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dedbroke
Frequent Contributor

upgrading nt drills

Currently using 15 ft jd 750.  Using drill almost exclusively now for cover crops, finding especially in corn residue, germination is better if I use vertical tillage tool first.  If I switched to a coulter cart drill, I may be able to skip that trip.  I have some very heavy clays and gumboes.  I know the krause, crustbuster, and sunflowers are out there, but not familiar with them.  Looking for real world advise.  I have found a very nice drill, has s i belt meters....asking also if the belt meters are advised for use with cover crops.  Thanks

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10 Replies
Longcreekfarms
Senior Contributor

Re: upgrading nt drills

For seeding cover crops, seems to me that your money is already spent in the right place. If you have other needs such as beans or wheat, I would recommend the crustbuster. It's a very heavy drill that goes in the ground with very little hairpinning on corn stubble. Seed metering is accurate as I've ever seen out of a drill. I upgraded from a 1590 JD to an all plant crustbuster last year. It is a world of difference, but has a high price to come with it. I'm not knocking JD, it just wasn't heavy enough to cut stalks or go 2" deep consistantly in hard ground. For cover crop, I'd just put down a little extra seed with the drill you already own. My 2 cents...
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Faust100F
Advisor

Re: upgrading nt drills

If you are going to no-til you might want to pick up a great plains no-til drill.  I have one 25 ft. wide, the coulters on it each one  must weigh 30# (maybe less), It has ten inch spacing and grass seed on it, has a monitor on it.  I use it solely for drilling soybeans. It is a heavy drill folds up so it will go through a 15 ft gate, holds 50 bushels of .soybeans, You must have a heavy tractor to hook it to, I have it hooked to an older JD8640 with duals, which is  left on it and only used when beans are drilled.  This drill willl lift the rear end of a heavy row crop tractor off the ground, plus you need a heavy tractor when drillling hills and you are going down hill.  It will push the tractor if the tractor does not have the weight. 

 

This is an older drill and also comes in 30 ft. length and folds up, they are not expensive they run from $15K-20K.  They are much better and heavier than a John Deere Drill, and you can by one of them for the price you would pay for a drill half their size.  Adios Amigo. John

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dedbroke
Frequent Contributor

Re: upgrading nt drills

Well, this may sound odd, but this is from actual experience....my problem isnt depth, it has been covering in shallow placement. the vertical tillage tool seems to root up enough loose dirt for contact that i musnt get with  the deere.  I borrowed neighbord coulter drill and had much better results  side by side.  Only reason I can see.

 

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Shaggy98
Senior Advisor

Re: upgrading nt drills

There is a reason the Great Plains drills are so cheap compared to a John Deere.  They are an inferior drill.  In our area performance and reliability are issues.  I will gladly pay double for a John Deere drill over a Great Plains or even a Crustbuster, and I am a red paint man.  The single disc opener can't be beat.  At the present, it is the best on the market.

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Pat in CMO
Senior Contributor

Re: upgrading nt drills

If covering is the problem, you might try some notched closing wheels. My neighbor has been no-tilling a lot of beans in sod, the last few years. He has had better luck closing the slot on a Deere drill since switching to notched closing wheels.  Patrick

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buckfarmer
Senior Contributor

Re: upgrading nt drills

If we are talking just cover crops and coverage is the issue. How about pulling a chain harrow or something similar directly behind the drill.
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GKT
Senior Reader

Re: upgrading nt drills

I hired a crustbuster drill in 93 to drill beans and in to many places he couldn't get in the ground deep enough for good coverage of the beans. Luckily damp weather after planting got the beans up.(crustbuster may have been redesigned since then)

In 94 I bought a new greatplains 15' with their caddy, the drill followed the caddy great on contours but the seed depth control was terrible because of a few things.

                           1. the 15" tires that carried the drill wieght when planting were a multi ribbed implement tire. I replaced those with tires front tires a backhoe they had a much bigger foot print which gave a more consistant depth between fully loaded and almost empty.

                           2.I had to also put cyl stops on the caddy so I could use the wheels on the caddy helping with depth control when loaded ,at 1/2 empty I pull a cly stop off the caddy .

 This was the only way I could control the depth for me.I did not like the drill

 

In 2004 bought a slightly used 1560 JD drill,it worked good for consistant depth, I think it pulled easier than the greatplains eventhough the JD is heavier but I had to do some changes on the JD.

                         1.The harrow was too heavy and would break cyl bracket on the rear gang of openers, so I built the harrow it's own lift cylinders.

                         2.Put Thompson spiked closing wheels on ,but when you do that you must also replace the original seed press wheel because it will not and never did actually press the seed in because the wheel was to wide to get down in the furrow properly.The press wheels I installed were from Case(they use them on drills)and from I think Venemin (I know I butchered their name) .the Venemin is just a little narrower than the Case but both seem to work fine and can replace JD without any adapters, same for the Thompson closing wheels.

 

I plant soybeans,oats w/alfalfa,wheat (all no-til) have not used it for cover crops yet, had those flown on.                     

 

 

 

 

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Pat in CMO
Senior Contributor

Re: upgrading nt drills

I think the narrow press wheels you are referring to are the Needham ag v8 firming wheels.  Patrick

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GKT
Senior Reader

Re: upgrading nt drills

Thanks for the correction, I could not pull Needham as the maker of the press wheel,and I knew the name I printed wrong.

The Needham wheel does work fine.

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