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fleurie

Mechanical donkey

We've bitten the bullet and lashed out on a mechanical donkey. Husband's quad bike has become too unreliable for collecting olive sacks - we had to push it uphill half a km last winter because it died at the bottom of our land, and we were getting seriously concerned about the potential for heart attacks carrying/wheelbarrowing the sacks up this year. So - welcome George the mechanical donkey! Will carry up to 300kg and much more versatile - olives, fertiliser, concrete, firewood, you name it!

Uses "normal" petrol & relatively easy to handle - like a motor mower, essentially. Has used all our potential profit from this year's harvest, but will make life easier for a long time to come - we hope!



Click to see full size image


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kaz

Why did I expect George to actually look like a donkey?  
sod

some people.
That looks very interesting good tyres on it will be waiting to hear how it goes, shame about quad bike.
redbelly

Looks like a handy gadget.
My theory is that labour saving machines use about the same quantity of fuel as the volume of sweat produced doing the same job manually.
fleurie

kaz wrote:
Why did I expect George to actually look like a donkey?  


Ha ha! Some people have suggested a real donkey - that being the traditional way of doing things here, but we know absolutely nothing about equines and prefer to keep our animal interaction to dogs, which we understand!

We'll find out how much fuel it uses - we've only had it just over a week, so it will take a while to make a fair judgement, but so far, so good; it will carry 3x the number of olive sacks that the quad would take, so 1/3 as many trips, for a start. The tyres are seriously chunky, which is necessary on our kind of land - very steep and, in places, very rough. We had a bit of a problem on a muddy patch the other day - slipped sideways into the mud and then didn't want to get out, but a bit of manouvering did the job. The single wheel rotates through 360 degrees, so the cart will turn in its own length (forward gear only).

Yes, it is a shame about the quad, as it has been really useful. However, it is now 5 years old and uses petrol at about the same rate as the car - initially very much more economical - and has had numerous breakdowns, so we just don't trust it any more. We'll sell it for whatever we can get, to offset the cost of the "donkey". Incidentally, these things are called donkeys by the locals here - quad bikes are "pigs"!

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