Choosing the Right Bale Spear
When it comes time to harvest hay, you’re going to have some heavy-duty hay bales to deal with. If you’re in need of a bale spear, and you’re not sure which type of spear is best for your needs, we’ve put together a guide highlighting some of the basic features and options available in bale spears.
When looking for a bale spear, the most important factor is to find a spear with a capacity that matches your baler. Depending on your type of baler, you will need a bale spear that will be able to easily handle the weight of your hay bales. Below is a guide to approximately how much each bale type weighs.
|Small Square Bale||50-150 lbs.|
|Large Square Bales||1,300-2500 lbs.|
|4×4 Round Bales||700 lbs. +|
|5×4 Round Bales||500-800 lbs.|
|6×4 Round Bales||1000 lbs. +|
|6×5 Round Bales||1,000 – 1,5000 lbs.|
|4×5 Round Bales||700 – 1,000 lbs.|
|4×6 Round Bales||1,000 – 1,600 lbs.|
|5×6 Round Bales||1,500 – 2,000 lbs.|
Of course, lots of factors come into play here. Anything from variety of hay, to moisture content and density can effect how much a bale weighs. Keep in mind that when hay is first baled, it typically has a higher moisture content. After it sits, it will eventually cure and dry out which causes it to weigh less, as long as you make sure to store bales in a well ventilated, low moisture area.
Be sure not to use a bale spear on any bale that exceeds its lifting capacity.
Buying a bale spear with multiple tines can maximize lifting capacity. Typically, bale spears are equipped with anywhere from 1-3 tines, sometimes even 4. The more tines your spear has, the higher lifting capacity it has. Tines can come in a variety of sizes, strengths, and gauges.
For added support, many bale spears come equipped with stabilizing tines. Stabilizing tines can improve the transportation of bales by making sure they don’t move around during transportation. This prevents the bales from falling off of the spear.
Perhaps the most important factor in deciding on a bale spear is making sure that the implement will fit on your tractor. Bale spears typically come in three different mounting options – 3-point hitch, front loader mounts, and Clamp-On Loader Bucket Bale Spears.
- 3-Point Hitch: 3-Point Hitch Mounts easily attach to the 3-point hitch on your tractor.
- Front Loader Mounts: Front loader mounts are the most common type of bale spear mounts. These types of mounts typically have the greatest lifting capacity.
- Clamp-On Loader Bucket Mount: By far, clamp on loader bucket mounts are the easiest type of bale spears to attach. Without having to unhook your loader bucket, you can quickly and easily attach bale spears right to your loader bucket.
|3-Point Hitch|| Clamp On Loader
|Front Loader Mount|