All Around the Farm: March 2016

  • Add a ladder to the spreader

    Since I fabricated this three-step traction tread rung ladder and bolted it to the left front end of my manure spreader, I no longer have to climb over the PTO shield to get in or to jump off of a tire to get out. The ladder also holds my scraper, and it cost only $100 to build. This makes it safer to get in and keeps me cleaner. 

    Jerry Heller | Galena, Illinois   

  • Auger-out a blocked riser pipe

    I had a lot of trouble with the orifices getting plugged in terrace risers. So, I put a 10-inch length of auger that is about 5½ inches in diameter on a 6½-foot length of ½-inch-diameter rod. I made and attached a crank to the other end. Now when a riser is plugged, I’m able to take the cap off and use this tool to clean the orifices out effectively.       

    Allen Keim | Kinderhook, Illinois    

  • Don’t let tiny parts get lost in the scramble

    I’ve found that one of the best things to have handy when I’m taking apart something with small, delicate parts is an empty egg carton. I use it to store the tiny parts and pieces; the egg carton keeps them safe and organized. The other nice thing is that I can close the lid on the carton and stack multiple cartons if need be.  

    Leon Waldner | Rosholt, South Dakota 

  • Socket wrench caddy is ready to go

    This carrier that I built from scrap metal accommodates commercially available socket holders. It’s helpful because it seemed I was always without the precise metric or SAE tool I needed when away from the shop and toolbox. My carrier holds sockets, ratchet extensions, and adapters. It’s also easy to tell at a glance if anything is getting left behind when the job is done.      

    Jerry Meireis | Paul, Idaho

  • Try bending the wand

    Treating for hairy warts and foot rot can be time-consuming. Trying to spray between the hooves is tough because half of the liquid gets sprayed on the floor. Bending the wand at a 90° angle solved all my problems. Now I can spray without worrying about missing the hooves or having to get down too low behind the cow where it can be dangerous.      

    Ryan Waldner | Burnsville, Minnesota

  • Get better access to the combine battery

    A heavy battery cable hooked to the positive post on my combine’s battery runs across the platform behind the engine and down the machine’s right side. It’s covered in ¾-inch heater hose. I hooked an L-shape bracket to the side of the combine with two existing bolts. A small U-clamp on the cable end extends past the bracket for hooking the positive side of the jumpers or charger. 

    Carlyle Holman | St. Joe, Indiana 

  • Watch him strut

    In trying to adapt the bracket for an aftermarket GPS antenna to the roof of my tractor, I was unable to mount it with the factory roof bolts. I was able to attach small lengths of strut channel (commonly found in the electrical conduit area of big-box stores) to the roof using the factory roof bolts. That made it easy to attach the GPS bracket to the strut channel with bolts and special channel nuts. 

    Brad Milbrath | Lakefield, Minnesota

Check out these innovative farmer inventions. Compiled by Paula Barbour.

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