Thursday, April 28, 2011

Hey Dad, How wet is it there?

Here are a few photos to give an idea what it's like here.

This was Liffick Corner Wednesday morning.   It's a couple feet deeper now.  Looking from Mom's with the binoculars the sign is just out of the water.
 Looking northwest from the Milo Prust bridge on Mill Creek Thursday morning.  That is supposed to be a cornfield.
 550 Road/2100 Street (corner at the church road) looking northeast Thursday morning
 about 1/4 mile east of the above photo.  The photo at the top of the page was taken here.  The water is crossing the road over 1/4 mile wide here
 Looking toward Ivan Cline's house Thursday afternoon.
 Looking across Illinois 1 at Walnut Prairie on Thursday afternoon
 450 Street/York Road (Don's) looking toward the bridge Thursday evening.  Look closely at the gray Herron standing in the middle of the road fishing
 Another view
 looking north from the last photo at the water coming out of Mill Creek.  The stream is about 2 feet higher than the field here.
It's going to be a long planting season

Saturday, April 23, 2011

I'm tired of being saved from myself ....

We bought a new drill press recently.  Pretty nice drill press ... even if it did come from Harbor Freight. But one thing that just drove me up the wall was the chuck key.  Apparently somebody sometime left the key in the chuck and got hurt or something.  Because it came with a spring loaded pin in the end of it
 It causes the key to pop out of the chuck whenever you do not push in against the spring.  Sounds like a good idea, but it is a real pain.  Because unless you are putting pressure on it you can't tighten the chuck. But it was a simple fix.
I'm all for safety, but at some point common sense needs to kick in as well.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

We added something to the fleet I've been wanting for a while.  Friday Aman went to Fowler, Indiana and brought home a trailer with a seed vac and a 3 seed box frame on it.
 It allows us to put 3 seed boxes on a trailer
  and run the contents into a drill or planter with the seed jet.
 Why does that excite me?

I can use it for corn, beans, or wheat. No need to touch a bag, no need to fill a seed tender, no need to  pull a gravity wagon to the field with a tractor.

Monday, April 11, 2011

The opportunities are endless ...

I'm setting here at 5:30 trying to decide which opportunity to pursue today.  I've been awake since about 4 when thunder woke me up and I decided to get up and unplug the computers.  I went back to bed for a while but wasn't resting so I go up.  To answer your question, I have the DSL modem plugged in by itself and am using the laptop via wireless.

After my conversation with Syngenta Jeff Friday I decided I needed to figure out a way to put a Kinze unit on the planter as a 13th row.
We can rob one of the toolbar or use the one I bought at the Paris Young Farmer's sale.  So Saturday morning started in.  My first idea was just use the bracket for the IH unit. and make new tabs to bolt to.
Great plan, except the IH unit is ground driven.  The drive shaft is directly behind the mount in that picture.  Plan B was mount the IH bracket under the planter frame and bole the 7x7 tube that came with the Kinze unit to it.  Great idea if we cut the mounts off for the markers.

 Yes, that is the planter serial number tag attached to that bracket.
So now we are to plan C. I'm going to see if ROC can make a heavy plate to weld to the 7x7 tube to bolt to the planter frame and then bolt the Kinze unit to the 7x7 tube.  But that will have to be Ralph because I haven't got the material to make it from or the torch to cut something that thick.

Next project.

I need to decide which tractor to put the sprayer on and get it installed.  I was going to use the 3010, but have 2 problems.  First, I'm not sure it has the power to pull the sprayer loaded. Second, I was playing with the 3010 Saturday afternoon and when you crank the engine sometimes something goes clank.  I'm not a John Deere mechanic but that doesn't sound right.  So I rolled it under the shed roof and told Aman we had a project tractor for him now. Since we aren't going to use it to plant male rows I guess we need to put the 7120 Magnum on the sprayer.  But first we have to get the planter put together and out of the way.  It is parked in front of the sprayer.

I got the dirt fender bracket fixed for the Tillol ... but the assembly weighs too much and is too awkward to handle to do it by myself.

The 966 is torn down in the corner waiting for the steering motor, which I removed and took out to Farm Pride for repair.    And I have crop insurance paperwork due this week, plus NFIRS reporting for the Fire Dept and tax withholding payments.

I found a dealer in Dyersburg, TN who has the closing system attachments I want.

Dyersburg ... go to Arkansas and turn left.  It will take a long day to go there and come back.  And  farmer at Renssalaer, Indiana had a set of seed box holders s like I've been thinking about.
 Again, a full day trip.

On the other hand, after last night's rain I'd say we are out of the field until Thursday at the earliest.  And Aman is back so something might get done.  And the lightning seems to have went away so I can turn things on again.  Later Y'all

Friday, April 8, 2011

The smoke got out

Did you know electronic devices work by smoke?  It's true!  Think about it.  Everything is working well until something breaks and lets the smoke out.  Then you have to get new parts with new smoke in them.

I was trying to drill a couple holes Thursday when I let the smoke out of the motor on the drill press.  Lots of smoke.
It is a made in China drill press.  Everything on it is metric.  I have no problem with that. I kind of prefer metric personally. But I don't think I have any old motors setting around with metric shafts. So I went down and talked to Ralph.  He suggested I might be better served just replacing the whole press. It probably wouldn't cost much more than a motor if I could find one.

I pondered on it most of the day.  I came home, ate supper, and Sue I talked about it.  We jumped in the big red Ford and went to Harbor Freight.  I bought the biggest, heaviest, hardest to handle drill press they had in stock.  I was really glad we brought the Ford, because I don't know the box would have fit in the Dodge.

Friday I took the Ford to the shop and slid the box off on the Hyster.  I took all the pieces and parts out and was looking them over when Mom came in.  So we set up the drill press.  The instructions were very detailed.  The only problem is they changed how they packed and assembled it but failed to change the instructions.  But we figured it out.   The biggest problem was getting the head on top of the column.  We used a couple lawn mower straps to pick it up with the floor crane and set it where it should go.
Oh, and this is for Mom
In the OH $#^&! department, talked with Jeff from Syngenta today.  Everything we have is "plant the male first"   I can't describe how happy that makes me (I know, sarcasm doesn't work online very well).  To be honest I feel a little taken advantage of.  I bought a 2 row male planter from Syngenta this winter.  Then they offered to let me use the 3 row as I needed for storing it.  Now I haven't got a use for them.  However to be honest it isn't their fault.  If I had RTK autosteer I could use the 3 row to plant male first then come back with the 12 row to plant the female.  But I don't have it ... yet.  It's beginning to look like if I want to keep producing seed corn I may have to go to autosteer.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


I hate waiting for service people.  Maybe it's something inherited from Dad. Maybe it's from doing service work for several years.  But I was taught if you are expected someplace and find you will be late to call.  That's why I found it a little irritating to be waiting for the internet guy.  35 minutes after he was supposed to be there he called.  "I'm at 2200 north and 1400 east..."

I said "What?  You went through Marshall?"

"I don't remember going through Marshall."

We talked a little when I realized he was still in Crawford County.  He made it, changed out some equipment, and got Mom back online.

After lunch I had to run a couple errands, then I took the steering pump off the 966 and Sue and I took it to Farm Pride.

I really did more than it sounds. 

Another rainy Monday

My plans for Monday were to get the 9270 out, hook on to the disk, and dig up Nash.  Well ... that was the plan Saturday afternoon.  After Sunday night and Monday morning I probably won't do that this week.  That pretty much describes my Monday accomplishments.

After doing a couple  things in the office I went to Darwin and picked up Cynthia, then went to Mom's.  I think she enjoyed the company a lot more than setting on the porch watching it rain, but she really wanted to be close to me. I put together a sign I was working on for the Silver Moon field.  Someone has been crossing the wheat field on a 4 wheeler.  I finished it when Paul called wanting to look at Blue.  So I took Cynthia home, talked to Bill at Bunker Hill a minute, then went to West Union.

Paul looked it over, drive it, and decided he wanted it.  That was kind of bitter sweet.  I needed to get rid of that pickup, I don't need this many setting around.  But it was a good old truck that just did whatever I asked it to.  I hope it does well for Paul.  I get this uncomfortable feeling selling vehicles to people I know.

My early afternoon was spent with insurance again.  We got the new policy in the mail and I had to go over it and make sure everything was as we understood it ... like you really understand insurance.  There were a couple things needing clarified, so it took a couple phone calls.

I discussed the 3010 not going into reverse like it should on AgTalk ( I decided to check it out.
I did find one place the linkage was worn
and a couple places it was a bit sloppy, but nothing I wanted to tackle where it sat.  So I decided to replace the steering wheel.  I bought a new one on ebay.  Someone gave me a center cap they found laying on the ground after Shannon's sale where it had been lost.  Great idea ... but it will involve heating the nut to get it loose.

A guy online has a couple seed box holders for sale on the AgTalk classifeds (

I called him and asked about them.  He said "Didn't I talk to yo a couple weeks ago.?"   Ummm... maybe ?

I took the broken bracket off the Tilloll dirt fender and took it to the shop.  Made a repair part ... except it needs a hole drilled in spring steel. I probably ruined my new bit before I realized the problem.  I'm going to see if Ralph can punch it for me.

So I decided to pull the steering motor on the 966 to get it repaired.  First step, remove steering wheel.  Yes, another steering wheel.  The nut came off easily.  Never did get the wheel off.  I pondered on this and decided to look in our I&T shop manual. I looked in the cabinets, in the safe, in Dad's office ... I never did find out I&T shop manual.

That is pretty much how my Monday went.  Tuesday starts out waiting for a computer tech for Mom's internet.

Friday, April 1, 2011

FRIDAY ! Friday ... friday

Hard to translate echoes to the written word. I'm trying something different today.  I'm starting this early in the morning and scheduling it to publish later.  I'll come back at various times and edit and add to it.

Good theory anyway.

Today's schedule includes cleaning up old blue, taking out the radio, etc.  Sue and I have some errands to run in Terre Haute this afternoon, I may need to run to Marshall this morning and meet with a banker or a few minutes.

So far today I've written up a rental agreement on some farmland, faxed it the landowner and talked to him twice, done payroll, and eaten breakfast. SO I'll save this and see y'all later.

9:30  OK, Plan B.  Banker said  his schedule got changed, so we rescheduled for Wednesday.  I stopped and checked on the black pickup.  No answers yet.  I decided to try hooking the little goose neck trailer to the 550.  It just barely clears ... close like the bed will scrape the paint on the jack when it turns tight if everything is not setting just right.  I backed the trailer in the shed and painted the ramps Aman rebuilt.  I'd take a picture but black paint just doesn't lend itself to photography very well.

10:30 Now that I've had my mid-morning caffeine break I think I'll pull it out and run Blue in, uninstall the radio, clean out the cab, and see if I can get the name off the door.

19:30  (7:30 PM) I got the radio and lights off Blue, peeled the name off the doors, cleaned out the cab ... and I am STILL getting broken glass out of it from when I slid the table through the back window.  Oh, you don't know about that ?  Good ...

We parked it in front of Ron's with a sign in the window.

After noon I checked on Cynthia, went to the bank, then on to Terre Haute to Specialty Graphics to pick up the door lettering for the 550. When I got back I Goo-Gone'd the doors on the 550 and removed the adhesive from the IFTA stickers.

Seemed like I did more before I wrote it down.