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Discussion Starter #1
At the end of 2016 I will be able to buy a grain dryer or drying kits for silos, I am new to this area and wondering what is best? I was leaning towards aeration kits but I'm in a cool coastal climate...harvest days are limited if wanting to get it off at 12.5% moisture.

So do I buy a dryer and basic silos or silos with aeration/ drying kits.

Things to consider
1. I am a one man band...could dry in mornings however and harvest in after noons and if I had dedicated dryer could dry on rainy days etc??
2. Cool climate 20 degrees c days the norm....can be a touch humid...I thought with dryer silos I could take advantage of the total fire ban days when it's 40 degrees c ??
3. Crops, wheat, barley, faba beans, canola, peas, lupins.
4. Cost? I may be better to spend a bit on dryer, might pick up contract work for the other odd grain grower here?
5. Moisture...most crops I would have at 13-14%...if I try corn down the track it maybe at 20%...or if a local dairy farmer did I could contract dry....

Not sure what else to consider? A grain dryer with a seed cleaner would be the ducks nuts! As when stripping a touch wet sample can be a bit ordinary in the 7720...hope in a couple of years to upgrade to STS....

Any ideas or feed back much appreciated...

Ant...
 

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Hi Ant. Someone with more experience will have a bit better info but in our experience and similar climate aeration drying is tough.

I'd look at an agri dry chassis bin type. We've used one a few times and it's quick and easy to knock a couple percent off with good conditions.

If I remember rightly we had 70t of wheat in a neighbours silo for weeks aerating it on seemingly warm dry days and didn't have much luck. I think we gave up and sold it for cheap feed.
 

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Probably cheaper to upgrade that header now and strip more in the heat of the day. Drying can chew into your profit pretty quick. But can be handy when you get a fortnight of rubbish weather I guess.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Cheers Will, this year I battled to have any weather to harvest in and seems to get to 13.5-14.0 and then no dryer...because I'm buying with my super fund it kind of has to be a fixed asset...

I've been looking at the agridry site...I will chase up some others...

I figure If I can at least dry it can go into a truck and be sold...maybe 1 dryer and 1 59 tonne silo, then add some more the following year...I'd like to get 400 tonne...at current production rates I will have 300 tonne to rent out!! ...but I hope to change that...

Ant...
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Any nth Americans use heaters in the duct of fans? How does it work...

Ant..
 

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Have used the heaters(propane, but could be nat gas if were more serious) in small(5000b) bins and they work(believe Grain guard is name that have, but there others). Just a bit finicky sometimes with lighting - think this due to static pressure changes - such that you almost better just to get lit and leave it that way.
 

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We have aeration in almost every bin (silo) up here, as do most farmers. Exception from you is, we are in the middle of the Canadian prairies which has vastly different, post harvest, weather than your area. We usually have plenty of warm, low humidity days to get tough grain down to good condition and relatively dry, cool nights to bring any hot grain down in temp. As well we have brutally cold winters to freeze down the grain.

We turn our fans on as soon as the bins are being filled and if the grain is tough we run them continuously until the moisture front has passed up through the bin and the top of the bin is dry. If the grain is dry but hot, we will run the fan for a few cool nights and then monitor the temp at the tops every couple weeks to make sure it doesn't start rising again.

The great part of aeration is if the bin starts showing signs of change, you can flip the switch on and recondition it.

I also have a dryer that gets used very seldom but is nice to have as an emergency back-up when we have a later harvest. We have used auxiliary propane heaters, in-line with our fans and they do work but we don't have them anymore. The heater and fan technology is destined to become quite sophisticated in the next few years, or some self monitoring systems may be around already.

Since you are new to this area, here are a few articles i found that you can read thru:

http://iharf.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/New-Insights-into-Natural-Aeration-Grain-Drying.pdf

http://www.agcanada.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/FS140317.pdf

http://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/agdex4509
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks IXL, my climate is pretty different, I'm on the coast, we get relative low humidity but somedays can creep up, also do get the odd run of 25-30 degrees c days after harvest, however if I wish to do corn in the future that is a different story.

Cheers...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
On page 13 from the agcanada link, the add for western tractor, the John deere combine has the unload auger on the RH side of combine.....??

Ant...
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I read the article and there is a YouTube video on it as well....going by that article I am in perfect conditions for drying grain...I mostly have surface moisture on grain, I have no issue ripening grain...if it works in a 60 tonne silo surely I can do ok with 40 tonne silos?

I might have to buy a data logger for next summer and see if my weather suits?

I could also buy a small kit for my two field bins and maybe trial it next year with the beans and some barley.

Also if the silo is not full i wonder how it goes...what if I have 5 tonne in a 20 tonne silo?

This system would suit me better than dedicated dryer as I can have it run pretty much autonomously...

More research required!!

Ant...
 

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Hi I live in Canterbury New Zealand we are 4km from the coast and struggle to harvest wheat under %14.5 we dry a lot of grain and grass seed and other different vegetable seed crops using silo dryers. Our main dryer is a 200 tonne westeel silo with sukup stirrers in it and it has a 20 hp centrifugal fan sucking through a heat exchanger which is diesel fired. LPG Gas is to expensive here it cost $38 to fill up a 12kg BBQ bottle.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Kiwi, what are you drying it down too? I need to be 12.5% and under...

Cheers, Ant
 

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Grain dyer is the answer. Agridry bin dryer, 21t per load. Plenty of them on the Darling Downs, wouldn't farm without it.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
What are they worth, is it mobile, I called yesterday for pricing just waiting to hear back from them....

Ant...
 

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Ant We are drying wheat down from 16% to 14% it taks about 3 days to get 180 tonne done there is faster ways to dry wheat but it comes at a big cost. I have dried grass seed from 28% down to 12% that took 6 days but there was 65 tonnes if it in the silo. Harvesting wet grass ant much fun.
 

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I don't know how them crops dry with just air, soybeans if you need to drop a couple points of moisture just toss them in the bin and put air on them several days later they are down them couple points, if need to move 5 points run them through the dryer with a cooler flame then corn,
corn to move any points of moisture you have to use heat.


I combine for a guy that has a dryer bin. the stirator set up. the fans on the bin have heaters on them then augers from the roof stir the grain to get even drying. for him it works because that bin holds all of his crop.


the stir rators from sukup don't have the best reputation.


shivers makes a more simple more efficient bin drying system that the bin its in can be used as a wet bin, as it dries the grain goes to a different bin. or it can be used as a drying bin where the dry grain stays in the bin.
simple reliable some say very efficient others say not as efficient as some of the new batch driers.


hard to beat the speed and versatility of a batch or automatic batch dryer.


no matter the system you use you need to figure daily bushels and a dryer/holding bin capacity to keep up. if you can harvest 5k bushels in a day a 250 bu/hr dryer and a 3k bushel wet bin should keep you going all day. over night the dryer empties the bin and you start over the next morning.


don't know if there really is a right or wrong way to do it, everyones dryer setup is different but at the end of the day everyone gets dry grain in the bin.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I think if I only required 13-14% moisture a bin dryer will do, to get to 12.5 and especially to do corn I will need a dryer. I am waiting on pricing of a agridry unit. I won't need to dry all my grain as I sell some local...and the way our harvest works there plenty of days in between to dry grain and put into bins. I will probably fit some fan kits to a few bins down the track so I can just air dry grain that goes to local market...

Now it's just having the money to get it! Dryer first or bins first? Kind of need both...I might get dryer first and maybe some more cheap field bins...that would give me 100 tonne of storage to play around with....

Hopefully I can pick up some contract drying to help get some pay back...but it's going to be a big relief to have this set up, really opens up some options.

The fun of farming...thanks to everyone with there in put.

Ant....
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Well I have tried to get pricing and information out of that company that sells in QLD...and no luck, I called twice got promised they will send through pricing and options etc, called again today and they said sales rep is now on holidays and no one can help me....f**king pitiful...

I am amazed at what some businesses think is acceptable...

I will look elsewhere or import from UK...

Ant...
 
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