"It's a great low-cost way to get double duty from your grain drill," says Kansas farmer Joe Elmenhorst, of Moran, who has a patent pending on the "O.J. Drill Conversion" he invented.
It consists of twin disk furrow openers, mounting bracket and a seedbox for each "planter" row.
"The furrow openers move dry dirt and trash out of the way, allowing you to plant in moist soil without getting the seeds too deep," explains Joe. "Kits we've made and sold locally have been used primarily to equip drills for planting milo in 30 in. rows. There's been a lot of interest from corn and soybean producers, many of whom ask if our kit can be used to plant row crops in 15 in. rows. It'll adapt to 15 in. rows but there could be a problem controlling the amount of dirt kicked up by the close-together fur-row openers."
The kit, includes twin furrow openers, vertical stem and mounting bracket, "tie up" straps for immobilizing drill rows not being used for planting, and a seedbox.
Individual seedboxes hold 48 lbs. of milo and can be purchased separately. They come with a strap and bolt for fast mounting, or dismounting, over the selected "planter" rows. The twin furrrow openers (9 1/2 in. in dia.) are made of heavy (9 ga.) metal and each has a heavy-duty bearing on each side. Their working depth is adjustable in 1/2-in. increments.
"Once the furrow-opener mounting brackets are installed, it takes about an hour to convert a large drill for planting and tie up the unused rows, or to switch back to conventional drilling. "We currently have planter kits made up for Grain Plains and Crustbuster drills, but can make up brackets to fit most other makes," says Joe.