2013 - Volume #37, Issue #2, Page #27[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Modified Plow Turns Sod Better
"I like to keep my costs down and had pulled the sulky plow out of a fencerow," says Sumy. "I checked on a new cast iron plow share, and it was high priced. Just shipping alone came to $50."
Instead Sumy found an old, used IH plow with a good 16-in. plow share and moldboard.
"With most of the moldboard a full 16 in., but the plow share cutting only 12 in., I figured a slice of sod would lay over much more slowly," explains Sumy. "Cutting the angle on the rear of the plow share keeps the sod strip from being completely severed. The uncut corner hangs enough to ensure that the sod layer lays face down."
To make the changes, Sumy set up the Oliver 40 with its furrow wheel, original plow share and landside flat on a concrete floor. He put the landside wheel up on a block to replicate the field situation.
"The nice thing about the Oliver 40 sulky plow is it has lots of adjustment capability with its multiple control levers," says Sumy. "Getting everything in line was fairly easy."
Using chalk, he marked around the cutting point of the plow share and alongside the landside. He then cut off the old plow bottom and slid the IH bottom into place. He lined up its point against the chalked point and the landside against the landside's chalked line. After welding the 16-in. plow share and moldboard in place, he marked back 12 in. from the point on the landside of the share.
"I cut away the extra 4 in. on the plow share and the inside of the moldboard, leaving the remainder of the moldboard its full original length," explains Sumy. "Trimming the landside end of the plow share was more difficult, as it was trial and error. I knew it would work because I used to do it with tractor plows, too."
Sumy says he made a dozen trips back and forth from the field to the shop as he readjusted the angle of the cut. He would trim off a small amount, try it and return to trim off a bit more until it lay the sod over just right.
"I like to plow alfalfa under and plant corn into it as a way to reduce fertilizer needs," says Sumy. "Last year with the drought, it also made a big difference in conserving moisture."
Sumy said the field he plowed gave his modified plow a good test. He estimates it had been at least 15 years since it had last been plowed.
"It turned over nicer and pulled easier than the original Oliver 12-in., and the long moldboard gave the sod a long slow turn," says Sumy.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Spring River Machine, 3490 L.C. 2110, Stotts City, Mo. 65756 (ph 417 285-3164).
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