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Hail-Damage Detectors
"They help eliminate guesswork when settling hail damage claims. I wouldn't try to farm without them," says Canadian grain farmer Harvey Aichele, of Yorkton, Sask. who uses home-made detectors, made from sheets of styrofoam, to monitor hail damage.
Aichele buys styrofoam (1 in. thick) in 2 ft. by 8 ft. sheets from the local lumber yard, then cuts each sheet into 16 1-ft. by 1-ft. squares. He clips or glues each styrofoam sheet to a piece of 3/8 in. plywood backing, then mounts each monitor on a wooden post, positioning it level and about a foot off the ground, with the styrofoam side facing up.
"Soon after the crop is up, I install three or four hail monitors per 160 acres of field area," explains Aichele. "As each hail stone strikes the monitor's surface, it leaves a tell-tale dent in the styrofoam, giving you a positive, accurate measure of how many hailstones fell per square foot, their size, velocity and the direction from which they came. If you're away on vacation or if you own farm land located a long ways from headquarters you can tell simply by looking at the monitors if any hail has hit the crop.
"You can glue or clip the styrofoam sheets to the plywood. One advantage in using clips is that, after a light hail storm, you can flip the styrofoam sheets over and use the reverse side to monitor the next hail storm," Aichele points out.
If you decide to try his low-cost way to detect hail damage, he'd like to hear from you and how the idea worked out. He'd also welcome inquiries from farmers interested in having the monitors, and mounting posts to go with them, custom built.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Harvey Aichele, Box 1163, Yorktown, Sask., Canada S3N2X3 (ph 306 782-4998).


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1983 - Volume #7, Issue #4