Like most farmers, Rick Scott of Underwood, Iowa, needed to find a way to speed up harvest. After surveying the farm and paying attention to workflow, Scott determined the biggest bottleneck had to do with augering grain.
In particular, augering grain to store in an 11,000-bu. corn crib that only has a 10' clearance.
"I got tired of switching to my cables tractor every time I used the crib because of its low clearance,” explains Scott, who farms with his son, Kyle.
"I figured there had to be an easy fix to this situation.”
A longtime machinery tinkerer, Scott designed an auger that could be wheeled out from the crib to the gravity wagon parked outside, eliminating the clearance issue. He started with a 20'-long, 8"-diameter auger tube. Next he bought a used auger hopper, about 3'x4'. Scott had Campbell's Welding & Repair in Avoca, Iowa, weld it to the end of the tube. A 2-hp, 220-volt electric motor runs it. The auger is matched to the speed of the bucket elevator.
To increase mobility, Scott added a pair of pivoting wheels up front and large 14" tires on the rear. He put a tongue on it so he can pull the auger behind a tractor or pickup.
"The auger is short enough that I can turn it easily and move it in and out of spaces,” Scott says.
It took about a month to have the auger assembled, he says, but the simple piece of equipment can save the Scotts one to two days of time during the rush of fall harvest.
You can e-mail Jeanne Bernick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- September 2009