Lotsa mechanic work

Friday, August 31, 2018

Last day of August…it’s 92F (33C) out there, and it feels like an August day.  It has been a busy week here at Carnahan & Sons.  The maintenance on the JD S680 combine turned into a bigger task than initially anticipated.  A formal mechanic-performed inspection turned up some additional belts and bearings that required replacement.  Also discovered were some cracks in the frame that holds the chaffer.  That particular chaffer repair was done at John Deere’s expense under what they call a PIP.  (Product Improvement Program).

All  that mechanic work took place this week, Monday through Thursday.  Nathan was here parts of Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.  We assisted him with the repair work on those days.   After the combine was done, there was some repairs needed on the 612C corn head.  Two rows of the twelve rows were very noisy, because the stalk rolls were loose on the shaft.  The repair required replacing not only the stalk rolls, but also the shaft inside the rolls.  Nathan took charge of replacing those 2 stalk roll drive shafts.  We felt it was important for him to be the one to pull the rolls from the gearbox, and assemble them with the new shaft, and then place them back into the gearbox.   We had to wait for the final two stalk rolls to get here, and after they arrived at Thursday noon, I slid those rolls into place and tightened them down.  Even re-checked the level of ‘corn head grease’ in those two rows’ gearboxes.   Needless to say, after 3 1/2 days of wrench-pulling, I was kinda sore.  I know now for sure I’d rather drive a combine than work on it!

To see how the insides of a combine work, see this YouTube video, and for the chaffer in particular, view the video from 4:15 to 5:50.  To see how a corn head works, click on this link.

Nathan, mechanic  from Hutson, Inc., works on one of the row unit gearboxes of the 612C header.

Here are the new stalk rolls for the 612C corn head. These work together to pull the stalks down through the row unit to snap off the ears of corn.

The last of the trucks (Vision) has returned home from the shop, where a new clutch was installed.   It is being lubed and prepped to be hooked back up to its Wilson hopper trailer.

John checks some wiring on the Vision

Another big and rather unpleasant task took place this week.  Our #4 grain bin was showing some problem with the under-floor unload auger.  The guys from Montgomery Welding (our millwright) came and took up the drying floor, and discovered that over the many years, dust, grain, and other debris had accumulated under that floor.  Brandon and John worked long and hard in that hot environment to scrape up that debris, and remove it with hand shovels and 5-gallon buckets.  They tossed the debris into a waiting bucket of the backhoe, and we hauled it out to a nearby field to dispose of it.  The two young guys kept Bill Berry busy in the backhoe!  It was a pretty grueling task, but John and Brandon were determined to get it behind them. Today, Montgomery Welding guys came and installed the new unloading auger and placed the flooring back down.   That #4  bin will be ready very soon to receive some soybeans.

Derrick from Montgomery Welding adjusts the new auger center well into place in our #4 bin.

It’s not hard to see that the old unload auger was worn out.

The floor components are beginning to be reinstalled.

Pat and I took Wednesday afternoon to travel to Purdue for the retirement celebration for Donya Lester, the Exec Dir of Purdue Ag Alumni Association.   This party was held in the new Creighton Hall of Animal Sciences on campus.  It was our first look inside this beautiful new facility.  It was a grand location to host Donya’s event.    We have appreciated her tireless work for the last 28 years, and we are grateful for her friendship.   As the celebration wound down, here came the Boilermaker Special to give Donya a celebratory ride!

Here’s a great picture of Donya speaking with Purdue President, Mitch Daniels.

The Purdue Boilermaker Special.

Pat and I were very happy to see the “Special” up close!

Corn harvest is not very far off now.

Have a great Labor Day weekend!

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