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Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8823

PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 14 6:41 am    Post subject:  Reply with quote    

We have a little alpine tractor that we bought to work in the coppice. It has the advantage over a quad bike that it twists in the middle so at least 3 wheels are always on the ground. Makes it a lot more stable and it will go where quads won't. Low impact too, so doesn't do much damage to the ground. We use it with a forwarder, mower, log splitter, and post ram attachments. Might be a bit more than you want, but definitely a useful machine for close packed stools.

When you cut the coppice, if you want to walk or take a vehicle in there, cut the stool so that the outside rods are slightly lower than the middle ones, but don't leave them spiky but there are not sharp edges, which is best done with a chainsaw. Then if you fall or drive over them there is less chance of getting a puncture in either a tyre or you.

midtown



Joined: 18 Oct 2013
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Sun Nov 09, 14 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Fully agree with Mistress Rose regarding the alpine tractor.

We've got one of these http://www.ctm-ltd.co.uk/index.php/goldoni-tractors/4-wheel-tractors/quad-20/ and together with a range of attachments, its virtually made our David Brown redundant!

Its certainly proved its worth when fitted with the back hoe and ditching bucket, as we can now access and clean out ancient ditches which previously we could only do by hand.

Cat 1. 3 point lift, 2 speed PTO, tows 2 ton plus, an excellent bit of kit!

gregotyn



Joined: 24 Jun 2010
Posts: 1423
Location: Llanfyllin area
PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 14 4:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

There are quad bikes available which will tow purpose made mowers and small trailers and would be adequate for a small coppice enterprise-all you have to do is make sure the ground is suitable for such machines and if you don't know someone will advise you. If you do most operations sensibly and not fly round the place then they should cope and last for some time. I see the value of the small alpine style tractor, they are tough and good, but I read between the lines that you are seeing this more as a hobby and for enjoyment rather than a commercial enterprise, where you have deadlines to keep, or am I mistaken? I am seeing this as I viewed my 2 acres of fruit trees when I was married, as a slight income without the confines of commercialism! I sold most of my fruit and veg at work. My sole power was an old garden ride-on mower which had a rotovator attachment at the back if needed, I made a trailer for the job in the orchard. I am not suggesting that an old ride-on mower is suitable for you. A good quality quad is best bought from a local dealer. A farmer friend always has Hondas and a second hand one of his would be a good buy as they look after their tack, but too far from you! I am only giving my opinion others will differ no doubt, but I hope this helps.

Cathryn



Joined: 16 Jul 2005
Posts: 19829
Location: Ceredigion
PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 14 10:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Quad's are an easy target for theft.

Hiring someone to come and do a lot of this work on a regular basis would probably be a much cheaper option. You might then also have someone local keeping an extra eye on the place. Then you can get on with planting and tending and playing and lying in the sun enjoying. doesn't mean you can't dig and hoe occasionally if the urge takes you.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32959
Location: yes
PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 14 11:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

in a small area a few power tools that will fit in a car boot and a wheel barrow chained to a tree might be a good option .

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8823

PostPosted: Sat Nov 22, 14 7:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

A quad bike with attachments is very useful Gregotyn, but there is always the problem of theft as Cathryn says. Our local Countrywatch seems to have at least one stolen in each issue. There are advantages to getting someone local in to help, but it depends upon finance and if there is anyone suitable.

gregotyn



Joined: 24 Jun 2010
Posts: 1423
Location: Llanfyllin area
PostPosted: Sat Nov 22, 14 10:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I assumed Wellington Womble would be taking the quad home, as they are road going with the right insurance, and taking the machines/produce too. At home I garage everything and leave nothing out that is obviously knickable or worth taking.
For site clearance you could always invest in pigs or better to offer the ground to a local pig keeper, he gets to do the fencing, they would clear the ground faster than most things and thoroughly with no serious effort on your part; and as for lawn mowers, Shropshire sheep won't graze your trees-they are called the orchard sheep for that reason. All you need now is Jenna to become a shepherd in order to maintain the flock! Your imput is to collect the rent- pork, bacon and sausages, lamb chops and shoulder and gather the fruit after the pigs have gone and you have planted the fruit trees!

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 8823

PostPosted: Sun Nov 23, 14 9:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Sounds ideal Gregotyn. Just need someone to water the pigs and sheep and see they play nicely.

gregotyn



Joined: 24 Jun 2010
Posts: 1423
Location: Llanfyllin area
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 14 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I was only suggesting the owner of the pigs looked after them, not WW! there would be enough to do splitting the big logs the proffessionals are going to cut down The the pigs would have to go before the sheep arrive, cos the pigs would be uprooting the fruit trees WW is going to plant and grow before the sheep arrive!

wellington womble



Joined: 08 Nov 2004
Posts: 14810
Location: East Midlands
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 14 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

There are fruit trees already. I don't want animals yet, though. It's bad enough being tied to the school run (the land is three miles away) I'm a bit limited as to what I can keep here - I have no garage, so to-ing and fro-ing is not really an option. I might take Catherine's advice and contract it this year. I wanted to plant trees, but the woodland creation grants are not expected to return until the spring, so I will miss this years window. There will be plenty to do in the orchard and garden, but I'm back to square one with what to do with the grassland. I wonder if it's worth ploughing it and planting something.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 32959
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 14 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

if it is only a small bit of grass it might be best to plan someting else for it

Treacodactyl
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 25697
Location: Jumping on the bandwagon of opportunism
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 14 8:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

wellington womble wrote:
I wanted to plant trees, but the woodland creation grants are not expected to return until the spring, so I will miss this years window.


I gather the window for getting a grant next spring will be short as they're changing the grant system next year. You'll need to have your land registered with the RPA and you may need a suitable management plan. Worth speaking to your local FC office if you've not already done so.

Lloyd



Joined: 24 Jan 2005
Posts: 2693

PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 14 9:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

wellington womble wrote:
, but I'm back to square one with what to do with the grassland. I wonder if it's worth ploughing it and planting something.


Invite local horse owners to rent the land to allow their horses grazing? At a low cost short term rental that will get you through to March before you have to reface these decisions?

Nick



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 33683
Location: Hereford
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 14 9:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Horses will destroy it over the winter.

wellington womble



Joined: 08 Nov 2004
Posts: 14810
Location: East Midlands
PostPosted: Mon Nov 24, 14 10:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Treacodactyl wrote:
I gather the window for getting a grant next spring will be short as they're changing the grant system next year. You'll need to have your land registered with the RPA and you may need a suitable management plan. Worth speaking to your local FC office if you've not already done so.


That's pretty much what they said, except he implied the system was currently changing. They don't expect any applications to be made until spring, but they haven't had any details yet. He was dismissive of the TPO's. He also mentioned initial funding and maintenance over the next ten years as a possibility. Apparently, the FC have an alerts system you can register for. I've put it on a list, but I'm keeping any eye out anyway.

I don't think it's really suitable for stock. It's not an empty field, it's got all sorts of greenhouses, raised beds and fruit trees in the middle of it. I've no idea what's lurking in the undergrowth, either.

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