Winch type hay buggy/mover

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Well-known member
Aug 11, 2009
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South of San Antonio, Tx
I am in the process of building one, have everything cut and ready to weld. Need opinions on the width of the forks that slide under the round bale. I have seen one that is 4' wide and pics of one 3' wide. I am leaning towards the 4' wide.
Here is link to a pic of what I am building or atleast the same idea.
It would depend mostly on the diameter of the bale you are going to move. The smaller the diameter of the bale, the closer together the forks need to be.
As I understand it bales come in 4,5 and 6' circumference?
We normally buy 5' wide, this last purchase was 6' wide milo bales- heavy. The tumblebug style mover we have rips the milo bales apart when trying flip back over. We are having to run a 2" ratchet strap around the "arm" and bottom of frame of tumblebug to flip it over to keep from tearing up the bale.Plus we are in sandy soil, so you have put a concrete block in front of tires to break it over. Depending on how long this drought goes we may end up buying smaller bales too. I am using 2" square tube for the forks, so I am thinking go 4' wide. If we do get smaller bales I can build a set of slide on "forks" using the 2" reciever sockets. The sockets slide over my 4' forks and decrease the inside diameter to 3'.
Hope that makes sense, maybe I am over complicating things too. We dont have a tractor, everything is done buy truck.
Understand the trouble with the tumblebug tearing up the bales. I've got one (with brakes that don't work anymore) that I load with a tractor and unload by chockin the wheels.

I'm thinking 42 inches on the spacing of the forks that slip under the bale would work on the large 6' bales as well as smaller 5 foot bales. But even if you go the 48 inches, if your spear point is positioned well and long enough, it should do a good portion of the work in keeping the bale from slipping thru the forks.
For the spear, I have some 1-1/2" hot roll solid round stock that I plan on positioning 3' high from the top of forks and make it 3' long. With forks being 5' long, i figure the spear will go in easy enough. I figure on torching a good angle on the roll round stock and dressing up with a grinder to smooth the edges.
The spears don't need to be as long as in the pic, flip the point over so the spears are like a skid plate not a ramp, no need for a third spear in the middle, and go small on the width. A big bale will sit in a small cradle but a small bale won't sit in a big cradle. :tiphat:

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