1990 - Volume #14, Issue #4, Page #03[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Slow Grinder Makes Better Chopped Hay
Anderson says most bale choppers and tub grinders use flying hammers or high-speed sickle sections that work the hay over too much, turning leaves into powder that blows away when it's windy.
"My grinder works at 20 rpm's, cutting bales up in 3 to 5-in. lengths. Hay between knife sections isn't touched at all by the knives."
Anderson hand-feeds bales into the grinder's 20 in. sq. hopper. Fifty offset knives, powered by a tractor pto, grind the hay into wafers that drop out the bottom of the grinder.
"Lack of fiber causes twisted stomachs in dairy cows. Feeding long-stemmed hay is the way to prevent it," says Anderson, a practicing veterinarian who uses the ma-chine to grind baled hay for his 88 cows. "Horsepower requirement of this grinder is low and the capacity (three tons per hour) is high. Torque, rather than speed, does the cutting. Moisture level has no affect on the grinder. I built my grinder for small bales, but it could be built for big rectangular bales by enlarging the hopper to 50 in. sq."
Anderson used angle iron to build the legs, large channel iron to form the body, and 1-in. thick flat iron to build the knives. He's working on a conveyor to carry hay from underneath the grinder to the feeding area or into an auger mixer.
In addition to preserving quality of hay, Anderson says his long-stem chopped hay can be used in an auger mixer to produce a total mixed dairy ration. He's looking for a manufacturer.
For more information, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Harlan Anderson, Rt. 1, Box 55, Cokato, Minn. 55321 (ph 612 286-5682).
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