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Close Call: lesson well learned
#53593 04/29/05 09:50 PM
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Today I rented a Bobcat front loader for some pond remedial work from my neighbor, and it nearly ended in disaster. I was filling in some low areas on my newly built dikes when I started to sink in near the water's edge with a full load of fill in the bucket. The frontloader started to tilt to the water and I was stuck and couldn't back out. I got out and commenced to unload the bucket with a shovel to reduce the weight. I got back on but only dug in deeper as I tried to back out.

I called the neighbor over who drives truck for a living and is one of those guys that can do anything with heavy equipement including repair it himself. The first words out of his mouth were "holy -hit" you really are stuck. Anyway he pushed down with the bucket and was able to back out somewhat only to have the frontloader almost tip into the steepsided pond. It was really, really close! One more inch in the direction of the water and he would have tipped in.

My pond bank has a steeper grade than 1:1 (the heavy clay can hold it), and if he would have tipped into the water he and the frontloader would have been headed to 10 feet of water really fast! Can you imagine having a bar holding you in with a seatbelt, and on top of that you could be pinned by the frontloader underwater in mud?

I can assure you once he was safely out of there I praised the Lord. The Lord was with us today! I told my neighbor I was going back to using a wheelbarrel and to take the frontloader back and I paid him for the time I used and more. Yikes!

I now respect equipment and the danger it can put you in more than ever. If I have to haul 40 wheelbarrel loads to the ponds edge I would rather do that! No more monkeying around steep pond banks with a front loader! \:o

Please be careful out there with heavy equipment. If it seems like it could be dangerous it probably is!


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53594 04/30/05 04:17 AM
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Cecil, I've pulled dumb stunts like that on too many occasions. I almost learned the hard (lethal and permanent) way why tractors with front end loaders need liquid in the rear wheels and 4 wheel drive. Some of the stuff I've done with boats and motorcycles should make me uninsurable. Guys like you and me are why insurance premiums are so expensive. I won't even go into how much fun I've had by playing with horses, bulls, rattlesnakes and narrow minded goats.
However, I think I've learned more by sheer terror than by reading the owners manual. BTW, if you think bobcats are dangerous, don't ever get sideways with a woman and her lawyer.

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53595 04/30/05 05:10 AM
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Dave,

Well than knock it off! Your posts are too valuable to have you no longer post here! ;\)

I've heard about women and divorce lawyers and hope I never have to deal with that. My wife says I'm "stuck" with her and I tell her no, it's the other way around -- she's "stuck" with me. Hope it always stays that way.


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53596 04/30/05 05:22 AM
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Glad you're both OK.

My wife bought me a sickle bar mower for the tractor over the Winter so I "can mow around that damn pond without getting so close to the water!"

I think I'll go give her a hug.


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
[Linked Image from i582.photobucket.com]
Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53597 04/30/05 06:34 AM
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Hey Cecil, I'm not talking about my present wife but the entry level one that I started out with.

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53598 04/30/05 07:47 AM
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Man, Cecil!! Glad you're OK. If you would've broken your back you would have had to hire me to sample your perch through the ice next winter. ;\)


Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.
Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53599 04/30/05 08:33 AM
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Bruce,

I think it would have been more serious than that. You could have bought the farm for a secondary operation after I "bought the farm."

If you want to come out this way this winter and sample the perch you're welcome to.


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53600 04/30/05 08:42 AM
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Seriously...my neighbor just offered to let me use his front-end loader and I (inexperienced as I am) told him I'd take him up on it.

You just changed my mind.


Holding a redear sunfish is like running with scissors.
Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53601 04/30/05 06:30 PM
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Be careful! I found out the hard way that tractors and bobcats don't float. Got a rented tractor stuck twice ( over the axle ) and a rented bobcat stuck once. Luck for me my father-in-law has a tracked-loader. On the positive side, digging out the tractor kind of forced me to enlarge the pond, what with the 10' wide by 100' trench he had to excavate to reach the tractor.

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53602 04/30/05 08:16 PM
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"entry level wife".... that's funny...cracked me up.

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53603 05/02/05 06:49 AM
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Cecil,

With a small dozer and a back-hoe/front-end loader and an engineer's mentality ( I can do anything), I've had a number of close calls also. One of them was very similar to yours. However, we press on...and try to minimize the risks, realize they can never be eliminated, but don't let 'em stop you.

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53604 05/02/05 07:05 AM
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Cecil:

Right on, I hear ya......I've been placing nearly 400 tonnes of rip rap rock along the east shoreline the last 2 years with a wheel barrow along the waters edge for the same reason. However, I'm will trade by loader tractor for a skidsteer hopefully later this spring to continue with my less aggressive slope along the lake and the back of the house creating my lined koi ponds and streambeds circulating back into the lake. Safety is paramount for us all..........

Rowly

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53605 05/02/05 07:37 AM
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THEO.WERE DID YOU GET SICKLE AND HOW MUCH DO THEY COST.I'M IN BAD NEW OF ONE,BANKS ON MY POND ARE WAY TO BAD.I'VE LOOKED FOR THEM AND CANNOT FIND.

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53606 05/02/05 08:48 AM
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Fish:

The Missus picked up the sickle bar off a friend of the family who was moving to a bigger farm half a county away and gave her first refusal on everything he wasn't taking with him before he held his farm sale. She got the "cousin" price of $250 for the sickle bar (with some extra parts-teeth and bars) and a spike-toothed harrow.

I believe new sickle bars have been OSHA'd to death (PTO shafts AND exposed teeth) and you will have to try to find one from a farm sale or used equipment dealer. My wife and our friend based the price on this one from the range of used sickle bar prices given by a local dealer ($300 - $600).


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
[Linked Image from i582.photobucket.com]
Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53607 05/04/05 05:37 AM
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And then there was the day I drove a tractor across a rain soaked pressure treated wood bridge. The problem was that the disk was loaded with mud, the front end was light, and the front wheels would not bite the wet wood as I tried to correct my direction. The front end went off the side of the bridge, and so did I. Ended up in the creek, with the tractor wedged over the top of me.

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53608 05/04/05 05:45 AM
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Read this yesterday and chuckled about what I have done in the past and so last night I'm cutting a high bank with the box blade and looked to see what the dog was barking at sure enough put the front wheel over the edge and right into the muck! Oh well thank goodness for the 4X4 and a come-a-long to get it back out.

Bob

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53609 05/04/05 06:23 AM
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Cecil,

Glad you're ok. You have taken the first step to becoming an "operator". I know the nauseated feeling that you had, have had it a couple times myself. Like the time I almost drove my excavator under the power lines with the boom up. Or the time I accidentally engaged the dozer while standing on the track (can you say treadmill?). Haven't repeated either mistake, but I wonder what's next.

Don't stop now, a few more close calls and you'll really be dangerous. \:D

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53610 05/04/05 11:31 AM
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I dumped my brand new Kabota tractor into a pond I was cleaning out. Lucky for both of us it was dry. After a lot of laughter the tractor store told me I should have jumped off the opposite way of the roll. Good advice.

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53611 05/04/05 03:55 PM
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Gosh Stony don't leave us hanging! Obviously you got out but how did you get out? Did you need help or were you not pinned bad enough to get our by yourself? Did you get hurt?


If pigs could fly bacon would be harder to come by and there would be a lot of damaged trees.






Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53612 05/04/05 06:47 PM
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Stony wins for the scariest situation in my mind. A guy about a mile away from me lost it last year, bush-hogging along the creek bank and had the tractor fall in and flip over on him. He died of "positional asphyxiation" (tractor on top would not let him inhale). He had buried his wife a week or two before, the kids were grown and gone; nobody found him for a couple of days.

I think Stony was damn lucky, thank God.


"Live like you'll die tomorrow, but manage your grass like you'll live forever."
-S. M. Stirling
[Linked Image from i582.photobucket.com]
Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53613 05/04/05 08:13 PM
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Fish,

Keep an eye on Ebay for sickle bar mowers, sooner or later one will come up for sale close to you. Also, place an ad at the feed stores or Co-Ops. Check old sales on ebay for general price ranges.

Good luck,


Dennis
Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53614 05/05/05 01:35 PM
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cecil it sounds like you are on your way to being a real pro. I think i've gotten everything I own stuck at least once. The worst was a backhoe that required a semiwrecker to pull it out. keep up the good work but be careful.

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53615 05/23/05 07:43 AM
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I found some sickle bar mowers on-line. First I found one in a 2003 John Deere brochure, but can't find it on their web site. Here is what I found:
http://www.wikco.com/befsbm.html
http://befco.com/products/hayequipment/sicklebar.html
http://www.ssbtractor.com/page3.html

These are just a few I found using Google. Also, farm auctions occasionally have some. I need to look into getting one for myself. I'd hate to sink my JD 4020!


Shawn

Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53616 05/23/05 06:09 PM
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"Like the time I almost drove my excavator under the power lines with the boom up."

I actually did that. Nephew stopped me after I hit them, but before they broke. I hit the lines with the boom hard enough that the lines swayed like crazy for a long distance. I held my breath as I lowered the boom and backed up as quickly as possible. I'm lucky the lines or poles didn't break and I apparently didn't connect two bad wires.

I also unloaded my trackhoe sideways off the trailer once. That was a bit too exciting for a while. The trailer I use (and would love to replace) doesn't disconnect from the semi. As a result, it is fairly tall. You drive up ramps in the back over the tires. There are a couple points above the tires where it is metal on metal with limited contact. Not good at any time and especially when the trailer isn't perfectly level and you have a light rain. In half a milisecond I went from going good to wondering how bad this was going to hurt / what damage it would do to I survived / what damage did it do / apparently none / I'm glad this has wide tracks! / how do I get the other track off / WOW I was lucky! I need a different trailer!

I still have that same ***** trailer; but I've purchased some heavy rubber matts that seem to help (while I keep looking for a different trailer) and I'm close to paranoid around power lines.

Actually, I can think of two other scary momments with that trackhoe. I've been lucky, but I'm getting better.


Re: Close Call: lesson well learned
#53617 05/24/05 05:21 AM
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You guys are crazy. You should never take chances on heavy eqp.! It's just plain not smart.
I would never do anything that dumb, except the last time I was building a road around the steep south side of my pond. \:D Not being too familiar with backhoe controls I gee'd when I should have haww'ed while pushing myself backwards. It was 30' to the bottom of my pond. The low side stabelizer was all that saved me. I only raised it out flat to the side in order to back up. I was perched on the high side stableizer almost completely verticle & afraid to move! Luckly I collected my senses & after rehersing in my mind which way to push the boom I was able to save me & the hoe.
It can happen so fast!


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