The rise of the machines

​Good day, faithful followers of the bountiful BOTL.  It has been 6 months since we last spoke, and for this we offer our deepest apologies.  The past 6 months have not been lacking in development, so today let’s focus our discussion on a specific topic.  Let’s talk about the fields, the harvest, but most importantly… diesel powered heavy machinery.  Meet BOTL Farm’s latest staff member:
The Kubota L-48.  There’s something to be said for working with hand tools. The feel of the maker connected with their work piece.  The satisfaction of molding raw stock into finished product.  We can see this whether we are hand planning boards, digging thirty six holes for orchard trees with a shovel, or kneading bread dough with only the power of our forearms.  We understand the value that only manual labor can bring.  We also think power tools are amazing inventions, and we have a whole lot of stuff to move around on our land.  Mostly the land itself.
If you’re anything like us, you may have a rudimentary knowledge of the internal combustion engine, especially as it is used in automotive applications, but looking at diesel powered hydraulic farm machinery is a new experience for you.  We started by watching YouTube videos, making ridiculous Google searches like “what tractor will run forever”, and reading about how to quickly diagnose the health of a continuously variable transmission while doing a test drive.

Craigslist is powerful magic, and it was there that we happened upon our tractor.  It was under the care of a fairly well to-do individual to help with their yard work.  We paid three times as much for our tractor as we did for our last car, but with diligent care we hope it will last us for many solar eclipses yet to come.  The tractor came with front forks, a front bucket, a rear mower deck, and a back hoe.

Job number one for the tractor was brush clearing.  A person staring at an endless field of poison ivy feels a sense of calm and control when sitting in a cracked leather seat, riding high above the flowing urushiol oil, and unleashing the fury of liquid dinosaurs to blaze a path down to bare soil.  Job number two was using the mower deck to cut a parking lot in the pasture for our annual pig roast.  The mower deck was renamed “the rock finder” for its ability to smoothly cut tall grass until that fateful moment when a boulder is hiding underneath that grass, at which point a resounding “KAPOW” rings through the fields, and we are truly glad that hydraulic driven mower decks don’t have many moving parts to shear off.

The tractor was also employed by our resident hydrologist to trace a state drainage pipe from the road towards our river, which was piled under years of sediment layers [editor comment: sediment is dirt, sand, rocks, and organic matter … the culvert filled with all of these things].  After using the tractor’s backhoe and exploring the layers all the way back to the jurassic era of 1987, we were able to free the end of the drainage pipe, only to find the pipe appears to be itself filled with dirt [editor’s note: this is scientifically known as “soil”].  So that complicates things.
We’ve completed initial maintenance, had several hours of test sessions with all the attachments, and we’re looking forward to serving you delicious animals in the future with the help of our new Kubota L-48!

Last Updated on 2023-01-03

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