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Self-Loading Hay Basket Still Going Strong
Back in the late 1980’s Mark Kerkow bought a couple Pro Quality self-loading and unloading hay baskets for small square bales. He’s still using them today.
    FARM SHOW found him demonstrating one of the 10-ft. wide, 12-ft. high hay basket at a local threshers festival. The self-loading wagon holds about 100 bales and automatically unloads itself in seconds.
    “We’re dairy farmers and have used these baskets to make 6,000 to 8,000 small square bales every year. We’ve had very few problems and have just replaced a few wheel bearings over the years,” says Kerkow. “Pro Quality had just introduced these hay baskets, and we liked not having to spend the money for a bale thrower or hay racks. We paid about $2,000. I don’t know if anyone builds hay baskets like these any more.”
    Bales are pushed out of the baler up a metal slide into the basket. “When the basket is full, I pull up to an elevator, trip a lever, and the hinged back panel swings open allowing all the bales to fall out. The bales spread out on the ground but don’t get all packed together like they do with a bale thrower,” says Kerkow.
    He says most other dairy farmers in his area chop haylage, but he chops only corn silage and bales all his hay. “We don’t have the facilities for haylage,” says Kerkow.
    He says the hay basket’s only limitation is that when it’s almost full and going downhill, bales tend to roll forward and sometimes out the top of the basket. “Also, the bales exiting the metal slide can sometimes get stuck against bales already in the basket and get bent out of shape.”
    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Mark Kerkow, 7750 West 195th St., Jordan, Minn. 55352 (ph 952 292-5467).

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2015 - Volume #39, Issue #6