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Thread: To dozer or not to dozer

  1. #16
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    Widows back. We lost a good friend, one in a million man so we just buried him. I want to send this email to you first and then go back and look at all the links that many of you sent. Let me answer a few questions asked. We employ 100 men a day in groups of 10. Each group can take an acre of bush out, nothing else. We pay each man $5.00 a day and we could employ 100 more as they wait in line for a job. So 10 acres cost us $500.00 just to remove the trees ready to burn. Fuel here is $7.00 a gallon so hauling wood to Kampala would not be profitable. A few areas I dug had 18" of top soil and there are two growing seasons. The dirt is red and digs like butter. Let me figure out how to send some pictures later. Some suggested using the farm equipment that we will eventually need and we agree. You can rent a Cat dozer d6 brand new here for 15k a month and a chain loader for 9k a month. If we continue just with our Manuel laborers we could take the bush out in 16 weeks or four months. Our seed needs to be in the ground late March early April but honestly we'd be happy if we got 200 acres planted by that time just for a test run. Our next plant starts July/aug. so we have some time. We have not selected our cultivating machinery yet but it will be limited, as Scrub said, to the depth of pocket. My ag guy, a native Ugandan, said that they don't care about anything deeper than 6" so it doesn't appear that we are pulling everything out of the ground just stumps....14-20 inch stumps. That's why we were thinking skids with grabbers and just pop a stump out every 5 min or less. Skids could be put into containers but dozers and farm equipment have to be placed on skids and tax issues etc... Thanks.

  2. #17
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    Yair . . . 8k bill. So true what you say. The machinery changes but trees and dirt remain constant . . . there is not much point in reinventing the wheel.

    I hope the O/P continues with this thread as it would be interesting to see how his project evolves.

    Cheers.

  3. #18
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    Sorry to hear about the loss of your friend widows.

    Thats pretty much how I envisioned the job with a large crew cutting the small brush stacking & burning it. Clearing 10 acres a day at $500 with the 100 man crew may be the best way to go under the circumstance. I'll probably stick with my first thought of using a rubber tire backhoe on the stumps plus be handy on other utility tasks later on.Probably have to remove rops cab & possibly front bucket to fit it in the container. Small dozer would also fit in a shipping container . Found this JD 550 highlift combo at http://www.machinerytrader.com/listi...x?OHID=9582167 Those riggs were popular at one time in my area & got the job done. Interesting project widows & Best of luck with it.

  4. #19
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    Yair . . . Woops don't know what happened there, my #17 post didn't go up when intended . . . it was a reply to the #15 post.

    Pleased to see you back widows. My condolences for the loss of your friend and colleague.

    Your operation sounds not unlike the PNG job I mentioned where we had many hands chopping and stacking and I ripped the large stumps with the MF dozer.

    After clearing the land was ploughed with two and three furrow linkage disk ploughs on MF 35's and 65's . . . the tractors were leased to local villagers to contract grow the peanuts, it ended up quite a large operation with fifty or sixty tractors.

    I think td25c offers good advise. I believe for this sort of duty a small dozer would be more effective than a skid.

    Having said that there are several threads on here where folks have equipped bobcats and so on for grubbing mesquite so some of them may chime in with their thoughts.

    As mentioned please keep us all posted as this is an interesting thread.

    Cheers

  5. #20
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    I don 't know the local trees or soil, but are you sure a grapple on a skidsteer will just pop a 14-20" stump out of the ground?!

    They definitely wouldn't here, you'd have to do a bit of digging. Most of the 14-20" stumps here would take a bite or two of soil loosening to pull them with a 20 ton trackhoe.
    "Don't sweat the petty things, and, don't pet the sweaty things." That's what I live by.

  6. #21
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    Yair . . . mitch504. I feel we may be talking at cross purposes and it is very hard to envisage the scale of the problem without pictures.

    Reading back through the thread in the original post widows told us he had thousands of rootballs with multiple four inch stems on each. I could be wrong but it seems to me they may be cutting the stems off fourteen to twenty inches above the ground.

    As you say it is extremely doubtful a skid could remove such a stump in five minutes . . . they certainly won't "pop out" if they are as I imagine.

    In my opinion the most cost effective way of dealing with such stumps would be a one hundred and fifty hp dozer with a horizontal cutter bar fixed between the outer tines of a ripper, such a tractor will undercut the stump and take it out in second gear.

    As has been mentioned by others it is still a major job to get rid of all the stumps and, in my experience it would be much easier to burn them with the top growth. I would suggest to widows he hold off on the burning until they have found a satisfactory method of dealing with the stump problem.

    Cheers.

  7. #22
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    Widows, IMO your better off doing it right and at least put a cutter bar through and cutting everything off at 6" to 8". ThenUsing your cheap labour to stick pick would give you ground that would be safe to put any tyned implement in.sounds like your soil is a sandy loam and a d6 would easily do it. All the best Bill

  8. #23
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    My guess was that he was talking about medium sized trunks that had been cut, and sprouted multiple 4" stems.

    I'd be using that cheap labor to limb the poles and stack them for future use. Buy a couple dozen solar panels, DC blowers, and 5' lengths of 3" round duct, and make myself some mini stump burners.

  9. #24
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    Yeah.. Stump grinder might also be an option . Grind down to needed depth & move on to the next one . Shaver MFG makes a 3 point grinder for use on a farm tractor. www.shavermfg.com/stump-grinders

    This dealer in Denver , Colorado lists the model SHSC-50 at $7,056 www.beavervalleysupply.com/sectionb/shaversb.htm
    Last edited by td25c; 11-06-2013 at 08:30 PM.

  10. #25
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    Yes, medium trunks with multiple 4" calipers growing. I will try to get some photos but its real jungle and most of the large trees were harvested years before we got there. If you walk up to the bush from the road you literally cannot step 5' into the bush without a panga. I like the idea of a horizontal cutter bar that Scrub mentioned. There is also mention of the US Banks not allowing international wires over 50k per month to leave the country. Has anyone heard that? I'm not sure how that effects us unless we attempt to purchase a Dozer there. Scrub, what did you think of the idea to lease? 15 per month. If all the bush is gone and you use the horizontal cutter how many acres a day would you say the dozer could do? Would you try to find a dozer here and ship and if so can we find a dozer for under 100k? Used machinery there, say a Cat D6 sells for 220k used and 340 new. Can we find a used machine that would do this project? Thanks for everyone's help.

  11. #26
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    Name:  image.jpg
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Size:  147.9 KB. Here's the first picture. Any large trees we had planned to leave.

  12. #27
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    Name:  image.jpg
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Size:  101.4 KB still trying to get a video of the stump.

  13. #28
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    That does look pretty thick in the pictures widows. Trees dont look that big for a dozer. Pretty amazed the 100 man crew can clear 10 acres a day just taking out the bush around the bigger trees. If I was going to buy a larger dozer for that job ....... Pretty hard to go wrong with an older Cat D7G. Very reliable and have stood the test of time. A guy could have alot of fun on that job with a Rome K/G blade http://www.machinerytrader.com/listi...x?OHID=8941721

  14. #29
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Size:  163.5 KB last picture. I can't seem to get a video to attach. This is an old logging road I'm walking on otherwise you would get through.

  15. #30
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    Yair . . . Thanks for pictures widows and I must say your country is not quite as I imagined . . . but incidentally I have been told that some of that red soil in Uganda will grow a four inch nail into a crowbar! (he grins)

    You obviously realise that any comments here can only be very general in nature and, although you will probably find some of the techniques mentioned (by myself and others) confronting, unaffordable, or, at best, confusing and out of the question, they will all have been offered with the very best of intent.

    One of things we probably don't understand are your climatic conditions.

    Such country here in Queensland is generically called "vine scrub" and, in the old days in the high country behind Cairns (in far north) was hand slashed with cane knives and axes in during the first part of the dry season.

    The fallen material was left in place forming a dense mat and allowed to dry out as long as possible. If they got the timing right it was burned just before "the wet". The land for the most part was being cleared for grazing and the intense fires that resulted from the mass of vegetation often resulted in country that could be sown to pasture.

    Unused to fire, the rainforest species never recovered and the remaining stumps and logs rotted and disintegrated over the years.

    I realise you don't have years but it seems to me that in your situation the employment of local labour is a cost effective option and I would imagine will assist in establishing good will and co-operation . . . there is nothing like a paid job when few such jobs exist.

    If your hand clearing crews were to just slash and fall, would an initial burn with no heaping or stacking be an option? Such a procedure reduces the volume of material that needs to be handled and (possibly) provides the option of raking with agricultural tractors. I obviously don't know the scale at which you wish to operate the farming operation . . . that is to say, many smaller tractors or a couple of larger ones, it all makes a difference to methods.

    An eighty to one hundred HP 4x4 tractor with a decent rake mounted to the loader frame is a fairly potent weapon and when a patch was finished could plow with a decent set of heavy off-sets that (I imagine) in that soil would pull out a lot of stumps and be pretty much impervious to damage. I am thinking Rome or Towner Armstrong style plows.

    I have doubts about the effectiveness of chaining in country as shown beside the road. I small dense brush such as that it tends to slide up and over unless specially weighted into a "prickle chain" with sections of railway line welded to the links . . . clearly not an option.

    The Dozer lease deal sounds a little strange, how many hours are you allowed per month?

    The cutter barring will be expensive and probably say three acres an hour would be the best you could expect.

    The between ripper tines cutter is at its best when on the back of a rake tractor and used intermittently for under cutting stumps that have been hit with the rake. In your country, undercutting relatively shallow I imagine any given tractor would pull a cutter wider than the tines and the equipment becomes more complex to fabricate . . . it is all a matter of trial and error and for your situation may be a little difficult to arrange.

    Texas and New Zealand style roller choppers are another option that would work to establish a burn mat of vegetation but, as mentioned it all comes back to cost of acquiring/fabricating the equipment.

    My thoughts here are a bit disjointed but it's coming up to daylight here and I really have to run. I find your project extremely interesting and would like to continue the conversation if you feel the random thoughts of myself and others here of value.

    Cheers.
    Last edited by Scrub Puller; 11-07-2013 at 01:52 PM.

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