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Discussion Starter #1
Cutting soybeans yesterday. I thought I had things set pretty good at first, but holy cow did I have a lot of pods in the tank. No other junk like stems, but lots of pods. I thought I had everything set pretty much like last year (only my 2nd crop of beans), and tried to tweak from there, but I couldn't clean up the sample very well. Last year, we had 1 load with a 1% trash dock, and another load with 2% trash dock, I don't know what this is, but it looks bad. Any short term suggestions? For the future, any parts to invest into? Moisture was 12.5%, but later in the day, it got a little tough, that's when it was worse. . .

By the way, does anyone know if there is a flex head available small enough for this machine? Are all flex heads automatic height control? The 213 head does not make a very good bulldozer.
It sucks to look down and see those bottom pods still on the stems, so you try to sneak down and get them, next thing you know, you're swallowing dirt
Not good.
 

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Got to make sure you thrash them in the cylinder. Try and close your concave clearance tighter and speed up the cylinder speed a bit. then you can play around with the bottom sieve.
 

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Our 4420 is running a 213 flex head. Are you positive you dont have flex on it? There will be just 5 or 6 large washers/bolts holding the platform up in place. I think our head has the electric hookup for height control however the combine doesn't have it


As for settings, last year we had lesser population , but large beans. This year seems to be high pop., small beans.
I have my concave set quite low on the 4420, I think around 3-4. Cylinder speed at near 500.

I'm still getting pods in bad fields, but its like cusher22 said, they gotta get thrashed in cylinder and if the head isn't taking them in at a even flow its not gonna happen.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
phishstik, Is there anyway you can elaborate on this? I don't quite follow you.

Well, my first concave setting was 4, wasn't cracking beans so went down to 3. I was getting some unthreshed pods on stems out the back, and some unthreshed pods in the tank. Also sped up cylinder to about 575 now, and this small problem is pretty much gone. The big problem I'm talking about is open pods making there way to the tank, lots of 'em. I sped the fan up about 4 turns last night, and its . . . . better? . . . .

Sure wish there was a fan speed readout. I guess I need to invest in a handheld tach.
 

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I've had the same problem with my 4420. It does it mainly when beans are small or the one bean pods. I've never been able to totally correct the problem but a lower cyl. to concave clearance and a higher cyl. speed will help.
 

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You got that right! I love in the owners manual how it tells you what RPM to set it at, yet YOU DONT KNOW unless you have the weird tool to set on the shaft while its spinning (not very safe) to check it.

cusher22, after thinking about it I realized the easiest way to check if a 213 head is flex capable, is whether or not you have a ball and stick marker on the right side of the head. Sorry I don't know proper term for this, but it has numbers from 0 to 5, with a ball that floats up and down letting you know how low its flexing. If you have that, then it should be flex head.

If I still don't make any sense let me know I can snap a few picture today.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
By what you're saying, it sure doesn't sound like mine is flex, but I'd really like to see a few pictures to help. Boy, do I feel like a rookie, which of course I am.

Amen on the fan speed adjustment. Other than knowing if you crank it all the way in, it's probably the biggest number in the book, you have no idea. And being by yourself in the field, it really starts to suck driving 50 feet, getting out, looking, thinking over and over. Oh well. No $$$ for a new combine for me, so it'll make do.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Gotta share this with you guys! After struggling through this season, swallowing dirt like I mentioned, I finished up with what I thought was decent enough yield for our area. Seed guy calls dad and asks if we were done combining beans. Dad says yes so seed guy drives by the field. Calls back and says "they're cut way too high. We'll recombine them for you if you want." Mind you, I've got to get wheat stuck in this ground ASAP. My vote was "No way, can't possibly be enough beans in there to make it worth while", not to mention the time lost in getting the wheat in."

Well, my vote didn't count. So seed guy and buddy bring in their Big Ol' Super Twirly Swirly(STS), and get. . . 10 bushels! (not per acre, 10 total!) "we can't do as good as we thought with the ground like it was", they said. Guess I didn't do as bad of a job as they thought.

Not to be deterred, Dad says he's taking the 4420 back through the OTHER field which the Big Ol' Super Twirly Swirly couldn't even get to. Because "he knows he cut 'em closer last year". Ok, let's wish him well, and I truly hope he doesn't harvest 5 more bushel of dirt, because that really sucks!
 

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The best thing for a 4420 in beans it to have nearly new cylinder bars, and a good concave. As soon as the leading edge wears off the groves off the bars it WILL NOT take beans without slugging. I usually run the cylinder on 550 to 600 and the concave in the 3 to 4 range. Another thing is make sure all your fingers are in your platform otherwise it just will just throw slugs in, instead of a nice even feed. I run the autoheader height too, but sometimes that can push dirt up on the right side.
 

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Ya tbone for beans you really need a flexhead. Just watch for a 213 or 215 flexhead in local ads. You drop head and it follows contour of field for very low cut.

By the way, if the "Big Combine" didn't take much more off cause of the ground, how are you preparing it? Disking or cultivating it before seeding?
 

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i had a big pod problem on my 7720 a couple years ago. replaced the sieve with one form loewen and lost 70 % of the pods. replaced chaffer last year and lost almost all of the rest of the pods.
213 flex heads are out there, but a 215 and 216 are most more common and a 4400/4420 will handle them no problem. if you can make it happen by all means get one with a stainless floor as they last much longer and feed much better. no matter what you do get plastic for the bottom of the skid shoes if the head does not have it. much less of a dirt problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the thoughts guys. The field was prepared in the spring by plowing, discing, seeding, cultipacked. I did not row cultivate. In the spring, the thoughts were "save fuel, save fuel, save fuel!", so I didn't run something light over it to level it out after discing except the cultipacker after planting. Truthfully? I didn't think it was that bad. The worst part is, plowing, the one edge of the field is very crooked, so there's a funky dead furrow system there. The other side of the field can be wet, so it's been plowed the same direction for a long time to creat a ditch. The rest was pretty decent, but far from perfect. Suffice it to say, I've learned a lot and been humbled. What we have for leveling now is a good ol' fashioned drag, and we often drag a chain behind that, when set light, it does a pretty good job. We also have a plank float.

So, a flex head will work OK in wheat and oats and the like, right? I'll start looking. For next year, there's wheat in the field, so the rigid should do fine, probably no beans next year anywhere, so that will give me some time.

I thought the feed of the crop was decent. I don't have tons of experience obviously, but everything felt and sounded even. Once we get the crop sold for a final yield check, I think we will have made out ok after all.
 

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I don't know if your soybeans are in rows or not, but the best way to make a 4420 combine soybeans is to use a row crop head. It feeds the beans into the machine much more evenly then a platform. In helps to eliminate "slug feeding" which causes unthreshed pods. Also, you will be able to drive a lot faster with a rowcrop head than with a platform, plus you eliminate a lot of scatter caused by the reel and sickle. The down side to a rowcrop head is that they require more maintenance.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks rbwapiti, but once again biggest problem was open, threshed pods. Like half pods. Been kinda searching for a row crop head anyway for sunflowers. . .another story. Yeah, we're in rows, I plant beans with corn planter. Thanks again, all!
 
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