1989 - Volume #13, Issue #5, Page #16[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Bale Hauler Built From Old Garbage Truck
Meyers and Charles use the rig in their custom hay hauling business. "As far as we know there are no commercial self-propelled round bale haulers on the market," says Meyers. "Some pull-type round bale haulers work similar to our machine, but they're much slower. On a good day we can load, haul, and unload 320 bales, or 180 tons of hay, going two miles each way. Before we built this self-propelled bale hauler, we used trucks and wagons to haul round bales. It took five men to operate all the equipment. Now we're doing twice as much in one day with one man."
The bale hauler, 41 ft. long and 10 ft. wide, is equipped with a U-shaped bale loading arm, made from 4 by 6 by 3/8-in. steel tubing, and a bed with four parallel unloading chains along its length. The operator approaches each bale so that its end fits into the open end of the loader arm. When the bale is cradled within the arm, the operator activates a hydraulic cylinder which swings the bale up and flips it onto the opposite side of the bed. The operator lifts a second bale onto the bed alongside the first one, then depresses a foot pedal inside the cab. The pedal activates the chains which move the pair of bales back just far enough to load the next pair of bales. Once the bed is fully loaded, the operator activates a hydraulic cylinder to bring side-mounted "outriggers" in against the bales. The out-riggers squeeze the bales together to reduce loaded transport width to 13 ft. To unload bales, the operator releases the outriggers, hydraulically tilts the bed until the back end touches the ground, and then uses the chains to push bales off as the truck moves ahead.
Meyers and Charles kept the truck's original 392 cu. in. gas engine, 6-speed Allison automatic transmission, front axle, differential, and steering components. They re-placed the truck's original frame with the frame from another International truck equipped with tag axles. They mounted the combine cab at the front and installed the engine, transmission, and the combine's hydraulic components behind. The bed of the trailer consists of four 32-ft. long beams made from 2 by 9-in. structural tubing. The four "endless" unloader chains run along the top of the four beams and return through the middle of each beam.
The bale hauler is equipped with eight hydraulic cylinders. Four cylinders operate the outriggers, two operate the loading arms, one operates the hoist, and one operates a pair of sliding mirrors on either side of the cab. The mirrors slide along 2 by 2-in. sq. tube frame and extend 18 in. out on either side so the men can see past the bales when loading. The cab is equipped with the combine's original air conditioning system. The bale hauler is equipped for night loading with two quartz halogen headlights and three wide angle quartz halogen floodlights pointed toward the bed and loading arms.
Meyers says he and Charles spent $5,000 for the garbage truck and about $30,000 in all to build the bale hauler. They'd like to sell it for $55,000. Also for sale is a bale hauler they built from a 1974 International school bus.
For more information, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, M.C. Fabricating, Box 9, Wawota, Sask., Canada S0G 5A0 (ph 306 739-2418 or 306 739-2119).
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