2016 - Volume #40, Issue #3, Page #24[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Big Wheel Ditcher Outperforms Scrapers And Dozers
“The T-Rex moves 1,500 to 2,000 cubic yards of dirt in an hour,” says Grant Dyck, T-Rex Ditchers. “It can throw 20 to 85–lb. stones 100 to 150 ft. The dirt is thrown evenly over a 300-ft. distance, which eliminates the leveling work required with a backhoe.”
Dyck designed and built his first T-Rex to resolve drainage problems on his own 14,000-acre, Red River Valley farming operation. Other rotary ditchers on the market couldn’t handle the work and broke down.
“The first T-Rex was built out of necessity,” recalls Dyck. “We were running behind on ditching and clean up. Other rotaries worked fine under ideal conditions, but they couldn’t do the whole job.”
Dyck’s prototype had its own CAT engine and drive. He put 10 years and 3,000 hrs. on it. When he located heavier duty components, he upgraded the ditcher and began to commercialize it.
“When Walterscheid came out with the driveline we needed, we switched over,” says Dyck. “To protect the driveline, we put a cut-off clutch between 400 and 450 hp. It also has an override clutch, so it free wheels when it lifts out of the ground.”
The T-Rex averages a 6-in. cut at 3 to 5 mph and can cut as deep as 2 ft. Dyck has made twenty 6-in. passes for a 4-ft. deep ditch. He’s also cut a foot deep in clay at 3 to 5 mph. It can also be used as a finishing tool to “step” or “flare” ditches.
“We ran it for 10 years in the Valley without problems, but when we tried it in Saskatchewan with all the sand and rocks, we had to rock-proof it,” says Dyck.
In addition to the protection offered by the slip clutch, the heavy-duty cutting teeth are fastened to the disk with bolts. If they hit a very large rock, the bolts fail before damage to the driveline can occur. If that happens it takes just 3 min. to fix with a $2 bolt.
Dyck has operated the T-Rex with everything from a 200 hp tractor to a 650 hp tractor. While the components are designed to handle up to 500 hp without a problem, he suggests a 300 to 400 hp tractor as ideal.
“With its 8-ft. wheel, it is twice as large as most rotary ditchers, which means it leaves a ditch twice as wide,” says Dyck. “The geometry of an 8-ft. wheel is ideal. The centrifugal force, our footprint, and our cut-load all match.”
The T-Rex is priced at $57,500 Canadian. Dyck says he has been delivering the ditchers all over western Canada.
You can see a video of the T-Rex in action at www.farmshow.com.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Grant Dyck, Artel Farms, Box 550, Niverville, Manitoba, Canada R0A 1E0 (ph 204 346-4222; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.t-rexditchers.com).
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