out a driveway and wanted to reuse the rock. They'd had a circular drive and wanted just a twenty five foot single opening.

wroughtn_harv
01-29-2005, 10:03 PM
This is after we'd excavated and placed the new culvert. Then we went after that perfectly fine gravel.

wroughtn_harv
01-29-2005, 10:06 PM
Then it was done.

And if I remember it was a single opening of forty feet. I remember them gates being on the large side.

wroughtn_harv
01-29-2005, 10:11 PM
Out in the country we build pipe fences and sometimes we put in overheads over gates.

This one is a fifteen foot high mama.

One this one I cheated. The property owner brought down his crawler for me to use as scaffolding for cutting the saddles, aka notching pipe.

He then went on about his business and we put up the pipe.

wroughtn_harv
01-29-2005, 10:15 PM
This is a lot simpler and safer than it looks.

The pipe lays across the base of the gin pole which is sitting on the fork attachment. The winch is electric and is attached to the battery on the tractor. The winch line is placed six inches off of centerline of the crosspiece. In this case it's six inch (6 5/8) pipe.

I lift the forks up.

wroughtn_harv
01-29-2005, 10:19 PM
If you noticed there was a line off to the left side. That's why the winch line is offset six inches. The line is attached to the short side.

With the forks up I can lift with the winch line via the remote in one hand and the line in the other. Using the line and the winch I can place the heavier end into it's saddle. Then I use the line and winch to place the other end in it's saddle. EEEE-HAAAH (it's all saddled up and ready to go)

wroughtn_harv
01-29-2005, 10:22 PM
Then the customer came back after lunch with his scaffolding and I sewed it up.

wroughtn_harv
01-29-2005, 10:24 PM
Scaffold at rest.

wroughtn_harv
02-02-2005, 03:09 PM
Here in norte tejas we have some miserable stuff affectionatelly referred to as "gumbo clay". It's nasty. Get it wet and it's like walking on grease. The only thing worse than that is when it's just damp. Then it's sticky you can pick up a foot in height just walking across a pasture.

When you're drilling postholes in it it tries to reconstitute itself about eighteen inches down. That is, it tries to stick to itself. If you're not careful you'll find the auger locked up and your options are either digging it out with a shovel or waiting for late summer when it's dry.

All my holes are three feet or deeper. When the clay is icky I put this hundred gallon propylene tank on top of the tractor full of water.

I've found out that a quart or so of water applied after about a foot down lubes the flights. So the auger goes straight down like warm knife through butter. Then when I pull it out the hole is clean and the clay spins off in clumps big enough to break a leg if it hits one.

That Lucy. She's not only cute, adept, and generally well mannered. She's also smarter'n a border collie hungry.

PLM-1
02-02-2005, 07:09 PM
Here in norte tejas we have some miserable stuff affectionatelly referred to as "gumbo clay". It's nasty. Get it wet and it's like walking on grease. The only thing worse than that is when it's just damp. Then it's sticky you can pick up a foot in height just walking across a pasture.

When you're drilling postholes in it it tries to reconstitute itself about eighteen inches down. That is, it tries to stick to itself. If you're not careful you'll find the auger locked up and your options are either digging it out with a shovel or waiting for late summer when it's dry.

All my holes are three feet or deeper. When the clay is icky I put this hundred gallon propylene tank on top of the tractor full of water.

I've found out that a quart or so of water applied after about a foot down lubes the flights. So the auger goes straight down like warm knife through butter. Then when I pull it out the hole is clean and the clay spins off in clumps big enough to break a leg if it hits one.

That Lucy. She's not only cute, adept, and generally well mannered. She's also smarter'n a border collie hungry.

I just noticed that Iris only has one arm...how does that work out? I'm sure line of sight is easier.