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Discussion Board - Do you think three's a market for rebuilding rotary hoes?

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01-18-2013 13:25:06

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Hey all,

Seems some organic guys hang out down here, so I thought this might be the place to ask.
I have been looking for a GOOD used rotary hoe. There's plenty out there, but there are more trashed ones than good ones. I just went to sale where the hoe had been sunk in the ground so long that the tines had several pounds of sod stuck to them. Once the spoon is gone, the hoe is just a crust buster.

So, I finally pinned down the manufacturer in Canada that sells weld-on spoons. They're hid so well that most people think they're outta business - no web presence AT ALL, they're number has changed, and they don't do much paper advertising at all. After talking with them, I mentioned I may be interested in becoming a dealer. They seemed receptive to the idea.

So here's the price breakdown - You can buy an entire wheel from the Sloan, THE's, ASAP etc of the world for between $32 and $40 per wheel, plus shipping. You can get them for $54 from Deere and $40+ from Yetter. I wouldn't be at all surprised to find every one of these sellers get them from the same factory in China...

I can get the spoons for $13 a wheel and a bearing for $5 or less a wheel. The manufacturer sells a jig for $125 that he claims I can weld up 5 an hour. At $15 an hour, that's $3 labor. I'd have $20-25 a wheel in rebuilding, depending on if the bearing needs replaced. Since these weld-on spoons are supposed to be "better than new", I thought I'd offer them for $35 a wheel outright or $30 a wheel with a trade-in.

D'ya think this could be profitable? Hoes have gone by the wayside for conventional farmers, but they're still popular in organics. Yetter and Deere still make them new. I didn't price a Deere, but a 30 foot Yetter is $9000 plus.

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01-18-2013 21:51:27

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 Re: Do you think three's a market for rebuilding rotary hoes? in reply to rockyridgefarm, 01-18-2013 13:25:06  
Like you said, the company that makes the spoons has no web presence. Why not become a dealer and set up a website? See if you can sell a few and maybe buy a jig to rent out. It wouldn't be a big labor investment that way. If folks are interested in rebuilt wheels, then get into doing it.

For what is worth, I do farm organic. Dad bought Ho-bits as they were called when he got started 15 yrs ago and used a jig from the company to put them on. I don't remember if he had to pay extra, but he had to send it back. They worked good, but they didn't take the rocks. Now we bite the bullet and buy $40 wheels for half the hoe and put them over the rows. When the spoons wear out we'll move them off the row and put an other set of new ones on.

For some one without rocks (or some one who hasn't tried them) those ho-bits are a good deal.

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01-18-2013 14:33:57

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 Re: Do you think three's a market for rebuilding rotary hoes? in reply to rockyridgefarm, 01-18-2013 13:25:06  
I am an organic farmer and I currently have three of them. One at every location that I farm. All of mine are in very good condition and were so cheap that I would rather have one at each location than road them. I can not see rebuilding them as a money maker for you at this time.

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01-18-2013 14:12:17

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 Re: Do you think three's a market for rebuilding rotary hoes? in reply to rockyridgefarm, 01-18-2013 13:25:06  
they give those old hoes away here, so i dont think in my area there would be much of a market.The only time ive ever seen anyone run one here in the last thirty years was to simply break up the crust on a wheat field.if you were in a area with lots of truck farms and things it may make sense.

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