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Simple Maintenance Got One More Year Out of Planter

Simple Maintenance Got One More Year Out of Planter
Give seeding mechanism top priority.

Seed monitors mounted in tractor cabs don't lie these days. Perhaps they malfunction occasionally, but more times than not, they'r3 right on target. One year ago Kevin Thompson knew the brushes were likely getting worn in his split-row, 8-row soybean planter. So this spring, he replaced them, both kinds of brushes found in those units.

He didn't have to wait long to see the results of what he did. Previously, the monitor typically jumped 4,000 to 6,000 seeds total drop as it passed through the field. After replacing the brushes, they noticed that the first variety planted with much higher accuracy. It varied only about 1,500 seeds per are, and stayed there the entire season. He attributed the increased efficiency to having more accurate metering.  

The replacements the farmer made where simple bush replacements- replacing two typos of filters on these row units. While it took some time to tear the units apart, this farmer believed it would be worth it. He also believed that if he was going to spend $50 per acre or more on seed, he wanted s it applied as accurately as possible.

His Kinze bean meter units required replacing two brushed per row unit. Now with that part fixed in his planter, he may eye other adjustments for next year. He typically no-tills beans into corn stubble, so coulter blades get considerable wear. Next year he will seriously consider replacing coulters and perhaps double-disc seed openers on the planter. He chose not to replace hem this year, judging they could provide penetration needed to make it through another season. So far the unit has worked well.

It's typically recommended that on most models, especially Deere models, that if they're worn to 14 inches or less, it's time to replace them. While your first instinct once your don't planting, is likely to put the planter away and get it out of your hair for another year, many urge making a lisat of necessary parts, including brushes and coulters at the end of the season.

Not replacing true vee-disc openers worn to 14 inches or less can affect the vee opening they leave in the soil. It's crucial to proper seed placement. Most companies pride themselves in producing a true vee opening. If coulters running up front are not adjusted properly and run deeper than the disc openers then soil can be worked deeper before planting. This can result in kernels falling too deep in the seed slot.

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