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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Im brand new to this site, and I really appreciate all the wisdom you guys offer here. This is my first post, I’m wanting to start baling round bales of hay here in Georgia, my son is a fireman and I’m an over the road trucker and wanting to do what I always wanted to bale hay. My son has some registered Santa Gertrudis cows. He also works part time when he’s not at fire station mulching and bush hogging pastures for folks and he keeps up a lot of pastures for folks that on farm land and live in the city so they hire him to cut it. He says he can get a couple to 400 acres of good pastures cut every year in lew of charging them by he hour bush hog it.
Everyone down here in Georgia wants a smaller round bale to fit in their pickups, so he and I was thinking we could get a used small baler and mower, rake , tedder, etc.. and start baling hay to sell to folks like him that just has a small herd of cows and don’t have all the equipment to bale with.

is it possibly for he and I to do this , not get rich I know, but at least do something we both like to do and just pay for the equipment if we get the pastures? I would like a 4x4 or 4x5 baler like I said before for folks to get in their pickups. Do any of you have some advice on whether or not this could work or if I’m just dreaming? I know I would have the expense of fertilizer and weed control on top of the equipment also. I was looking at a new JD 5075E 2wd cab tractor and I already have a Kubota M4700 tractor, what do y’all recommend for the tractor, it’s 75HP and 57.7 PTO hp. Thanks in advance for any info, I really appreciate it.
 

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Welcome to HayTalk
Sounds as you & your son have a good plan. I grew up on a farm that had a small sq baler. After graduating college I was employed by a JD dealer for 21 yrs. I started custom farming/baling in '87.

I think 75 pto is enough hp if you're not baling hilly ground. I normally pull my JD 467 rd baler with my JD 4255 that's 120+ pto hp but when the AC compressor clutch had failed I used my Kubota M7040 with 64 pto to successfully pull my rd baler making 4X5.5 bales on virtually flat Texas soil.

I would suggest getting a 4X5 or 4X6 variable chamber baler then you have a choice of making several different diameter bales. I've cut hay with a 45 pto hp tractor using a 9' disc cutter but only cut at 5-6 mph due to rough terrain.
 

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Hay Master
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Yes, in Georgia, most folks prefer a 4' wide roll. As Tx Jim suggested, I would probably go with a 4x5 baler as that gives you the flexibility to downsize to a 4' diameter roll if needed. In my area, at least, 4x6 rolls are rare (I've never seen anyone baling that size).

What part of Georgia are you guys from?
 

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I owned numerous 4X6 rd balers BUT I refuse to make 6 diameter bales due to 6' diameter bales putting more stress on baler components. 64'' diameter is large enough for me. Also 6' diameter bales are very difficult to transport on highway if stacked double high on a trailer/float
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Welcome to HayTalk
Sounds as you & your son have a good plan. I grew up on a farm that had a small sq baler. After graduating college I was employed by a JD dealer for 21 yrs. I started custom farming/baling in '87.

I think 75 pto is enough hp if you're not baling hilly ground. I normally pull my JD 467 rd baler with my JD 4255 that's 120+ pto hp but when the AC compressor clutch had failed I used my Kubota M7040 with 64 pto to successfully pull my rd baler making 4X5.5 bales on virtually flat Texas soil.

I would suggest getting a 4X5 or 4X6 variable chamber baler then you have a choice of making several different diameter bales. I've cut hay with a 45 pto hp tractor using a 9' disc cutter but only cut at 5-6 mph due to rough terrain.
Thank you Tx Jim, I will take that good advise.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yes, in Georgia, most folks prefer a 4' wide roll. As Tx Jim suggested, I would probably go with a 4x5 baler as that gives you the flexibility to downsize to a 4' diameter roll if needed. In my area, at least, 4x6 rolls are rare (I've never seen anyone baling that size).

What part of Georgia are you guys from?
Looks like I’m real close to you, Rockmart,Ga. I live in Paulding County, please don’t get worried I’m gonna put you out of business, im just wanting to help him and enjoy the work, when I’m home, I would like to get to know you and maybe if we get some big jobs would love to share, and vice versus. I’m a Baptist, lover not a fighter! Lol! I’m guessing you are the one coming from 278 headed towards the new Pizza Farm on the left? Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I would love to to get more advice on tractor sizes, mower width, everything, RockmartGa, the reason I was wanting the 5075E was that’s the biggest I can get with a 2wd and I don’t have to mess with the def, it’s a 3 cylinder. He dealer swears it will do the job, but the MAIN thing 0% for 60 months lol!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Man the more I read online the more confusing I get! Lol, I don’t know what tractor to buy now, I can’t always guarantee I will be on level ground, now or in the future on new fields. I really like that little 5075E like I said for the 0% fin. But I was looking at tractor place and saw some jd 6105’s around $50k w/1400 hrs and don’t know if I should go with something like that or stick with the 5075? Any suggestions?help! Lol
 

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Man the more I read online the more confusing I get! Lol, I don’t know what tractor to buy now, I can’t always guarantee I will be on level ground, now or in the future on new fields. I really like that little 5075E like I said for the 0% fin. But I was looking at tractor place and saw some jd 6105’s around $50k w/1400 hrs and don’t know if I should go with something like that or stick with the 5075? Any suggestions?help! Lol
As Tx Jim said, 75hp is just about enough for the flat, but you'll have no reserve left in the tractor, I'd certainly go for the 6105 at around 105hp if you can manage it.
 

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Hay Master
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Bigger is better (in many cases). As you grow, you might want a bigger mower, bigger rake...and then you're having to upgrade your tractor. My suggestion is at least 110-120HP--more if your ground is hillier that 20% slopes.

Ralph
Sliding downhill is fun on a sled in the snow, but not so much so on a tractor on wet grass!
 

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Hay Master
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Looks like I’m real close to you, Rockmart,Ga. I live in Paulding County, please don’t get worried I’m gonna put you out of business, im just wanting to help him and enjoy the work, when I’m home, I would like to get to know you and maybe if we get some big jobs would love to share, and vice versus. I’m a Baptist, lover not a fighter! Lol! I’m guessing you are the one coming from 278 headed towards the new Pizza Farm on the left? Thanks
Howdy neighbor! LOL
"I’m guessing you are the one coming from 278 headed towards the new Pizza Farm on the left? " No, that's not me. I don't know who that is - tells you how much I get out in a small town like Rockmart. My place is between Rockmart and Cedartown in the Antioch community. And actually, I got out of the hay business about three years ago.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Beautiful country that way! I would really appreciate any advice would love to meet you sometime. I’m a Tibbitts, I live in the Burnt Hickory community off of 61 between Dallas and Cartersville
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Howdy neighbor! LOL
"I’m guessing you are the one coming from 278 headed towards the new Pizza Farm on the left? " No, that's not me. I don't know who that is - tells you how much I get out in a small town like Rockmart. My place is between Rockmart and Cedartown in the Antioch community. And actually, I got out of the hay business about three years ago.
You got any equipment you want to sale?
 

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Hay Master
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You got any equipment you want to sale?
No, sold the hay equipment about a year after I got out of the business. I retired from the power company and wanting to spend more time with the grandkids and traveling. Also, I was to the point where I was going to have to spend a bunch of money to upgrade equipment and haying was getting lower and lower on my list of priorities.

As far as some of your other questions:

Tractor size:
Really depends on a lot of factors.
  1. Other posters on here have mentioned the advantages of a larger, heavier tractor if your ground is hilly. Same goes for a 4wd vs 2wd tractor.
  2. How much hay you are planning to harvest. If you are planning to cut 30-50 acres and use a 3 pt disc mower and a four foot wide round baler, then 75 hp would be adequate. In your initial post, you mentioned the possibility of 200-400 acres. To do that, you are going to want larger mowers, probably some type of trailed mower, and for that you will need more hp.
Rakes:
  1. Most folks around here use wheel rakes. For grass hay such as you will be cutting, these are probably the best overall, utilitarian choice. Rotary rakes are nice, but the cost is prohibitive for most folks.
Tedder:
  1. You will need a tedder. Four basket is most common in this area.
Baler:
  1. Discussed previously. I'd probably go with a 4x5 and if you are planning to sell, I'd get a net wrap machine. Case / NH and John Deere are the most prevalent in our area with a few Vermeers scattered about.
 

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John Deere 330 or 335 round baler. Nice tight bale, 4x4, easy to work on, low hp requirement, cheap to buy at auction and straight forward to restore. They are just a simple, no frills, get the job done, inexpensive baler that 65hp would handle without a problem.
 

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I have operated a JD rd baler since 1977 when JD model 410/510 were introduced. I've baled over 150,000 rd bales. I would chose a JD rd baler with capability to make a at the least 4X5 bales that I could make any diameter bale between 3'-5' that has a ""bale monitor"".

At the end of the day having a crick in baler operators neck from having to continually look back at baler to correct bale shape is no fun !
 

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I have operated a JD rd baler since 1977 when JD model 410/510 were introduced. I've baled over 150,000 rd bales. I would chose a JD rd baler with capability to make a at the least 4X5 bales that I could make any diameter bale between 3'-5' that has a ""bale monitor"".

At the end of the day having a crick in baler operators neck from having to continually look back at baler to correct bale shape is no fun !
So, I hung a mirror from my ROPS canopy and I can see bale size and bale shape from it. When you look in the mirror at it, left is left and right is right on the bale shape. No neck cricks.
 

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I'd still prefer a baler with automatic twine application vs manually controlled twine application. Plus JD rd baler that makes larger diameter bales has better hyd bale tension system than the JD balers that make smaller diameter bales
 
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