2013 - Volume #37, Issue #2, Page #30[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Micro Plow's 2-In. Tile "Better Than 4-In."
The 3-pt. mounted Richland Micro Plow is designed to lay small 2-in. dia. poly tile only 2 ft. deep. The unit was designed by Mark Martin of Shiloh, Ohio, who uses it to do custom tiling in his area. His nephew Elton Zimmerman, who has 15 years of experience working in a machine shop, builds the plows.
“We use the machine to install 2-in. tile spaced 20 ft. apart on fields that have never been tiled,” says Martin. “We’re excited with the results we’ve seen. We built a special shoe on the tile plow in order to accommodate the narrow tile.”
Although 2-in. tile is smaller than conventional 4-in. tile, Martin says it drains just as well. “Even though 4-in. tile is normally spaced 40 ft. apart, we find that it’s more cost effective to use 2-in. tile on 20-ft. spacings. That’s because the tile itself is less expensive, and because installation costs are lower as the plow costs less and can be pulled by a smaller tractor. A tractor with 150 hp will usually do the job. Also, you get much quicker drainage with 2-in. tile on 20-ft. spacing than with 4-in. tile on 40-ft. spacing.”
Martin says that in Europe, 2-in. tile has been widely used for years because it works. “We think that using 4-in. tile is overkill, especially in rolling ground where you hardly ever find more than a 1/4-in. of water in the tile unless it’s a main. Also, 2-in. tile has a sharper profile, which gives the water more velocity. As a result, the tile is more likely to stay clean than 4-in. tile, which has a wider bottom and therefore tends to collect more sediment.”
He says farmers have asked him to install 2-in. tile as laterals between their existing 4-in. tile lines. However, he hasn’t done that yet. “One problem is that it’s often difficult to find the old tile so we don’t know where to go between,” he notes.
The basic plow sells for $6,500; an interchangeable 4-in. boot is also available and sells for $800. The plow comes with a pvc frame that serves as a water level. However, it can also be used directly with GPS to keep grade. An Intellislope control system is available and sells for $9,995, and a GPS Hemisphere A320/321 base station sells for $13,500.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Richland Micro Drainage, 8105 Malone Rd., Shiloh, Ohio 44878 (ph 419 896-3623 or 419 895-1585; email@example.com; www.richlandmicrodrainage.com).
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