2008 - Volume #32, Issue #4, Page #20[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Swather Converted To Brush Cutter
"I had used the swather for many years and just retired it, but the motor was still good," he points out. "I also had the 8-ft. wide cutter for a number of years. Both units had more than paid for themselves."
The cutter is the kind used on the state highway, pulled behind a tractor to cut the ditches. Rife bought it for cutting road ditches and around his farm buildings, but he never liked the fact that, since you drove over everything first, it would be laying flat and the cutter would miss it.
As a winter project, Rife took his cutting torch and trimmed the 15-ft. wide swather back to 8 ft. and removed all the sickle and guards. Then, he welded some brackets onto both the old swather head and the mower, so the two pieces could be bolted together. "I had one shaft machined for the drive on the cutter," he explains. "It had a 3-pt. hitch with a pto drive and I just took that off and had the shaft made. It's driven with a V-belt pulley and is real simple to hook up."
Rife says the rotor cutter is "real safe as far as throwing stuff, compared to a Bush Hog," and he has "hardly any money" invested in the front-mounted unit.
"It will cut up to 3/4-in. dia. brush if it's green, and height doesn't seem to make any difference," he points out. "You can go into stuff that's 3 ft. high, and it chops it up."
This will be Rife's second year of using the unit, and he really likes how it cuts without running over it first.
"It has very good visibility and it maneuvers just as good as with any little mower. With the swather controls (zero turn radius) you can spin right around in one spot," he says. "It really works good for clearing brush, roadsą anyplace."
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Jim Rife, Box 269, Roy, Montana 59471 (ph 406 464-5341).
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