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We have a couple of pole barns to build. I called the rental place to see about digging some post holes for us and they said they won't rent out a Bobcat with an auger as long as the frost is in the ground. There can't be but a couple inches. We will use a spud bar and hand diggers if we have to but that takes a while as it is hard clay we will be digging. Any suggestions as to an easier way?
 

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Not sure of your area but here is some advice on the type of equipment. Tractor/PTO type augers have 2 limitations 1- no down pressure unless you stand on the attachment although that is too dangerous. 2-they only spin in one direction-down.Gas powered augers have the same limitations. That being said an auger mounted on a skid steer can offer you the advantage of lots of down pressure and the ability to reverse the auger out should it get hung up. I have used all three and prefer the skid steer type but in my area, the frost and hard clay don't usually pose too much of a problem. Plus it's much easier on the back muscles!!:cry:
However with the cost of repair to equipment these days I can see why they are a little cautious. Sorry I could'nt be of more help.
 

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If the rental place won't rent it out...nothing I can say will help, other than frozen soil is softer than a lot of rocky soil that can be encountered.

In the event you can talk them into a rental I would advise slow going through the frost, with new teeth you should be fine.

Where are you located? how deep is the frost by now? Seems a shame for this to hold up your barn construction. :sad:

Here, we rent, we break, we buy! :cry:

It is up to us to take the risk, talk 'em into it if you have to.:smile:

Edit: You can buy an auger attachment for a couple thousand, and rent the loader. I would not let the rental house stop the project. What is it worth to keep moving, once the posts are in you have months of good work ahead.:)
 

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DGR,IABD
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You might check to see if any of the electricians in your area have a digger derrick. This is the machine that is used to drill for and set telephone poles. I have an old one, and have loaned it out quite a few times to pole barn builders.
 

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TGEB makes an interesting point. If you have enough work to do purchasing the auger atachment and renting the skid steer makes sense. I see them on EBAY all the time,new & used, and it will probably pay for itself in short order. Also since most skid steer's use the universal attach plate, you won't be limited to where you rent from.
 

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I don't know where you are but I suppose if you're desperate, you can buy a gas powered ice hole auger (popular in ice fishing areas).
 

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check around for a local guy who sets post holes for a living. we've got a guy around here who's prices we can't compare to by doing it ourselves.

That would be my suggestion. The guy I use is pretty cheap compared to renting.

(we might even use the same guy TBF)
 
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