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Manure Handling | Equipment | Compact Spreaders | Carts | Forks
With the right tools and equipment manure cleanup doesn't need to be such a chore.
If you are knee deep in manure from a hobby farm or equestrian ranch you are probably not alone. Many who dream of living the country life on a small hobby farm or ranch never really realized just how much manure and work it creates just from a couple of horses or other livestock.
Most hobby farmer and ranchers build small barns and stalls never really considering just how much manure will stack up in a few months.
Some are able to reach in with a compact tractor and loader, but then end up piling it up outside the barn wondering how they will ever get rid of it.
Manure makes the best fertilizer for pastures and when it is composted makes a great garden fertilizer. For the small size hobby farm and ranch the manure fork and an easy wheeling cart will be much easier to use than a wheelbarrow, especially if you’re a lady farmer or rancher.
You will want a good manure fork that will hold up. It is worth spending a bit more than finding a pitchfork down at the discount store. A pitch fork is good for loading hay, but for dealing with manure the tines are spread too far apart and then the overall narrow width makes twice the work than a fork designed for manure.
Wheelbarrows are difficult to balance and wheel a heavy load, so a nice balanced two wheel or four wheel cart is your best option. Preferable something that can be easily dumped.
The two wheel garden type carts work good on composted manure but not so good on heavy wet manure. A poly or fiberglass tub will hold any liquids that might drip out. The picture shows a two wheel cart with a fiberglass tub that will work perfect around the hobby farm for manure and other wet or dry product handling.
The ultimate is to load manure once into a compact manure spreader and then spread out over the pasture. Manure spreaders have come a very long ways from the large bulky monster spreaders used on large farms. The compact E-Z spreader pictured are sized in to models to handle from 25-35 bushels. It can be easily pulled by a small garden tractor or ATV. Overall they weigh between 700-800 lbs.
There is no PTO or special hitch needed. All the operation is self contained driven off the wheels. One wheel handles the roller chain to unload the manure into the auger while the other wheel drives the auger. The hitch uses a standard flat bar and pin. The tongue even comes equipped with a trailer jack to hook up loaded or unloaded.
The smallest 25 bushel spreader is only 8’ long and is easy to store on a hobby far or ranch. The 35 bushel is 9’ long they are both only 3’ tall to make them easy loading by hand or loader.
Best of all the E-Z spreaders can be equipped to handle even fine sawdust and wood chip bedding manure.
Like everything else you get what you pay for. Cheaper tools and equipment will break down, considering manure is an ongoing chore, buy products that will hold up for the long term investment.
A good manure fork is not going to begin twisting in the handle, and a good cart is not going to break down after repeated trips.
The same goes on the manure spreaders. You will find several compact manure spreaders on the market. They may all look the same but manufactures can cut cost by using smaller sized roller chains and thin metal sides.
The E-Z spreader pictured is actually made in an Amish factory and is built like a tank. The sides are made from 11 gauge steel while the others on the market are made of only 13 gauge steel. Just compare the overall weight, the E-Z spreader overall weighs almost double of others on the market, and it is even priced a few hundred dollars less.
The E-Z spreader is only available online at Cottage Craft Works .com All the pictures and products are courtesy of this unique online back to basics store.
The Amish products they sell like the E-Z spreader are made in small Amish shops without the overhead and profit margins driven from large corporations. They also don’t have to pay for the marketing and advertising that other companies add into the overall price of the product.
Most of the Amish products are still made and touched by the owner(s) of these shops so the quality workmanship is always at the top of their list.