Tips for Planter Storage and WI Planting/Hay Update

by Bill Kletecka, Cuba City, WI 

Planting has finally wrapped up in the south west corner of Wisconsin.  Most of the corn and beans are up and looking fairly good.  Some local areas have yet to see any rain for the last three weeks, and the crops are beginning to stress. Spraying post emerge has started on the corn ground that has weed escapes from the pre emerge or lack of rain to activate the chemicals.  All of the rye crop has been taken off with the dry weather, with above average tonnage taken.  Some customers have begun cutting first crop hay which also looks very good due to the recent warm weather.

With planting being done for the year, it is a good time to get the planters cleaned up and serviced for winter.  Sloan Implement has a very attractive planter inspection program going on where we check over the planter for any worn or broken parts.  Details of the inspection program can be found here.

When cleaning up your planter for the winter, here are a few tips to save some headaches next spring:

1. Drain the water from all compressor tanks before storage.  It is something that should be done daily and it is very surprising how much water collects in the tanks from just a short amount of run time.

2. Clean out all seed from the boxes, mini hoppers,  and CCS tanks.  Rodents are always looking for food and they have the rest of the year to find it in your planter.

3. Clean out all fertilizer from the tanks.  All products will eventually settle out of suspension, and most will freeze in smaller lines and then crack fittings.  We recommend using RV antifreeze and flushing it through the system.

4. Store your seed disks out of the planter in the vertical position.  I also recommend numbering the discs for the corresponding row that they were removed and also marking the position on the hub to insure that they are placed exactly in the same position in the row unit hub next year .   This will help with wear on the disc from the hub not running perfectly true in the meter.

5. Take pictures of how the hydraulic hoses and also how wire harness’ are ran and what they are plugged into before unhooking everything.    Using a smart phone or any other camera and saving the pictures for next year, will greatly reduce your hook up time and any possibility of hooking something up wrong and possibly damaging some components.

Southwest WI Planting, Row Clutch Settings, and RTK Field Trials

by Bill Kletecka, Cuba City, WI 

Planting progress is nearing the end in the southwest Wisconsin area.  This past week we had very favorable weather and we luckily dodged a few rain events.  A large portion of the soybeans in the area are planted, and the last corn acres are waiting for the rye or hay to be taken off and planted for silage.  This past week’s heat  pushed a lot of the corn out of the ground and we are finally able to row the early planted crops.  With the crops finally out of the ground it is a great time to walk the fields and see exactly where the planter clutches were turning on and off.  Hopefully you dug seed when you were planting, and adjusted them properly before planting was over, but if they are still off you can adjust them for next year.  This picture shows you how to adjust your on/off times on your GS display.

Row Shut Off Settings

 

With the new RTK network in Wisconsin, I have had several customers that are planting beans with 30” planters on 15” rows.  The customers have done both AB curves and also straight track with very good luck.   They have found that you cut your desired population in half and plant across the field.  Then they would clear the field coverage and shift their line over 15” with the line shift buttons and make another pass across the field.  Granted it is another pass across the entire field but the customers are experimenting more than anything.  Also I was invited in helping with several trials with corn and beans this past week.  A few examples are row spacing on beans from 7.5” to 15” to 30”, and also a starter fertilizer trial done with different row spacing on beans.  The use of the RTK network is making these trials much more useful due to no longer needing large gaps or spaces in the field to separate one trial from the other and still be close enough to have comparable data on our highly variable soils.  You can see our WI RTK coverage map here.

Effingham Update, Documentation, & Kinze Sensor Issues

by Matt Dehlinger, Effingham, IL

Field work started back up again this week and planters are rolling as hard as they can.  If we don’t get any rain in the next 5 days several guys will be getting close to finished up.

I have received several calls about documentation not working on planters because of multiple tabs being open under the documentation page or because the tab wasn’t completely filled out.  Remember to only have one tab open under your documentation icon on a GS2 or GS3. You do not want multiple tabs open unless you are doing multiple operations at once, like planting and putting on starter.

I also had a KPM III monitor that said that half of the planter was not planting.  I had the guy check the shaft speed sensor and it had moved out of place.  I had him move it over and secure it on the shaft with a zip tie on each side of it.

I also had a Kinze ISO planter that would not plant and the height sensors were out of adjustment and would not tell the planter it was down.  There are two of these sensors on the planter on the parallel arms of the back rank of the planter and the easiest way to check them is to stick a screw driver next to them with the planter raised and the electric clutches should click on.

1775 ExactEmerge High Speed Planter Clinic June 4

You are invited to attend Sloan Implement’s ExactEmerge High Speed Planter Clinic at our Lanark location on Wednesday, June 4th starting at 10:00 AM.

We will discuss the fundamentals of the new planter along with the proper settings and adjustments. We will also show the differences from current production planters and the new ExactEmerge as well as the 2015 MaxEmerge 5 planters.

We will cover the new features of both planters and options you can get on them that you could not before. Salesmen will also be present to discuss the Early Order Program that starts on June 3rd. Some area fields have also been planted with the ExactEmerge (high speed) planter this spring and we plan on walking some of those fields. We hope to see you there!  Register and print tickets for the event here.

1775 ExactEmerge

 

 

Monroe Planting & Hay Progress, 1790 Planters, & ExactEmerge report

by Joe Brunker, Monroe, WI

Most guys are wrapping up with corn. There are still plenty of soybeans to plant. Some rye has been cut. I’ve seen one field of alfalfa cut, but the windrow was pretty small. There will be a lot of hay cut here after the holiday weekend. It feels like we missed spring altogether and it finally went into summer this week. We had another productive week throughout most of the area and a lot of seed went in the ground. Some areas could actually take a nice rain again.

I had a 1790 this week where everything worked except the recording when starting the tractor each day. Set-up was perfect. Cold boot would not fix it. Unplugging the ISO and plugging it back in would let it record. Kept getting a general communication error message with no controller information on the bottom of the message and PM1 was not coming up clean in the message center. Everything else worked though. Updated all of the 7R tractor software (10 updates). Re-updated the planter controller software. Checked connections. Found row command connector (not in use) dangling down and full of water, cleaned it up, but did not fix the problem.  The GS2 already had the latest software. Did a field reprogram on the 2600 and recording works every time you start the tractor now. The communication error message is also gone. Had a similar communication message a SPFH with a GS2 last year as well. Factory reprogram fixed that one.

Had a customer call last night with the VRD motors turning and dropping seed with the planter raised. Tried to recalibrate the height sensor, but it would not let us. Found a pushed back pin on the height sensor connector.

Customers have been impressed with the high speed ExactEmerge planter in the field. Seed spacing was very good even at 12 MPH when we tested it. Everyone is interested to see what the emergence will be like and we will be watching the fields that we planted with it.

Central IL Planting Progress, Height Switches, & Connector Issues

by Derek Sloan, Assumption, IL

The majority of the crops have been planted in the Central IL area. A few customers are still finishing soybeans and with the current weather forecast should be finishing up with those by next week. Several customers have been side dressing with liquid and fast bars. I have seen a couple of height switches that were out of adjustment and it is always a good first place to look when having problems with product application. You can find the height switch status under the book and wrench tab in the rate controller in the readings drop down box. It will read “Switches/Status”.

I have spoken with several customers that are still having issues with section control setup and offsets. It is very important to double check your equipment offsets throughout the season and make sure that the measurements you have input are staying there every time you cycle the key when using the R series tractors. I suggest taking a picture of them with your phone or writing them down on a piece of paper you can leave in the armrest for quick reference upon start up. Hopefully this issue will be resolved soon but for now it is better to be safe than sorry.

I have also seen two instances where the connector pictured below causes problems with correct operation of equipment. Once on a 1770NT 24 row, the connector was just not pushed together enough and was causing intermittent problems on the GS3 display and not allowing proper operation of the planter. The second situation was on a new 2510L that the customer had just taken home and was preparing to use. The customer put water in the tank and attempted operation of the tool and the valves would not turn on allowing proper product application. Examination of the connector and a tug on the wires pulled the ground wire out. After proper replacement of the wire and insuring the connector was pushed together well, the tool worked just like it was supposed to. This connector is found on many John Deere machines and on the rate controller harness. The last situation was on a rate controller harness.

connector

 

 

New Fillmore, IL RTK Base Station

by Lucas Benning, Vandalia, IL

Things are just starting to get rolling again south of I-70. We had 2-3 inches of rain from Tuesday through Friday last week.  Things were pretty saturated and cool weather didn’t help things dry out very quickly. I was able to get up one more RTK base station in Fillmore. With the help of Troy Pinkston from Assumption on top of the leg and Joey Stewart from Vandalia down on the ground tying things off for us. Even though it was plenty windy that day we were able to get everything up and running. We should be able to get some guys started on RTK before the planting season is done. Still have a few more dead areas down here that we are trying to get base stations up, but need to find appropriate structures in those locations first. Here’s the view from atop the Fillmore base:

Fillmore RTK Base Station

You can see maps of Sloan’s RTK coverage in Illinois here and our coverage in Wisconsin here.