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04-22-2014 11:36 PM
These clips are from a single operation using a 'cross slot' drill pulled by a unique leveling tractor - Knudsen that levels like our combines. The drills are an Australian development though there are several heavy notill drills built in our area.
And a modification of the JD 455 drill hitch by the welding shop in town.
04-23-2014 08:40 AM
interesting videos. How much power does it take to pull a cross slot drill? Are they very common? I had seen leveling combines, but not tractors before. Thanks for the post.
04-23-2014 08:56 AM
Been to Palouse and up Steptoe butte mountain. Favorite part of our trip.Beautiful wheat fields on them big slopes.I didn't see any or very little
04-23-2014 11:45 AM - edited 04-23-2014 01:18 PM
The 'Channeled Scablands' run through the area where gargantuan floods roared through during the last ice age in sudden surges hundreds of feet high when an ice dam broke that let a huge body of water called 'Lake Missoula' in the mountains of Montana suddenly drain - dozens of times. The surges scoured away the dirt from the flows of basalt and ripped huge canyons (called 'coulees' out here) right through the basalt, the largest called 'Grand Coulee', where the namesake damm is located. For a few days the flow was more than 10 times the flows of all the rivers on earth at once and would have literally shook the earth and heard 30 minutes before it arrived. Only now are some - including me - coming to grips with the magnitude of these events and how it shaped the vast 16,000 sq miles of scablands. I'll include a little clip or more of the geological description if you're rain bound and have time.
The Knudsen tractor that levels isn't built anymore as far as I know. I think the running gear was pretty standard stuff. They usually ran the 855 Cummins block.
The cross slot openers, though an Aussie product, I think are on a locally designed and fabricated frame. I neighbor custom drills with one. I usually pull a 'Zero Till' built by the local welding shop for fall planting. I'll try and post a local machine. I think the heaviest is 35' and 60,000 lb loaded. The big Yielders used to be built here. Because our soil has a lot of clay and we don't get summer rain the ground can be very hard in the fall and weight is needed to punch through. And punching through minimizes side draft on the steeper slopes.
We don't usually pay a lot of attention to soil type beyond the obvious. I'm close to the eastern edge of the Palouse against the foothills of what becomes the Bitterroot Mtns further east. There are probably 100 distinct ridges before you come out the other side onto the Plains in Montana. Clay loam is the general description though there is what we loosely call 'forest soil' that is less organic material and lower PH. My ground probably ranges from 5.6-5.8 PH soil. This is all loess soil blown on top of horizontal flows of lava of many sheets that are several thousand ft thick total. Basalt, with some granite peaks that stick out a little higher - like Steptoe Butte. The soil blew in as huge 'dunes' and is several hundred ft thick in places.
An intro to the formation of the channeled scablands
04-23-2014 07:19 PM
04-23-2014 07:56 PM
He farms on the lower slopes of the Sierras in California and buys hillside equipment in our area. The tractor went over the edge of an 'eyebrow' and landed on it's side below the eyebrow with the wheels on the downhill side. He said they dug a pit below the wheels sloped down and into the hill and used cables to roll it on over. Then drove away. Combines around here used to get rolled once in while but now it only happens when someone goes over the edge of a highway cut, steep breaks on the edges of fields going down to a ravine or river, or occasionally an eyebrow (these are features that remind one of an eyebrow as they are usually on a steep slope pointed at each end and arch over a very steep part or obstruction (rocks, trees, etc) when doing tillage.
04-23-2014 07:58 PM
I don't think there are more than a handfull of notill drills with cross slot openers. I know of two. I don't know much about their characteristics except the placement of seed to fertilizer and soil seed contact is supposed to be superior.