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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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.


Farm Progress Show

grain cart flag poleWhat We Did At The Show

I must say I enjoyed the Farm Progress Show this year. Mostly because William and I went on Tuesday when it was perfect weather. We started the morning at the gate waiting for it to open after the big ceremony with the parade of a motorcycle. Making a bee line to the hospitality tent, we met some people we knew right away. At the tent was Illinois State Univ. Ag Dept. breakfast. We ate and talked to some professors and alums. Afterwards KJ gave us a ride on his golf cart to the area with the livestock equipment where we ordered a hay hauler from another ISU grad who was manning his exhibit.

I am always disappointed in the lack of livestock exhibitors at the Farm Progress Show. It’s all corn all the time. It seems to me. Anyway we talked to a lady who had vet supplies. She explained this electronic immobilizer for cattle that was very interesting. William would really like a brand for our cows. So we discussed that. She gave us a tip on locating a dry ice supply.

William just had to hear the Quebe Sisters sing and I wanted to win an Ipad. I didn’t feel like sitting for the whole performance but I wanted that Ipad. The sisters and band were really good. Well, we sat but I didn’t win it. They went thru about 5 names of people who weren’t present, one we even knew. Those idiots.

Then it was off to the Morton Buildings where we entered for the $50,000 towards a building. We have been talking about putting up a barn for our cattle for years. I told William, “I am done talking. Let’s just build the @#^% thing.”

Stopped at the John Deere tent and looked over the new combine, of course. (more about that later). William wanted to talk to someone who knew something about the trouble we have been having with one of our tractors. But no one new anything. Went in the tent to look at the new GreenStar Monitoring system. The technician there gave us a walk thru the new features. The new screens will have video available. The GreenStar expert at your dealership will eventually be able to see your monitor on his computer to walk you thru the settings. Was so interested in talking about the monitor, I missed the tweetup.

Then it was on to the seed dealers; Pioneer, Wyffels, & Stine. Talked to some nice guys there. Another ISU grad. William told them where their seed was lacking and what was good. Looked at a few plots. After this we were ready to head home.

qr code collgeQR Codes where everywhere. I think they just wanted to show off.


Deere Store TrailerLots of people were paying to give John Deere advertisement.  William said they were making more money on shirt sales than tractors.


Bin PavillionI want one of these. And we have an old bin to do it. Will try to get the boys working on that.


combine collageLast but definitely the most expensive a big green combine. Praise God a radio with an audio input. Lots of cup, deep cup holders and cubby holes for a phone and stuff.(Refer back to my storage complaints: here & here) William questioned the Deere draper header. There is a big slat on both sides that grain could fall thru. And I can’t believe I didn’t even check out the refrigerator. Our dealer said it is more like plug in cooler anyway.


Well that is a wrap up of our experience at the Farm Progress Show. I was very pouty that I didn’t go home with a free Ipad. If you went and wrote about it like Dave did on his blog, leave a link in the comments.


More on the Frigid Farmer

What do farmers do in the winter?

Before I talked about farm shows and cleaning out bins. Another thing farmers do in winter is go to farm auctions. They go with the idea of picking up a bargain for something they need/like to have. Farm auctions are usually for some retired farmer selling out his life-long accumulation of stuff. Generally 4 rack wagons of junk: gas cans, rusted tools, ect. Then his old equipment and tractors. But this farm sale that we went to was extremely unique. The guy wasn’t retired. He just quit farming and rented out the ground. His tractors and equipment were disgustingly new. (no twinge of envy here) You don’t see auctions like this in a coons age.

You may remember my predictions for this year about a purchase of a tractor in our future. We were looking at a couple of tractors on the sale. But we did not end up going home with one. The prices went too high for what we were willing to pay. Our search continues. Below is a quick video of the sale. The last tractor shown is the one we bid on. The last bid on it was $151,000. Like I said. We’re still looking.

[youtube width=”540″ height=”385″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RE6FnbQcr98[/youtube]

One more thing. Do you recall in my Carhartt review about what I said about the Carhartt conventions at farm sales? Oh, yeah.

In the comments, tell me if you would have bought that big green machine.

Reality Shows

After letting William drive for a while, he complained that the seat was too low. Well besides my being 4 inches shorter than he, I don’t want the seat cutting the circulation in my legs. I reminded him that both Phil on Deadliest Catch and Alex on Ice Road Truckers both were hospitalized from blood clots caused by sitting for long periods. He didn’t think I had much to worry about. Those guys sat for months and months. I am in the combine for around 40 days. I didn’t tell him about what I saw on the show Monsters Inside Me.

Combine Clinics

are basically a good thing, especially when they are held at the local winery. But what you end up seeing is the new series combine that has all the bells and whistles and you still have five payments on the one that was new one series ago. I did get some info on running GreenStar and the Apex software along with the coveted phone numbers of Scott and Brad who actually know how to run them. One thing I forgot to ask is about load calibrations sequence. I guess I am going to have to look that up. Then I’ll call the guys.
I do like being the only female at meetings. No lines for the bathroom.

Must haves for any combine

One combine we bought had a few things added on by the previous owner that turned out to be very helpful.

First is this steering wheel ball. I love these. It makes it so easy turning at the end of the fields.
Next is this round mirror that I put on the right rear view mirror. This little thing lets me see the rear tire. I can quickly see which direction the tire is pointed when I am about to pull forward or back up. Very handy.