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Mike M2692830
Senior Contributor

Question about moisture and shrink on soybeans

Very little soybeans been harvested here in our area. Some have gone to coop over 14%. local coop has a 2% shrink factor per half point from 13.6 to 15%. So a soybean that tests 14.6 or more will be shrunk 4%. Here's my math. On 100 bu you lose 4 to shrink. That's 240 pounds of weight or about 30 gallons of water. Is there that much extra water in a plus 14 bean for that kind of shrink factor? Does one save enough beans due to less shatter to justify harvesting that wet of a bean. TIA....MikeM
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6 Replies
KSKid501
Veteran Contributor

Re: Question about moisture and shrink on soybeans

100 bushels at 14.6% equates to 98.84 bushels at 13.6% moisture on a dry weight basis. The questions you have to ask yourself are: 1) Will I lose 3.8 out of every 100 bushels to shatter? And 2) do I have on-farm dryers that will dry them for less than 50c per percent per bushel? (Which really is just a matter of whether or not you have dryers).
At the risk of getting personal, how big are you? My rule of thumb is if you're gonna live off row crop farming, you need to have storage available to take advantage of marketing options and to take every cent you can from the elevator.
Mike M2692830
Senior Contributor

Re: Question about moisture and shrink on soybeans

We have an average size operation but am short on farm storage. A little spread out for centralized storage. I've always felt once beans are on wheels they should go to town. Shrink happens at home too. I was just curious about others opinions in harvest moisture of soybeans and what is everyone's sweet spot. I guess I would rather harvest a bean north of 14% rather then watch sickle and reel shatter put more beans on the ground. Thanks for the input...MikeM
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Waterlooiowa
Frequent Contributor

Re: Question about moisture and shrink on soybeans

In general I think you are better taking out wet beans and taking the dock.One year almost all my beans came out at 12-13,the following year we went from 2 weeks of rain to 90 degree temps and by the time I got to the last field they were under 10%It is irritating to see the dockage in definate dollars but shattering and less weight to start with is usual more

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idalivered
Advisor

Re: Question about moisture and shrink on soybeans

Mike, i'm sure there is not that much water in 15% beans, but (as you know) the coop is not gonna do it for just the exact shrink factor. they are gonna put the shrink higher to their advantage . I would also guess and just a guess that you would lose a minimum of 1.5 bpa to reel shatter at 10% with a regular flex header.

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sw363535
Honored Advisor

Re: Question about moisture and shrink on soybeans

I haven't got the exact shrink but I have always been impressed with how little air it takes to dry beans compared to corn.  but we are a dryer and warmer climate in the fall than you are Mike.

 

The drying charge seems high, but as stated they need to charge for the convenience.

 

The fear factor with beans for us is the harvest conditions.  We are dryer and warmer so when they are ready, past ready comes fast.  At that point a hard shower or a sudden cold front wind can get expensive.

We would like to have more acres of beans than we have but the sudden harvest need limits our fun.

 

Corn on the other hand will get too dry but we can still get it in.

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ECIN
Senior Advisor

Re: Question about moisture and shrink on soybeans

I'm with sw - on his thinking about beans - Mike - IF I remember right - it only takes 4 beans per sq foot to = 1 bu. of loss on a acre .  I do have the drying capacity to dry beans and thats what I do if I can - Sunday I caught a small window to get in the field beans ran from 14.5 to 17 - I got out to check the machine a fwe times - and it always amazes me the beans that are NOT on the ground behind the head when cuting them a little wetter .

BTW I did end up cutting 40 acres -- before the next rain came in around 5 Sunday -

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