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I'm thinking about buying a discbine need help???


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15 replies to this topic

#1 angusdan

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Posted 24 February 2011 - 07:56 AM

I currently have a sickle bine and need a new one. Was leaning towards buying a discbine but i've heard a few horror stories, like disc's flying off or breakdowns that cost a small fortune. I like the JD 830 or maybe a New Holland7230. Anyone with any ideas would be helpful.

#2 Josh in WNY

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Posted 24 February 2011 - 08:44 AM

Angusdan, if your looking at a new unit, I don't think you have to worry but if you are buying a used maching, you definately need to check it out good. I switched from an old NH 488 sickle style mower/conditioner to a CaseIH 3309 disc mower/conditioner about 4 years ago and would never want to go back. There is much less general maintenance to a disc style mower. However, if something does go wrong in the gearboxes of the disc sections, the repair cost can get big quick.

General things to look for on the cutterbar would be loose discs or excessive backlash between adjacent disc sections. I believe that the NH 7230 should have the individual gearboxes for each disc and that there is a dip stick in the back that you can check the oil level with. Also check the condition of the oil for water, burned smell, etc. If the cutterbar shows any signs of being bent or sags in the middle, be very suspicious. I read on another post on this website that the NH cutterbars that saged in the middle were a problem if the bolts that hold the sections together weren't tightened properly and ended up damaging the unit. I have never looked at the JD 830, but many of the things to look for should be the same.

As far as the rest of the maching is concerned, they aren't a whole lot different that a sickle bar mower/conditioner. So check the same things you always would (conditioning rolls, frame, etc.).

If you do pick up a good disc mower/conditioner, it should run fine for you as long as you take care of it. Proper maintenance is the key to all good equipment (in my opinion anyway). The other thing to remeber is that just because you can mow faster with a discbine, doesn't mean you should. Just like hitting a rock with a sickle mower will bend a guard or break a knife section, hitting that same rock at twice the speed could do some pretty good damage to a disc mower's cutterbar.
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#3 downtownjr

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Posted 24 February 2011 - 12:47 PM

I have become a believer in alfalfa sickles and grass discs. However, you can cover alot more ground with a disc mower. I agree that for a new one, John Deere, New Holland/CaseIH, Vermeer, and Krone (and others) all make wonderful machines. Any of these would be good used if taken care of. But I have seen some at auctions or eq lots that cut rock fields, were poorly maintained, etc that would be a concern, but still go for a high price IMO. If you have never used one before, it may be good to get a friend that has some experience with them go along. Like mentioned above, it usually becomes apparent fairly quickly if the machine has been run hard and put away wet.

Good Luck and welcome to the boards.
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#4 Toyes Hill Angus

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Posted 24 February 2011 - 01:10 PM

They all start out as good machines, its all about maintance and care. The most important part of all to me is parts availabilty, and god forbid service. If all makes are considered equal, parts and service are the detmining factors...
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#5 hay king

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Posted 24 February 2011 - 07:24 PM

Dics are far faster. but take someone that knows about them and look at it real hard. If buying from a dealer make them fire it up listen for any souns that dont seem right , then make them take it to the shop to check the oil any signs of metal on the magnetic plug are a bad thing alittle bit of grey fillings might be ok but any thing like a chunck watch out. I look at one at a dealer once and in had no oil and it had a disc that would lockup bad bearing?? didnt buy it cause I could tell it was shot but the sales man would never admitt to it. When the mower is it the shop talk to the mech he will tell you the truth because he wont make any money by selling it. any way spin the discs by hand any clunks or slop is not good. hope this helps and good luck
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#6 stickney farm

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Posted 24 February 2011 - 09:48 PM

my grand father always said the three best improvements to dairy farming were a refrigerated bulk tank, barn cleaner, and the discbine. definitely heard plenty of horror stories about sickle mowers, mowing one direction only in lodged hay, unclogging cutter bar, lots of regular maintenance, bending sections on rocks, pain to maintain. I have no regrets never learning how to run a sickle mower and can't even imagine screwing around with one. If i'm the only one running the discbine i never do anything but mow hay quickly, grease, change the oil once a year, and change the occasional knife(quickly) in our extremely rocky fields that grow new rocks every year.
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#7 cmsc

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 12:09 PM

I would buy a New Holland since the last couple of years they have come out with the shockpro hub and that is a wonderful idea. IF you hit an object is shears the 5 spines off and can be fixed in less then 15mins and only cost around 40 bucks instead of hundreds of dollars
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#8 mlappin

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 12:31 PM

FYI, far as I know the shock hubs can be added to any NH discbine that doesn't have em. I bought the last four our dealer had on the shelf last year and placed two on the very out side on the left and right. I plan on replacing the other 6 this year.
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#9 cattleranch

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 01:04 PM

We went from a NH 488 then NH 499 and are now on a Agco 3312 rotary swather. There is another guy in our valley that runs a MacDon and does the sickle in alfalfa and rotary in grass but the other two of us that do custom work in our valley just run the Hesston style cutterbar with no problems in alfalfa. I have hit a lot of large rocks (10 in diameter) with our swather while cutting other people's fields and we haven't had any problems. It is a 2008 and we have used it for 2 and a half seasons.
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#10 Customfarming

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 10:51 PM

Make sure the knifes are the same on each hat. If there is a worn out knife and a brand new knife on the same hat they will be problems down the road since the balance is off. Most problems with disc mowers are when people run mowers with bearings out and dont change them till its too late. On most disc mowers its easy to see if bearing is out or has spun. Place both hands on either side of the hat where the bolts holding the knife and go up and down if the hat has any play and not tight a bearing is out and needs to be replaced.

Also keep the tarp and shields on the mower. The shields protects you and the tractor from rocks and other debris that you hit. If you cut enough acres with rocks in the fields you will bust a few windows out of the tractor.
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#11 JB1023

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Posted 02 March 2011 - 04:12 AM

We started out with a hesston pt-10 sickle. It worked well but it was slow cutting. Upgraded to a new holland 411 and a john deere 1470 both discbines with rubber rollers. Much faster cutting. I must say that I am more impressed with the new holland than the john deere but these are older machines from what you are looking at. Most people around here have new holland cutters and john deere balers. Dont know if this helps you but its just my 2 cents.

Jason
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#12 angusdan

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Posted 06 March 2011 - 08:50 AM

these things don't sound very safe for a tractor with out a cab.

#13 Toyes Hill Angus

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Posted 07 March 2011 - 12:09 AM

well, most of the manufactures today will have some sort of a disclaimer and a recomendation against using an open platform tractor. i've done it for a few years and its hot and noisy! Especially if the mower has flails, they make a pile of racket. And yes there has been the odd occasion to see thrown debris go flying out past the tractor, but I have only been hit once in the cheek by a peice of a stone. Like I said its not recomended.

Edited by Toyes Hill Angus, 07 March 2011 - 12:12 AM.

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#14 rjmoses

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Posted 07 March 2011 - 09:46 AM

I have never had a problem with a disc mower.

I keep my knives sharp by touching up the edge periodically with a grinder, but not so much as to make the blade unbalanced. I replace the knives about every 2 years, when the tip is showing about 3/8" wear. The tip is what does most of the cutting and I want a clean cut on my plant. Just like mowing your yard--a ragged cut allows disease to get into the plant and slows regrowth. Also, a good sharp tip allows me to run just a little faster without clogging up the mower.

Just my $.02 worth.


Ralph
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#15 Barry Bowen

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 09:08 PM

I have an old 5209 NI. This machine has been sold by Heston, Massey, Case, and I don't know who else. Pros to the enginering, there are no belts or chains, all gears in lubricant. Cons, you have to take the pods apart every year to grease, and retime the machine, but this makes you inspect your machine completely. Runs great, eats lots of hay. The only limit to what you can get done is the smoothness of the field and the b**** of the operator. Usually cut on the hill around here in 6th gear on a 1066 IH, but have actually cut in 7th just for kicks and giggles. Tractor never even started to smoke.

Flails are better for grass, and rollers are best for alfalfa. Becarefull not to set too low in grasses. Orchard usually means set it as high as it will go or about 4 inches.

Roller machines, you should be able to turn the cutting discs with one finger, if not something is wrong inside.

#16 Iowa hay guy

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Posted 26 March 2011 - 03:58 PM

we bpught a mac don disc mower last year about half way through the season traded 2 8360 case ih sickle machines
so far i wouldnt go back and i would reccomend it to anyone that asks they have a really good video on their website




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