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Author Topic: Rotovator  (Read 414 times)

scary crow

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Rotovator
« on: November 27, 2013, 11:05:07 PM »

Who on here uses a rotovator .I know lots of plot holders like to dig manually but as you get older it becomes more diffucult and it,s a quick and easy way to turn the soil over and incorporate compost and manure into the soil ....Oh yes and the old woman can use it aswell ...
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Big Gee

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2013, 11:43:17 PM »

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Who on here uses a rotovator .I know lots of plot holders like to dig manually but as you get older it becomes more diffucult and it,s a quick and easy way to turn the soil over and incorporate compost and manure into the soil ....Oh yes and the old woman can use it aswell ...

I don't think I could do my lottie without a rotovator these days!

I have two. There's 'Big Bertha' a 3.5HP Briggs & Stratton powered Jonsered that my lottie mate Stephen & I bought between us at a second hand auction. Fabulous bargain @ 290 and in almost new condition. We are both deeply in love with her!

Here's a photo of Stephen putting her through her paces on his plot last March.



Then there's her little sister I call "Little Tilly" she's a Mantis tiller with the latest Honda OHV 4 stroke engine. Another pearl - and again bought at a giveaway second hand price. This one had actually done no work at all from new. The guy who bought her originally had his wife sadly die on him three weeks after he purchased it. He lost interest and after some time in his garage he offered her to me at under half the price he paid for her new. Here's a photo:



The Mantis is PERFECT for beds & light tilling work. If I had to give up either of my two girls I'd give up the lottie!

Indispensable.
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scary crow

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2013, 11:52:50 PM »

Must admit there a great tool we were lucky was driving to our local feed store to collect dog food and see a honda f220 for sale for 80 pound used it for the last 2 seasons makes light work of the peat soil only problem is i never get to use it the other arf loves rotovating ..Half a day and the whole allotment is turned over im like you wouldent be without one ..
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Big Gee

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2013, 12:29:28 PM »

No - it's a "must have" if you're serious about your lottie, especially if your energy and stamina levels aren't what they used to be!!

It's also extremely therapeutic, there's something oddly pleasurable about rotovating. If I was married to your better half we'd be permanently squabbling over the rotavator!  :-)snigger

Digging can also be quite therapeutic, but I find that a full sized plot can now be a daunting task with a spade or fork. Plenty of opportunity to get a "fix" with bits of digging - or forking manure!!


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lottieguy

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2013, 03:39:35 PM »

I use a rotavator but not all the time. I have a Honda 370 and it's brilliant. I bought it from someone whose father had died sadly and had only used it once, didn't like it so put it in the shed where it sat for 6 years.  ??? I have had it for 18 years and do get it serviced regulaly. It still had the paint on the tines when I got it. Cost me 100 back then.  ThU32:-) I also have a flame gun second hand and got for fiver. Cost me 10 to get it checked over. ThU5:-) They say you just quickly go over the weeds then come back 2 days later, not me, I stand there and frazzle them.  ThU432:-) I tend to use long handled tools to try and save my back and find they help well. I am a bit of a sucker for wolf click tools and use the longest wooden handles they provide. I like wood and prefer that to alloy. I find the wood is warmer if that makes sense. I have quite a few wolf tools now and I buy them off amazon or some where and get them delivered to work, the OH doesn't see them then. I have two mini greenhouses at work and when I tidied the shed found 4 more. I do dearly love a bargain and when they are 1/3 price on offer. ;D Some things still have the labels on them. Now where did I put those netting clips?  Happy Gardening to all
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rugbypost

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2013, 06:01:34 PM »

Was looking the other day on PRELOVED. AND GUMTREE. Was just looking I have raised beds so it is all very easy digging. But Son has time for a small plot know. My arms have lost the strength they had for using machinery are there any places near you were you can have a trial and see the one that suits you before you buy. Would had loved BIG GEE,s Big Bertha machine when I first started out but if I remember correctly my Old Man would not trust me with his wheelbarrow he used to shout slow down you got all day.   rol :-)
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scary crow

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2013, 09:15:09 PM »

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No - it's a "must have" if you're serious about your lottie, especially if your energy and stamina levels aren't what they used to be!!

It's also extremely therapeutic, there's something oddly pleasurable about rotovating. If I was married to your better half we'd be permanently squabbling over the rotavator!  :-)snigger

Digging can also be quite therapeutic, but I find that a full sized plot can now be a daunting task with a spade or fork. Plenty of opportunity to get a "fix" with bits of digging - or forking manure!!



Got this picture in my head now of you and my other arf squabbling over a rotovator  lol(1)...Must admit though there is somthing good about rotovating well when she stops for a coffee and i get a go im lucky they dident  put a cup holder on my rotovator ...They do cut the work down and means the wife can help out and do her bit as she,s not too keen on digging well not for too long and she loves to help out which is nice as it makes it a enjoyable hobby that we both can do .. chrs:-)
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Big Gee

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2013, 01:02:19 AM »

You could always buy another one & label them "His" 'n "Hers"!  :-)snigger
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scary crow

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2013, 01:09:34 AM »

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You could always buy another one & label them "His" 'n "Hers"!  :-)snigger

Yes that would be a good idea i would get to have a go then .. ThU:-)
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galina

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2013, 07:18:47 AM »

I have an old inherited petrol 3.5hp, but it is so heavy.  And it does not do the job unless conditions are just right on our clay.  And it does not go deep enough even if everything is right (for about a week and a half every year).  As I have to pre-dig anyway to take out all the convolvulus roots, all it does for me is provide a fine tilth.  And for that I can use a cheap electric one, which does not hurt my back when lifting and transporting.  So I bought a real cheapy (less than 50) and that works fine, but the tines are whizzing so fast it is a bit messier around the edges than the big rotovator and needs more raking up afterwards.

It is nice to have the tools to create a fine tilth for sowing parsnips, turnips, carrots etc, however most of the time I transplant anyway and it doesn't matter whether the soil is perfectly crumbly.  Both rotovators work well for mixing in muck and mulch.   I don't absolutely need a rotovator, but it has its uses.
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Big Gee

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2013, 03:42:10 PM »

Not all rotovators are equal I'm afraid galina - even if they share the same engines. It's also a case of "horses for courses".
My 'Big Bertha' is brilliant on rough ground and goes down to a depth roughly equal to a spade's spit -unless it's on hard 'virgin' soil - but even then it will get to that depth on the second or third pass.

On the other hand, it's my "Little Tilly" that does the trick when it comes to beds - where a fine tilth is required. The Mantis only scratches the surface on rough compacted soil. Using it for that is a sure fire way to wear it out before it's time! The Jonsered is not designed for tilling - that's the difference between a rotovator & a tiller.

Bigger rotovators are not meant to be manhandled anyway (you'll do your back in sooner or later). Ideally it should be within pushing distance - on it's wheels - to where it needs to be used. I have an advantage there because 'Big Bertha' is kept permanently in a shed on the allotment plot.

If you took away my rotovator & tiller I'd give up my plot!  what:-{
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rugbypost

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2013, 08:38:39 PM »

Boys and there toys ?
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Big Gee

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2013, 11:01:59 PM »

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Boys and there toys ?

Yes - it's true what they say "Men are just boys with more expensive toys!"  CThUpD:-)

Mind you, my toys are never that expensive. Nothing new - all second hand & always at the right price. The way I look at buying gardening tools & machinery is that they don't eat or drink and they pay for themselves over & over. If I was a drinker I would soon spend that on booze and have absolutely nothing to show for it, and after one weekend in the pub I'd have to spend the same again the following weekend. With tools & machinery once bought they stick with you for good - if you look after them. Besides what fun is a headache?
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Poppa Tommo

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #13 on: April 14, 2014, 08:16:36 AM »

I use a beast of a Husqvarna rotavator on the plot and my gem of a bargain, Mantis in the greenhouse. I bought it off the Morrisons Community notice board from a local lady who's husband could no longer use it. It's the two stroke model ( not the husband, the Mantis) with every attachment you can think of, all boxed up and in mint condition...50 quid...50 quid!.

Then there's my Kubota Tractor with a 4 foot rotavator on the back, rarely used now but has been brilliant when clearing the allotment sites. I'll probably advertise my services to other local allotment holders with it.

Yep, boys toys...wouldn't be without them. ThU32:-)
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scary crow

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #14 on: April 14, 2014, 09:27:26 AM »

You had a bargain there tommy with the mantis ...Wouldent be without our rotovator it makes light work out of turning the plot over ...Big Gee is the same he loves his big boy.s toys... I have a fantastic rotovator operator here she,s called the wife once i,ve started the rotovator she speeds away with it and thats the last i see of it well untill it needs fuel .. lol(1)
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Westheathdave

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #15 on: April 14, 2014, 10:15:18 AM »

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I use a beast of a Husqvarna rotavator on the plot and my gem of a bargain, Mantis in the greenhouse. I bought it off the Morrisons Community notice board from a local lady who's husband could no longer use it. It's the two stroke model ( not the husband, the Mantis) with every attachment you can think of, all boxed up and in mint condition...50 quid...50 quid!.

Then there's my Kubota Tractor with a 4 foot rotavator on the back, rarely used now but has been brilliant when clearing the allotment sites. I'll probably advertise my services to other local allotment holders with it.

Yep, boys toys...wouldn't be without them. ThU32:-)

Who's a jammy sod then wow must be the best bargain yet hope you have fun with it.  ThU32:-)  ThU432:-)
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Big Gee

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #16 on: April 14, 2014, 11:52:44 AM »

50 is a bargain Tommy - one attachment could cost you that new. Pity you didn't get the Honda 4 stroke model - but hey! Who looks a gift horse in the mouth? And that's a 'gift' at fifty pounds.  ThU:-)
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ladybird

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #17 on: April 14, 2014, 07:16:22 PM »

Rotavators are great provided you don't have bindweed.  >:D stuff!
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scary crow

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #18 on: April 14, 2014, 07:47:40 PM »

True that ladybird a rotavator is useless if you have bindweed ,couch grass or deeply rooted nettles as they chop the roots into little pieces and dump them all over your plot ..We had bindweed all along the fence when we took our plot over but managed to get rid of it by mixing up some weed killer in a jar and painting the occasional  leaves with a paint brush eventually we got rid of the nasty weed and could rotavate right up to the fence line ..
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ladybird

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Re: Rotovator
« Reply #19 on: April 14, 2014, 08:19:54 PM »

Snap!!  That is exactly what I had to do Scary.  The bindweed roots were running like spaghetti along the fence and would start making their way out into the plot during the growing season. The paintbrush method seems to have done the trick,  but I still keep the weed killer and brush in the shed and if any stray shoots appear I zap then straight away.
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