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    I am hoping to get a bit of advice here . I have inherited a 300acre smallholding 700km away from me in a place called broederstroom. Its got nothing growing on it. But its near the lion park so every now and then you kak yourself cause they roar real loud. However they are caged but its amazing how far the sound travels. Anyway I get to see giraaffes and buck and zebra etc but its through a fence. Got some of my own buck but jackals are a problem.
    Anyway its a bit of a financial burden because of distance and being non productive.Any suggestions as what I could grow.
    Please no wize cracks like dube for medicinal purposes that my mates would like me to grow

    My main problem is the tractor and brushcutters. Does anyone know if there is a online manual for a massey fergusson 135 tractor.
    Or does anyone own one. I would like to ask a question on how to use it.
    Second is we have to cut fire breaks and we use sthil fs 280 brushcutters. Does any one have any knowledge on how to repair these. I would like to know how to change the bearings. Does the crank need to be split. I was not raised to grow up with bikes or else I am sure I would have a better knowledge of two strokes.
    Also I cant believe a piston can cost R750 00 ($110)
    Are there cheaper generic pistons?
    Or could a piston be made or am I now really showing how ignorant I am .

  • #2
    Go to this site (password is "Discovery") and click on the small engine repair link. You will find .pdf manuals for both the tractor and the brush cutter. The cutter head and engine are in different areas however.
    Hope that helps...


    • #3
      Good Morning...

      I think you may find the follwoing site helpful. Best of Luck...

      Great resource for all tractor makes and models along with implements...



      • #4
        300 acres; that sounds like an awfully big plot to be tackling with an MF135 - I have 6 acres, mowing it with a similar sized tractor takes about an hour. If you're looking at working that kind of area, I'd think that a *much* bigger tractor would be in order - maybe also 4wd if it's hilly.

        Manuals are available on ebay: for instance.

        For cutting the firebreak, would you be better off hitching a mower behind your tractor, rather than using a brushcutter? The MF135 can handle about a 2m wide mower, and it would be a lot less work than using brushcutters. Good luck with maintaining the fence!

        All of the gear, no idea...


        • #5
          How much of that 300 is arable?
          You see here in the US we use our corn crop to fuel our cars so you might want to consider corn.
          If it can't grow crops you might want o consider live stock.

          Stock it with retired zoo residents and call it a ,"shooting preserve".


          • #6
            Not sure what your rainfall is like but you might want to consider managing it for forage hay (I assume it's not bare dirt and has grass/weeds on it already). You may have a ready market next door selling feed for the herbivores to the park's management. Forage grass does need some management and investment but is relatively low maintenance and can be hardy if you use local grasses. Your tractor is a bit small for that purpose but you can often contract with other farmers to cut, rake and bale for minimal investment.


            • #7
              Is this the area?

              Maybe forget what I said about mowing with the tractor - a herd of mountain goats might be more appropriate!

              All of the gear, no idea...


              • #8
                Its not arable. Its very rocky but fairly flat. There is thorn bush and velt.Lots of cactus but they are alien spieces. The forestry department poisoned all the cactuses cause they drink to much water. Water is only from bore hole. There is a road that my father built right around the farm by making a fire on the blue stone and then quenching and then hitting with a 14 pound hammer. The tractor has a mower and does most of the road but some areas are still to rocky and that is where the brush cutters come in.The tractor has some goodies that I dont know what they are for. I gave it a service by changing the oil filter and the two diesil filters but wasnt sure how to bleed it but it started so it was a relief. The wiring loom burnt out while the one worker was on it and even burnt his gumboot. Lucky the tractor never caught alight. Does a tractor have glow plugs like a diesel pickup and the brakes feel bad. Would it be a hard job to replace or repair the brakes. Both pedals feel as if a spring is broken as they hang half way between on and off. Also can a tractor jack itself up as I dont have a jack for this tractor. Most of the tools were stolen from the farm while my dad was sick.Rusty bolt thats called caged lion hunting. It was close to my farm and caused a world uproar.


                • #9
                  very interesting thread. . .


                  • #10
                    The massey 135 comes from a linage including 165 and 185 maybe 205. from the looks of it the 135 holds up relatively well, probably well worth repairing. I'm aware of 3 locally still going strong , and none rusting in weed patches.

                    Rocky ground. I'd go with hay as the easier option. If there is no market then there are several great you-tubes of farmers using "rock pickers" in Canada. Is there a market for gravel in the area? Might offset the cost of picking.

                    I suspect the price of wheat to continue to rise. Dry land wheat crops here are an every other year crop, letting the soil regain moisture in the fallow year. I remember a tow behind machine called a land imprinter that was supposed to help the soil gain moisture, don't know a damn thing about it, if it worked or not, probably on the net somewhere.

                    Hope that helps.


                    • #11
                      I have that same weed eater. My BIGGEST advice - never use a plastic jug to store your fuel in, even a so called plastic gas can. For daily amounts I use a chevron 1 gallon oil jug for ease of handling and pouring , but I mix in 5 gallon bathes and only in metal cans. I have witnessed it too many times to doubt that those red "gas" jugs cause problems with the gas/oil mix; fouled plugs, poor starting, rough running, etc.


                      • #12
                        We have similar terrain here in Texas and our version of jackals (they are called coyotes). Most people can run sheep or goats with great success as they will graze on a wide variety of plants and not require much water. You can fence your land with game fence, which will help with predators and keep the animals inside. Put a few burros or donkeys in with them and they will guard the flock. With a couple of water troughs, you could likely run at least 600 sheep or goats on 300 acres, depending on forage.

                        Texas A&M University has a lot of information online that is helpful to small landowners and might be a benefit to you - even with the distance separating us. Here is the primary website.



                        • #13
                          I am going to second the goat suggestion. They are tough, will eat anything, and sprinkling of buros or mules will keep most predators away, unless some of your neighbors get out. I've seen a mule kill a mountain lion, so they are tough!

                          BBQ'ed goat is great! The milk is in high demand as well, for cheese, but thats a full time job. With your part time status, I'd graze some goats and see how it goes.
                          James Kilroy


                          • #14

                            You asked if the tractor can jack itself up. I guess you mean with the 3 point linkage arms at the back. The answer's no. It's hydraulics to lift the arms, gravity to get them back down. That's why fixing a tow ball to the arms isn't generally a good idea - they can rise up when you least want it.

                            Some of the tractors from Belarus had the ability to hydraulically push the arms down, but I don't know of any others. Seems like a lousy design to me, but that's just how they are.

                            All of the gear, no idea...


                            • #15
                              oilseed rape, or rapeseed oil, self minding!