How to use a pull behind box scraper
A pull behind box scraper, which connects to the back of ATVs, garden tractors, riding mowers, and other vehicles, can be extremely useful for landscaping and gardening projects, including heavy-duty work.
It’s a versatile tool that can be used for ripping, leveling, fine grading, and backfilling; the hardened scarifier teeth can handle even the hardest digging, grading, and earthmoving employment.
If this is your first time using a box scraper, here are a few pointers to make leveling, ripping/excavating, and removing materials a breeze.
How to use a pull behind box scraper
Before we look at how to use a pull behind box scraper properly, it’s important to note that regulating the height of your box scraper is the most important move for accurate results.
In other words, if the implement is not at the correct height, it will be difficult to grade a site (or level and backfill unsightly holes in your yards/fields/driveways, etc.).
As a consequence, the top connection of the three-point hitch should be changed first.
To do so, park the tractor on smooth, hard ground and change the top connection on the tractor so that the cutting edge(s) of the attachment are in contact with the surface (resting on the ground) and perfectly leveled.
The most common operational position for most box scrapers is this one.
Of course, depending on the job at hand, you can need to elevate it a little, so practice lengthening and shortening the top connection to suit the task at hand.
Here’s how to use a pull behind box scraper for different tasks:
How to grade and level with a pull behind box scraper
When used for grading and leveling programs, the tool should be used as follows:
Lower the box scraper to the surface and move forward with the equipment’s ripper shanks lifted (all the way).
What would you anticipate?
The cutting blade starts shaving the ground right away, and dirt/aggregate material begins to collect in the box.
You could now simply drag the collected material to a suitable location and then slowly hoist the scraper to deposit the accumulated load.
How can you improve your leveling?
Set the scraper to shave off the high spots to create a more consistent spreading and leveling of the scraped material. This way, the accumulated dirt escapes the scraper (under the blade) to the low-lying spots.
What do you do if you come across rough ground or surface material?
You’ll sometimes come across extra hard ground/surface stuff.
Don’t worry, it’s time to use the ripping motion of the box scraper to loosen the stubborn earth. After the hard soil has been torn up, the blade should be successful on those fields.
Here’s how to break up the field in extremely difficult places…
For extra-aggressive ripping (recommended for extra-difficult soil conditions), follow these steps:
Simply manually lower the entire complement of shanks (one notch, at a time).
However, you must exercise caution here, as lowering the shanks too far into the hard soil can cause the tractor to stop.
In fact, it’s preferable to be forced to make several repeat passes to grade and level those areas than to risk the tractor coming to a halt.
For a gentler ripping action (where the soil conditions aren’t as demanding):
In this case, the opposite technique is required; simply lift all of your shanks entirely.
How do you change the shanks?
For nearly all box scraper models, change the height of each shank as follows (first stop the tractor and park on a flat, secure surface):
- Using pliers, press the top of the shank spring retainer together. Pull the retainer up and out of the tube slot on the shank. When you remove the spring retainer, make sure the shank notch stays in the top slot.
- Raise/lower the shank manually to the correct height, making sure the shank notch stays in the top slot. Now, in the top slot, catch the shank notch at this height.
- Use the spring retainer clip to hold the shank in place – insert the clip into the top slots (behind the shank) before it snaps into place.
Keep your hands off the shank slots when adjusting the shank height; shanks will pinch body parts (in the slots) during the adjustment process.
Start the tractor and move forward until the shanks are in the desired place. The ground material can now be quickly broken up.
How do you get the best cutting angle?
Although some models, such as the Land Pride box scraper, are custom-engineered to cut at the best angle, you will need to change the cutting angle for better results in some situations.
To increase the blade pitch, simply shorten the top center connection by one-half turn (at a time).
Depending on the project, you can now expect outstanding results.
A quick note on ground speed
Attempt to keep the proper ground speed in the service.
To be more precise, you’ll get the best results if you keep your speed between 2 and 4 mph for the most part.
How to backfill with a pull behind box scraper
For backfilling purposes, use the following tips:
Simply lower your box scraper to the deck, then back up into the backfill pile with the normal, rear-facing blade.
Carry on with the back-filling and moving activities until the job is completed successfully.
Last but not least,
The box scraper can be used for a variety of tasks, including scarifying, leveling, grading, scraping, and backfilling.
However, no matter how costly your box scraper model is, if you don’t use it correctly, you won’t get the best results.
Fortunately, you’ve just learned how to properly use a pull behind box scraper, so go ahead and use what you’ve learned to make it work even better for you.
You’ll appreciate the fact that the result is more consistent and repeatable.