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What is the best hay rake?


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32 replies to this topic

#1 Guest_Hoosier Hay Man_*

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Posted 16 May 2008 - 09:00 PM

I seem to be partial to the rotary, but you can cover a lot of ground with a wheel rake.

I need to update soon and there are a lot of choices out there.:confused:

HHH

#2 JD4755

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Posted 16 May 2008 - 11:47 PM

We run two Darf 917 wheel rakes, and the only other rake i would consider is an H&S wheel rake, which is pretty much the same thing, IMO they are easier on alfalfa than a bar rake, or rotary rake and i rake 12+ mph and dont leave any behind

#3 downtownjr

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Posted 17 May 2008 - 02:44 PM

I would like to try a rotary since I have never owned one. Heard good things about them. I like the idea of a wheel rake due to the speed in which you can rake. The Darf's have a great rep...I do not believe there is a better hay rake. The other wheel rake that has a good rep is Circle C. But to be that large of an operation for me is just a dream right now. I do pick up a 9 foot NH parallel bar rake in July. JD 4755...I will have to come visit and see a large operation someday. :)

Edited by downtownjr, 17 May 2008 - 08:24 PM.


#4 JD4755

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Posted 17 May 2008 - 06:57 PM

Whats your budget for a rake? you can get a used darf for 6-8,000 bucks

#5 downtownjr

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Posted 17 May 2008 - 08:27 PM

That is not a bad price...what does it usually cost to replace the teeth on the wheels? Right now w do not have enough land to probably support one. Although my goal is to have more land. Guess I need to figure if it worth trying to get a contract with one of the dairies going in around Indiana. JD...Do you sell to dairy farms? I am not paying much over a thousand for a used parallel bar 256 NH rake for a little bit of land.

Edited by downtownjr, 17 May 2008 - 08:30 PM.
add a line


#6 JD4755

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Posted 17 May 2008 - 11:29 PM

The teeth are probably 9 bucks a pop, and the wheel covers are about 70$/wheel for the black plastic inserts, the plastic inserts shouldnt ever break unless they get brittle from the sunshine, and we probably replace 2-4 wheels worth of teeth every spring at the most, usually 2 wheels, we run the first 3 wheels on each side pretty aggressive to pull the alfalfa out and everything behind those arent even touching the ground, and we do sell to a few large dairies, 1000+ head, but we dont sell everything we bale since we're mostly custom work

Edited by JD4755, 18 May 2008 - 01:08 AM.


#7 downtownjr

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Posted 18 May 2008 - 09:22 PM

I have looked at them and wondered how they held up. My brother and I have picked up a little custom work and I keep wondering if I can get the land to produce for some of the dairies moving into the area. The only problem with a lot of hay in Indiana is having the window to bale...springs can be very wet...have not bales yet this year but needed to start last week. If we did grow, a large wheel rake or really large rotary would be in the picture.

#8 JD4755

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Posted 18 May 2008 - 10:44 PM

They do hold up really well, they are tough pieces of equipment. Our biggest problem is getting enough dew to bale!:rolleyes:

#9 downtownjr

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Posted 20 May 2008 - 07:02 PM

instead of Indiana. Still maybe with bigger equipment and preservative I can make the window work...:rolleyes:

#10 readytohay

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Posted 03 June 2008 - 06:37 PM

Have a 7301 kuhn twin rotary great rake,i would never go back to a wheel rake hay does not dry and is roped and corners are terrible.spendy but well worth the money.

#11 jd6400

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Posted 03 June 2008 - 07:07 PM

We just purchased a Claas 650 dual rotary rake. Have a 350 single also. IMHO only way to go.

#12 jd6400

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Posted 03 June 2008 - 07:10 PM

Just purchased a Claas 650 dual rotary and have been running a 350 single for awhile now,IMHO only way to go.

#13 Hayguy

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Posted 03 June 2008 - 07:38 PM

Not sure if it's the best, but we use 2 basket rakes with a New Holland tandem hitch. Saves me more time making hay than anything we've ever tried.

#14 ButchAutomatic

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Posted 03 June 2008 - 07:52 PM

It to me really depends on field and operation. In my part of the world fields are not on circles and not in 1/2 or 1/4 sections. We have fields that the head lands are 35% of field and are selling into primary horse market, hay has to be dry and pretty. We use a Miller Pro 2260 twin rotor now, have used this type for 15 years and believe it is the most versitile rake. We are on our 4th rake like this and would like to try the wheel, but don't know about corners and drying. just my thoughts

#15 Erock813

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Posted 03 June 2008 - 08:48 PM

have to agree with you...neighbor runs wheel rake and then goes back to do the ends with a rotor..our hay fields ar no larger than 15 acres..we just have about 25 0f them...lol

#16 IAhaymakr

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Posted 03 June 2008 - 08:50 PM

I use Vermeer bar rakes. Simple, reliable and do a clean job. I tried a kuhn rotary with mixed results on the raking job and terrible results keeping it in the field instead of the shop. Still use a wheel rake for grass, but never in alfalfa, they put too much dirt in the hay.

#17 JD4755

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Posted 03 June 2008 - 08:53 PM

If your wheel rake is set properly, it wont put any more dirt in the windrows than a rotary or bar rake.

#18 OhioHay

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Posted 04 June 2008 - 09:13 AM

We run a Miller Pro 2250 twin rotary rake. Farming in Ohio with high humidities and selling into the horse market makes a rotary rake the only way to go for our area. We custom bale behind one wheel rake and it ropes the hay to bad for proper drying in our conditions.

#19 haymaker 515

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Posted 13 July 2008 - 01:56 AM

Boy thats a good one, wheel rakes and basket style rakes both have their advantages in certain conditions. Where Jd 4755 is in colorado maybe as he stated he has sometimes a dew problem. Wheel rakes are a good choice. Then again in Illionois where i believe hoosier is, if its wet and humid, basket rakes may be the best way to go. Basket rakes seem to fluff the hay up better for drying, but are not as gentle on the hay as a wheel. On the other hand, if its damp and humid, the wheel rake can sure rope it up. With either style i have never encounterd dirt in the windrow. I use the new holland ground style rolbar basket rakes, with the v hitch. they work well for me, Allen makes a nice set of unitized hydraulic basket rakes also. Whats the best one, i dont think there is,, they are both good when used in certain conditions.

#20 Feed Hay

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Posted 13 July 2008 - 05:50 PM

This year it has not worked so well. :( We have had alot of rain, I am down near Mt Vernon, east southeast of St Louis about an hour. It ropes up when damp and does not dry well. The things being said about a rotary may be the way to go for me. I bought a tedder this year. It is a small two basket made by Kuhn. I guess a rotary would keep it fluffy as well. I feed 37 boar goats, some are for show and breeding, and my four horses. Have to have some good hay for the horses and show goats.:)




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