2023 - Volume #47, Issue #1, Page #11[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Seed Cleaner Goes Mobile
Ole Norgaard is a Montana farmer who imports and sells the grain cleaners from his farm. “Buyers of the trailer-mounted unit will be able to take it to the farm bin to clean and select their own high-quality seed for planting. It can also be used to pre-clean grain to a higher quality before selling.”
The grain cleaner runs on single phase 220 farm current. It has a phase converter and variable frequency drive control box that allows the operator to control the fan speed on the grain cleaner.
Norgaard admits that the Big Fat Seed grain cleaner is similar in many ways to competitive systems built largely in Ukraine and imported to the U.S. However, he argues that the Danish unit is built to higher quality standards in smaller lots, reflecting farmer/user input.
The grain falls through a high-volume air stream. Dust, dirt and light non-grain material are removed with the airflow. Clean grain and occasional stones are channeled into five outlets by weight. Stones fall into the first outlet, with the heaviest seeds into the next outlet. The remaining three outlets capture the second heaviest seeds, lighter seeds and very light and broken seeds, respectively.
“The seed flow inlet and the speed of the fan fine-tune seed selection,” says Norgaard. “Handles over the outlets can further fine-tune the flow for the ideal cut of seed. It’s very simple, user-friendly and inexpensive to operate.”
“Our latest model has been modified with input from farmers in the U.S. and Denmark,” says Norgaard. “With only one step between the user and the manufacturer, we can respond quickly to customer needs.”
The Big Fat Seed cleaner is now in its third version and the first designed specifically for mobile use. Changes made in the most recent model include the addition of a window so the operator can monitor the separation process and adjust cuts in the grain flow for better seed selection. Other changes affect where materials are deposited.
Trash and dust are now collected in a dust net collection system at the rear of the unit. A handle-controlled end gate bypasses the net when cleaning crops like sunflowers, corn and emmer. These crops can create static electricity charges in the dust net. Chaff and other light materials will then collect and block the airflow through the net.
“Blockage creates back pressure, which interferes with the cleaning process,” says Norgaard. “A North Dakota farmer suggested the bypass, and we adopted it.
“We also made a change to outlet number five, which handles light and broken grain,” adds Norgaard. “We installed a slot that can be opened to direct the light grain directly into the dust collector net or into outlet number four for light grain.”
Outlets were made more versatile in the new version of the grain cleaner. A flow director is now mounted on each outlet.
“Flipping the control handle directs the grain to either the left or right-hand side of the trailer,” says Norgaard. “Originally the outlets had to be detached and reversed. Now there are outlets to either side.”
Two additional changes reflect the company’s desire to resolve even small problems. “A farmer discovered a dead spot on the top of the machine that can collect a small amount of water,” says Norgaard. “We made a change in design to drain the water away.”
The company also added access holes with removable covers to the shroud on the back side of the fan.
“A farmer noticed that a couple of grains could get trapped there,” says Norgaard. “Adding access to the sides allows us to blow them out. It’s just a small thing, but we wanted to take care of it anyway. We’re always looking to integrate common sense and good ideas in the design.”
For pricing on the grain cleaner, contact Norgaard.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, North Frontier Farms, 475 Vixen Lane, Shonkin, Mont. 59450 (ph 406-403-4600; email@example.com; www.bigfatseed.com).
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