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small square bale handling machinery questions

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#1 barnrope


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Posted 24 July 2010 - 11:50 PM

We normally square bale 3000-5000 bales per year. We are still doing it the old fashioned way with a man or two on a rack pulled behind the baler. Then we haul the hayrack or bale wagon as some of you might call it to the barns and use a rope and fork on a pulley system on a track with a haymow carrier to put the hay in the haymows. Yes, we are at least 60 years behind the times.

Is there a modern way to bale, and then pick up the bales with a tractor and loader and place them on a rack, trailer, or wagon so we can still fork them into the barn's haymow using the traditional 8 tine Olson bale fork with the rope?

It seems like getting labor to stack racks when hay is ready is the hardest part of the equation. I hope you guys don't laugh at me too hard. It is funny how cutting edge technology blends with living history on farms. Thanks for any input on getting small squares from the baler to the front of the barn! :)
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#2 aussiehayman



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Posted 25 July 2010 - 04:28 AM

we use a unit made by Acusin in Spain, it is towed behind the tractor and picks up the bales, it then ties 14 bales together leaving it in the ground. It is then 8*3*3, the same as a large square bale. we then use a truck and front end loader to pick the bales up out of the paddock. we cart about 20000 bales per year. so no blaes are handed by handed making labour easy to get!
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Posted 25 July 2010 - 07:30 AM

Do a search here on accumalators and you will see a wealth of information, Good luck.
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#4 swmnhay


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Posted 25 July 2010 - 07:48 AM

I would think the farmhand accumalator would work.They make a 8 bale pack layed flat.Don't know much about them but they don't bring much on a farm sale.
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#5 freedomfarm



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Posted 25 July 2010 - 07:50 AM

Wow, is that the only competition for the bale bandit? The Arcusin machine is impressive! How long have you had yours and if you don't mind . . . $? I think the bale bandit is close to 50k . . . ?
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#6 maknhay


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Posted 25 July 2010 - 08:50 AM

I've used a Steffen Systems 950 accumulator for 15 years now. It puts two bales crossways to make a 10 bale tie package. The nice thing about that is loading a flatbed with a loader mounted fork there's no touching them and you have the rail bale already there. I have to agree, the Acusin machine would be nice but they are four times the investment than a Steffen. Go to their website and you'll find my name and number listed for eastern South Dakota for dealers. Not trying to make this into a sales pitch but I can talk faster than I can type. Koyker Mfg is bragging heavily about their new "hay handling system" but I don't see it much different then a Hoelsher. And to my thinking, pulling that Kuhn thing around would be like taking all the labels off your canned goods in the pantry..........not a clue what to expect
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#7 rob_cook2001


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Posted 25 July 2010 - 11:38 AM

I vote for the Steffen. Very good stuff.

#8 river rat

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Posted 25 July 2010 - 07:12 PM

I would not put up small squares without a Bale Bandit.

#9 aussiehayman



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Posted 25 July 2010 - 07:13 PM

Sorry cant help with the $$$ as we are in australia, it is however a good machine

#10 viking7271


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Posted 26 July 2010 - 01:03 PM

I like the Koyker bale caddie because it doesnt put the bales on their side. It has a hydraulic wheel that pulls the bale back so the bales dont get jammed coming out of the chute on to the accum like the hoelscher or steffen. The koyker bale grabber keeps the bale stack real tight too.

#11 Marshall



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Posted 26 July 2010 - 05:53 PM

So after the Arcusin bale grouper groups the bales, how do you get that banded groupd piced up? Bale Spear, fork lift, on the front end loader of your tractor, or what?

It doesn't look like it would stand up to getting speared by a round bale spear to be stacked on a trailer, and then again to stack it in the barn.


#12 aussiehayman



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Posted 26 July 2010 - 06:43 PM

We use either a forklift or front end loader on a tractor to load them on a truck then stack them six high in the shed. they do not use steel bands it uses 3 or 4 strings (depending on the length of your small squares) the same as is used for a large square baler.

#13 baler


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Posted 23 August 2010 - 04:53 AM

I use the Steffen system, and it is working beatifully for our needs. There are a lot of different kind of machines available, so one has to think what are the needs for the accumulator. There can not be one best machine for all operations.

One reason I chose Steffen beacause it was the only one offering the chance to turn the bales 90 degrees if wanted. This helps both in stacking on the trailer and in stacking to the dryers/storage.

The other reason to choose Steffen was the capacity. I have a 1550 accumulator, and we bale 15 bale groups on the field and 20 bale (about 60 lbs apiece) groups from round bales rebaling without having to turn the bales on the side. That is 50 % more efficient while collecting and stacking versus a 10 bale accumulator. The only other one capable to do this is the Kuhn.

But the Kuhns accumulattor would've needed some modificatoins to be done for our operation. Since we have to dry all our hay and thus we can not make the bales too tight (max around 55-60 lbs for a 16"X18"X32" bale), so it is not a good thing that in the Kuhns system the baler plunger pushes the bales up to the accumulator. No way we could make the bales loose enough for the dryer without adding some kind of chain to pull the bales up to take pressure off the chamber with the Kuhn. And sometimes we bale with the moisture over 20%, so the bales would end up like bricks , and no way to blow air through them anymore...

I also toook a close look at the BaleBandit and Arcusin machines when looking for accumulator system. They seem like good machines and I was very interested at first. But then I found out the prices... BB is over 50 k$, and the Arcusin a bit more. And most of our customers would not be able to handle those bundles anyway, meaning no value added, no price premium compared to convetional small bales. The Steffens system was a lot cheaper to buy, and so far it has performed extremely well. I've only done about 30 000 bales with it so far, but the machine is simple and very troublefree once you get it set up right. Not the case with all BaleBandits, for what I've heard...

And what viking7271 wrote earlier, about bales getting jammed coming out of the baler??? Not in the Steffen accumulator, they are pulled to the wagon by the hydraulically driven conveyor. And what I really like in the Steffen is that the group is nice and firm once it hits the field. Unlike Koyker, Hoelscher or Kuhn, it makes a really nice group on the ground, no 3" gaps between the bales. The advantage from this is thet you don't have to push the bales with the grabber on the ground, and you have a smaller risk for getting dirt in the bales.

But like I said, different operations have different needs.

#14 Hayguy


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Posted 23 August 2010 - 07:08 AM

Welcome to Haytalk! I don't like to hijack someone else's thread, but... would you tell us where you're located and a little more about your operation? I'm especially interested in hearing about your hay dryer.

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