Combine reliability

JWL

Member
Location
Hereford
Now most are wrapping up cutting for this year many are looking on how their combines have performed over the season. Many will be happy, a few will have niggles or just nightmares and I just thought a quick word or two on their own experiences.
I was using a late 90's TX34, only a 15' header and a pretty basic model and only had just under 200 acres to cut so not a particularly onerous job. Winter Beans, Winter Wheat and Spring Barley. No big yields, the stuff was dying off during that hot spell June/July and then kept moisture high when it came to cutting.
The combine performed well, book settings went out of the window a bit, higher drum speeds in the beans to try to stop the wrapping of the ropey straw causing drum blockages mainly with the secondary rotary seperator.
Only "breakdowns" were the drive belt for the shaker shoe and the rotary seperator belt, had spares allready so little downtime. A bearing collapsed on the front right of the intake elevator, self aligning got within the hour off the shelf at a local bearing dealer.
The wrapping of the beans in the drum did cause a couple of major blockages and some of the larger lumps did get picked up by the stripper rotor behind the drum and bash the bottom of the grain tank which in turn cracked a couple of spot welds at the bubble up auger around the inspection hatch which then kept popping open. Drilled through the welds and put some bolts in cured that.
All in all fairly hassle free and will be kept for next year
 

Jsmith2211

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Somerset
seems a small header for that combine? We have a tx34 as well, took a bit of setting up in the barley but once we got it right she worked very well. only breakdowns were the front right hand straw elevator bearing, and the unloading auger belt, both were in stock at the dealership. What kind of speeds were you going at with that header? also does your loss meter work at all?
 

JWL

Member
Location
Hereford
seems a small header for that combine? We have a tx34 as well, took a bit of setting up in the barley but once we got it right she worked very well. only breakdowns were the front right hand straw elevator bearing, and the unloading auger belt, both were in stock at the dealership. What kind of speeds were you going at with that header? also does your loss meter work at all?
Yep the barley was a bit of a pain, dropped drum speed, opened concave, regulated by if any interested heads were going over the strawalkers. Small header agreed but that's how it came four years ago but with no header levelling it can still bulldoze on the end especially with a near full tank
And no, the grain monitor doesn't work never had much faith in the ones of that era anyway, get out and have a look is the true way of knowing
 

Jsmith2211

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Somerset
Yep the barley was a bit of a pain, dropped drum speed, opened concave, regulated by if any interested heads were going over the strawalkers. Small header agreed but that's how it came four years ago but with no header levelling it can still bulldoze on the end especially with a near full tank
And no, the grain monitor doesn't work never had much faith in the ones of that era anyway, get out and have a look is the true way of knowing
for us it was more getting it to thresh off of the straw, had the concave as tight as it would go and drum as fast as it would go, ended up being that the stripper rotor was on the slow setting, and the concave needed adjusting a bit tighter to the drum. Loss monitor would be useful for us as the crops are fairly patchy, what is fine in one place might throw half of it out of the back in other places
 

Zippy768

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Dorset/Wilts
Worst year for breakdowns I've known.
Claas 108 dominator.
-Drum belt.
-Cab fan failure - caused an electrical problem where nothing worked. 1 1/2 days for dealer to sort
- diesel problem
- sheared bolt on bell housing that held guards on and pump tight
- hydraulic leak on a failed union
- handbrake cable broke. Sticker over the dash light solved that!
- fire, day to get loom out, repaired and back in.
- another fire (smouldering) same area. Dealer out to check electrics weren't causing a problem.
- air con problem
- puncture

All that over 120 acres.
Has cut another 40 without issue. 40 acres of spring beans to go!!

Questionable performance I'd have to say
 

bravheart

Member
Location
scottish borders
TX 34 Off to a bad start water pump belt broke again seems like an annual first day out event spare behind the seat. Bubble up auger gearbox failed was brand new last year nothing available from the dealers so s/h from salvage yard best I could get, advised it shouldn't happen check auger for wear, decided to get a nearly new auger from same yard fingers crossed. Fan vari drive belt broke still had yellow paint so not too bad for 4.5k hrs. Not the only belt still with yellow paint.

edit. 3 fields left
 
Last edited:

Will 1594

Member
Arable Farmer
Mmmm. 1200 acre
gone through before started
And yes the no oil on the chains 👍👍👍👍
They are now off and all submerged in a 40 gallon drum of gear oil from a farm sale 🙈
Breakdowns and running repairs where 1 double finger and 3 knife section and those where in 6 ha beans shaving them as some pods quite low .
will let it digest two oily / diesel small bales to cost the insides when get chance
 

getting on

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Lincs
Worst year for breakdowns I've known.
Claas 108 dominator.
-Drum belt.
-Cab fan failure - caused an electrical problem where nothing worked. 1 1/2 days for dealer to sort
- diesel problem
- sheared bolt on bell housing that held guards on and pump tight
- hydraulic leak on a failed union
- handbrake cable broke. Sticker over the dash light solved that!
- fire, day to get loom out, repaired and back in.
- another fire (smouldering) same area. Dealer out to check electrics weren't causing a problem.
- air con problem
- puncture

All that over 120 acres.
Has cut another 40 without issue. 40 acres of spring beans to go!!

Questionable performance I'd have to say
Hi all, i commiserate with you, i have only had ONE problem all harvest. The engine, i had to bleed the fuel system every morning before the old (girl) would fire. I am not a mechanic but it appears to me that the fuel goes back to the tank leaving the fuel lines empty. I think there must be a none return valve some were. Don't laugh but the combine is a New Holland 1530 40 years old. It has been faithful all these years but i wonder if its time is up? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks.
 

Lincsman

Member
Arable Farmer
Location
Lincolnshire
Hi all, i commiserate with you, i have only had ONE problem all harvest. The engine, i had to bleed the fuel system every morning before the old (girl) would fire. I am not a mechanic but it appears to me that the fuel goes back to the tank leaving the fuel lines empty. I think there must be a none return valve some were. Don't laugh but the combine is a New Holland 1530 40 years old. It has been faithful all these years but i wonder if its time is up? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks.
It will be a simple O ring or rubber washer letting air in, you could put a tap at the bottom of the tank if not already there a switch it off at night to hold the fuel in the pipe. At least i dont think it will pull fuel out the top of the tank near the sensor????
 

robs1

Member
Mmmm. 1200 acre
gone through before started
And yes the no oil on the chains 👍👍👍👍
They are now off and all submerged in a 40 gallon drum of gear oil from a farm sale 🙈
Breakdowns and running repairs where 1 double finger and 3 knife section and those where in 6 ha beans shaving them as some pods quite low .
will let it digest two oily / diesel small bales to cost the insides when get chance
I worry the oil will mix with any dust and create a grinding paste rather than stop rust, I agree with you about not oiling chains though, we never oiled chains on our smallbsker apart from end of season, never had one break, our current NH 570 baler on the pick up that I didnt know existed until this year when the split pin holding the joining link broke and the chain came apart, it's done 7 seasons with no oil at all, and had no dust on it, I assume it's meant to be oiled by the sure oiling pump but the pipe wasnt fitted as to get at the chain you need to take out give bolts
 

Bluetooth

Member
Location
North east
TX 34 Off to a bad start water pump belt broke again seems like an annual first day out event spare behind the seat. Bubble up auger gearbox failed was brand new last year nothing available from the dealers so s/h from salvage yard best I could get, advised it shouldn't happen check auger for wear, decided to get a nearly new auger from same yard fingers crossed. Fan vari drive belt broke still had yellow paint so not too bad for 4.5k hrs. Not the only belt still with yellow paint.

edit. 3 fields left
Our tx32 has snapped a water pump belt near the start of harvest for the last 5 years, must be a common problem? The pulleys and bearings for it seem ok was going to get a mechanic to have a look over winter to see if he could spot anything. Always have a spare inthe toolbox now, but it took the alternator belt out this year (2nd time its dine that)
 

bkg

Member
Hi all, i commiserate with you, i have only had ONE problem all harvest. The engine, i had to bleed the fuel system every morning before the old (girl) would fire. I am not a mechanic but it appears to me that the fuel goes back to the tank leaving the fuel lines empty. I think there must be a none return valve some were. Don't laugh but the combine is a New Holland 1530 40 years old. It has been faithful all these years but i wonder if its time is up? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks.
Just put a new lift pump on simple as that,them combines will run for ever
 

clbarclay

Member
Location
Worcestershire
Running a JD 2256 here. It's done 10 seasons for us now and about 2400 drum hours. We tend to get the dealer to service it every other year, which catches quite a few problems before they become serious.

This year I had to replace a few knife sections, but the only proper break down was the locking collars on the drum bearings coming loose and it started to rub against the housing. The drum had been taken out before last season by the dealer mechanic. We reckon they must have left fastening the locking collars to the apprentice. I had my eye on a chain and belt though, which will get replaced for next year.
 

Romeogolf

Member
Arable Farmer
Location
Wiltshire
My trusty tx66 chomped through hundreds of acres, probably covered over 50 miles on the road and I didn’t touch her once save for grease and chain oil. 2700 drum hours and continues to amaze me what trouble free combining it gives, not even a knife section needed. Feel very blessed as a result. It may not be as pleasant a place to spend ones day as a CX, but reliability is surely the top trump for combine ownership.
 

balerman

Member
Location
N Devon
Our tx32 has snapped a water pump belt near the start of harvest for the last 5 years, must be a common problem? The pulleys and bearings for it seem ok was going to get a mechanic to have a look over winter to see if he could spot anything. Always have a spare inthe toolbox now, but it took the alternator belt out this year (2nd time its dine that)
Yep,mine does the same.The water pump went a couple years ago and the idler pulley bearing was tight so changed that thinking that would solve it.Didn’t make any difference ,new belt for this year and 3rd field went again,only thing is tighten it every day till it beds in seems to help.
 

balerman

Member
Location
N Devon
Hi all, i commiserate with you, i have only had ONE problem all harvest. The engine, i had to bleed the fuel system every morning before the old (girl) would fire. I am not a mechanic but it appears to me that the fuel goes back to the tank leaving the fuel lines empty. I think there must be a none return valve some were. Don't laugh but the combine is a New Holland 1530 40 years old. It has been faithful all these years but i wonder if its time is up? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks.
Hard as nails those old combines,stronger than the 8000 range that replaced them.
 

melted welly

Member
Location
DD9.
2005 nh cx880. Worst year so far for breakdowns, wobble box replaced (failed last year), angle box for bubble up auger failed, grain shoe cracked on one side, access hatch on clean grain elevator came off, then with 5ac to go the angle drive in the unloading spout gave up, so spout off on the hottest day of the year ☹️.

Excellent local back up though, barely lost any full days. 2nd hand parts on the shelf to keep us going till replacements arrived.

Had numerous years where annual repair and maintenance costs been sub £2000, basically oil, filters and some belts or bearings, so hopefully got this wave of failures out the way in a oner.

Bit concerned about the grain shoe cracking tho…..
 

Update on the Sustainable Farming Incentive pilot

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Update on the Sustainable Farming Incentive pilot

Written by Lisa Applin

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In July, we opened the applications window for farmers to join our Sustainable Farming Incentive pilot.

The Sustainable Farming Incentive is 1 of the 3 new environmental land management schemes. It sits alongside the future Local Nature Recovery and Landscape Recovery schemes.

Through the Sustainable Farming Incentive, farmers will be paid for environmentally sustainable actions – ones that are simple to do and do not require previous agri-environment scheme experience.

We are piloting the scheme to...
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