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Bale Ventilator Drills Holes In Bales
"If you punch a hole through a bale with a spear, all you're doing is bending the stems back. The hole soon fills back up. The solution is to drill a hole that will stay open," says Velere Strommer, who has designed and built a baler-mounted "ventilator" that drills a 2 1/2 in. dia. hole through bales as they're formed.
Strommer and his partner, Harold Winston, have worked on the new-style bale aerator for nearly 8 years. It consists of two parts - a 7 1/2-in. long, 2 1/2-in. dia. hardened steel bit that mounts on the bale plunger, and an inner auger that pulls the cut hay out of the hole. The components are driven by orbit motors powered by tractor hydraulics.
The first prototype is mounted on a Hesston mid-size square baler. "The probe turns clockwise, while the auger turns counterclockwise to remove the cut hay, which is dropped back into the hay chamber and baled," says Strommer.
Commercial hay producer Jim Bye, who raises 1,700 acres of hay near Gayeville, S. Dak., tested the device successfully last summer on a Case 8575 baler. "You could actually feel the heat come out of the hole," says Bye, who used it successfully on 1,100 32 by 32 by 88-in. bales.
The aerator can be adapted to any mid-size baler and can be easily removed when not needed. Strommer and Winston hope to fit it to other size balers as well. It will be tested this summer at the University of Wisconsin.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Velere Strommer, Quality Hay of Iowa, 1860 Hwy. 69, Klemme, Iowa 50449 (ph 515 587-2287).

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1997 - Volume #21, Issue #3