Grain storage ideas from All Around the Farm

  • Unplug the sump in the grain bin

    This device Lloyd Erickson of Hamill, South Dakota, built will slide into the tube on the unloader after the flighting is removed. Pull the lever in and out and side to side and the top piece of tubing moves the 3/4-inch rod on the end upward. When the rod hits the grain, it breaks up smaller pieces of debris.

  • Fill a wet holding bin

    Scott Hulstein of Melvin, Iowa, poured a piece of concrete with a shallow pit to accept the auger hopper and covered it with a removable steel grate. He's able to drive over it with either our semi or wagons. The concrete is sloped slightly toward the auger to help with cleanout. In the fall they remove the grate, lift out the hopper, then replace the grate.

  • View the top from the bottom

    It’s difficult to know when the silo is full of shelled corn. Now that R. and M.H. from Crawfordsville, Indiana, cut a rectangular slot out at the top and inserted a plastic window, they can see from ground level. Saves trips up and down the ladder.

  • Look ma, 2 hands!

    The climb up and down A.T.'s 4 hopper bins on his farm near Fortuna, North Dakota, is safer now that he don’t have to carry clumsy cans with us. Now they just pour the grain samples right from the probe into 1 1/2-inch PVC pipe that I mounted to the bin to form a chute. There is a 3-inch cleanout with a cover at the top & he used a radiator hose to make the bend.

  • With the auger goes a rain guard

    John Eden of Omaha, Nebraska, cut the top of an old PVC water tank into a 3-foot diameter. The original fill hole works perfectly to slide over the spout on his grain auger. With a few holes drilled in it, rope runs through and around the spout.

  • Farm-built grain leg

    Todd Koertge of Parkersburg, Illinois, built a grain leg tower. Then he did his own installation, saving about $30,000 in the process. Koertge’s is 125 feet high and has a platform on the top for a hoist system. He added I-beam trolleys they can hook onto each of the downspouts to put them up. This shop-built tower is 125 feet tall and constructed of 1/2-inch-thick oil field pipe found at auction. No guide wires are needed because of its heavy concrete ballast.

  • Old sprayer tank makes a hopper topper

    With a little measuring and some work with a reciprocating saw, Douglas Coop of Jacksonville, Illinois, now has a custom-fit hopper extension. It lets him back the grain truck up to the auger and easily unload with no spillage. The plastic is heavy-duty but light enough that it’s easy to put on and take off.

Whether you're doing it to spruce up or save your back, here are a few ideas to improve your farm's grain storage from All Around the Farm.

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