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« on: October 02, 2010, 20:12 »
I have just retired and am new to allotment growing, i don't want a lot of hard work and i am thinking of buying a rotorvator. The allotment is 250 sq yds, can anyone recommend one?
Has anyone used the Handy 3.5 HP classic tiller/cultivator or any information on it?
« Last Edit: October 03, 2010, 08:34 by desford »



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Re: Rotavator
« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2010, 12:13 »
I'm just a recent convert to allotment growing myself, son & I have taken on two plots that needed a lot of work to knock them into shape, and so we acquired a Mountfield M1 rotavator. Though some folk will tell you that using a rotavator damages the soil structure, etc, I found more folk happy to advise that the benefits (e.g. being able to prepare & then plant the beds in a timely manner with minimum effort) far outweigh the disadvantages - we really struggled trying to hand dig our heavy, clayey plots in our first season and consequently only got a third done, not only losing the potential produce from the remaining part, but  feeling thoroughly deflated as we saw it rapidly return to jungle.

With the rotavator, we have now managed to 'kick start' the proceedings, and are happy in the knowledge that we'll have the whole lot under cultivation next season.

A rotavator is hard work, though - particularly on heavy soil, where it can be physically demanding, wanting to go where it wants to go, not where you want to go!

My only advice would be - unless you're going to spend lots on a newer machine for which you can get service support, go for a common make for which spare parts are readily available. If I hadn't got my Mountfield on Freecycle, I would certainly have plumped for a Merry Tiller for that very reason  :)



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Re: Rotavator
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2010, 22:43 »
I was in a similar position a couple of years ago and was lucky enough to find a second hand Honda with reverse gear for around 100 in the local paper.  Have since bought new drive belt and paid to have it serviced by Garden Machinery firm (50 I think) but find it a real godsend.  I also bought a new Honda F110 tiller which is excellent for getting a fine tilth,  turning in manure etc and light and very easy to use.  Between the two there is no need to do any heavy work and the time you save is amazing.  You do still need to weed though!


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