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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone have any experience with the Edwards 60,000 btu propane or natural gas heater mounted in front of the aeration fan to dry grain? Did it work at all for drying your grain or did you have to pick warmer days for it to work? How fast was it able to lower the moisture and how long did it take? Any thoughts and experience would be appreciated. Thanks SouthernSK
 

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This year I bought a Air-o-Matic from Saskatoon and it did a great job. Not cheap (something like $7000) but it is a 300 000 BTU heater that also keeps the combustion gases out of the bin. Has a thermostat that works very well. It is basically a propane furnace (well, 3 of them) that the air is drawn through. Easy to move between bins on a pallet.

It was worth about a point a day in a 5000 bu hopper with a 5 hp fan on cereals. And those were wet, cold days. Thought that keeping the exhaust from the bin was important for keeping excess moisture from entering the bin from the combustion process. Didn't make sense to me to be burning propane to remove the moisture put in with my dryer.
 

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edwards grain heater

Cheap and definitely works, but as with most things your mileage may vary depending on many conditions. One thing that I found annoying is that one of factors that influences effectiveness is static pressure( believe is function of volume/height of grain you have in bin, but do not ask me how it calculated) can cause the pilot to go out when turn fan on. Forget how exactly worked around this, but do not believe it was in manual. Guess since am not using it this yr and have tough stuff in bin(just using air) I am saying that it likely worth what you pay for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Kirschenman the system you have can it run on gas or propane? What didmyou figure it cost you in propane costs to remove a point of moisture? With 300,000 btu was there any issue with over drying or burning the grain around the aeration duct?
 

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If you can get the 100000 btu ones, they work pretty good. I have a 400000 btu construction heater that we dialed back to 200000 btu and it can take a point per day on a 1908 bin full with 7.5 hp fan. Try to run air temp going in at 50 degrees.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Nicemustang are you ducting the heat into the inlet of the fan? What do use for ducting? How are you handling the propane - are you using 100lb containers and how much propane are you using per day?
 

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No ducting. If you do that the heater gets too hot and shuts off. Although if its windy, a old barrel with both ends cut off is sufficient. A full 100 lb bottle will last us 6-7 hours. If its full 400000, then its 4 hrs max. Usually have it connected directly to our 1000 gal propane tank if the bins we are doing this is close enough. Have 150 foot hose, which is legal for temporary use (that's how we get it down t about 200000 btu, longer hose). Basically we put a thermometer in the air tube. Put the fan on, turn heater on which has a blower in it, it blows the hot air directly pointed at the fan, adjust distance based on wind/temperature going into bin to be between 40-50 degrees c, run under during the day for 10 hours will easily take 1/2 point out if humidity is down. Not brave enough to run it all night without supervision. We were doing this while combining and trucker could check on it. I don't recommend just leaving it. Our propane tank can run that, a 100000 btu inline one and the dryer all at same time. Unfortunately we've had to dry 25% of our crop. Still have 450 acres out there but I don't think you can dry flax.
 

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diesel heater

Do not think you have to worry about smell of diesel - may improve mildew smell on most of this yr's grain. Actually tried one of these propped up/pointed at fan on small aeration hopper with very tough grain and it seemed to work very good. Only trick was getting it proper distance from fan such that air not too hot going in. Tank only allowed about 6hr running time and it did this unsupervised.
 

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Any idea how much propane is needed for 12 hrs with the air o matic

This year I bought a Air-o-Matic from Saskatoon and it did a great job. Not cheap (something like $7000) but it is a 300 000 BTU heater that also keeps the combustion gases out of the bin. Has a thermostat that works very well. It is basically a propane furnace (well, 3 of them) that the air is drawn through. Easy to move between bins on a pallet.

It was worth about a point a day in a 5000 bu hopper with a 5 hp fan on cereals. And those were wet, cold days. Thought that keeping the exhaust from the bin was important for keeping excess moisture from entering the bin from the combustion process. Didn't make sense to me to be burning propane to remove the moisture put in with my dryer.
 

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We used a john deere ac 100 (100000 btu) diesel heater for years with no issues. It works well, about 8 hrs per tank. I don't know if they make them anymore, but we've had issues with ours lately hence the reason I got a construction heater. I bought it at an auction sale for $250, it has worked awesome! Just yesterday we finally got a new nozzle in for our AC 100 diesel heater, it works again but is a bit smoky. I am caught up though on drying for now, have barley to do but it's going to go through dryer when I have a spare bin. We've used a inline heater on propane as well, it's on 2200 bushel bins with 3 hp fans, and it can dry pretty good. I'll be doing my soybeans this way again. Last year we combined them on oct 16 at 18 % and it took 7 days to get them down to 13 running heat just during the day. I run that directly from my 1000 gal propane tank so not sure how much it uses but I think a 20 lb tank can run 4 hrs, 100 lb 20 hrs with a 100000 btu heater.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks for the info nicemustang. With your diesel heater did you make a stand so the heater was approximatley the same height as the fan? How far away did you keep your 100,000 btu heater from the fan inlet?
 

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I am surprised putting the combustion air into the grain dries it much, if at all. Remember that the main byproduct of burning any hydro carbon is water vapor. I would also worry about smell. Foreign odor in the wheat makes it sample grade in Montana, "commercially objectionable foreign odor". Had a guy clean a couple sample buckets with solvent. The bit of solvent made the samples sample grade.
 

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Kirschenman the system you have can it run on gas or propane? What didmyou figure it cost you in propane costs to remove a point of moisture? With 300,000 btu was there any issue with over drying or burning the grain around the aeration duct?
Ours runs on propane, but I would assume you could do gas with a change of regulator and jets in it. Basically a big furnace.

Haven't done any cost comparisons but burns 4% of a 500 gallon tank per day when cold I think. I have to check my numbers still.

It gets to 35C on the bottom sensor of my cable and kind of sits there as it moves through the bin. Probably should look at getting moisture cables in those bins.


I have it set so that it only goes to about 45C as a max temperature so burning isn't an issue. It cycles in and out like a furnace with about a 15C temperature drop between cut in and out so it isn't on all the time either.
 

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Dried 50000bu with propane burned GSI dryer during harvest while outside temp was nice , propane .43 cent ltr, dried from 18- 14 . Propane cost .095 cent bu . Don' t know elektric cost .
Just for comparison ,
 

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I am using a IDF 350000 BTU diesel fired construction heater with a 5hp fan in a 4000 bushel bin. It seems to be working well, the air temp going in is 50 Celsius. I have noticed there is some over drying occurring around the cone, but nothing that could be mixed off! The only problem I am running into is during the night the warm air condenses on the bin roof and makes water. The bin is properly ventilated as well. Has anyone ran into the same problem? Or should I be turning the heat and fan off at night?
 
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