Click each picture for a closer view
the serious work (i.e. fun) begin...
it was time to get to work! I
had inherited a scrap heap "out behind the barn" from the
last owner, that may have been almost 150 years old -- the house and barn
were built between 1853 and 1857. This area was such a mess that I
couldn't mow it, even with a "weed eater." There was so
much scrap metal that it constantly cut the trimmer line. The pile
had built up so much over the years, that it was actually several inches
above the foundation at the corner of the barn. Further, poison ivy
was growing in it -- which I'm very allergic to. So, my "test
project" was to clean up this mess!
picking up the largest pieces of scrap metal and old tires from the
surface, I made a few runs down from the top of the slope, pushing the
limbs, scrap, etc. I stopped
at the bottom of the slope and picked out any scrap metal to take to the
dump, and left the wood and limbs for disposal on the wood lot in back.
See Figure 7
for an idea of what I was dealing with, and the original slope.
Note that in this picture I had already “clipped the top” off
the hump, cutting as far as the bucket’s designed 1” over center will
allow. This over-center
design allows the front, cutting edge of the bucket to be 1” below
ground level when in its full down position.
also found that with the bucket tripped and raised to its full height
(about 1” ground clearance) that you can certainly push a lot of debris
with it… This “pre-calculated” ground clearance was also very nice
when it comes to spreading the material that you dump out of the bucket
– this clearance allows you to effectively spread the materials, while
raising the bucket to it’s “full up” position is something that you
can do without looking or trying to precisely control – just raise it to
its “full up” stop and press on! (See Figure
8). These types of
features are obviously the result of a completely thought-out, well
engineered, and thoroughly tested design. While you might fabricate
something that’s close to this bucket by yourself, pretty readily,
designing it for the maximum clearance when fully lifted, over center to
cut below grade when fully down, and with the proper leverage for maximum
lifting capability isn’t something for the average do-it-yourselfer….
either picked up or dug out 1-1/2 pickup loads (Dodge Ram full-size, short
bed) of scrap metal out of this refuse pile, including a swing set,
numerous bicycles, two rear fenders off a ’63 Chevy, a 6-cylinder engine
block, and who knows what! The
surface and top layers were also laced with broken glass.
So I scooped off as much of this top layer as I could, and
immediately hauled it to the woods to go on the bottom of my fill. I
quickly learned that if you “curl” the bucket, raising it as you go
forward while scooping, that it lifts much easier.
See Figure 9.
The optional hydraulic lift on my B-210 proved invaluable on this
project, but I found it a bit tricky to control to just skim off the top
layer since I was pushing into the slope.
See Figure 10.
Quite often I would overcorrect and end up with less than a full
bucket, so I’d back away (See Figure
11) and take another run at it.
I was transporting the material about 40-50 yards, I tried to get a full
bucket each time before heading for the woods.
(See Figure 12) The
foot of the slope was quite damp (water was seeping out in one spot) and I
quickly found that I’d dig in with these tractor treads when pushing
very far up the slope. So, I
went back to pushing down the slope to cut the material off, then scoop
the loose material up at the bottom and haul it away. Clean
material I used as fill in an area right beside the refuse heap, while the
trashy material went to the woods where I filled in and built a road
across a wet, swampy area.
here to continue the story...