Slickest new system we've seen for moving grain into storage while virtually eliminating cracked seeds is the new Auger Blower introduced by Mason City Silo Repair, of Mason City, Iowa.

The Auger Blower lets you move corn, soybeans or any other grain into silos or grain bins up to 60 ft. high with a conventional forage blower. Cracked grain is eliminated since the grain never comes into contact with the blower fan. Instead, the 8-in. steel auger delivers the grain to the blower neck where air pressure off the fan catches it and forces it up the standard 9-in. silo pipe.

The Auger Blower fits most makes, models and sizes of forage blowers, according to inventor Roy Bilyeu. The only modification is to disconnect the regular feed table drive and install a partial shield over the intake opening. This restricts the amount of air admitted and prevents excess back pressure from building up and blowing grain out the blower intake. Bilyeu has shields for most blowers with shaker, chain and slat or auger feed tables and is currently developing one for blowers with spinning feed tables.

"We've blown corn and beans into an 18 by 60 silo with no problems,"reports Bilyeu. "The blower doesn't require a large tractor, but since the blower must be driven at 1,000 rpm, most farmers are using larger tractors since they're usually the only ones equipped with 1,000 rpm pto's. The auger itself is driven hydraulically from the blower tractor."

The auger attachment is designed to rotate to any position required for unloading. It can be used to unload gravity boxes or trucks and with an auxiliary auger, can be adapted to handle center dump wagons. The auger doesn't interfere with the permanent silo pipe. It's light enough to be installed or moved by one man.

"We've moved up to 1,000 bu. per hour through the Auger Blower. It has a little less capacity than a regular blower without it would, but we eliminate cracking," points out Bilyeu. "With this attachment, you can build your own pneumatic grain conveyor at a fraction of the cost of a commercial model."

"Many of our customers are Harvestore owners who have had problems blowing grain into the silo with a conventional blower. The cracked grain tends to gum up on the inside walls of the silo. If it freezes while it's still a little wet, the corn sticks there and won't fall down. And if it does fall, it usually has enough impact to damage or destroy the unloading equipment in the base. The Auger Blower eliminates this problem."

Bilyeu says he's had equally good success with dry corn, high-moisture corn and soybeans. He feels it has potential for other grains, too. The blower can be used for silage in minutes by removing the shield from the blower intake, reconnecting the feed table drive and lowering the sliding silo pipe back down to the blower.

The Auger Blower is also compatible with another of Bilyeu's enterprises, first reported in FARM SHOW'S July-August 1979 issue. He builds wooden liners to convert conventional stave silos into dry corn storage vessels.

"We tried plastic, epoxy and cement before hitting on the idea," Bilyeu notes. "We've converted over 50 silos so far and all our customers are satisfied."

The liner completely covers the inside of the silo. It insulates dry corn from the moist wall of the silo, creating an air space to evaporate condensation and frost.

"We create a 1-in. air space by nailing 1 by 4's directly to the silo walls, spaced 6 in. apart and running vertically. We then staple 1/4-in. plywood or Blandex sheets to the 1 by 4's covering the entire inside. In effect, we're building a barrel inside the silo."

Bilyeu builds wooden liners up to 200 miles from his Macon City head-quarters.

"We also seal the top of the silo and pour a concrete floor," he points out. "And, if the silo wasn't originally built strong enough to hold corn, we strengthen it with extra hoops."

According to Bilyeu, the key to successful conversion of silos into grain bins is proper aeration of the grain. "We use a 11 hp fan blowing through a 6-ft. length of vented 12-in. pipe across the floor, blowing or pulling air through the grain."

Base conversion price for a 20-ft. dia. silo is 45 to 50 cents per bu. of grain the converted silo holds, plus whatever extra work is needed, depending on condition of the structure and what's needed to ready it for storing shelled corn or other grain.