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    3-Point Equipment

    3 point equipment

    One of the best, most practical farm equipment inventions was the three-point hitch. Back in the 1960s, nearly all farm equipment manufacturers agreed on and adopted the three-point hitch as the one standard system, so that plows, discs, blades and other farm implements fit nearly any tractor, no matter the brand. Most three-point equipment requires a tractor of 20 horsepower or greater. And check to make sure that your hitch can handle the weight of the three-point equipment.

    If you have a smaller tractor with less horsepower, you may need to use sub-compact equipment, which is specially designed for today's sub-compact or small-framed compact tractors with up to 25 horsepower. This equipment looks like regular equipment, and works like it too, but it has a narrower hitch and lower center of gravity to accommodate the smaller tractor.

    Use this guide to help you figure out which three-point equipment will best help you work your property.

    Ground Engaging

    Ground-engaging equipment turns over, breaks, tills, or roughs up the ground to prepare it for seeding or planting.


    Rotary tillers break and turn over the ground at the same time. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    Angle or box frame discs break up ground that is turned over, or scratch a surface for reseeding. These attachments operate at a higher speed than a tiller, but will not mix the soil as well. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    Cultivators till the ground on either side of a planted row. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    Sub-soilers rip sod or loosen compacted soil for better plant growth prior to tilling the soil. They also cut slots on the ground to channel away standing water. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    Middle busters are used to make garden rows, dig a trench, dig potatoes, do general field preparation and more. HITCH CATEGORY: 1
     

    Utility

    Utility three-point equipment saves your back by doing all the lifting, scooping, and digging for you.


    Boom poles provide a stationary lift up to 500 pounds. HITCH CATEGORY: 1 & 2

    Dirt scoops will scoop, carry, dump, and spread material. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    A posthole digger allows you to make fast and easy postholes without leaving your tractor seat. HITCH CATEGORY: 1 & 2
     

    Landscaping

    Landscaping equipment moves and arranges soil and gravel and spreads seeds and fertilizer.


    Box blades level out, smooth, and contour ground. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    Rear blades grade rough ground and roll the material off to one side. This blade can be used going forward or in reverse. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    Landscape rakes aid in landscaping and soil preparation. They will pick up rocks, limbs, roots, etc. and redistribute gravel. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    A spreader broadcasts seed and fertilizer. They have adjustable spreading widths and maintain a smooth flow. HITCH CATEGORY: 1
     

    Cutters

    Cutting equipment is used to control vegetation, whether you're mowing your front lawn or cleaning out fence rows on the back 40.


    Rotary cutters are designed to cut fields and other rough areas that contain stones, tree stumps and saplings. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    Finishing mowers are designed for lawn grass only. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    Hay Handling

    Hay-handling equipment is perfect for easily moving bales of hay - both square and round - with the front or rear of your tractor.


    The hay spike typically has one main spike and two stabilizer spikes to easily move large, square hay bales. HITCH CATEGORY: 1

    The round-bale hay mover features tapered forks to minimize bale damage. HITCH CATEGORY: 1 & 2
     

    Diagram of a 3-Point Hitch

    The three-point hitch, which looks like a triangle, uses two lower connection points and one upper point.
     

    Your Tractor's Horsepower Determines Which 3-Point Equipment to Use 

    — Category Classifications 

     
    • If your tractor PTO (Power Take-Off) is 15-24 horsepower, you will need to look for category 0, or sub-compact equipment.
    • 25-40 PTO horsepower takes category 1 equipment.
    • 45-95 PTO horsepower takes category 2 equipment.
    • 95 PTO horsepower or greater takes category 3 equipment.

    See an expert Team Member at your local Tractor Supply store to find out about special ordering equipment for your tractor.