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Using Your Tractor & Crop Talk

Discussion Board - Not crop talk, but tractor work Feed grinders??

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10-18-2012 19:39:29

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The local elevator just closed it bins and grinder operation in Aug. (CHS co-op) I have 5 sows and a boar. Was getting feed from them in tote bags, pretty convenient to stop off on my way home from work and get more feed every few weeks (when feeding out the market hogs).
Next closest Feed Mill is 45 miles away.
I'm researching what it would take to get and operate my own PTO drive Grinder/mixer. How long does it take to mix a ton of feed with one of these? What things to look out for/know when buying one? What else should I know??

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10-19-2012 08:42:21

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 Re: Not crop talk, but tractor work Feed grinders?? in reply to dmiller, 10-18-2012 19:39:29  
By the time you spend the money for the grinder/mixer.....for only 5 sows and a boar, it probably will not be economically feasible. I'd call the mill (even if they are 45 miles away) and ask them if they would deliver mixed feed to you...especially for the finishing hogs. You'd need bulk storage to do this. As far as the sows and boar...they can be fed shell corn and pelleted supplement. There is NO need to grind the feed for them. You are going to spend a lot of money for not very much use in my opinion. There have to be others in the same boat as you in your area. Ask around and combine your orders with them from the new mill. I"m betting they already have clients in your area and would be glad to accomodate you.
But, to answer your question....the best way to determine the condition of a mill is to look at the hammers. If they are rounded off on all four's done a LOT of grinding. Check for rust especially on the bottom of the feed tank. Look down from the top lid and inspect the vertical auger for wear. Also inspect the discharge auger and supplement hopper. If the grinder has been used to mix a lot of salt rations, stay away from it. Check the chain drives for slop and check the belt pulleys on the main flywheel. Generally, most grinder/mixers hold together well unless it has seen a lot of "road time".

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10-19-2012 09:41:31

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 Re: Not crop talk, but tractor work Feed grinders?? in reply to randallinMo, 10-19-2012 08:42:21  
I agree, the issue is wich will be cheaper to get it hauled/delivered or to mix it myself. Also the time cost. Can I mix a ton in the same 2 hours it would take to make the trip/purchase/load at the mill.
The feed for the breed stock isn"t much of an issue 1500 lb bag will last about 3 months.

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10-22-2012 10:51:01

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 Re: Not crop talk, but tractor work Feed grinders?? in reply to dmiller, 10-19-2012 09:41:31  
Time wise, it won't take much more than 30 minutes to grind, mix and unload 2 tons of feed. This depends upon how you've got your grain set up....whether you have to shovel or not. Most mixers hold 2 tons. I'd grind 2 tons and leave part of it in the grinder if need be. Grinding feed really doesn't take long if you're using augers to move the grain to the grinder.

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10-19-2012 10:45:50

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 Re: Not crop talk, but tractor work Feed grinders?? in reply to dmiller, 10-19-2012 09:41:31  
I've had a couple Gehl mills and one Lorenz (MN product). Takes about 20 minutes to grind a two ton batch, depending how many ponies are up front.

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mosinee dave

10-19-2012 06:17:28

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 Re: Not crop talk, but tractor work Feed grinders?? in reply to dmiller, 10-18-2012 19:39:29  
I use a jd 700 with a 4020 tractor mke sure it has minimul rust and plenty of screens

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10-18-2012 22:52:24

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 Re: Not crop talk, but tractor work Feed grinders?? in reply to dmiller, 10-18-2012 19:39:29  
It isn't too big of a job to grind your own feed. As far as grinder/mixers go there are a lot of good ones out there, I have and prefer a New Holland myself but Gehl, Artsway, Farmhand and Peerless all made pretty good grinders. The bonus to the NH or Artsway is they still have dealer support, Farmhand and Gehl really don't. If you aren't grinding that much feed it probably wouldn't be an issue anyway. Depending on the area you are in there may be used ones around that could be had pretty reasonable. A small one like a 95 gehl or 352 NH could be had for less than $1000 in our area. Lots of them around and not much livestock anymore. Could be run with a 40-50hp tractor.

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