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We change blades every year on our Deere’s. They are 28$ a piece and brand new and sharp to start every year that way. Are the BG that expensive guys try to run them for 3,4,5 years? Cheap easy way to make drill seed well is new discs.
They are 38 a piece. Bigger reason is that a smaller diameter blade will cut through straw better so I don’t particularly want to change them. Might see if I can source 18” ones with the proper bolt pattern maybe. Mine were all brand new to start this past year.
 

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I cut short and find the more straw going through the pro-chop the further it spreads, I have been able to get 40'+ most times. The Elmer's harrow is very good at making a mess into something workable, it even spreads canola chaff!

As for the drill settings I have not run a BG but fairly high down-pressure and seeding a bit deeper helps, as well as slowing down. I'm not sure sharpening is good, might it take the temper out of the blade? They should self sharpen a bit shouldn't they? Mine seem to stay sharp but maybe I haven't taken them much past the bevel. Seems easier to just change them instead of sharpening or even adjusting the scraper in my case.

Couple pictures of straw management for me. The canola was done by a turbo-chop there but pic kinda shows what the Elmer's harrow can do. I would typically knife fertilizer into that before hitting with the drill. I did have a field of oat stubble I simply could not direct seed into because of hair-pinning this spring. Wiry straw, hard ground and 7.5" spacing simply was too much and had to hit it with the pro-till.:frown:
That’s what I figured. My issue is that one of the biggest reasons we went for disc drills is that I heard from several people that gophers, far and away the biggest issue on my farm, can not thrive long term in tall stubble. Toying with the ideas of strippers for my cereals, but even without them we are able to cut our straw pretty tall. But our biggest issues with hairpinning were in those tall stubbles so I dunno. I’d think the harrow would just make a mess of those tall stubbles. Still kinda want one just for the canola stubbles, although our germs was generally pretty good in them.

Also, being in a drier area than Manitoba, we’re trying to preserve as much snow as we can (although I’m not really convinced on how much that does given the frosts that accompany the snow).
 

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Does anyone ever get their discs ‘sharpened’ or re-beveled? On any disc drill. And if so, do you do it yourself or hire it done? I still got a fair bit of learning to do about hairpinning with these things, first place I want to start is by letting these discs wear down so they aren’t so big, the BGs say they can go wear down to a 17” disc with all the adjustment in the scraper but I wouldn’t want to do that without being able to re-sharpen the discs each season.

Speaking of hairpinning, what kinda systems are guys running outside of seeding? I know there’s the stripper guys, which I am considering, but it seemed my hairpinning was the worse in cereal straw that was cut 15-20” off the ground so I’m a little confused about how that’s supposed to work. Particularly after you’re done running a grain cart all over the field, there’s straw laid down everywhere. Cant really harrow it. Working on seeding between rows.

For guys not running strippers, what is your program in these heavy straw situations? I know SW runs an Elmer’s, are you doing that on all acres? Do you cut all of your straw really short? Is anyone using a high speed tillage unit for any reason? How wide are you spreading straw with the combine? Even with the prochop I don’t feel we are getting a full 40’. Guys with prochop, are you leaving your counter blades all the way up or doing lots of adjusting?
Why do you think a smaller diameter disk will have less hair pinning? We usually find once a disk is wore down more it plugs more frequently.
 

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Does anyone ever get their discs ‘sharpened’ or re-beveled? On any disc drill. And if so, do you do it yourself or hire it done? I still got a fair bit of learning to do about hairpinning with these things, first place I want to start is by letting these discs wear down so they aren’t so big, the BGs say they can go wear down to a 17” disc with all the adjustment in the scraper but I wouldn’t want to do that without being able to re-sharpen the discs each season.

Speaking of hairpinning, what kinda systems are guys running outside of seeding? I know there’s the stripper guys, which I am considering, but it seemed my hairpinning was the worse in cereal straw that was cut 15-20” off the ground so I’m a little confused about how that’s supposed to work. Particularly after you’re done running a grain cart all over the field, there’s straw laid down everywhere. Cant really harrow it. Working on seeding between rows.

For guys not running strippers, what is your program in these heavy straw situations? I know SW runs an Elmer’s, are you doing that on all acres? Do you cut all of your straw really short? Is anyone using a high speed tillage unit for any reason? How wide are you spreading straw with the combine? Even with the prochop I don’t feel we are getting a full 40’. Guys with prochop, are you leaving your counter blades all the way up or doing lots of adjusting?
Never had the discs resharpened. This spring with it being dry the bevel of the new discs was gone at 1000 acres seeded. I have had the same experience as you with cereal straw and believe it or not soybean straw. If not enough material is going through the chopper/ spreader just doesn't work worth a **** and it just pukes out a 15 foot wide chaff row. The main two things that I do is seed between the rows like you mentioned and setting my depth 1/2" deeper than the "perfect" depth. The soils that I farm usually aren't prone to crusting and I'm not using a hoe drill (obviously), so I haven't been burned by seeding on the deeper side with the exception of millet which is about the weakest seedling of all time.

On a side note, a more diverse crop rotation seems to have helped me more than anything
 

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Why do you think a smaller diameter disk will have less hair pinning? We usually find once a disk is wore down more it plugs more frequently.
Mostly based on what I’ve read on here from the more experienced disc guys. A smaller diameter disc has a higher attack angle and will cut better. That’s the theory I keep hearing anyway.
 

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Why do you think a smaller diameter disk will have less hair pinning? We usually find once a disk is wore down more it plugs more frequently.
I had an engineer tell me once that the angle of a smaller disk with the ground was better than a bigger disk. He might have been BS'ing me as he was a JD engineer.
 

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Never had the discs resharpened. This spring with it being dry the bevel of the new discs was gone at 1000 acres seeded. I have had the same experience as you with cereal straw and believe it or not soybean straw. If not enough material is going through the chopper/ spreader just doesn't work worth a **** and it just pukes out a 15 foot wide chaff row. The main two things that I do is seed between the rows like you mentioned and setting my depth 1/2" deeper than the "perfect" depth. The soils that I farm usually aren't prone to crusting and I'm not using a hoe drill (obviously), so I haven't been burned by seeding on the deeper side with the exception of millet which is about the weakest seedling of all time.

On a side note, a more diverse crop rotation seems to have helped me more than anything
The seeding a little deeper part is another I keep hearing, it’s something that I really need to train myself to do. Been struggling with it so far since I am so conditioned to err on the shallow side.
 

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Bean stubble can be tough to cut thru especially if there is a heavy wheat crop beneath.
I think I’m going to get some mav choppers in our machines. We spread and chop decent but I think the mavs would help even more on our 98/9770.
To me a seed firming wheel makes huge difference in wet as you can get stuff pushed into moist dirt with stubble around it. In dry springs like last 2 discs cutnit very well it seems.
 

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Discussion Starter #449
Does anyone have any trouble with the bolts that hold the gauge wheels/packer whhels anchored breaking? The one that slides back and forth. Our older unit has been breaking quite a few. Also seem to find lots of gauge wheels bolts loosening off. Mud smith wheels also starting to fail rapidly, rubber comes off and what’s left seems to be getting thrashed quickly. Just changed all the bearing last spring in them.
I was told to use red locktight on the left hand side of the drill when installing the gauge wheel bolt.
 

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Discussion Starter #450
As it stands now how long does it take one person to change depth on all the seed openers(not mrb's)? Does someone have to crawl on the ground to get the front row or can they be accessed from the top or front of the machine?
1 guy can do change depth on a 60' 10" spaced unit in about 1 hour. You can stand above the openers that works best. Back row under the hitch you have to crawl in on your knees to get those.
 

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Discussion Starter #451
Here is a pic of 2017 scraper on left and 2018 scraper on right. I ran both this season. my 2017 scrapers got updated to the flexible finger. That is the vertical rubber piece right behind the seed slot. improvement was that the seed firmer on the new design is held firmly in place. my 2017 scrapers the seed firmer was loose right out of the box. 2017 firmer had so much movement that the firmer was out of the ground due to excessive movement in the mount.


Otico wheel were a success. Very happy with that change over.
 

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Here is a pic of 2017 scraper on left and 2018 scraper on right. I ran both this season. my 2017 scrapers got updated to the flexible finger. That is the vertical rubber piece right behind the seed slot. improvement was that the seed firmer on the new design is held firmly in place. my 2017 scrapers the seed firmer was loose right out of the box. 2017 firmer had so much movement that the firmer was out of the ground due to excessive movement in the mount.


Otico wheel were a success. Very happy with that change over.
I gotta check my 2018 model and see if its the same scraper as on the right, guess I never looked closely enough. Is bourgault helping with the price of these scrapers to switch up their poor designs every year? I know they helped when we changed our 2016 model drill to the scrapers on the left but it was still like 8k in parts plus our labor. How significant was the improvement for the 2018 scraper? We had a lot of issues with plugging boots on the scrapers on the left but the newer drill had very little to no issues... I gotta see if its the same as that one on the right.
 

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Discussion Starter #453
I gotta check my 2018 model and see if its the same scraper as on the right, guess I never looked closely enough. Is bourgault helping with the price of these scrapers to switch up their poor designs every year? I know they helped when we changed our 2016 model drill to the scrapers on the left but it was still like 8k in parts plus our labor. How significant was the improvement for the 2018 scraper? We had a lot of issues with plugging boots on the scrapers on the left but the newer drill had very little to no issues... I gotta see if its the same as that one on the right.

The scraper on the left cost me about $7,200 out of pocket. The flexible finger update was fee of charge. The scrapers on the right will cost me and additional $7,200. I am considering drilling the old scraper to modify it to accept the new seed firmer.
 

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Here is a pic of 2017 scraper on left and 2018 scraper on right. I ran both this season. my 2017 scrapers got updated to the flexible finger. That is the vertical rubber piece right behind the seed slot. improvement was that the seed firmer on the new design is held firmly in place. my 2017 scrapers the seed firmer was loose right out of the box. 2017 firmer had so much movement that the firmer was out of the ground due to excessive movement in the mount.


Otico wheel were a success. Very happy with that change over.
Could you tell me what the spacing is between the mounting bolts? I wonder if these scrapers would fit on my Pillar drill.
 

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Discussion Starter #455
I was set to have my first trouble free planting season in 2018 then this happened. This is the rear pivot that the cleaner wheel and packer wheel pivot on. This was the first update bourgault did. Only two bearings where installed at the time with no spacer. I found that the bearings slid to one side of the pin creating side load allowing the pin to move and let dust in. This drill was operated in extreme drought like dusty conditions in 2017 and 2018. I just installed the Oticos and every pivot was tight at the beginning of the season than 800 acres later, I noticed a bunch of movement in my cleaner wheels. It looked like allot of movement in the pivot so I pulled one apart. Seals were wiped out and full of dust. and it was quick almost half had failed already. NOT SOMETHING YOU WANT TO DEAL WITH IN THE MIDDLE OF PLANTING!!!!so I installed new bearings and seals on completely failed ones and went to daily greasing just to get by and get the crop in. Grease forced the dirt out every morning, I knew pins were shot already. I did not have one rain delay in planting this season. I pulled the drill out of the shed on May 1st and backed it in the shed on May 20th.


I now have 144 seals, 144 bearing, 72 spacers and 72 greaseable pins to install in the rear pivot for a complete rebuild of that pivot. This all cost me a little over $1,000 parts.

Dry conditions really took the disk blades down fast. But I am impressed at how sharp they are. they seem to be self sharpening. You don't want to grab ahold of them without leather gloves on.
 

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By the circular wear marks on those pins it looks like the pins might have been worn from when your unit had it’s worn out brass bushings in it.

The 70 foot 2014 3720 I get to drive that’s had needle bearings since new, doesn’t have a single worn needle bearing in it after 40,000 acres. It’s possible the 2014’s and newer use case hardened pins, I don’t know? This one has been greased about eight times.
.
 

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Discussion Starter #458
By the circular wear marks on those pins it looks like the pins might have been worn from when your unit had it’s worn out brass bushings in it.

The 70 foot 2014 3720 I get to drive that’s had needle bearings since new, doesn’t have a single worn needle bearing in it after 40,000 acres. It’s possible the 2014’s and newer use case hardened pins, I don’t know? This one has been greased about eight times.
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No the pins were replaced with a greasable pin when bourgault first updated that pivot point. The original pins were not drilled and tapped for a grease zerks. You can see the hole in the center of the pin where the grease would come out. The later units updated at the factory had grease zerks installed in the casting of the opener and solid pins.

Those wear marks are from the bearings moving inside the opener body. Only two bearings were installed at the time. Once the bearings moved over to one side the pin could move around allowing dirt in the seal. Bourgault found out that this was not working, and that is why your drill has a plastic spacer between the bearings to keep them spread apart. Or else three bearings installed if a plastic spacer was not available.

I pulled a couple parallel arm pivots apart with three bearings installed just to check them out and they seem fine.
I have three bearings installed in all other pivots. Now this packer pivot will get two bearings and a plastic spacer just like the drill that is currently being produced.
 

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