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Sub soiler use

25149 Views 17 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  joshc
So I picked up this baby. I don't know much about it, but I need to use it tomorrow morning. Seems to me like there should be a bolt in one of the missing holes around the top link??


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See if this picture helps; your subsoiler looks to be a Fred Cain S-2.

Nice looking tractor -- possibly a 790 or 3005 -- of course I'm only seeing the rear end .... Or, is it a 4X00 series?

Hope it is at least 30hp or it may have difficulty pulling that single shank.



It is a Cain. It amazes me how you guys can identify these things!

I have a 790. Im anxious to see how she pulls it.

Looks like I need a bolt toward the bottom where it pivots. How does this thing work anyways?
Something doesn't look right but it's hard to figure out what it is. The factory picture does have a bolt or pin in the hole behind the pivot point, but imagining the pressure on the shank in use would seem to make that pin useless except for lifting it out of the ground. I hope someone with experience with these will chime in.

Another thought, it seems you've got that top link out awfully long. You may have to put that subsoiler in the ground to know if it needs adjusted.
No you are right. I have it out for transport purposes. I have to tow the tractor in the morning and it drags getting up on my trailer.
Subsoiler Use: Tips and Tricks from an old ....

Adjust the top link as short as possible; the "missing" bolt is a shear bolt.

When you lift it after shortening the top link, the subsoiler should "fold" and raise the foot -- it will be under the drawbar. The foot will be parallel with bottom of the tractor with about 6 to 9 inches of clearance. Maybe less with the smaller 790.

This implement is for breaking the hard pan or clay layer about 24" or more below the soil's surface. It improves drainage, and water reserve. On the larger field plows it usually runs through the rows where the actual planting will happen; this helps with water reserve and deep roots for the row crop; I know a farmer who does this every time he plants, his yields are greater than some of the other farmers in the area who do not; google / research: soil compaction, no-till, low-till, subsoilers, parabolic subsoilers -- read more about it. I know very little about anything.

Figure 40hp per shank; the larger subsoiler units with 5 or more shanks need 150+hp tractors to pull them; from what I read, the parabolic shaped units can be pulled with less HP. See here as an example:

One last comment, use it during the dry part of the year / season. If the clay layer is very wet or just wet, the "fracturing" does not occur very well. If it is "dry" clay, better fracturing occurs allowing water to pass ....

I'll be quiet now.

Joe :confused:

P.S. Weight down the front and rear ends on your 790 -- it's not a very heavy tractor. If MFWD is on your tractor, use it.

When you use the subsoiler, make sure the "foot" is at an angle -- down -- about 10 to 15 degrees. The mast of the implement will "lean forward" slightly, foot back and head forward -- not straight up and down. Not enough of an angle, the implement will start "floating" and work its way up in the soil; too much of an angle, and -- well -- you get a "brake" or "break."
Subsoiler Use: Tips and Tricks from an old ... continued


One more thought, snug up your sway links so the subsoiler won't "wander 'round" on you ....

Much appreciated Joe! Thank you sir.
I used a ripper tooth off a D9 CAT similar to that to bury some underground irrigation pipe. To get it to stay in the ground, I had to drop the tooth in a hole, and the run a chain from the top link to my tow bar to stop the 3pt from rising. Worked really well, but stopped my 2520 with a bucket full of wet clay a few times (traction limited)...
This thing worked like a champ. Little 30HP JD did a great job. I was actually able to pull it up hill, not going full depth of course.

We used it to make way for a electric line to a building.
Subsoiler Uses

Oh, did I forget to mention that you can pull cable and water line with a subsoiler!

Joe :thThumbsU
Would you just rip the ground first then go back and tie off your cable to the ripper then sink it in the ground again?
Here is a video of my neighbor digging a small pond with the sub-soiler and scraper blade..:fing32:

I welded a chain link on the bottom of my tooth and used it to pull some black irrigation pipe. Then, after I was finished, ran the electric wires inside the irrigation pipe. You have to use the right electric wires because irrigation pipe isn't condiut, but it is cheap and beats digging a trench by hand.
Would you just rip the ground first then go back and tie off your cable to the ripper then sink it in the ground again?
Here is a good adaption posted by dogfenceman..:fing32:

Would you just rip the ground first then go back and tie off your cable to the ripper then sink it in the ground again?
I built a similar thing like in the picture Ken posted (#15)

Mine is a King Kutter ripper shank for a box blade and a home built adapter to a receiver hitch. Mine has the shank pinned to the adapter with two 5/8" pins. So it is adjustable for depth.

Adjustable is a good thing since it seems to pull my 3pt to the full down position no matter what depth you run the shank. I suppose that is a function of the curve of the shank and cutting tooth.

I have used it to drain several mud puddles where I didn't want them. And to grub up around several tree stumps to remove roots and stump.

Never ran out of traction or power pulling it full depth, unless I hooked a root or big rock. It will just move over rocks about grapefruit size.

Good luck
JD855 hydro, 24hp, unloaded turfs, 4x4, about 2000lb.
Here's a couple more:


Thanks for the pictures. With the conduit strapped to the ripper, I guess you spool it from the top?
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