One day, a couple winters ago, Khoke was in a hurry at feeding time and tried his hand at the hay knife again. Soon reminded of his previous dissatisfaction, he reached for his limbing ax that he happened to have with him. Still shiny from a sharpening, this ax benefited from the density of the round bale and worked well to open it up. It has become Khoke’s standard bale opening method.
Because round bales are the cheapest way to buy hay for beef cows, and because I was tired of trying to roll the bales out by hand or wrapping a chain around them and skidding them out with a horse (if you ever tried to drag a bale with a chain, you know how hard it is to get the chain on and how easy it slips off), I undertook to build a bale mover.
First of all and maybe most importantly, I cannot take credit for this contraption as the idea came to me from my friend and mentor Wes Ferguson. I bought the original spike from him, then improved on it somewhat. To my knowledge, there are only two like this in existence, and I had a hand in building both of them. Anyone with a welder and some basic metalworking skills can make one of these. The trick is to make sure it is balanced properly to handle large bales.