Tiller for Sale: A Matter of Scale

Goodbye, o'l Paint, I'm Leavin' Cheyenne

It was heartbreaking to sell my old faithful Troybilt Horse rear-tine tiller when we metamorphosed from country to city life in 1987.

But when we moved back to the country (in western Carolina) in 1989, I would need me a tiller, and thought I’d just get what I had before.

No, said the salesman, you’ll not be happy with the “new” Troybilt. It’s not built like the old ones. So I set my sights on Honda, which they also carried, and I kept that tiller til today. And it has been a very good machine.

I’ve enjoyed the swing-handle feature that lets me walk beside the machine and not in the row I just tilled. I’ve appreciated the reverse gear and the power.

But life goes on. Our first garden here had a six foot grass perimeter that we had to keep mowed, but it gave me some tiller turning room at the end of my rows.

Now, we garden inside a small-square-foot stockade, and planted space goes right to the fence, but not with the big Honda. I have to stop far short of the fence to turn it, and we just can’t give up this much space.

So last year, I was leaning towards selling it and getting a very small cultivator of the Mantis variety. And to make that decision easier, late in the summer, the Honda wouldn’t crank. I went that afternoon and got a small hand-holdable Stihl tiller, and now the Honda needs a new home.

It has new tires I replaced two years ago. I’m asking $300 for it, as is. My guess is since it stopped in mid-season, it’s probably clogged fuel parts.

Send me a message if you’re interested.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. I have a 49cc cub cadet tiller that has done a great job for me, just replaced the lower end, all gears etc in the tiller housing, I have a 50 ft wide x 150 ft long garden & need a bigger tiller..woul;d you consider $150. plus my cub cadet tiller which I bought for my raised garden, 10 ft x 10 ft before I retired. It is in excellent condition and works beautifully just kinda small for what I have now…Would appreciate any answer,,,

    Don Tester
    arvil hunt rd
    Lexington nc 27295
    804 852 6138