I was thinking of buying a Massey Ferguson Seed Drill for sowing winter wheat in the early autumn mid September or so if the ground conditions were right.My land is very dry land. I didn't one to go for one pass cause it would cost alot more and I don't have the horsepower either .Have been using a contractor to sow for me in the past which is costly .I also will be using it to sow Spring barley so I kno it would work for this. Would the Massey Ferguson Seed Drill work for winter corn ?
what difference would there be between winter and spring?? the drill will sow either, but I dont think it would pay you tbh.. how many acres are you looking to sow? if drilling was cost effective everyone would do it.
I have 200 ac to sow. It cost me €5500 + vat every year
if you factor in the time / diesel it will take to drill, plus the power / time / diesel to power harrow it beforehand id nearly bet you will be worse off?
I work full time at farming so I don't mind the time . My contractor harrows the ploughed ground before he sows it with his vaderstad sower anyway
the drill has a power harrow :-) does the contractor use a power harrow or ordinary harrow before the drill? power harrow before the drill isnt really necessary, except on headlands or if the ploughing is very rough
He just uses a ordinary spring harrow . There was a man that I kno that is getting old and he has MF drill and a ordinary harrow in a shed that was not used in year and not to much worked either. I could pick up the lot for €800 and all in good nick . It just got me thinking and didn't one to let it pass
sounds cheap for sure! other posters might know more about it but Im not sure if one pass of an ordinary harrow would be enough to allow drilling? the main thing to watch for is that the drill doesnt block... if it does it could take you 3 weeks to realise you have to go again
the massey drills were very good and they could put the fert in as you sow , however it might be hard getting parts for them now as the newer one pass has taken over their role in sowing . i think the pipes that carry the seed down are hard to get to replace as they go pourous over time
We sowed winter wheat and barley for years with a massey drill before changing to a one pass, I think that there are one or two still going around here on the lighter land.
The biggest problem we had as I remember it was getting consistent depth and seed cover, if conditions were good to excellent things would be grand but if it was anyway damp or sticky we ran into problems (one pass would sail away no problem). It really depends on how good of condition the drill is in and how competent you feel to set it up and get the job done correctly. Remember with winter wheat you usually get only one chance to do the job properly and if it gets f****d up you'll be looking at the problem for 10 months and paying for it for much longer than that.
Would agree with nilhg on this. If it gets sticky the coulters/discs will all block up and you'll have misses.
OP what kind of land and what sort of tractor hp would you be sowing with? A few ppl had a 'bridge' over the power harrow to pull the seed drill before one pass became the norm about 15 yrs ago.
Just reading through this again and I noticed that the OP said his contractor is using a vaderstad to sow for him, there would be a huge difference in the capability of that machine (especially if it's a system disk version) and what you could expect from a MF drill, you'd need to have your homework done.
The other thing to consider is whether your contractor will be as timely with the ploughing/tine harrow if he isn't getting the sowing, if he take on a job somewhere else instead then you might be back in the queue.
i know a small bit about these drills.
theres easily run. the one we have is a 2.4metre. ideally you should run it off something small like a massey 188 or ford 5000. that way you can make the front wheels wider and drive on the track that the back wheel of the drill has made the last time. this way you are setting it all. they are handy in the way you can et the seed as well as putting out fertilizer. we power harrow in front of it but this is only in the last 6-7 years when we bought a new kuhn power harrow. take the black rubber tubes off where the fert/ seed comes out off every winter otherwise the rats will eat them. also that the shoes off and and leave them in old oil until needed next and then power wash them and put back on otherwise they will rust like mad.
you should take all fertiliser out every evening otherwise it will go soggy inside the drill and block the next day and you will end up draining it all out then otherwise. since you will be using the small bags (50kg) of seed as it would have the capacity for a big bag be careful a small piece of paper from the bag doesnt tare off and go into the seed cause this will block the shoots and seed/fert wont go out and there will be a gap in the field on every row that the seed didnt go out. have a person go up on the back for the first round or two to make sure both seed and fert is coming out of each shoot and not blocked. also make sure not to run out of seed when driving. i think when the tanks are full to the top it should set two acres if memory sevres correct. i would have to check my book on that one. we have a clock on ours and normally goes to 8-8.5 before its out.
cant think of anything else for now.
parts are hard to get and dear enough so maybe get enough spares now to have for future years.