RT12 Walk Behind Trencher
The Ditch Witch RT12 walk-behind trencher is powered by an 11.7-hp Honda® engine and offers a choice of high-flotation tires or heavy-duty DuraTrak™ track assembly. Heavy-duty frames and components to stand up to the toughest jobsite conditions. Chains, teeth and sprockets are specially designed and manufactured to work together to provide exceptional productivity, and last longer than any other digging system. Superior-quality Honda engines run hard all day job after job, year after year. Every component, every detail of the Ditch Witch® RT walk-behind trencher family has been contemplated, evaluated, and executed to create machines that will give you the absolute best bang for your buck—period.
Key Features
  • Heavy-duty components include a drive linkage that is built to last and designed to simplify operation and maintenance.
  • Standard outboard bearing support stabilizes and supports the headshaft and auger, for reliable productivity trench after trench.
  • No belts to maintain—or break—because Ditch Witch walk-behind trenchers are equipped with direct-driven hydraulic pumps, independent ground-drive hydrostats, and a hydraulic gear pump for auxiliary functions.
  • Hydraulic, skid-steer-style steering makes RT-series trenchers more maneuverable and more productive.
  • Easy hand controls: one hand for mobiling, two hands for trenching; all controls—including engine throttle, chain-engagement, and boom lift—are grouped conveniently at the operator’s station.
  • Your choice of high-flotation tires or heavy-duty tracks, both of which provide the stability and traction to drive across trenches, curbs, and rough terrain; oscillating tracks “walk” or oscillate 12 degrees, for extra stability.
  • Featuring a durable, high-strength axle and a steel deck, the Ditch Witch S2B single-axle trailer is designed specifically for our walk-behind trenchers.
  • Solid-rubber trail wheel increases stability when traveling over uneven and rough terrain, reduces breakover when loading and unloading, and improves leverage when trenching.
  • Exceptionally reliable and durable Honda engines power the RT12, RT20 and RT24, while the RT16 offers an economical and reliable Briggs & Stratton Vanguard engine; all models equipped with electric starters.
  • In tough ground conditions, torque to the trencher chain can be increased by replacing the digging system’s standard 12-tooth sprocket with a 10-tooth sprocket.
  • Optional, affordable backfill blade is easy to install and reduces cleanup time and manual labor.
  • Support from a worldwide dealership network dedicated exclusively to sales and service of the Ditch Witch product line; every dealer is extensively trained to provide superior customer support, including genuine Ditch Witch parts that extend the life of your equipment.
Trench depth, maximum
36 in
Trench width, min to max
4.3 in - 6 in
Boom travel down
Boom travel up
Head shaft height
8.6 in
Length - transport
84 in
Width - transport
33 in
Height - transport
47 in
26 in
Angle of departure
32 in
Centerline trench to outside edge of machine, left
15 in
Centerline trench to outside edge of machine, right
18 in
Angle of approach
Spoil discharge reach
10.6 in
Vehicle speeds
- Maximum transit forward (tire)
280 fpm
- Maximum transit reverse (tire)
114 fpm
- Maximum transit forward (track)
198 fpm
- Maximum transit reverse (track)
97 fpm
Digging chain speed @ 3600 rpm
- 12-tooth sprocket
389 fpm
- 10-tooth sprocket
324 fpm
Spoils handling (single auger)
- Outer diameter
12 in
- Inner diameter
4 in
- Length
9 in
Operating weight
With 33,000-lb test, two-pitch digging chain and 24-in roller boom
1020 lb
With 35,000-lb test, 4.6 in Combo Shark digging chain, Rotowitch, backfill blade, tracks and trench cleaner
1461 lb
With 24in X 4 in (based on roller boom and narrow width digging chain
Honda iGX390
Cooling medium
Number of cylinders
23.7 in³
3.46 in
2.52 in
Manufacturer's net horsepower rating
11.7 hp
Net torque @ 2500 rpm
19.5 lb-f
Rated speed
3600 rpm
Fuel consumption @ 3000 rpm
.89 gph
Power Train
Ground drive transmission
Hydrostatic, speed infinitely variable from zero to maximum, speed and direction controlled with dual levers
Digging chain drive
Hydraulic direct drive, dual lever-operated, one speed forward and reverse
Pump drive
Direct drive from engine
Trencher drive
- Hydraulic
Direct Drive
Spoils handling drive type
Mechanical, attached to and rotates with headshaft
- Chain drive sprocket
Forged and tempered
Digging tools
Bolt-on cup teeth with hard surfaced edge of tungsten carbide
- 18 x 9.5 x 8 bar lug
12 psi
- 18 x 9.5 x 8 turf NHS
22 psi
Hydraulic System
Digging drive pump capacity @ 3600 rpm
7.8 gpm
- Pressure
3200 psi
- Auxiliary pump
.5 in³
- Auxiliary motor
8 in³
Ground drive dual hydrostat pump @ 3600 rpm
11.4 gpm
- Pressure
2320 psi
- Ground drive pump 2x
.4 in³
- Ground drive motor 2x
24.1 in³
Filtration: Return flow, 10 micron nominal
Hydraulic cylinders
- Function: Boom lift
- Type: Double acting
Fluid Capacities
Fuel Tank
1.6 gal
Engine Oil
1.6 qts
Hydraulic reservoir
8 gal
Hydraulic system
8.5 gal
12-volt, top-post
SAE reserve capacity: 41 min
SAE cold crank: 340 amps
Vibration Level
Vibration at the operator's hand during normal operation
6.639 m/s²
Noise Level
Operator 90 dbA sound pressure per ISO
Exterior 102 dbA sound power per ISO
Additional Directional Drills
0 Selected