Heading into Haying – Equipment and Tractors of the Ranch

Hi I’m Mike. Today we take a look at haying in Northeast Wyoming. The mowing, the raking the baling and the equipment that we will use. We will also take a look back at some of the older equipment they used to use Its all coming up on Our Wyoming Life. Welcome back to Our Wyoming Life. Work is piling us as I’m sure it is for
you and originally, we had planned to brand calves this weekend. Well that has been pushed back a week because
we have had more rain and branding wet calves, even working with wet calves is no fun at
all. So on short notice I had to come up with something
that I could make a video about and make somewhat interesting. The story of my life. If this is your first time here please subscribe
and I’ll give you a couple of good reasons why. Number one well you can come along with us
and explore the ranch life and escape the ordinary. That’s our usual deal and its true. Each and every week we bring you more from
the ranch, some good some bad but its all there and real life. The other reason is that we are heading into
haying season, in fact, the weather is supposed to straighten out a bit. Next week we have temps in the 80s and no
rain in the forecast so things are going to dry out a bit letting us into the field to
begin cutting grass and making hay for all the animals to eat all winter long, and hopefully
make enough of it to where we don’t have to buy hay. But the verdict is still out on that. Before we can even cut one blade of grass
we have to get equipment ready to do that and I thought it might be cool to take you
on a journey with me through haying here on the ranch. With each piece of equipment, we use we are
going to go through it thoroughly. In fact, maybe even well enough that if you
came to help you could. I don’t have a ranch hand this year, so
you just volunteered for the job. Each step of the way through this entire haying
season, my plan is to show you the how and the why and maybe even throw in something
a little special now and then. So subscribe make sure that you follow along
and don’t miss a thing. Today we are going to get started with the
haying process by getting all of our equipment out of storage. Now this may sound mundane but it’s the
first step on a long road that people in this area have been walking down for years. This is a sythe, the grim reaper thing, traced
back to 500BC and it was cutting edge technology for thousands of years. It was used to mow hay and crops, which was
then stacked for animal use or later thrashed to extract the grains. We have come a long way since then but even
out in the pastures of the ranch we still find old remnants of years gone by. Mowing is the first step in hay production
on the ranch. In the past we have mowed using a swather
but this year we have actually sold our swather. The money will help the ranch and we have
other ways to cut and mow our hay. Sickle bars are the basis of the mowing system
and have been for years. Some newer technology includes disc mowers,
which we don’t have. Our mower is a Rowse double 9 mower. And just like this old horse drawn mower out
in a hayfield on the ranch it uses a sickle to cut the hay. This mower has been in this exact spot for
many, many years. I imagine it was dropped right where it broke
down 75 or even a hundred years ago, A rancher threw his hat down and said that’s it. I’m buying a tractor and off to town he
went. Leaving this 8 foot mower behind and a testament
to frustration. Hopefully he grabbed his horses. Now our Rowse double 9 mower can cut 18 feet
in one pass. Its roughly 30 feet long and we are going
to spend a lot of time pulling it around the field. Usually with our feeding tractor, the john
deere 6420. We will spend most of our time during haying
in this tractor and it’s the most comfortable to drive, for me anyway and the AC works really
well. The mower will cut grass and lay it down behind
it, allowing it to dry faster and be ready for the next step the haying process. Once hay is cut and dried enough we can begin
raking it into what are called windrows for the baler, our next step to come along and
pick up. But the baler wasn’t invented until 1936,
we will get more into that later. So before then they still had to gather hay
and do something with it until it could be fed over the winter. Most of the time it was raked and stacked. Raking was done using a dump rake, again pulled
behind horses. Just like this one, well almost just like
this one. Over the years this one has been modified
for tractor use. Imagine a seat on here and all the operator
had to do was move a lever and try not to fall off the thing. It would be pulled through the field gathering
cut hay in its teeth until it was full. Then the lever would be moved and the rake
would dump out the hay. That hay could them be moved into a stack
for storage. When we first came to the ranch, Gilbert was
still using dump rakes, they were pulled by tractors and up to 40 feet wide. Recently we upgraded to a wheel rake, this
rake is easier to use because there is no dumping involved. You just pull it through the field, the wheels
spin, gathering the hay in a 30 foot range and lay it out in a nice row. Theres really not much more to it. We usually pull it with our John Deere 6410
and if you can drive in a straight line you can run a rake and its often where I start
ranch hands while haying. The most complicated part of the haying process
can be the baler. Baling changed the livestock game completely
in 1936 with advent of the first automatic baler. The first round baler, the predecessor to
ours came around in 1947 with the Allis-Chalmers Roto-Baler. We bale using a round baler, creating bales
that are 5 feet wide and 6 feet tall, and can weigh up to 1500 lbs each. Other types of balers can make smaller bales,
and some make bigger, including big square balers that can make bales up to 8 feet long
and 4 feet high. There are different reasons for making different
kinds of and shapes of bales. Ease of feeding is a big one for us as we
roll out our bales in the winter for cows to eat. But a big factor for us is the storage of
the bales. Round bales shed water and moisture from snow
better than big squares and since we store them outside that’s a big consideration. Also large square balers can take a lot of
horsepower to run, round balers can often run on a tractor with about 100 horsepower,
so there is no need to have a bigger tractor. Our baler is a john Deere 568, its got an
extra wide pickup to enable it to gobble up more grass and make bales faster. It wraps bales in a netting, as well that
protects the bale better than just twine. Our John Deere 4055 is our biggest tractor
with just over 106 horsepower, enabling us to pull a heavy baler up and down small hills
without over taxing the tractor. Our next step before haying will be going
through each of these machines before we use them. The mower needs some sharpening and everything
needs greased and then we will be ready to go to work, making the food that the cows
will depend on all winter long. Haying can be one of the more strenuous times
on the ranch, theres a lot of pressure to make bales and make them fast, efficiently
and correctly. Over the next couple of weeks we are going
to learn everything there is to know about these machines from how to maintain them,
how to fix them when they break to running the baling computer and making sure you are
making the best bales you can. There are many factors that go into making
hay but one of the most important is the moisture level of the hay we bale and we are going
to be testing that as well. I hope that you are willing to come along
with me, I promise to leave this thing at home. We are going to get a lot done, hopefully
we are going to make over 500 tons of hay, that’s a million pounds and over 700 bales
that the cows are going to thank us for every day this winter. Please subscribe, hit that bell so you get
notifications when we release a new video. Its gonna be a lot of fun, and just a side
note, haying is when a majority of accidents happen around here so be careful, I know I
will. Check us out on facebook and Instagram at
ourwyominglife for content you cant find anywhere else and I will see you again on Tuesday as
we continue work on the project list. Until then, have a great week and thanks for
joining us in our Wyoming life.

100 comments on “Heading into Haying – Equipment and Tractors of the Ranch”

  1. Gene Robben says:

    Great video, Mike. I have used a scythe, dump rake, side delivery rake, sickle mower and square baler. Needless to say, I'm old!!!! Take care, be safe.

  2. Firemedic1985 Gross says:

    Great video very educational…Thanks for sharing and be safe

  3. Trevor Young says:

    Love you guys…cant wait to see this journey

  4. albert russell says:

    very nice video, good luck with haying and branding.

  5. Jess Roberts says:

    You got a good clean arsenal of haying equipment.

  6. Cherry The Slumz Gang says:

    Do you sell some of the hay?

  7. Andrew Terry says:

    Great history lesson, very professional as always, thank you!

  8. dejanira2 says:

    Cool video of some very interesting equipment and the reasons for use! 🙂🙂

  9. Jim says:

    "Cutting edge technology" hah!

  10. nashguy207 says:

    Great video mike. Will it take you longer to cut the hay with the sickle bar mower than it did with the swather mower. Also how many calves di9d you end up with total this year. Have a great day. God Bless!!!

  11. R de Kort says:

    Thanks for the axplanation 👍🏼

  12. Саян Баетов says:

    All this tractors help you production hay for alone? I have never seen anybody to help ) thank you, create video!

  13. Farming 4G says:

    Good ol rowse equipment.

  14. Todd Mcgough says:

    If I could I would LOVE TO

  15. RK Harm24 says:

    How many cuttings of hay do you normally get? Great information for a non rancher/farmer.

  16. Chad Hazekamp says:

    Good job Mike . I've heard people refer to those allis Chalmers round bales as cigarette machine s because of the small bales

  17. Matt Fencl says:

    I laughed at the line about the Scythe- cutting edge technology! That was funny! Read all the comments and I guess only a few of us found it funny enough to comment!

  18. Ross James says:

    This is a good vlog… as an aussie i used to do this

  19. Ross James says:

    I always learn something from your posts… some of these vlogs from others teach nothing to people… so sad

  20. nmelkhunter1 says:

    Great overview Mike. I worked for a guy who baled his alfalfa in small bales and we had to load these by hand. When he expanded his haying operation he bought a New Holland bale stacker and I thought that was the neatest thing ever. He taught me how to use and I loved it!

  21. Jacob braybrook says:

    Hay mike how are you today

  22. James Ball says:

    Hey Mike if I was in better shape I would definitely come and help out on the ranch

  23. Sumantha Baboolal says:

    Do u have place for ranch hands to stay… if we donate or time…

  24. JJ Bacon says:

    It is not called mowing it is cutting or swathing

  25. D Bruns says:

    As always great video

  26. John Hatt says:

    That is the wrong thing to tell me

  27. Barry Beggs says:

    Hi Mike. I have used a sigh ,to cut weeds, used a 9 foot john deere hay moore,on a f-20 IH and a Oliver 88 std,which I still own. used a JD side delivery rake   and used a small sq bailer.. That was back in the late 50's and 60's.That old piece oof equip.was a binder  used to cut grain  for thrething..Wisconsin Bear…

  28. Joanne Ganon says:

    Hi Mike, in VT what you call raking is called teting is that the same thing? I just recognize the wheels. Stay out of the hot sun lol that's right you have AC.

  29. betty kuykendall says:


  30. S&C Livestock says:

    Another excellent video Mike. Best of luck on the haying hopefully you make more than u need. I wish Northern Alberta was closer, I would come work with you for the farming experience. Looking forward to your next video,Stay safe while working those long hours in the field.

  31. Melissa Williamson says:

    I bet you don't have bails roll away from you and unravel out there, do you? 😄 we have that problem in the VT hills. 😉

  32. kyle Buchmann says:

    Thanks again Mike

  33. Mike Nicholson says:

    Mike I have been mowing hay like the for years drys quicker and if it does get rained on you don't have to go and turn widrows to dry it back out worst case you may have to teder it great to see people going back somewhat to the old ways. Keep up the good work

  34. Jesse Hires says:

    You showed hay being raked and I started sneezing. I don’t miss bucking bails when I was a teenager.

  35. longhaul 7 says:

    Yup that time of the year… we r getting ready up here also

  36. Cameron/ gaming says:

    Hope you get a lot of hay to fed your cows steers and bulls and calfs and horses

  37. Gerrald Farms says:

    Good info, thanks for sharing👍🏻

  38. PA Farms says:

    I liked the overview of the equipment. I put one of those H&S wheel rakes together when I was at the equipment dealership. It made me wonder who would use such a wide rake around here, I guess they are perfect for the prairie.


    How long do you normally need to leave the grass to dry? Here in scotland we've had a good dry spell so we cut on friday, use a tedder to turn the grass every day until hopefully tuesday its dey enough to bale. Usually we would make haylage which is hopefully what we can make in the other fields

  40. PC Sweeney says:

    Hi Mike,
    Getting ready here in central Ohio to bale too. Lots of rain so far. Hopefully this week we can get some knocked out.


  41. Captain farm man says:

    why do yall prefer the sickle bar mower over a disc bine i have seen some other channels like farming 4g that use them as well i have never seen those around here unless they are like 80 years old it seems like a lot of yall out in the praires they get used a lot

  42. Tony Burelle says:

    I'll be honest, I didn't realize a each would use a cutterbar, much less two in tandem, I'm sure there's less maintenance than a swather/ mower conditioner, the hay dries fast enough without tedding?, I can't wait to see your process should be interesting and different,

  43. Banjo Benson says:

    I have never seen a double cycle mower before , we had a single John deer on the farm for years.

  44. Frank Irwin says:

    AC was what type of breeze happened to be blowing. And winter time was what type heat you got from long johns. And the choice was one tractor and a team of mules on the wagon. Good luck on your hay season. Generally windrows needed a good week for moisture to drop. Sure didn't want to pick it up early.

  45. Jen Honey says:

    Thanks y'all. Enjoy your vids. I just bought my very own rotory mower. Yes. I'm disabled and had to find a reasonable solution. Haven't tried it out yet but she's a dandy looking thing.

  46. BIG GEE ROCHESTER NY585 says:

    nice farm

  47. Zeze Andjr says:

    Mike, are you GPS guided when doing those hay rows?

  48. Floyd Farms says:

    Love sickle mowers, simple to work on and if you have one of the popular brands easy to get parts for. Like our New Holland 451 9' sickle, which I'm in the process of rebuilding our spare one.

  49. C Jacob says:

    I could have my 20 yr old son come out & help

  50. C Jacob says:

    I want to see a snake in the baler

  51. justin whitley says:

    The v rake is the best way to put hay in a windrow I have seen what my grandmother used and that was a long day along with tons of square bales laying every where in the barn now I run 10 mph raking and 8 baling

  52. mark skaggs says:

    every Rancher/Farmer gets religious during hay season just like the old saying goes " there are no atheists in a foxhole". we pray for rain for it to grow, we also pray for no rain after it's down and drying, we pray for the equipment to hold together till we are done using it. for us guys who still square bale, we pray the bailer doesn't beat itself to death and for help bucking and stacking it and we pray we get it in the barn before it gets rained on, and above all we pray we don't get hurt because a lot of us are a one man band operation like yourself.

  53. Crows 2332 says:

    Thanks mate. Ripper vid. Good luck with the preparations. Cheers

  54. Dinoxt12 says:

    About time you got the cobwebs out off that fine 4055 and put it to work.

  55. Jeanette Waverly says:

    Wow! What a great, informative video, Mike! I love learning about the history of things. Looking forward to this series of haying videos!

  56. Caolan Murphy says:

    Another great video Mike!

  57. Sicklecroft Dave says:

    Hello,I don’t understand why you boys don’t make round bale silage,it would mean no concentrate feed required in winter,because all the goodness is kept inside no like hay where all the goodness has to disappear before you can bale it 🇬🇧

  58. The Strathroy Boys says:

    My uncle lost his arm in an auger on a small square baler, after it jammed up. Make sure to turn the PTO off before servicing; it's a lesson you won't forgot…

  59. wayne steven says:

    May it be Known to all, and to DC Communist Democrats,and Globalist and Deep State
    , I, nor my Family, Nor Friends, Nor any others that i personally know, we do not want a civil war, and we have had much patience and mercy on all of you anti-american people, and it does seem you may be planning and getting ready to make the biggest mistakes of your lives,, by mistaking our kindness and patience as weakness…
    We do not want a civil war,, right vs left, but make no mistake about it, if you fire the first shots, we will not run, and we will respond, to protect our families, friends, and all fellow americans, you communist socialist democrats will not get your hearts desire for america, we will not bow to you nor submit to your will or plans.
    and it really puzzles me, how you DC democrats are now screaming for civil war, and you have zero idea what a civil war in the usa would even look like, and the loss of lives, would be in the tens of millions, it would end up being total war, research General Sherman, and his march to the sea, and then you will understand total war, from just war.
    But i have a feeling, that many of you on the left, may just be foolish enough to start firing shots at any and all on the right, and if you do, Trump will declare Martial Law, and you will never get trump out of the white house, if he declares martial law, and them FEMA camps are real and do exist,, i do not want to see all of you end up in them, and you sure dont want to personally end up in a FEMA camp.
    Understand what it would mean if Trump was forced to declare Martial law, Means Military takes over all, even the Media, and all food and water, all oil and gas, and congress is suspended, and so are the Judges and courts, it will be Generals from the military in charge in every state, you will face a Military Judge,, and so much more,, and if he must declare martial law,, we all will suffer, and our lives will be put on hold,, and we will never again return to the america we have right now,, and if you on the left start firing bullets, well you will force trump to declare martial law, and trump would have every right to under law.. so think before you act.. globalist–democrat communist

  60. The Angry Fish Guy says:

    Looking foward to the series.

  61. Ian Williams says:

    do you need any help at all haying?

  62. Ian Williams says:

    I live in whitewood south Dakota if you want you can call me at 605-269-1013.

  63. Rich Peterson says:

    Mike, that's an impressive line of machinery ! How do you sustain/maintain your grasslands? Do you burn, seed, fertalize or anything? 🤠

  64. Bewt 12 says:

    This was my first summer doing hay at a farm I work at

  65. ebin belji says:

    Do you burn hay rolls to keep the cattle or plants warm ?? Is that a myth ?

  66. Joe Nadeau says:

    Question: You mentioned in another video that you only get one cutting so why not wait until later in the season, wouldn't you get more hay that way? We are currently cutting in New England but the fields will have time to regenerate. Great channel, I really enjoy your presentations. Joe

  67. Urs says:

    that old 8 foot is a binder and not a mower lol

  68. Jake Boss says:

    Hey Mike, as a reminder, it would be nice to see a video of loading the netting/string into the hay baler, (if its not too late)

  69. toska babar says:

    hi i'm finish haying today  good bravery for you

  70. Landon Skretteberg says:

    How much hp dose the 4055

  71. Kieran 6215 says:

    What brand of mower do ye use

  72. Micheal O'Donovan says:

    That mower is a binder ffs

  73. South Sask Farmer says:

    That's not a mower that's a binder.

  74. Evan Swink says:

    About how much is the cutter, rake, and baler?

  75. Ethan Ray says:

    Why do you not use a tedder to dry the hay faster after cutting it?

  76. Brayden Heath says:

    Have you ever grown fodder from wheat or barley to feed to you cows (or other livestock) during the winter. There are different commercial fodder growing machines available for purchase.

  77. zachary campbellgiffin says:

    the piece of equipment is an early mccormick reaper binder

  78. lee ardis German shepherd team says:

    Get rid of the John Deere for a New Holland

  79. b.murphy says:

    Its interesting to see how hay is made in america compared to Ireland

  80. Frank Metcalf says:

    Those of us who grew up on Midwestern dairy country with lush alfalfa don't appreciate the challenge of harvesting more sparse grassland forage. Thanks.

  81. Arnór Hermannsson says:

    few questions.
    why don't you use disk mower? and mow 50% faster.
    why don't you turn the grass on the field? dries better.
    And why don't you wrap your bales into plastick? better storage.

    best regards from iceland 🙂

  82. Mary Dorr says:

    Interesting! Sheds light on those giant and mysterious pieces of farm equipment… well, for those of us that are not in the know. Thanks Mike!

  83. gary d thim says:

    that is a binder yes i have used onei

  84. Andreas Putzhuber says:

    The wheel rake isn't good for the hay quality because the tow dirty in the hay

  85. Valentus SlimROAST says:

    I wish we had a 568

  86. Wild Ginger Farm says:

    In 3:38 it's not a mower thats a wheat reaper probably McCormick if it's around the 100 year old era

  87. Franz Joseph says:

    6:27 Thats my Tractor😍😍😍
    Of cours I love yours to!

  88. Perch09 farming says:

    How much do you want for that old horse drawn mower

  89. Perch09 farming says:

    Or the rake

  90. topherh33 says:

    Call me stupid but, why not put tarps over the bales after they are stacked to keep the rain off???

  91. Peter R says:

    sell the old mower. People love restoring those now a day

  92. Cathy Macdonald says:

    Love the old dump rake. Never remove it from the farm.

  93. Reinhard Geissler says:

    Hello Mike, maybe the hay is swathed across the hillside, so that the freshly pressed hay bale doesn't roll down the road again. Greeting from Germany, Reinhard

  94. Tracy Jerred says:

    Very interesting. I'm looking forward to the other videos on haying.

  95. Hamish Kay says:

    Your equipment is very different from what we use in the UK some, they work in exactly the same manner but look different.

  96. Connor holt says:

    Will your farm be past down to your kids

  97. Grant D Travels says:

    If you are not attached to it, you'd be surprised what that old haying equipment goes for at auction. Just saying. You could do some clean up and make extra income from it. Other people pay big time to put those antiques in their shops and front yards.

  98. T K says:

    Mike… Call me when you need a hand. Seriously ! I'm 2 hours away. II can re-arrange my schedule. Tom

  99. Brad says:

    Can you do a tractor oil change video?

  100. Galen Crawley says:

    Mike, On your 6420, have you ever had any codes that tell you transmission fault and to put trans in park before driving any farther? Just. Curious if had this problem before I take mine to dealer….Love the channel !

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