Posted 8/1/2007 08:34 (#181214 - in reply to #181014) Subject: Re: Midwest Striptill Expo - photo
Driftless SW Wisconsin
Thanks guys. It was good to see so many of you there - must have been a good show, the hamburgers were all gone by the time I got to the lunch line....By the way, Loran, I did get a haircut tonight! Not often my son is the cleaner cut one of the two of us.
I have to say thank you to the U of MN, Iowa State, Hawkeye and U of Wisc folks that put on the show. An excellent job of organization and trying to provide a meaningful and fair strip till field demonstration and comparison.
I don't see how anyone could say they were "discouraged because one machine didn't jump out at me.." I think what I hear you saying is that there is no "ONE answer" to strip till and that is 100% correct. But should not be discouraging - there is just no one answer to many things, especially in agriculture. Maybe the one answer is "it depends"???
That is exactly why these field demos are important. There is no "one way" to strip till.
The term strip till itself seems to apply to any ag tillage system in which the focus of your efforts are on a STRIP where the seed will be planted, rather than full field tillage. Strip till can have advantages in residue management, fertilizer placement, compaction, horsepower and fuel requirements etc....
However there are many different version and ways to focus on that strip. That was one of the things which was very obvious yesterday. For example, some of the machines demoed were obviously fall-only machines, our Pluribus unit, as we discussed, tends to be better used as a spring machine in corn, fall in wheat and either in bean stubble, depending on other factors such as slope. Locally Dan does all C on C in the spring as he spoke about.
Here is a picture to show the basic setting for those who were not there. You can also see some of the differences between the strips left by the two machines in the photo. There were also differences in the depth of operation, speed of operation, possible width of operation, degree of row cleaning, ability to handle rocks (not an issue in the test field but a major concern in many areas), ability to make a strip you can find and keep the planter on, etc.
It would have been nice to have some spring-like standing corn stalks to run into but that is impossible in July in Iowa. I think the folks that put the show in did a great job of creating the best possible test conditions for this time of year.
This site had also had 5" of rain in a storm a couple weeks ago and given the oat cover, most of that moisture was still there! The oats had alo been harvested with the ground wet but that is the type of thing we all need to deal with in farming - conditions are almost never quite perfect.
Neither are operators, as I think I showed pretty clearly! I maybe went overboard on the speed thing - the new high speed kit works well but not too many folks will be stripping at 10-11 mph! The strip is better at 6-8 mph. For the afternoon run we raised the Trashwheels a bit and ran at 8 rather than 10. The Deere 7820 IVT tractor was an interesting new experience also.
Here is a photo Joe took. Maybe no one machine jumped out but there were certainly a lot of things to see and learn. Thanks to Dan and all the customers who made the trip and stopped by. People are what makes this business very enjoyable.