Hay land replaced by cornfields could have hurt Brian Alff’s custom baling business in southwest Iowa. Instead, he adapted by adding corn stover baling to his services. His customers recognize the value of harvesting a second crop of what was once considered waste. Alff has learned that using the right equipment makes baling more efficient for a better product worth the extra cost.
Choosing the Right Equipment
The Carson, Iowa, farmer’s custom baling partner and father, Duane, suggested they purchase a windrowing crop shredder a couple of years ago when it was so dry that the hay rake pulled up root-balls filled with dirt.
Alff crunched the numbers and decided there was enough demand to make the investment. He purchased a pull-type, 20-foot Loftness windrower center discharge shredder. The machine has cupped 4.5-inch knives that spin at 1,450 rpms and shred crop residue in foot-long strips that are pulled by high-speed air to rear shields that flow to a discharge diffuser and onto the ground in clean windrows.
“There’s no dirt in the bale,” says Alff. “It picks up cobs and shelled corn and does a beautiful job.”…