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He self-propelled his two hay balers
Paul Doepel, Ponca City, Okla., "self-propelled" his square and round pull-type balers by hooking them up to independent power units complete with hydro-static steering, air conditioning, and cabs, saving the cost of a new tractor while adding comfort and convenience.
Doepel built the self-propelled square baler a year ago and the self-propelled round baler last winter. "The old 65 hp Case 830 tractor I had been farming with worked fine for pulling my Deere square baler, but it could barely pull my Deere 530 round baler. I needed to use both balers at the same time so I converted the pull-type square baler to a self-propelled model combine. The front axle of a 6-WD military vehicle is mounted directly under the engine. He used 12-in. channel iron to build a rectangular frame which supports the engine and cab and bolts to the baler in place of the tongue. The combine's fuel tank is mounted in front of the baler. A reduction gearbox from a Wetmore hammer mill slows down the engine and reverses its direction of rotation to match the pto shaft. He mounted a hydrostatic motor on the transmission and a hydraulic pump on the engine to operate the baler's pickup and gate.
Doepel "self-propelled" the square baler using a 4-cylinder, 50-hp diesel engine removed from an air compressor, a cab off an old International 403 combine, the drive system out of a forklift, the steering column from a self-propelled forage cutter, and a hammermill gear reduction box. He installed a swivel seat and air conditioner in the cab. Two narrow-mounted front wheels steer the rig.
"We baled 35,000 bales with the square baler last summer without any major problems," says Doepel. "One afternoon, we baled 814 bales of wheat hay in 2 1/2 hours. We can bale a little faster than with a pull-type baler because the hydrostatic transmission lets us use the exact speed needed. One of the machine's big advantages is its ability to make sharp turns. We can run right up to the end of the row and turn 180 degrees with no problems. We plan to switch to a single tire in front. We've found that with two tires one can be on a hump while the other tire spins free."
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Paul Doepel, RR 4, Box 320, Ponca City, Okla. 74601 (ph 405 767-1003).

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1989 - Volume #13, Issue #3