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Tractor Talk Discussion Forum

Re: Picture for Today

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Author  [Modern View]
LA in WI

03-21-2013 10:35:07

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I remember my grandfather putting up "loose hay" that way (it was called that to avoid confusion with the new fangled baled hay some people had). He drove the team of horses used on the rope to lift the hay into the mow. You can barely see it, but the farmer on the load is holding the "trip rope", letting it flow thru his hands until the hay fork trolley got far enuf into the hay mow...guys in the hay mow would yell when the trolley got to the target area, the guy holding the trip rope gave it a jerk and the hay was dropped. The driver on the pulling team would see that and turn around and go back to his starting point for the next trip.

The guy on the wagon would pull the trolley back out (not easy because he is also pulling that heavy rope back to the barn) and then it would release the hay forks and they would fall down to the wagon for reload. One time I saw that man holler "OK" to the team driver to start the lift and he didn"t get his fingers out of the way quick enuf and got them severely squeezed by the rope passing thru the big wooden pulley, making him yell "Stop! Stop!" to the driver. I can still see him in my mind...he was wincing badly and he slowly pulled off a glove and I saw those bloody fingers squeezed into narrow points. I don"t remember him going to the doctor, in those days they probably bandaged the fingers up with a torn bed sheet, cut the roll of tape to hold the bandage, and let him sit in the shade for a while.

Sometimes, as the hay started the trip upwards the man on the wagon would accidently be standing on the trip rope (it would be coiled everywhere)and that tripped the hay forks, resulting in a big cascade of hay falling down on him and him scrambling like mad to get out of the way and trying not to fall off the wagon.

Haying could be dangerous work, but not as risky as getting hands caught in the new fangled corn pickers while the pto was running. Many a man in farming communities had fingers and thumbs missing.

Insurance for that???? Surely you jest.
LA in WI

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03-21-2013 13:04:07

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 Re: Picture for Today in reply to LA in WI, 03-21-2013 10:35:07  
When I was a kid before dad got a baler we had a "buckrake". It was an altered truck with a large set of wood tines on back. When you brought a pile of loose hay to the barn there was a set of "slings" on the barn floor that had a trip in the middle so the two halves would separate. To get the pile of hay off the slings dad or a grownup helper would stand with his feet between the tines after they were lowered and the buckrake driver would pull ahead briskly. After the buckrake was out of the way the two lifting ends of the sling had to be hooked together- meaning someone had to crawl over the pile of hay and it was ready to be pulled up. We used a tractor, not horses. The person in the mow tripped the slings, the rope was long enough so the end was out from under. Back then we didn't think about taking pictures, wish we had some.

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LA in WI

03-21-2013 17:09:20

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 Re: Picture for Today in reply to gtractorfan, 03-21-2013 13:04:07  
What part of the country was the method used that you described? I never heard of that method before.
LA in WI

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