Tiller

snuffyinatlFebruary 18, 2013

Does anyone make a good, heavy duty tiller any more? I need one, and the ones I have been seeing look pretty flimsy. Any recommendations?

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slowpoke_gardener

I think you can still get a new Troy Bilt Horse for around $2,000.00. The BCS will be more than that, but I dont know anything about it. I bought my horse used for $250.00, its a 1981 model and is still a good tiller.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 7:24PM
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gator_rider2(z8 Ga.)

This 4 speed horse on craigslist.

Here is a link that might be useful: For sale n Atlanta

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 7:52PM
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txtom50(8a texas)

Over the years I've read some pretty positive comments on Gardenweb about Merry brand tillers. I have my Dad's old Merry Exporter model that was built in the 70s and with a new engine, it still works fine.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 4:25AM
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DCM1519

Years ago, I was faced with the need for a tiller. Knowing nothing about them, I bought a front tine tiller that was on sale. It was a big mistake. That thing beats me up badly every time I use it.

If I was doing it again, I would only look at rear tine tillers and maybe one with tines that sit in the center under the motor. Not sure about that one though and would only do that after asking for advice from someone that owns one.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 9:58PM
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zen_man

Snuffy,

A lot of rental places have Merry Tillers because they are not flimsy. I have had a top of the line Merry Tiller International model for many years, and I really like it. It is a mid tine model. It features a triple reduction transmission for unstoppable torque, and a dual V-belt connection from the engine to the transmission which serves as a heavy duty clutch.

It has several different available tines. I have the standard Slasher tines that came with it, and I have since got Finger tines, Pick tines, and Bolo tines. All are very useful for different purposes.

I got the Pick tines when I lived in Maine and needed to till some very rocky stuff. Here in Kansas, those Pick tines turned out to be surprisingly useful. No rocks to deal with here, but down about 12 inches there is a hard pan, and the Pick tines are my most aggressive weapon for gouging it up.

The mid-tined design is capable of deeper tilling. The design depth of my International Merry Tiller is 12 inches, but by going back over it, I can and do till to a depth of 16 inches and occasionally more. You do have to keep the motor above ground (grin). Most rear tine tillers are hard put to till 6 inches deep, because of their high tine speed in the 200 to 300 rpm range.

My triple reduction transmission lets me till with a slow tine speed in the 40 to 80 rpm range with very high torque. No dirt shield is needed, and that feature comes in very handy. I like to see exactly what the tines are doing.

ZM

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 5:18PM
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tdscpa(z5 NWKS)

Used to be a guy here who extolled Merry Tillers. Don't remember his name, but he impressed me with his knowledge. I bought one. Have been very happy with it. Think it was the Suburban tiller. Mid-tine, about 6hp. Cost was about $800 maybe five years ago. Have had no problems with it.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 2:19AM
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loger_gw

Is tilling 12â deep on one pass excessive or possible with normal use for a 2001 Troy Bilt Pony? In a garden that has been tilled that deep at least the last 3 yrs. Tilled with an Old WardâÂÂs front tine tiller that lasted since 1970 (until now with too much wear).

Thanks for any info.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 12:25PM
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sandiegojc

Whatever you do do NOT get a Mantis tiller. They are total junk.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 4:53PM
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farmerdill

I concur that the Merry is one fine tiller. Pricey tho. Snapper use to make a reasonable knock off of the Merry Suburban, but they have gone to rear tine models. Not sure how well made these are. Merry are front tine which I prefer, because one has a lot more control than with a rear tine.They handle like a horse drawn plow, If you learn to apply the correct pressure at the proper time you will not raise a sweat. I am almost 80, and my 1968 Suburban has never beaten me up. I also have a 1970 Western Auto (Gilson) which is not balanced as well and will give me a workout when breaking sod.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 7:27PM
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zen_man

Hi Farmerdill,

"Merry are front tine which I prefer, because one has a lot more control than with a rear tine."

I think MacKissic refers to their Merry Tillers as mid-tined tillers. That is a reasonably accurate description for the International models and the Suburban models, which have their engines in front of the tines, with the weight of the tiller approximately balanced over the tines. I have been using my International Merry Tiller for several years as a senior citizen. You are right, that you can learn not to "fight" the tiller, give it a bit of freedom to buck around a bit. People who rent mid tined tillers are inexperienced with them, and tend to over-control them. And that can be hard work.

And the mid-tined tillers are much easier to maneuver than the rear tined tillers. You can literally turn a mid-tined tiller on a dime, by rocking the tiller back onto the drag stake, so that the tiller is balancing on the drag stake, and just pivoting it around the drag stake. It would be pretty hard to do anything similar to that with a rear-tined tiller.

ZM

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 11:25PM
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weldonnorman

Does anyone have a picture, or know where I can get a free manual of a Montgomery Wards rear tine, forward rotating tiller, powered by a double pulley briggs & stratton? Specifically, I need the routing of the inner drive belt, which powers it both forward and reverse. I'm tired of scratching my head and other places. Its model #GIL 9032E. I know, it was built by Gilson. Thanks.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 10:45PM
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gator_rider2(z8 Ga.)

Does this video help you on belts install the reversing belt on back pulley is twisted as view in video. I no this is not your model number tiller but is a gilson may help

Here is a link that might be useful: Drive belts install

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 12:50PM
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snuffyinatl

Thanks for your input, guys. I wound up getting a Maxim, and it is basically a copy of the Merry, and seems made just as heavy. I believe it is made like the good old ones! Maxim till n plow is the name of it, got it at Tractor Supply.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 5:35PM
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