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Market Research - Hay Drying Machine

alfalfa horse small square equipment hay

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#41 hillside hay

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 02:45 AM

Sorry to hear that. Sounds almost as they were looking for a way out though. Good baling windows have been in short supply for sure this year. They won't find high quality anything in large quantities this year locally.
I've had to bale everything a tougher than I've wanted to. The week to 10 days of rain between windows allows the wagons to sit in the wind tunnel (machine shed). Haven't had any dusty hay yet. Air always moves through that building even with minimal breeze.

#42 Dan_GA

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 06:17 AM

I have an engineering background.  I'd suggest working on drying the hay prior to baling.  The compaction of the bale would likely cause you a lot of unforeseen variables that'll be difficult if not impossible to control.


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#43 slowzuki

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 07:49 AM

You can bale 25% hay no trouble, common in uk so small squares can be wrapped.

#44 Three44s

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 09:13 AM

I have an engineering background.  I'd suggest working on drying the hay prior to baling.  The compaction of the bale would likely cause you a lot of unforeseen variables that'll be difficult if not impossible to control.


Yes, I agree with this completely.

To drive water out of a windrow will be difficult enough, but out of a bale would be much more intense.

Either way it will be akin to pushing a rope up a hill as to the cost of the energy required.

That said, if we waited for every idea to fully rippen on the tree before someone attempted to harvest it, the human race would awefull hungry by now. Someone has to stick their neck out once in a while.

Good luck on your project!

Three44s
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#45 Dadnatron

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 11:31 AM

You won't be able to charge more. It's a question of good hay vs bad hay, if you charge more they'll go elsewhere.

 

 

I meant that if my hay quality isn't 'lesser' due to weather/rain damage or bleaching, allowing me to charge full 'excellent quality price' rather than weathered price. Great quality alfalfa/grass hay in my area can go for $8-10/small bale delivered. 'Regular' quality is significantly less. 

 

That variance is one of the reasons I'm planting my own rather than purchasing. Consistency is the difficult thing to ensure in KY. For my own horses... and for anyone else who is looking for hay. The cows love it... because there is always a lot of 'cow hay' available. Or so I hear.



#46 somedevildawg

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 08:38 PM

I meant that if my hay quality isn't 'lesser' due to weather/rain damage or bleaching, allowing me to charge full 'excellent quality price' rather than weathered price. Great quality alfalfa/grass hay in my area can go for $8-10/small bale delivered. 'Regular' quality is significantly less. 
 
That variance is one of the reasons I'm planting my own rather than purchasing. Consistency is the difficult thing to ensure in KY. For my own horses... and for anyone else who is looking for hay. The cows love it... because there is always a lot of 'cow hay' available. Or so I hear.


The bottom line is will it make you more money.....definately a drying system would be beneficial, the cost of lost quality is long lasting. What has to be weighed, is the cost to operate....purchase price can be spread over many years, it's not as much a concern.
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#47 Waldo

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 04:43 AM

I c,ant get paided enought for the hay i make now,so c,ant see my customers paying more,because unless there is drought there there is always someone who will sell cheapper
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#48 swmnhay

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 07:44 AM

What is the cost of operation?

 

This is reminding me of the Godiva hay from a few yrs back.


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#49 KyHay111

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 12:01 PM

Thank you everyone again for all of your input.  

 

That said, if we waited for every idea to fully rippen on the tree before someone attempted to harvest it, the human race would awefull hungry by now. Someone has to stick their neck out once in a while.

Good luck on your project!

 

Three44s: Thank you for the sentiment here as well.

 

The cost to operate should be fairly minimal, no more than 20-30HP (potentially taken from the PTO).  I know there are a lot of naysayers out there regarding the energy input, but right now I just need to know that if this were possible, would there be a market.  Based on your responses so far, it seems that the market is soft.  That surprised me a little bit, because I think that I would definitely buy the hay dryer as I described it, and would probably pay $30k if it existed and was as advertised, possibly more when you consider how much equipment costs these days.  And we only have about 40 acres of alfalfa, so we are small time farmers.  I guess one big difference is I only farm part time and therefore have no real requirement to make money from the farm, it's a labor of love (although I definitely don't want to lose money either).

 

Keep the comments coming!

 

Thanks.



#50 skyrydr2

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 02:50 PM

If it could run right behind a mowco and dry it to 14% so I could bale that day I would definately want one. I dont care for tedding as it is a huge time vaccum, yet here in NewEngland you have to tedd or the hay will bleach out before it ever drys enough to bale.
And second cut.. dang..
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#51 slowzuki

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 03:13 PM

If you make one that uses 20-30 hp to remove water at those tons per hour forget about hay you are going to make billions revolutionizing the industrial production of the world. That's why I'm highly skeptical of the claims. Drying consumes a giant amount of energy use in so many industries scientists and engineers the world over try to shave fractions of a % off the cost to save money. You're talking a 10-100x improvement in energy efficiency of drying.
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#52 glasswrongsize

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 03:52 PM

20-30 hosspressure could be ran with...say a Farmall H or M and could follow the baler or be ran from a thru-pto of the baler? 

I guess a feller could bale onto the ground like hell-wouldn't-have-it, then come back with the drier and maybe pull accumulator behind that?

 

I'm a small lil bitty hay guy just doing @70 acres. I'll take one for 5-10 kilobux....and I realize that will be for a used one a few years old at 25% of new price. (that's the kind of equip I buy)  :)

 

Mark

 

Ifn I ain't home when y'all wanna deliver, park it over by the unicorn pen.  :D

 

Just funnin ya. I've made quite a few things that "can't be done", and I'm satisfied you have a plan formulated between your antlers. 


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#53 mlappin

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 04:50 PM

If you could get hay dry with only 20-30hp, you need to design a corn dryer next.

Seen another cute article, the amount of sun required to dry hay equals a LOT more than the equivalent of 20-30hp. 


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#54 endrow

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 05:02 PM

I kind of shared before that my grandparents had a Hay dryer that used oil heat forced hot air, they used it from 1960 until 1980 and then the price of oil caused it no longer to be practical.

#55 Three44s

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 10:37 PM

If you could get hay dry with only 20-30hp, you need to design a corn dryer next.
Seen another cute article, the amount of sun required to dry hay equals a LOT more than the equivalent of 20-30hp.

Me too!

If you can make a dryer that economical with respect to energy inputs the world will beat a path to you.

As a matter of course, I don't agree that artificially drying fresh cut hay is the most efficient way as has been suggested.

From my perspective taking hay from say 40% down to around 20% and baling with preservative would seem to use best use of resources and save the most hay more economically.

The reason I believe this is that in difficult drying conditions preservative is really hard to ignore as a tool. Second, a rain on fresh cut hay does less damage than hay that's closer to baling. If one slows a drying apparatus down to take hay from just cut all the way to conventionally baling, you will cover less ground and save less hay. If you pass up the option of preserving you have also slowed down the artificial dry down. The more narrow the range you expect a dryer to work within with respect to moisture percentage your cost per acre and per ton will be reduced (again, more acres and tons saved and less time spent).

A drying agent applied from the swather would seem to add to the process as well. Something that busts the wax layer. Good conditioning of course goes hand in hand also. You would be making the artificial dryer work less intensely also.

I have used a microwave on hay and I wonder about feasibility of taking hay to a really dry state. Granted, it was for comparing meter readings to actual moisture by weight. But for what it's worth I had to run a cup of water with the hay sample to reduce the instance of the alfalfa trying to catch fire at lower moisture levels during the cook down.

Three 44s

#56 Bishop

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Posted 01 September 2017 - 06:55 AM

Up here if you could invent a way to stop dew you'd make a ton of money.  Sometimes it is 11:00am or later before the dew is gone.


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#57 skyrydr2

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Posted 01 September 2017 - 07:14 AM

30 hp converts to a large amount of btu per hr. Just a quicky convert gives roughly 76,333 btu cubed per hr.thats a pile of heat. How it gets converted to the moist grass to dry it is the interesting part.
If I had to by a 150hp tractor to run it to get my hay done in a day it would still be worth it i think, especially in the 30-40k price range. But it has to work!

#58 slowzuki

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Posted 01 September 2017 - 09:13 AM

So there you go, it will remove at most 76 lbs an hour of water if it uses a conventional drying process. So to dry from 30% to a 15% 50 lb bale you need to remove 10 lbs of water, so you will be able to able at about 7.6 bales an hour at 30%.

That's assuming 100% drying efficiency of the 30 hp.

#59 Three44s

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Posted 01 September 2017 - 09:18 AM

Up here if you could invent a way to stop dew you'd make a ton of money.  Sometimes it is 11:00am or later before the dew is gone.


It's rare or late season before I have too much dew but baling as it forms and having preservative on hand would be my choice. Our burn off is often too severe and uneven to bale then but sometimes it works as well.

If a dryer were to be created that is economical, one could likely burn off the top of the windrow (where much of the dew lays) and preserve?

One thing about being a hay farmer is that you are constantly trying to stick a square peg in an ever changing "round hole" that jumps around quite a bit.

In my area, a Steamer would my cherished square peg!

Three44s

#60 Jay in WA

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Posted 01 September 2017 - 11:52 AM

I am less than 100 miles fro Three44's and have the opposite problem.  Too much dew.  Not hard to figure out why though with all the pivots running, corn potatoes, orchards, etc.

 

I would love a dryer so I could bale green hay before its dew bleached but I don't see it as being practical.  Preservatives and a no go either.  The buyers all carry moisture testers.  Once he sees high moisture readings he wont ever be back.







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