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Veteran Contributor

Grain cart scale trouble?

OK in 1998 I bought a used parker model 450 cart and installed a new weigh tronics scale myself. The results were great having enjoyed many years of very accurate weighing. Last year I decided a new J& M model 750 cart was needed so after purchase I also bought a new weigh tronics scale and installed it myself. WELL the results have been less than satisfactory. The cart is a great unit and I have no problem with it but the new scale is much less than accurate. I have complained to the middle man that sold it to me and they assured me there is a 3 year warrantee and they will do what they can to make it right. But I have a feeling that after many conferences with them they are hinting that they think it is working as best as can be expected and I will just have to use it that way. Now here is the problem. I still own the old cart and scale - if I put say 24000 pounds of grain on the old cart and on a level hard packed gravel farm yard I would drive forward with the old cart and stop take note of the scale reading then back up say 20 feet stop and take note of the scale reading it would have only fluctuated maybe 10 - 20 -or 30 pounds. BUT try that with the new cart and scale. Here is what would happen. Put the same amount of weight on it say 24000 pounds drive to the same exact hard level well packed gravel spot, as you pull ahead and stop the 24000 pounds will drop about 250 pounds to say 23750. Now back up say 20 or 30 feet and stop the weight shown will rise up to say 400 or slightly more now about 24150. IS THIS the best I can expect? I have seen even bigger discrepancy's of up to 600 pounds and even more when the cart is full - remember  my example is with only 24000 pounds - the cart will hold much more. Now how can 14 year old technology out perform 1 year old technology. The scale selling middle man admits the installation is probably the best they have seen and have backed off on blaming me for not installing the axles correctly and solidly. By the way I did run into one fellow that works for J&M that said you just simply cannot backup with modern weigh bar axles and expect them to weigh correctly!! Sure seems possible with what I am experiencing although the scale middleman said he had not heard that and he claims to have sold 1000's of cart scales over the years. By the way one more interesting phenomena if you pull up to unload fold out the auger zero the cart unload the load print the weight then fold the auger the scale will then read at least 60 on up to 190 pounds more with the 18 inch unload auger stowed. But if you immediately fold that auger back out the scale will not change????????????????? What the heck??????????  I ask the scale middle man about that and they say well they have observed that but have NO answer just silence. I believe the weigh bar axles I have are some what defective but of course the scale middleman seller says no, that weigh bars either work or don't work. Mine work so they seem to think that is not the problem. I have also taken the scale head off my old parker and put it on the New cart and it acts the same as the newer head with all the discrepancy so that points to the weigh bars.  So am I being too critical, is the new scale actually working as designed and I was just lucky to have an older scale that actually out performs it's design specs. Or am I right in complaining when I see a load fluctuate 10 plus bushels in less than the lenght of a short semi?????????????????

Every thing seems installed correctly axles level to cart and solidly anchered to main axle. Front weigh bar solidly anchored and hitch pin as large as possible and bushed into cart hitch with only give in hole in tractor drawbar.

I was told to expect a call fron someone at weigh tronics in a few days on the subject but my guess from what the sale middleman seller say I am not going to get much more than lip service..........................What am I missing do any of you out there using 600 to 800 bushel carts have the same experience? HELP

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3 Replies

Re: Grain cart scale trouble?

I'd guess bad connection... I know the weight will be off, but can you unplug all the load bars, plug 1 in, try, then plug the 2nd 1 in and try, etc.... will that show you which load cell or which connection has an issue?


I run a scales on my drill seed box, and when it works, its great... when it doesn't I've thought about how to test it.



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Veteran Advisor

Re: Grain cart scale trouble?

We had the same issue years ago with a grinder mixer.  One of the axles was bent, and as you drove forward or backward, it would stress the axle in different ways, and make it read off, up to maybe 100 pounds per ton.  Put in a differentt axle, problem solved.

Here is how to tell if an axle is bent.

Put a mark or a piece of tape on both rims, opposite each other.  Drive forward as much as you can, to still have a straight line of sight from one mark to the other, and measure.  Now, back up as much as you can, to have a straight line of sight from one mark to the other, and measure.  If the two measurements aren't exactly the same, it is indicating a possible bent or out of line axle.

This is assuming, all electrical connections are good.

Does the scale, and your old one have a 'dummy' in one of the plugs?  For example, our Weigh-Tronix on the grinder mixer had plug ins for 4 weigh bars, but only was a 3-bar scale, so they had a 'dummy' plugged in where the 4th bar would go.  If your old scale has a 'dummy' plugged into one of the ports, see if it will fit in the new scale brain.  If it will, unplug one weigh bar at a time, replacing it with the 'dummy' and it should tell you which weigh bar is off, or if it is a bigger problem.  Keep in mind, the weight will be way off, but if all you are looking for is consistency, that should be able to do it.

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Frequent Contributor

Re: Grain cart scale trouble?

A quick way to test the weigh bars on our truck mount feed mixer is to take a known weight, like me at 200#, and put it in each corner and see if they all read the same. i think they are wrong that they either work or don't as i have had some that were off. If you have one weigh cell  that is not reading right, your readount will change anytime you change the load on that corner, which is pretty much any time you move it. You have proved the head is OK, so it is in the cells, either one is not up to snuff, or there is some binding going on so that they are not always feeling the correct load.

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