Crop-Drying Furnace Burns Cornstalks

If you knew you could dry your entire corn crop with just 5 acres of cornstalks, would there be any reason to keep buying and using LP gas?

That was the question Minnesota farmer Greg Wieweck asked our readers back in January of 1979 (Vol. 3, No. 1) when we first featured his crop drying furnace. He used the cornstalk-burning furnace for six years to dry his entire crop (about 16,000 bu./yr) with 1-ton stacks which he fed into the huge throat of the furnace with a 3-pt. mounted stack mover. He also burned big bales of straw. The furnace had a forced-air heat exchanger, meaning there were two layers to the entire structure. Heat passed from inside the large firebox to air between the double-walled furnace and chimney. The hot, clean air was then fed into the grain dryer.

FARM SHOW recently talked to Greg Wieweck, who now lives in Stewart, Minn. His farm was sold in 1985 after his father died. For the next 7 years, Wieweck traveled the country, consulting with other farmers who wanted to build their own crop residue burners. He still has detailed plans of all the bale and stalk burners he's built and would be willing to work with anyone interested in putting up their own crop-burning furnace.