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Implement Alley Discussion Forum

Grain Drills

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03-15-2005 16:59:56

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Can someone tell me the difference/advantage to a grain drill with double disc openers compared to one with the single disc? Will the drill with double disc openers do a better job of planting?thanks in advance.

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03-17-2005 08:41:17

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 Re: Grain Drills in reply to Randy165, 03-15-2005 16:59:56  
I have an old JD/VanBrunt double-disk, 14 row, 7 inch spacing drill on rubber tires, with additional small seed box for grass seeds. Until this one I had always used the single disk kind. According to Mother Deere book the double disk were for well prepared ground to be planted at high speed. At higher speed the single disk openers will throw well prepared ground too far, each of the double disks (being flat disks only) will not "overthrow" the dirt.

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03-19-2005 13:39:59

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 Re: Grain Drills in reply to TomTX, 03-17-2005 08:41:17  
Thanks everyone, you all have furnished a lot of usable info, another example of how valuable this site is, thanks again.

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03-15-2005 21:21:51

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 Re: Grain Drills in reply to Randy165, 03-15-2005 16:59:56  
Double work better in any hard ground or trash. Need a better softer seed bed prepared for single disk.


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03-16-2005 10:02:16

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 Re: Grain Drills in reply to paul, 03-15-2005 21:21:51  
I'm a little confused, and not trying to be disagreeable, but everything I've read has said the single disk was for more trashy ground and the double was for prepared ground. I know this is not consistant with planters, but it is just what I have seen the OEM's recommend and what I have read in old ag books (pre 1960). Perhaps real life experience shows the opposite. We had a single disk Oliver drill which was used to plant wheat in trashy conditions (twice disked corn stalks with lighter disk) and seemed to do OK. Everything I have now is double, but we prepare the ground better. I thought the main concern with the double in trash, was residue hair pinning. The older doubles did not have enough down pressure to cut the residue, and I believe he is not looking at a newer drill. Maybe, I just read too much.

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03-16-2005 15:37:33

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 Re: Grain Drills in reply to James2, 03-16-2005 10:02:16  
You could be right. I only have personal experience with an old IHC double disk type for 35 years. (Sheez - that was old when I was little & dad was using it - now I feel old!)

There are no single disk type around 'here'. They all went to the trash heap. The few I see on auctions anyone who comments roll their eyes - and they sell for about scrap.

I let cattle grase some cornstalks, disk once, & plant oats into that in the spring. Lots of trash. It works fine with my double disk. Hairpinning is a problem for getting corn in the ground, but around here small grains are pretty easy to get growing, to be honest the single disk would be fine too.

I suspect the hard clay is the 'local' issue for double disks being much more popular here.

I can see where a single disk would throw the trash to the side, leaving bare ground for the seed. Makes sense. Our clay would not move back again to cover the seed I think.

Don't you have a lot of wear & side-draft with a single disk? Never understood how the bearing & linkages take all that side-pressure.


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03-17-2005 08:29:01

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 Re: Grain Drills in reply to paul, 03-16-2005 15:37:33  
In the 30 years Dad owned that old steel wheeled drill, I don't believe he ever changed a disk bearing. But then again, he didn't drill over 4.5 mph. The single seemed to work pretty good with the shallow disked ground, that is, it cut a slightly deeper trench and the chains covered the seed with the limited amount of loose dirt. We just had an old 10 ft JD tandem. It was difficult for me to believe that it was doing a good job, but every time and everywhere I looked, the seed was covered and we always got a decent stand. I had plenty of time to look, Dad always did all the planting and drilling. Fast forward to the current times, I have an IH 620 double disk press wheel drill that does one heck of a job. Not easy to move, but that is the reason they made planter trailers. Since I have a much heavier tandem disk with mounted harrow (IH490), working up a good seed bed with a couple of passes is not difficult. More often it is one pass with the disk and one pass with the field cultivator Overall I believe my end results are better with stands now being very good to excellent. Suprising how just spending some money without getting crazy, makes the job easier and the results much better. However this violates my father's guiding principle which was never verbalized yet patently evident: "you don't have to make much money if you don't spend any". Unfortunately, this has a tendency to make a relative hard life, a lot more difficult. On the positive side, he had no debts or mortgage when he passed away, and did survive some pretty tough times.

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03-16-2005 16:41:35

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 Re: Grain Drills in reply to paul, 03-16-2005 15:37:33  
Still have a single disk Van Brunt here. Been a few years since small grain went in.

But used it to reseed grass seed into ripped alfalfa then drag it after.

Dragging after is a must tho even with drag chains on.

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Tx Jim

03-16-2005 04:04:40

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 Paul/penetration ?? in reply to paul, 03-15-2005 21:21:51  
Paul,I agree that double-disk does better in trashy ground,but how do two straight disc penetrate hard ground better than one concave disc.I heard same thing yrs. ago when I worked for a JD dealer but never got anyone to explain.Thanks,Tx Jim

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03-16-2005 08:49:15

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 Re: Paul/penetration ?? in reply to Tx Jim, 03-16-2005 04:04:40  
Heavy, heavy clay soils around here, & for small grains we tend to work them when wet.

I suppose both get as deep, but the double disk makes a narrow slot that has a better chance of closing again, while the single disk does not seem to cover up the seed as well. Uncovered seed is wasted seed.


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03-16-2005 06:18:53

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 Re: Paul/penetration ?? in reply to Tx Jim, 03-16-2005 04:04:40  
Like a boat cutting the water vs dragging a board sideways.

The single disc is sitting at an angle and has to push the dirt away to get a place for the seed to fall whereas the 2 disc just cuts a slit like the bow of a boat cuts water with the blades straight fore and aft.

Seems to me to be a lot less strain on the blade(s) and on the running gear. Mother Deere makes both so they must work but mine have been double and in our clay soil, most I've seen have been double.


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03-15-2005 19:23:40

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 Makes a difference in reply to Randy165, 03-15-2005 16:59:56  
Double disk openers are a lot better - a lot more seed gets covered, especially if the seedbed is not super soft or ideal....

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