Harvest 11 Day 5

It is definitely a love/hate relationship with the GreenStar. But I did add my first flag to a map today. But I don’t know how to remove it. I was on the end rows dumping into the grain cart just figuring out the flagging. And I did make a new home page with the flags in the layout. I should have taken a picture of the screen. Will do that tomorrow and show you. William didn’t seem all that impressed with these accomplishments. He just said, “But you don’t know how to remove the flag.” He didn’t score many points today.

Event of the day: Our first breakdown. The chain that drives the right side of the corn head broke. You know about this problem quickly when you start plowing rows of corn. This is a messy fix since the chain is in a sealed oil bath. We got it fixed and running again. I ran the combine ’til about 5:30 when we had enough wet corn in the bin. Next we moved augers and wagons to transfer corn from the first drying bin to a regular bin with a fan. William will fill that bin tomorrow morning.

Combine corn head

William fixing the chain on the corn head.

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Harvest 11 Day 4

Not taking it too fast yet. The corn is still a little wet at 24%. It is still averaging 175 bushels/acre. I would say we took out about 35 to 40 acres today. The guys switched to another drying bin after filling the first.

I am having a little difficulty getting the GreenStar screen to display the info I want. I got the acres for the individual fields to show but now I can’t zoom in and out of the map. Will be pecking away at it again tomorrow. There are some tile risers I want to flag on the maps. So I put out a tweet asking how to do that. @AaronBokeck was nice enough to tweet back the steps. Thank you. I was thinking that if I had auto steer on the combine I could tweet a lot more. 😉

Harvest 11 Day 3

Harvest 11 Day 3 Had .4 of rain that was mostly drizzle for a day. But when the clouds cleared the next afternoon we went back to the field.

William is teaching Z to run the grain cart. Lord help him.

Nate from Wyffle Seeds came by and road in the tractor with William. He was talking about some seed corn will be scarce next year because of the terrible growing conditions this year.

Need to get more podcasts on my ipod. I’m running out of shows to listen to. Hauled more water at dusk.

Harvest 11 Day 2

Another slow day. William and Bella had to take a few steers to the sale barn. Then it was left to the boys and I to handle the corn. The field we are in is close to the bins so we don’t have to haul it too far. Becker showed up to run the grain cart. Unloading on the go, is much faster. We put two cameras on the grain cart; one to see behind the cart and one to see inside the cart to watch the corn dumping. I’ll get some pictures or video on them.

The cattle haulers returned home. Next they had some cattle rustling to do. They were moving cows and calves around to get ready for weaning. Only one calf escaped but they quickly corralled him back into the lot.

Late after noon, it started to drizzle enough that we had to stop the combine. The video below was taken just before then.



Harvest11 Day 1

I have to decided to capture this harvest season day by day as much as possible. We have started pretty much on schedule with only a few “hiccups”. Stopping and starting because of cattle work, wells going dry, hauling water, meetings, drizzle ect. The corn is testing around 22%. So we can only fill the drying bin so much at a time.

Day 1:weigh wagon

Mike came with his weigh wagon to calibrate the GreenStar monitor. Got the cheat sheets out to remind me of what buttons to push. Only had to call the guys at the dealership twice for all the different settings. At the Farm Progress show, we were told that the dealership will be able to see our screen on their computer to see what in the world we are trying to describe.

The kids have cleaned out the bins and replaced the doors. The boys’ job is to watch the auger dump loading the bins. Bella is to keep track of the pastures and water situation.

The following video is a short one. It was taken before I had the idea of a daily harvest log. If you would like to follow along with our daily harvest activities, subscribe to the post updates in the sidebar. New entries will be sent to your email. And ask any questions you might have.


Can the bean save the day?

This little soybean was hanging from a cob web in the combine’s front window. Last year I didn’t have much good to say about beans. Much like most years. But this year has been different. The plants are maturing evenly. The stems are not tough. Plus the yields are pretty good for all the rain we have had. Fortunately, William decided to plant more beans this year. The corn yields are below average. They did not take the wet spring / summer as well as the beans. So hopefully with good yields and a decent price the bean will carry the day. (year)

Harvest Status Report

After two weeks or so, here is the Harvest Status Report
BigGreenCombine: no breakdowns.
Grain Bins: one fan has gone out
Elevators: The first one we have been hauling to is putting in a new dump pit (supposed to be finished weeks ago) is having electrical problems on and off.
Yields: Corn- Highest field was 178 bu/a, Lowest field was 67 bu/a
            Beans- Haven’t started yet. Will start after the next rains coming in.
Rain: 3.7 in. for Sept.
Cattle: One cow (Mable) escaped the pasture and went for a stroll down the road. Put a new solar fencer on the electric fence. William put some round bales in to keep everyone happy.

An Ah-ha Moment

Phone call to Loren while in the cab of the combine in the field:
Me: Loren, the automatic head height isn’t working. I have to us the manual adjust.
Loren: When you push the 1, 2. or 3 button does the head move?
Me: It moves a little but hardly at all.
Loren: Do you have the sensor bars down underneath the head?
Me: I don’t know.
Loren: Go check. And give me a call if you need help.

I didn’t call him back. The auto head height works like a dream when the bars are down where they can do their sensing.

For those who don’t know: These bars make the head move up and down automatically with the terrain. Love ’em. You really miss these neat little features when they don’t work or forget how to make them work. Thanks Loren.

Love by the GreenStar Light

It may not look like it but all the elements of romance are there: soft light, music in the back ground, even a little vibration. But alas, it is a lonely existence in the combine cab. Sure there may be brief moments (a round or two) when I let William drive and I sit close to him in the buddy seat. A peck on the cheek or rub the shoulders is all there is time for. ;o) We must concentrate on the job at hand.

Gentlemen, Start Your Combines

Every year we have the combine gone thru by the very able mechanics. They found a gear box that had come off its bracket and was sitting on a bolt. Its amazing that it had held up that way it did. Anyway they found it and replaced it. It has new belts, filters, tight chains, ect. So the Big Green should run with no problems all fall. ;o). We picked it up last week and are now getting the trucks and augers ready. The kids have to finish cleaning out the bins. Then we should be good-to-go after a cattle sale and a wedding. (Mr. Cox said it was time to start up the combine blog. So, here ya go.)