Milking parlour and loose housing

Location
southwest
You won't like this @Jdunn55 but here goes.

You've gone into a new farm with a fixed idea of how you want it to be and, frankly, you've set your sights too high. You need to have a set up that suits the farm you've got, not the farm you wish you had. If that means fewer cows and/or lower yields or a completely different system to what you are trying to do now, then so be it.

Your wishlist of what you want if you move tells a tale. If you are going to start with 100 cows, you just need a basic 8 or 10 unit herringbone (or even an abreast) parlour-all the bells and whistles like cluster flush, acr's, autowash can wait. And for where you are, do you even need to house the cows?

Look at what @Cows 'n grass has done with virtually no infrastructure and how @som farmer got back into dairying on a budget.

There's a wealth of experience on TFF, don't be afraid to use it.
 

som farmer

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
somerset
You won't like this @Jdunn55 but here goes.

You've gone into a new farm with a fixed idea of how you want it to be and, frankly, you've set your sights too high. You need to have a set up that suits the farm you've got, not the farm you wish you had. If that means fewer cows and/or lower yields or a completely different system to what you are trying to do now, then so be it.

Your wishlist of what you want if you move tells a tale. If you are going to start with 100 cows, you just need a basic 8 or 10 unit herringbone (or even an abreast) parlour-all the bells and whistles like cluster flush, acr's, autowash can wait. And for where you are, do you even need to house the cows?

Look at what @Cows 'n grass has done with virtually no infrastructure and how @som farmer got back into dairying on a budget.

There's a wealth of experience on TFF, don't be afraid to use it.
very well put, and perfectly correct. One certainly cannot knock him for giving it his all, and l really hope he succeeds, we need keen lads like him. But, he seems to have quite a large amount of 'financial backing' somewhere behind him, that we never had, l cringe at some of his reasoning, certainly l couldn't have done as much as he has, once we started, cheap cows were the target, and our processor, didn't worry about cc, till the tank was over 1000cc, we never got anywhere near that, but milked a lot of 3/4 cows - they were cheaper.

Buying y/s, never featured, and l have mentioned 'cash flow' and the implications of y/s eating into precious income. But you have to be flexible, but must always have a plan, of where you want to go, what system suits both you, and your farm, and that is what seems to be lacking, a case of jumping from one mishap, straight into another.

you are also spot on about experience, and while he makes mistakes, he openly admits them, which is great, hopefully he listens to some of that advice.
I also stress, that l hope he succeeds, we need lads like him in our industry, seriously need them.
 
Loose housing works fine for spring calvers with a short winter. At every stage on my expansion I've put cows on first and followed with infrastructure.

As a long term tenant I strongly agree with what's been said above. I usually have at least a dozen landlords to deal with and I will always have one or two who are being difficult to deal with in some way. Always you just have to learn to nod, smile, walk away and not fall out with them despite sometimes wanting to tell them where they can stick their land!

Calling your landlords liars on here isn't something I'd recommend. While they might not read things on here, their children or grandchildren might and that's unlikely to improve your relationship or achieve the results you desire.
 
Location
East Mids
Parlours: We picked up a second hand 12/12 in 2015 for £15k + we paid our fitters £8k to dismantle and fit. It was fairly new, had all the gizmos but had not been used for a couple of years, so the fitting price included all new rubber/silicon. The feeders are a bit old, we paid for a new auger & had to do a new shed, pit etc, total cost was about £50k. We already had bulk tank, plate cooler in existing dairy.

It's fine for our 85 cows but would want larger if milking 100. If you are milking 100 that is pushing it for an abreast, even a larger one, you will spend too long in the parlour let alone pushing up to 150.

You can't necessarily get to your ideal set-up in 2-3 years, it takes time, unless luck falls into your lap, to get something you are happy with, let alone your ideal. We've never been entirely happy with our set up for various reasons, such as having to cross a road to grazing, but it is what it is, we have tweaked and improved things, perhaps not as much as some, but in the meanwhile we have paid the mortgage off so when we retire we will have a decent nest egg. Rome isn't built in a day.
 

Jdunn55

Member
Public forum probably not the best place to air landlord/ Tenant problems,it will end badly!!
Thankyou, I will not be going into any detail as to what has happened here on a public forum because a: it's no one's business but the people involved but b: it'd not the right place to do it regardless
Just simply wanted to know details regarding parlours and loose housing dairy cows
 

Jdunn55

Member
You won't like this @Jdunn55 but here goes.

You've gone into a new farm with a fixed idea of how you want it to be and, frankly, you've set your sights too high. You need to have a set up that suits the farm you've got, not the farm you wish you had. If that means fewer cows and/or lower yields or a completely different system to what you are trying to do now, then so be it.

Your wishlist of what you want if you move tells a tale. If you are going to start with 100 cows, you just need a basic 8 or 10 unit herringbone (or even an abreast) parlour-all the bells and whistles like cluster flush, acr's, autowash can wait. And for where you are, do you even need to house the cows?

Look at what @Cows 'n grass has done with virtually no infrastructure and how @som farmer got back into dairying on a budget.

There's a wealth of experience on TFF, don't be afraid to use it.
You're wrong, I agree with virtually everything you've just said.
However the issue that I am currently facing is nothing to do with my standards or what I want etc as said above I won't disclose what said issue is or any details about it but just know that my reason for asking about getting ready to move isn't because I want to but because I feel backed into a corner with little option.

I spoke to the land agent today who has convinced me not to go completely insane for now, but still good to have a backup plan

Regarding outwintering cows, it's not allowed under the roddas contract. I'm happy with an abreast parlour but I doubt I could get anyone to milk for me so I could have a morning off every now and again. Happy with second hand but wanted to know a price for new so I could work backwards
 

Jdunn55

Member
Loose housing works fine for spring calvers with a short winter. At every stage on my expansion I've put cows on first and followed with infrastructure.

As a long term tenant I strongly agree with what's been said above. I usually have at least a dozen landlords to deal with and I will always have one or two who are being difficult to deal with in some way. Always you just have to learn to nod, smile, walk away and not fall out with them despite sometimes wanting to tell them where they can stick their land!

Calling your landlords liars on here isn't something I'd recommend. While they might not read things on here, their children or grandchildren might and that's unlikely to improve your relationship or achieve the results you desire.
It's not my landlord who's the liar, I'm not in a very good situation here, I really like my landlord but I am scared to stay here. I need to be ready to move, I can't explain why for reasons already said.
 

eulb

Member
I built my 32/64 for under £50k,lot of late nights but I built half in front of my old 24/24,then removed the 24/24 and built the other half in its place,hardest part was tidying up for milking time and keeping everything working,no parlour fitter would have done what I did but it makes me smile every day how cheap it was.

When I started I built my 12/24 in 6 weeks,wasn’t milking at the time so was a lot easier,although I did build the pit out of blocks I wouldn’t again using 20’ panels your far faster.
 

In the pit

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
Pembrokeshire
Can you not buy something like this for the parlour
Floor and sides in one,put pit edging on and concrete standings and it’s a wrap
 

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Jdunn55

Member
I think I might have given the wrong impression with this thread, I'm not on about phoning the builders tomorrow and getting them there next week.
Like @frederick said, it's going to take a minimum of 2 years.
I just need to be ready to go for reasons I can't explain on here.
The first stage for me atleast is budgeting to work out what I can afford, in order to do that I need to know what stuff costs which is what this thread was for.

Then it will be planning, followed by permissions, foundations and building. Then if things are fine in 2-3 years time it's no panic I just have some "spare" sheds which I can almost guarantee will be full with something whether it be youngstock, straw or general sh!t (I've never seen a shed empty for long!)
 

Sandpit Farm

Member
NFFN Member
Location
Derbyshire
I think I might have given the wrong impression with this thread, I'm not on about phoning the builders tomorrow and getting them there next week.
Like @frederick said, it's going to take a minimum of 2 years.
I just need to be ready to go for reasons I can't explain on here.
The first stage for me atleast is budgeting to work out what I can afford, in order to do that I need to know what stuff costs which is what this thread was for.

Then it will be planning, followed by permissions, foundations and building. Then if things are fine in 2-3 years time it's no panic I just have some "spare" sheds which I can almost guarantee will be full with something whether it be youngstock, straw or general sh!t (I've never seen a shed empty for long!)

This tool is ideal. It will give you costings for different types of parlour and will show milking times and labour requirements so you have both fixed and variable costs. https://ahdb.org.uk/parlour-wizard

Also, there is a great bulk tank for sale up here. It would suit you down to the ground but I guess you won't want to tie money up in kit just yet. It is a farmer (a close neighbour) who has packed up and moved farms. Can vouch for the guy.
 
Due to various backgrounds issues that most on here don't know about (and I'm not going to post what the issues are on a public forum but they don't seem to be getting resolved), I'm not sure how long I can put up with staying where I am - and no it's not because the cows have escaped again!

Has anyone had a price recently for a milking parlour? Looking for something with acrs, milk meters and cluster flush, possibly and automatic wash system too depending on price. How many units? Currently hovering around 100 cows at peak but hopefully going up to 150 and then we will see where we are. Was thinking 15?
Obviously haven't got an endless supply of cash and the parlour is going to cost enough, so instead of a massive bill for a lagoon (which might end up not being legal anyway because who knows what on earth is going on with slurry regs!), cubicle House etc was thinking of just putting up a shed ready for cubicles but loose housing in it? How much space per cow and how much straw would they use? Would 7m² be about right and 10kg a day of straw?
Thanks
We scrape our cow shed out every day and re-bed infact it's scraped in front by the barriers in the evening too and the bedding topped up , we use a fair heap of straw but have a fair dung heap ... hopefully not buying any p&k this year 😀
Shed is 75ft by 40ft barriers about 12 ft out side for more room 64 milkers in there 🤔
 

Martyn

Member
Location
South west
We scrape our cow shed out every day and re-bed infact it's scraped in front by the barriers in the evening too and the bedding topped up , we use a fair heap of straw but have a fair dung heap ... hopefully not buying any p&k this year 😀
Shed is 75ft by 40ft barriers about 12 ft out side for more room 64 milkers in there 🤔
Could we see a photo please, so used to cubicle systems here.
 
How often do you have to clean the whole shed out? Is mastitis a big issue? Lovely seeing cows on straw. Do you still run a slurry pit for the front scraping or does it all go out as dung?
We scrape the w
How often do you have to clean the whole shed out? Is mastitis a big issue? Lovely seeing cows on straw. Do you still run a slurry pit for the front scraping or does it all go out as dung?
We scrape the whole shed every morning and then throw around some cubicle lime then bed up 😁
 

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