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I have a New Holland Twine small square baler (5060) that I bought new 3 years ago. I have baled over 10,000 bales of Bermuda hay without any problems but I was wondering when should I have the blades sharpened or replaced. I suspect I'm already behind the ball but the bales are very uniform and compact. I've looked at the manual to see what is entailed in sharpening them but it is not very clear when or how to do the job. Who ever writes NH's manuasl does make it easy for the rancher to do it himself. I'm sure it is not that hard once you do it but I reluctant to just start taking parts off without knowing what I'm doing. Dad and I always had John Deere's before and they weren't that hard. Anyone know what dealers charge for sharpening blades? Are the new blades throwaways or can they be sharpened. Any help would be appreciated.
 

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I pay a guy with a private sharpening shop something like $10. They're not hard to remove. Putting them back in can be slightly more annoying as you have to make sure the shims stay in place. I guess this is why tape was invented. When to do it? Probably when they either feel dull or when your cut edge starts to look less than flat.
 

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I would sharpen them when the bale looks like it has a bad haircut, or you notice an uneven cut side. As to the replacement question, I have replaced blades after finding chunks missing from the blade. Sticks and other debris in fields can cause chips in the blades pretty easy. Just remember to replace the shims exactly as they were when you re-install the knives. Guessing where to place the shims can cause the knives to contact each other, breaking them both. Failing to put the shims in will leave the knives to far apart and will cause stripping of material rather than cutting of it.
 

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If you rake up a little ground or sand it with your windrows they' dulll quickly .Which is why I do not think there is a, number of bales to how often you should sharpen
 

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They say you’re a man of vision....
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Made a sharpener out of a sharpener from an Fox 3000 silage chopper. Set the knife in the jig and away you go. I'm sure a machine shop would do it for $10-15.
 

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I've used 4 1/2 grinder with grinding wheel if really bad and finish with sanding disc. I can get a heck of a nice edge like that and even if your edge is a little off it won't matter the way they work.
 

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I've used 4 1/2 grinder with grinding wheel if really bad and finish with sanding disc. I can get a heck of a nice edge like that and even if your edge is a nlittle off it won't matter the way they work.
When I bought a used NH 316, I had a farm service tech thoroughly go over the baler to fix any issues. The knives needed sharpening which he used 4 1/2" grinder. The grinder did a great job just need to hold it a the correct angle. We removed the plunger to check the bearings so the knives were very accessible. Not sure if I'll take the plunger out just to sharpen the knives this year unless that is the best method.
 

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When I bought a used NH 316, I had a farm service tech thoroughly go over the baler to fix any issues. The knives needed sharpening which he used 4 1/2" grinder. The grinder did a great job just need to hold it a the correct angle. We removed the plunger to check the bearings so the knives were very accessible. Not sure if I'll take the plunger out just to sharpen the knives this year unless that is the best method.
Take the knives out. Not the plunger. Don't make yourself extra work.
 

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Take the knives out. Not the plunger. Don't make yourself extra work.
Guess I am dumb/stupid. My 570 manual says to remove the plunger to get the knife off it. Ain't gonna happen, would also need to remove the thrower too! Haven't figured out how to get to the top bolt on the plunger knife. Have used angle grinder on it but too old and portly (FAT) to get a good job in the machine. Had baler gone over by Messick's about 10 years ago before moving. They put new knives in without removing thrower but I haven't figured out the top bolt.

Any input?
 

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Guess I am dumb/stupid. My 570 manual says to remove the plunger to get the knife off it. Ain't gonna happen, would also need to remove the thrower too! Haven't figured out how to get to the top bolt on the plunger knife. Have used angle grinder on it but too old and portly (FAT) to get a good job in the machine. Had baler gone over by Messick's about 10 years ago before moving. They put new knives in without removing thrower but I haven't figured out the top bolt.

Any input?
Through the top of the chamber. You'll scratch your arm. It's not comfortable.
Of course, I'm 6' and 160 so my arms are pretty much designed for that kind of work.
 

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Hay Hoser
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What do you do if you have fairly sharp knives but some big chips?
 

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Hay Hoser
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Do you have ragged bales? If not, I'd sharpen the chipped areas too and keep them.
They aren't to bad, but you can see the bottom 1/4 of the bale is a bit obviouse where the knives have the chips. I'm a bit of a perfectionest. I was thinking of climbing in with a grinder, but I also need to check the shims. So I'm sure it will turn into a project!
 

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I sharpen the chips. We bales a few dozen fence posts the first year from all the garbage left in the fields. They have never seemed to affect the cut quality.
 

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Hay Hoser
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I sharpen the chips. We bales a few dozen fence posts the first year from all the garbage left in the fields. They have never seemed to affect the cut quality.
Baled an old snap-on pry bar left in a field. The evident cause of my chips. Same field did a fence post too, only caught it when the barb wire was feeding in. I was surprised the hay bine, Tedder and rake didn't catch it first.
Sorry wasn't trying to high jack the thread.
 

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I am 6' 8" and closing in on 285 pounds. My vote is for removing the plunger and chamber knife. If it was a 3 X 3 baler I might be able to squeeze in there with a grinder. Of course I was able to coerce the youngest son into crawling in there with a grinder once to fix some damage behind the knife.
I just pulled the plunger out this past year from mine and it only took an hour total to pull it out, change the knive and throw it back in. That was with air tools though.
I am not sure on the new inline, I have one that needs the knives worked on and I am not really looking forward to that little treasure.
A gas ax works well on that pesky little top bolt. That is a cutting torch for those not familiar with the term.
 

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Hay Master
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I think you can touch up the knives with a small grinder, but if the whole knife is done, you need to reshim to keep the clearance right. So, you might as we'll take the knives out and do it right.
 

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As the person indicated, reach down through the opening around the tension rails.

Depending on the age of you 570 baler, it can be difficult to remove the top bolt. On the earlier production 500 series balers there is not enough room to slip a wrench onto the nut because of the narrow opening around the nut. You can take a die grinder and remove enough metal so you can get a wrench on the nut. Years ago I modified a 3/4" box end wrench to fit on the top bolts on other NH model balers where similar problems exist because the bolts were too long. Grind the wrench to narrow the width. Since your bolts on the 570 baler are metric you might want to use a 19mm, I just use my 3/4.

Sharpening your knives is only half the solution. You should also adjust the plunger bearings to remove the side play of the plunger so the knives are close when they cross and are not pushed apart when cutting the hay.

Always check that the stationary knife is not protruding into the bale chamber too far when installing shims behind the knife. I take a shim and run it along the edge of the knife pushing it towards the front of the baler. If the corner of the shim hits the corner of the side rail in the bale chamber then the knife is not protruding too far. Conversely, running the shim along the side rail back towards the knife should not contact the corner of the knife.
 
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