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Welder Built Expandable Cultivator For Nursery
With less than $1,000 worth of new parts, Denny Williams built an expandable cultivator for the 2,000-acre Illinois nursery where he works. Built in 2001, that first custom cultivator still works well.
  Williams built it after working with a newly bought commercial cultivator that cost $5,000. He knew it was a "piece of junk" when it arrived. Built out of lightweight flat steel, he knew it wouldn't last long, and he told his boss so.
  "If you can build one that's better, go ahead," the boss told Williams, an experienced welder and fabricator. His cultivator is made out of 2 3/4-in. square tubing that goes into 3-in. square tubing receivers to expand and decrease the width of the cultivator hydraulically. The cultivator front adjusts from 50 to 84 in. wide, and one or both sides can be moved in or out. The width flexibility is important at a nursery where row widths frequently vary, Williams explains.
  He used Deere field cultivator shanks and other new parts and built the cultivator heavy duty enough to handle rough use by hired hands as well as the large rocks in parts of the nursery. He has since built six more of the expandable cultivators. He notes that the biggest challenge is getting the tubing to go all the way in and figuring out where to place the two 24-in. hydraulic stroke cylinders. He used steel line for the hydraulics to make them less susceptible to damage.
  Williams' expandable cultivators dig up to 8 in. and can be pulled with a narrow, 30 hp tractor. Semi-retired in Wisconsin, he is willing to talk to people interested in his design.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Denny Williams, 11319 Tuttle Rd., Trevor, Wis. 53179 (ph 262 960-3668).

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2008 - Volume #32, Issue #2