Tag Archives: tools

What’s in our tractor toolbox

Behind the seat of our Kubota L5030 tractor is a steel tool box. It’s not much to look at – especially because I didn’t clean it up for the photos below – but it’s come in handy often and worth a mention here on the blog. I’m pretty sure most tractors of this size have one so even if you’re looking at something other than a Kubota, this could be of interest to you.

Tractor Toolbox

We have come to realize that we need various tools at odd times when our tack room and workshop aren’t close by. Some tools are important for regular tractor operation and others come in handy when working with implements or on fences and pasture structures.

Tractor Toolbox Inside

Inside the box:

  • Big hammer – 2 lb. – useful for encouraging heavy bolts and tractor implements (like the bush hog and post hole digger).
  • Rag – lots of greasy bits on tractors so having a rag handy is important
  • Vice grips – different sized nuts and bolts and some of them are stubborn
  • Lots of extra pins – a variety of nut and bolt pins exist on our tractor and sometimes they’re damaged or lost. These are cheap so we stock up.
  • Adjustable spud¬†wrench – that’s the adjustable wrench in the photo above with the long pointy end. The pointy end is used often, usually to tighten the adjustable chain that holds the hay spear onto the bucket.
  • Multi sized wrench – there isn’t room to carry every wrench size so it’s good to have an adjustable one. Because you sometimes need two wrenches, one for a bolt, one for a nut, it’s good to have more than one and/or the vice grips previously mentioned.
  • Multi-tool – we use a multi-tool you can put in your pocket that can unfold into a pair of needle-nose pliers. It also has various screwdriver heads and a knife. Folded it fits easily in the toolbox.

As nice as the tool box is, it’s not air or water tight so it gets dirty quickly. I can’t store my phone or anything made of paper (like a manual) in there.

If you’re planning on having a tractor, I recommend assembling some useful tools and keeping them with you on the tractor. If for some reason yours doesn’t have a toolbox, perhaps you can find a way to attach one. Trust me, you’re going to need some of these at one point or another.

 

Stall Fork Preferences

Manure ForksIt doesn’t take long to figure out what products and procedures work well for horse chores. Last night while shoveling horse stalls (it’s more like forking horse stalls), Mikki grabbed the manure fork I normally use and I in turn took hers. After a few minutes, we happily swapped back again. Neither of us found it easy to work with a manure fork weren’t familiar with using. That might sound silly but we each use a different size and style fork and that makes more of a difference than I would have thought. Mikki uses a smaller fork purchased at a tack shop for around $20. It’s the typical style you see for manure duties, with a nice smooth aluminum handle. We bought the fork I use specifically for use with pellet bedding such as Woody Pet and Equine Pine. In fact, I think it’s actually manufactured by the Woody Pet people (I think they call it their “Fine Tines Fork” – around $26 at Tractor Supply). It’s tines are closer together for catching small manure pieces. It’s also quite a bit larger than the one Mikki uses and as a result picks up a LOT of horse manure, which makes it quite heavy to use. For those who use sawdust or pine pellets, cleaning stalls is part scooping big chunks of horse manure and part sifting to separate the good bedding from the little pieces of manure. The larger fork does a great job as a “sifter”, since it’s deep and the sides adequately keep the payload from prematurely escaping the fork. The smaller fork Mikki uses doesn’t work as well as a sifter because the payload keeps falling off the sides. At least it does for me. Mikki has it down, though and much prefers it over the larger stall fork.

Here’s what they look like. Even though the larger one looks like it’s carrying less horse manure, remember it’s deeper. You just can’t see the depth in the photo.

Small Manure Fork Large Manure Fork

On the left is the smaller fork, with the larger Woody Pet fork on the right. While shooting these pictures, I lost some of the horse manure from fork on the left.

Incidentally, we’ve been using both stall forks for at least 6 months without any of the tines breaking. They’ve fallen down in the barn and used as rakes and shovels (not recommended) and have proven to be durable, despite being plastic. The bolt holding the fork onto the aluminum handle of the smaller one needed tightening once.