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I had a new septic tank installed last week, and now I have to get the grade back to where it should be. I have about a 40'x50' area that needs to come down anywhere from 2" to 6". I started by using by FEL bucket to backdrag, but I am not happy with the results. I do not have a tooth bar on the bucket yet, and the edge just starts to dig in too deep when I try to scrape going forward.

Yes, I am new at this. I have only had my JD 955 for about 6 weeks. I am learning quickly and have gotten rather proficient with my BH, but now I need to learn how to use the FEL.

Thanks for any help.
 

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I would use a box blade if I had one available. In my opinion trying to dig dirt etc with a FEL with a plain edge without teeth and even with teeth on them on a CUTS is looking for problems. They are made for scooping up loose materials not digging as such, unless perhaps the soil is soft loamy and sandy, then you may get by with it. Even a full sized backhoe has problems trying to do much more than scoop loose fill etc with the FEL portion.



In another post IO made about my neighbor buying a fully loaded Kubota M6800, well today he was outside trying to redo his driveway. Its extremely hard packed clay gravel. He had his bucket on the FEL in all kinds of positions and angles trying to level out and fill in his driveway. It currently has some pretty deep ruts in the driveway perhpas 8 to 12 inches deep, and he is trying to cut it all down level.....He takes a run at at and the machine just shakes shudders and jumps when the bucket grabs ahold. I would have to assume that kind of playing around is gonna be awfull hard on the loader arms etc......the machine just was not made for that kind of use IMHO. I think if he had a box blade he could do it some good and not put as much strain on his machine in the process.........same goes for what your trying to do.....a box blade willlevel / cut and drag material and fill in low spots all in one operation. It may take a few pases but its more than doable. Contractors around here all have box blades behind ag or CUTs, that they use to level out building lots prior to pouring a slab, as well as a backhoe setting there waiting for the ground to get leveled up so they can dig a footer.
 

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Jim, in this case you may want to consider a landscaping rake. It will allow you to move and grade out the soil as well as clean out some of the sod clumps and larger rocks. It should leave a nice smooth textured finish when you go over the are the final time to smooth is out. I own a Land Pride LCR 1584 Landscaping rake.

15 Series Landscape Rakes

I use mine to maintain my gravel driveway and it does a good job as well there.

Land Pride is pretty expensive but you can get a King Kutter rake for about half the price of a LP.

KING KUTTER YARD RAKES

I believe Tractor Supply Center sells them for $350.

6 Ft. Landscape Rake

A box blade or grader blade will work as well.
 

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I have a cheap box blade that I got for $295 and it works great at smoothing loose soil and the such. Last week a new item on my wifes honey do list appeared and she ask if I could smooth out the bumps in our driveway. the driveway is made out of recycled black top and had got rutted and bumpy. I thought for awhile if the box blade could do and decided I give it a try. I wish I had done it earlier, It did a terrific job of smoothing the driveway and I had only one unintended dig that was easy to correct and the driveway never looked better. Just shop around and get the best medium duty one you can afford they are really good at this work.
 

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Jim, as far as needing to push dirt I would reccomend a box blade.. It works great for finishing also.. Those land scapping rakes are fantastic for loose soil as Chief was saying for the clumps of sod and finishing touches.... Just a thought:idea: do you have any machiinary auctions in you area? possible to get some thing very resonable....
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the input guys. I called one of my local dealers and he has no more 5" BBs in stock, and won't be getting any more this season. I have a couple of more places to check. Unfortunately, there are no machinery auction places within 2 hours of me.
 
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