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26518 Views 57 Replies 20 Participants Last post by  Longrun
I think I asked this question about a year or more ago, but I am curious if there are any new members or anyone for that matter that can shed some light on K-Hart drills. I want to know more about performance. I don't know anyone that has one near me, and have only caught a glipmse of one actually working in the field. His crop seemed good later on in the year, but it still doesn't answer my questions. Depth control? What about packing in dry soil? Penetration in hard soils? Durability?

I love the simplicity of the design (both openers), I am just not sure if it is 'enough'. It seems almost too simple, especially when compared to other manufacturers disc equipment. They only offer sizes up to 60', small by todays standards. I wonder why these guys have not stepped into the plus sized drill market? No demand? In my eyes a drill from these guys should have been the first to break the 80' mark.

Thoughts, comments or experiences?
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I guess a disc drill doesnt have to be that wide since you can go way faster.But i agree with you,those k-harts look almost antique,if you compaire that to the Bourgault 3710...
Are mid row or side banding disks an option? If not I see that being a problem for a "zero-till drill"
K harts are limited by the size of frame the REM builds for them. It is a REM toolbar that they are mounted to. Most of them have chloride in the tires, rebar in the frame, or both to get the discs in the ground. Being a double disc, they need weight on them to make them penetrate. The new opener looks pretty nice and well thought out. I have seen what they do in dry springs and would not consider one because they have a hard time closing the seed trench in some soil conditions and when this happens they don't get very good seed to soil contact. If it is wet they will throw some soil or even chunk out the furrow wall as the soil sticks to the turning discs, but this may be good for getting a black strip to warm faster in our cold springs (or are they warmer winters?).

We considered one a while ago, but they really aren't much of a deal unless you can get in on some government help to pay for some of the cost of the openers. I know that Allen's in Oyen has three sitting right beside the road.
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redgreen , i am new to this board and noticed you had an old posting saying that you had purchased 5440 canola for 396 a bag .I was wanting to find out where that was at.
I sent you a PM joedirt.
I believe these guys came out with an MRB option last year.

As per the seed trench closing issue, I can see how that could be aggravating in certain conditions/soils. Maybe K Hart should be offering a closing wheel? I didn't see that listed as an option on their openers...
They try to do all the closing/packing/setting depth with the single wheel at the back. If you look at a great plains drill, they offer a twin closing wheel much like a corn planter that angles toward the trench. This probably would work better. Firming the seed in the trench with a keeton would help too.

I'm pretty sure Snipe bought one this past year.
Your probably right, that twin closing wheel design has only been used for how many decades on planters?

The other thing is to use a firming wheel that runs inside the trench, much like a keeton, except it rolls instead of slides. I don't know of any aftermarket makers of such a thing, but I have seen them in magazines.

Side note: Do you know of anybody running Keetons on any of our traditional seeding equipment Andy? I seen them at a show recently and thought about taking some home to adapt to our 3/4" knives on the air drill. I think it might help tame down seed 'splash' that we get when running high fan speeds in small seeded crops (canola), in order to push the high rates fertilizer through without plugging. Plus the added benefit of pushing the seed into moisture. Or they might just ball up into a big lump of mud and drag...
I should get some, modify them to work and try it on a few openers, never heard of anybody doing that before on an hoe drill.
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Great plains makes what is called a seed lok wheel that does what you describe. They are available on their drills. Deere 1890s and Case SDXs have firming wheels, and a company makes a poly fin that replaces the firming wheel on a deere (called The Fin, interestingly enough). The talk about firming wheels is that in the right (wrong?) conditions they roll the seed out of the trench. Keetons can ball up a little bit too, but they have a couple of different profiles available. Also, along the same lines of the keeton and your goal for reducing seed bounce would be what are called Rebounders by Schaffert (sp?). They don't firm seed but are made to corral it in the bottom of the trench on double disc openers.

I have also though about just a small piece of thing spring steel that runs against the ground behind an opener. Would firm the seed a little bit and control bounce. If it balls up, you could always put a little chunk of plastic on it to make it slippery.

One thing that acts like a keeton on a hoe is a technotill opener, although it brings soil in above the seed and then packs it all.
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i bought a K Hart last year, i used a 5000 Flexi before that. i did have a few issues with germination in peas (big seeds) were the straw mat was thick; i had lots of straw from previous crop and i heavy harrowed making problem worse so this wasn't really the K Harts fault my Flexi 5000 would have put the seed in the ground in those spots but would have been buried so deep in straw it wouldnt have grown anyway. i do have the weight boxes but no chloride in tires; i will lode center section tires this spring. as far a depth control it is similar to the technotill; there is only about 1" of dirt covering seed at what ever depth the disks run. this year i did a excellent job chopping and spreading straw so with a bit of moisture and no hard frosts things should be better. K Hart does make mid row banders but i am using a blend of phos N and ESN down with the seed. K Hart has a new opener which looks really good and they also have a adjustable packer wheel for the older openers.I find K Hart is very simple to service and maintain; rotate the disks once a year and grease bearings once a season. and they pull super easy.
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Snipe, are you thinking of trying some keetons this year?

One thing that is really nice on the Khart is the spring loaded packer arm. In hard soils, a double disc opener will sometime ride out of the soil because of the wedging action of the discs (a V). Because it is spring loaded, even if the opener rides up a little bit, the packer will still pack the soil. Other openers do not have this.
@snipe:How wide is your drill,what do you pull it with and do you use row cleaners in front of the double disc openers to avoid hairpinning?
i do have a keeton that i will try this year; i have heard some good but more bad about Keetons. I put down some extra N down this fall on about 400 acres with very consistent depth; hair pinning was not a issue with good straw managment. no row cleaners. my drill is 43 foot wide 9 inch spacing and i pulled a 5300 bourgault cart and a 1200 gallon liquid cart with a 280 hp Versatile at 6 mph 1400 rpm almost 2 days on a tank of fuel. i think i could pull a 450 bushel cart with no liquid cart with same tractor
jaydee i cut my cereals as high as possible this year so there was only about a foot of straw going through combine so it was mostly chaff coming out the back, so in my case there is no need for row cleaners
There are 2 streams of thought with disc openers and hairpinning. Either single disc openers are better or double disc openers are.

The thing about Kharts, Great plains, and a couple smaller companies out of the states (including Case planter row units) is the offset discs. The leading disc is supposed to cut some of the residue as well as make the opener go in the ground easier. It also sharpens the inside disc so you can switch them every season and have sharp discs until they have worn too much on diameter.
Most studies conducted in stubble height relate to potentially higher yields, more favourable micro-climates, increased snow catch, reduced soil erosion, fuel savings, the list goes on. That list really makes me want to reconsider our decision to run a hoe drill, which inadvertantly cannot deal with really tall stubble, especially in chemfallow.

I realize there is some drawbacks with disc drills, however I believe that the drawbacks can be considered minor nuisances when compared to the potential benefits.

It would be nice to see some disc drill comparisions at Rosetown areas next seeding demonstration, that is if they have it this year and I get time to go.
I would really like to compare the seeding performance of other discs to the K hart, mainly to see if the extra cost of the others (especially the 3710) is justifed. Not too mention a comparision of the new parrallel linkage hoe drills and disc drills. Hopefully we get to see that this spring.
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I was amazed that there wasn't a Khart there this past year. It isn't that far to go and it would be really interesting to see work. I hope that either Bourgault or Pillar has their machine there as well. If you are looking at Kharts, I would consider going with Khart openers and a different frame. If you look at what great plains does with their 4010 HDA, that is the ticket. Or their planters are available on 10 inch spacing with many openers. Too bad their drill only comes up to 40ft. But they have a planter frame to 60.
Andy other then a non floating hitch what dont you like on the Khart frame?
I don't like that they need so much added weight on them -I realize that they aren't just for Khart, but if the toolbar was built heavier from the start, so much wouldn't need to be added. I think a heavier walled tubing is going to be much more durable than a frame with weight boxes and stuff in the tubing. It is true that you can remove the weight if conditions allow, but I don't think anyone ever does because penetration of a double disc opener (any of them, not just a Khart) is so variable because of the wedging action.
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