Brush Hogging and Connecting your Brush Hog to your Compact Tractor
I want to show you how to hook up a New Holland bush hug to the back of your John Deere compact tractor.
On the back of the tractor you’re going to have two lower links one on your right and one on your left. You’re going to hook up these to your implement with the little studs sticking out. These lower links are what raises your implements up and down. Then your stabilizers keep your links from flying into your tire, or your implement from swaying from side to side. What I usually do is I hook up my lower links first. I raise the implement to almost level, and then I hook up my PTO shaft to the drive on the tractor. And then after that’s hooked up, I do my top link and then adjust it to the correct height to cut the grass.
First we’re going to put our PTO pins in and we’re going to do the other side the same way. I’ve got two choices here. It looks like either the tractor is going to have to come back, or I’m going to have to push on the back of the implement. I could probably push on the back of the implement a little bit. What I like to do is raise it to where it is almost level. At this point it is helpful to use a mechanics pry bar and a drift pin to lever things into place and align holes for the lift arms. Good pry bar sets are made by Stanley, Craftsman, Tekton, and Tech Team https://techteamproducts.com/. We like the Tech Team’s because it is good quality, has a drift pin, and 4 sizes of mechanics pry bars. https://www.amazon.com/Mechanics-Prybars-Chisel-Angled-Rolling-Head/dp/B07CSBZ4ZM/ref=sr_1_11?s=power-hand-tools&ie=UTF8&qid=1540409708&sr=1-11&keywords=pry+bar+set
The next thing I want to do is put on my PTO shaft. When you put your PTO shaft on, you’ve got to make sure your tractor is off for safety reasons. You don’t want that thing spinning on you. Even though the controls are in the off position to engage a PTO, you just don’t want to take a chance. Next connect the PTO. On the PTO there’s a pin you push, it’s a spring loaded pin, and that will let you engage. The splines have to line up with the splines on the tractor and on the implement. You will be able to turn it a little bit, actually quite a bit, to get those splines to line up. As you’re putting it in you can push this pin in. You’ll feel it lock. Then put your safety cover down. Now we can hook up the top link.
The top link is fairly simple. Put your hitch pin in. Bring it down to where it’s about right. Now adjust it so the holes line up. You can use the drift pin for this. You thread this or out depending on which way you got to go to line up the pin. Okay now we’re through. Now we can adjust this to where we need it. There’s one more thing I wanted to add. This is a drive shaft, and there is a protective cover because you don’t get things winding up in there as you’re cutting grass. All the chains do is keep this from spinning, its free spinning right now and it will always be free, but this will keep it from spinning. You just want to hook it up somewhere, and you want it a little loose because as you’re raising this up and down, you don’t want this binding up and pulling. So you want it fairly loose and in the back you’re going to have another one.
Now with the tractor running we’re gonna level this. What we want is the front of this brush hog a little bit lower than the back. Just a little bit, maybe an inch or two. This keeps the grass from getting clogged up in there when it shoots it out the back. Now we’re going to tighten up the top link. You’ve got a locking nut, just snug it up. On the bottom links, the right one is usually adjustable. But you can tell that this one is adjustable. This one here is a solid rod and it’s fixed. If you needed to raise or lower this, first you hook up the left side, and if this is a little off and you know you’re on level ground, then what you would do is pop this up, and then spin it around like a bolt and it will adjust it like the top link. Now that we have it leveled where we want it, go to where your levers are, and if you notice, there is the control to raise the lower link and your implement up and down. What I want to do is loosen the stop and bring it up to where it just touches a lever. So now if I raise my implement up, and I bring it back down and hit my stop here and the implement goes right back to where it was.
Now we’re going to cut some grass. The first thing we want to do once you get to the area where you want to cut is put your bush hog down. Push the lever down to where we set the stop. What I’m noticing is a back tire on the brush hog isn’t touching. That means the ground I was on when I did the set up wasn’t level. So we’re going to bring this down a little bit more, adjust that little stop a little bit farther down so the back tire touches. Now we’re ready to cut. What we’re going to do is push the clutch in all the way and we’re going to engage the PTO lever. Now it’s engaged. This is a two stage clutch. When you release it a little bit it will get the PTO turning. When you release it the rest of the way, the tractor will move forward. So we’re going to engage the PTO for the brush hog. But make sure you’re in first gear. I like to cut it off at 1200 RPM’s. We’re going to release the PTO, get it spinning, and now we can move forward.