Old Troy-Bilt Horse Tiller: Dreams of the Past Come True

Troy Bilt Horse Tiller - Early 70's

When I was a teenager living in a small Missouri country town, I would go over to my friend’s house and see his grandparents tilling their garden with an old style Troy-Bilt Horse tiller. This was the big unit with the swiveling handlebars. I was very impressed. I thought, one of these days I would like to have one.

Now back in the country these many years later and my passion for gardening quickened, I mainly wanted to garden using all-natural, no-till methods to rebuild the soil. I thoroughly devoured the readings of Ruth Stout, John Jeavons and many others. I really believe in their methods and have used them extensively. However, the vision of that old Troy-Bilt would still pass through my thoughts.

As I continued to expand my garden, working Missouri clay became a challenge to say the least. Building large new beds with no-till methods in this clay can be very back breaking. I thought it was time to see if I could find one of those old Troy Bilt’s in good shape for a reasonable price.

After searching for several months, I recently found one on Craig’s List near where I live. I was able to purchase it at a price that was good for both me and the previous owner! The Horse, an early 1970’s model with a 6 H.P Tecumseh engine, was owned by his grandfather and passed down to him. My vision of the past has come to life.

The Horse needed some basic maintenance and replacement of the belts and reverse disc along with some clean up. It runs good for being this old and it really does work like a horse. They sure don’t make them like this anymore.

Below is a video describing some of the work I did on the Horse and a cold start. Later I’ll share some other videos of it working in the garden.

I still plan on using no-till methods primarily. But this old horse sure does help get things started and gives some definite back relief.

Do you have any stories of an old Troy-Bilt?

Larry Braley

About Larry Braley

Blessed husband to a wonderful, virtuous woman and father of five, a daughter-in-law and granddaughter. Raised on a midsize farm in the midwest during my childhood and early teen years. Moved away for several years to live the corporate life. Glad to be back in the country raising my family, teaching life skills and developing our mini-farm.
This entry was posted in Gardening and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Old Troy-Bilt Horse Tiller: Dreams of the Past Come True

  1. Doyle E. Collins says:

    I have one just like yours. I need Model #, not on unit. Can you help?


    Doyle E. Collins

  2. Doyle E. Collins says:

    I have one just like yours, I need Model #. Can you Help?


    Doyle E. Collins

    • Larry Braley Larry Braley says:

      Hi Doyle, I don’t have the model number, but I know it was made in the mid 70’s. Mine has the 6 HP Tecumseh-Lauson engine. You may be able to find the model number on the web by using the serial number. The SN can be found etched on the top of the transmission case on the right side when standing behind the unit above the wheel axle. I hope that helps.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.