Hay & Forage Forum banner
1 - 6 of 6 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there

Long time lurker, first time poster. I've owned a Hesston 4600 (the small square version, I think it might be one of the early lots, as its serial number is in the low hundreds).

For most of the past eight years its worked like a dream - I cut a variety of different hays on my farm, from stemmy first cut canary grass to very fine second cut orchards, and it bashed through them. I bent a needle once, but my uncle in law (who works on propellers) returned it back into place. Its worked fine since.




It cuts about 1500 bales a year, gets cleaned out in september, and is stored inside a barn - it lives a pretty easy life. I really like using it.

Last year however its failed me. I can't get it to knot properly. One side always was a bit temperamental, but its just missed knots all the time and the bill hook gets gummed up (its not a sweeper issue however). It makes a knot, but it doesn't put the other side in. The needles seem to get to the right height and position according to the manual.



I've cycled it too many times to count, I've replaced a number of parts, tightened things up, still to no avail.

Another issue is that the actuating bar that opens and close the little needle doors seems to be taking too much of an impact and starting to get bent. This was a long time issue with the original to the point where I couldn't bend it back into place anymore, so I replaced with a brand new one (at an insane cost), and its starting to show signs of bending now too. I had a buddy make me copies of it, so that if it gets bad again, I'll have spares. You can see it near the top center in the background, its grey, not red.



Part of the problem is that there is only one person in the area who works on hestons and he's as confused as I, so if I bring it back to him, its going to be a long costly process of trial and error with him, when I can do it.

Does anyone have any ideas/suggestions? I have four months to fix it, so I'm hoping someone might have some ideas, I'm happy to answer any questions or try things out.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
669 Posts
In the manual for John Deere balers they have a trouble shooting guide for the knotters, you would have to find the same thing for your Hesston. You need to study the knot and repair replace or adjust according to what the missed knot tells you.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Yup, I've been through the manual.



It was after exhausting the manual I called the professional.I'll go through some of the things I've tried and replaced in a bit, if that helps.


The other thing - running the unit is causing damage to the actuating bar for the needle doors - which I sorta would like to resolve first before I have to replace it again - I'm not sure why its happening all.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
According to your description you have two things going on. The gummed billhook is probably wear in the pinion gear that runs on the cam and drives the rotation of the billhook (can`t remember the proper name right now). As it wears, the tension on the twine makes the billhook end up not being parallel to the knife arm; so when the knife arm tries sweeping the knot off the billhook, it just misses it because the billhook is misaligned.

On the other hand, if the twine finger rod keeps getting bent, that is the symptom and not the cause. Most of the times I have seen this, it is because the twine fingers hit the needles and something has to give and it usually is the rod. When checking the twine finger adjustments, make sure to push the twine fingers towards the slot to take up the slack. I would also check if the plates that are holding the twine fingers are sitting flat against the top of the bale chute, sometimes chaff or rust gets underneath causing misties.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That's some excellent perspective, thanks. I noticed the last couple of teeth on the pinion gear might be damaged on that side - but I didn't think that affected it because the knife arms did sweep properly during cycling. I'll try to take a photo of it today or tomorrow.

Many thanks!
 

· Senior Member
Joined
·
3,037 Posts
What you are calling needle doors are known as twine fingers by most companies and tucker fingers by JD. Their purpose is to pickup the twine from the needles as the needles reach the knotters. The twine fingers then rotate and moves the twine so the twine is against the billhook. The billhook then rotates to form the knot and the twine fingers return to their home position.

Since I do not know at what part of the knotting cycle the photo was taken, my observation and following comments may not be right.

The left twine finger is over the needle slot, while not clear, the right is not, If The twine finger is to far advanced the twine finger will not pick up the twine from the needle and you end up with only one string in the knot. When the needles are in the home position the tips of the twine fingers should line up with the left edge of the top needle slot. When the twine fingers rotate under the needles the clearance between the needles and twine finger should be as close as possible without the twine finger touching the needle.

You also need to check your haydog springs. The one shown in the photo does not appear to have fully entered the bale chamber. This will allow hay to push back into the needle slot which can deflect the twine being brought up by the needles. The twine fingers will then miss the deflected twine.

There is a video on You Tube produced by NH which shows how the knotting is completed and how each component works. The bale case is cut away and each component colored and the video is in slow motion so you can clearly see how things work.
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top