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More Farmer Inventions: March 2014

  • net wrap

    Got net wrap? You bet!
    We do a fair amount of round baling. When my son grew tired of always having to bring another roll of wrap (or have someone bring him some), he devised this way to carry extras to the field. He cut some grain tube downspout in half and mounted it to the front of our baler tractor. It will hold up to three rolls – enough for even a big cornstalk day.      
    Ron Mulholland | Plainview, Minnesota 

  • nozzles

    Change welder nozzles less often
    I couldn’t keep my welder nozzles clean with my pliers once they reached too high a temperature, so I cut off a length of rod at 45° and welded it onto my workbench. Now, when a nozzle becomes too messy, I just slip it over the top of the rod and tap on it with a hammer until it’s clean. My nozzles will work for a lot longer.    
    Josiah Wipf | Lake Andes, South Dakota

  • merger

    Self-propelled merger is lightweight 
    My 18-foot air-conditioned hydrostatic merger made with a large round bale pickup is so easy to run. It’s gentler than a windrower, so I lose fewer leaves, and it weighs less than a conventional tractor and merger setup. With the hydraulics rerouted, the old reel orbit motor gives the pickup a variable drive.    
    Irwin Raak | Jasper, Minnesota 

  • insects

    Stinging insects won’t nest too close to home
    To keep wasps and bees from building nests in the outdoor electrical boxes on my farmstead, I use livestock fly ear tags. I place one in each electrical box. This is a very effective way to keep bugs away. I find that each ear tag lasts for about six months. Then it’s a simple matter to just pop open the electrical box cover and replace with a new one.  
    J.T. McGuire | Palestine, Texas

  • workbench

    Workbench is portable but solid 
    The rolling workbench I made was a great addition to my shop. The two cabinet spaces below hold all my tool sets that are kept in cases. Six easy-sliding, 32-inch-deep drawers provide storage for all the other tools. That leaves the 42×75-inch old bowling alley lane top free to work on. Locking wheels and the overall heaviness of the portable workbench make it easy to use and nice to work on.   
    Kevin Gradert | Sibley, Iowa

  • load tester

    Load tester does inexpensive diagnostics 
    Recently, I had a hard time trying to tell whether or not my engine frost plug heater was working. The local repair shop said it wouldn’t be able to help me for a few days, so I bought an appliance load tester for $30. The tester showed No Load. This told me that the problem was either in the frost plug or in the electrical cord to the frost plug heater.      
    Craig Fahlstrom | Dickinson, North Dakota

  • monitor

    Locate all the monitor plugs in one place    
    After ripping the electrical apart and searching for the right plug for planter and sprayer monitors, I consolidated the plugs by mounting them on a steel plate. The plugs are held in place with conduit clamps. The plate is on the rear of the tractor opposite the hydraulics.       
    Steven Bauman | Garnett, Kansas

  • cutter

    When you don’t have a plasma cutter
    When I need to drill larger hole in carbon steel and I want a better hole than a cutting torch will produce, I use a hole saw. I drill into the steel until the hole saw makes a kerf mark. Next, I drill several holes in the kerf with a drill bit. Then, with the hole saw back in the drill, the chips are flushed out of the kerf, and the hole saw can penetrate down through the metal.   
    Dudley Blumenschein | Ohio

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