Sugar beet yields

Discussion in 'Cropping' started by Banana Bar, Oct 1, 2018.

  1. DrWazzock

    DrWazzock Member

    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    About 8 days but not been pushing it. Been lifting about 60 tonnes per day (2 artic loads). It tops and lifts the same row, topper in front of Opel wheels. Single row machine. A steady job but low capital and running costs. DB780 tractor unit uses 5 gallons of diesel per day.

    Biggest expense is the chains which cost about £50 per ha, being the main wearing parts. A set lasts about 5 years. £2000 to replace if new but have been living on ones salvaged from scrap machines so far.
     
  2. Flat 10

    Flat 10 Member

    Location:
    Fen Edge
    So £1000 in labour (not including winter maintenance) £100 in diesel £100 wearing parts not counting depreciation or insurance as negligible or any tractor and trailer costs if you use one v paying ~1700 to get it lifted. Of course you might not value your labour that highly or logistically it might be difficult for you to have a 6 row in or you might just not want massive machinery on your land but I’d have thought it’s barely worth it.
     
  3. DrWazzock

    DrWazzock Member

    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    There is so much more to it than the basic contractors charge versus my own perceived costs. There is timeliness which is worth a lot, there is the fact my machine leaves the tops whole for the sheep. I am paying the labour charge to myself and I like the job.

    I have always done a much tidier and more timely job than any 6 rower I have seen. I tip in a shed with my own trailer as well, so load off concrete. with my own loader. All neat clean and tidy how I like it, all harvested just in time and got away within a couple of days of lifting.

    Depreciation is negligible considering I bought the machine for £750 twenty years ago. Yeah it's a bit third world but so is the price of the beet. Compared to paying £400k for a six rower and working every hour through the season I know which I prefer.

    I even have time to hand lift the corners as well.;)
     
  4. spin cycle

    spin cycle Member

    Location:
    north norfolk
    the thing about labour is that you're there and if you used a contractor you'd have to be out earning....so good for you(y)

    £20/ac for chains is a bit horrendous though:eek:
     
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  5. DrWazzock

    DrWazzock Member

    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    I think I have perhaps overestimated that. I was pricing the rod links at £5 (main dealer price) each whereas I think I can get them for £3 to £4 for a bulk order. I haven't bought any new ones anyway, just salvaged part worn off scrap machines at much less so far, but I put a fair price for new links into my costs to make it realistic.

    It would actually be more cost effective to rechain with continental web but this precludes the ability to alter the ratio of straight and down links in the conveyors which adjusts the amount of scrubbing. More straight equals less scrubbing. No straight links in the back elevator maximises tumbling and scrubbing.
     
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  6. DrWazzock

    DrWazzock Member

    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    In reality @Flat 10 does make a valid point. I'd be better off selling the machinery and letting the entire farm really and going and doing something else.

    But there is more to it than money or is there?
     
  7. nick...

    nick... Member

    Location:
    south norfolk
    I’d imagine there are a lot on here like that but we all enjoy doing it,farming that is
    Nick...
     
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  8. Flat 10

    Flat 10 Member

    Location:
    Fen Edge
    It wasn't meant as a criticism, I did note there were other valid reasons for not having a contractor in. I have a contractor and I wouldn't want to run a solobeet, it would take a long time and I just couldn't face it. However I would consider my own 6 row if I could make it add up.
    Ps can't let my farm out as mostly rented but I'm sure most of my work could be done cheaper by contractors.....
     
  9. Daniel

    Daniel Member

    As above, if you already have the staff then the labour charge is paid to you. The thing is that you can't run a machine as cheaply as a contractor charges, so 60 ton monsters it is.

    Apparently you can detect the compaction 75cm down.
     
  10. DrWazzock

    DrWazzock Member

    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    The Solobeet weighing maybe what 7 tonnes when full and running on 4 tyres, 16" at the back and 7" at the front all at about 20 psi and running two sets of wheelings over every row might even be putting more pressure on the ground than a 6 rower. Difficult to say. I don't know what their tyre pressures are like.

    There doesn't seem to be a painless way with beet as far as soil structure goes, apart from getting it out the ground early, but we can't all do that.

    Maybe if the seed was direct drilled or just the row was loosened as per OSR, then the soil would be better at carrying the traffic than after ploughing.

    I keep meaning to fit the beet drill behind low disturbance legs on a toolbar and go straight into stubble and see how that works.
     
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  11. radar

    radar Member

    My memories of lifting beet with a cyclone are that as soon as the land got a bit wet the amount of clods in the tank increased markedly. The cleaning ability of the cyclone and chains have no comparison to 6 rower and as the 6 rowers wheels are not running down the rows the clods produced by compaction are nil.
     
  12. spin cycle

    spin cycle Member

    Location:
    north norfolk
    couple of points
    1/ the docs cyclone is actually appreciating in value
    2/ six row pulverisers are great early on when you want to get wheat in.....but the loss on tops later on means beet growers are missing out on circa £80/ac in feed value
     
  13. DrWazzock

    DrWazzock Member

    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    I can usually keep clods out by careful Opel wheel depth setting and careful adjustment of the distance between cyclone wheel tips and cyclone peripheral guide. It's possible to pluck the beet out of wet clay fairly cleanly. Clay plastered on the sides of smaller roots can be a problem.

    Too right. Last year we fattened 100 hoggets on half the beet area so an extra £1500 return. Tops can be as good as a crop of barley. More protein in the tops than the roots. With this mild weather the tops still seem to be growing.
     
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  14. timmyboy

    timmyboy Member

    Location:
    Bury St Edmunds
    And I’ll bet the land is so much easier to plough after the beet have gone too. Much better than these massive 50/60 t machines and trailers packing the land down tight. Being totally independant and doing the job when you want it done......not when a contractor thinks he will come and do it. A pleasure to do the job and enjoy it too. Good on ya @DrWazzock. Carry on. (y)
     
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  15. Spud

    Spud Member

    Location:
    YO62
    Some would say that paying a contractor c.40% more than one could do the job oneself is an expensive option!
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2018
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  16. copse

    copse Member

    Location:
    Rutland
    I know there’s not much chance of it this year but if anyone has some c beet available am looking for some for feed. Delivered to Rutland
    Thanks
     
  17. Honest john

    Honest john Member

    Location:
    Fenland
    Will keep you in mind.
    John.
     
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  18. Ruston3w

    Ruston3w Member

    Location:
    south suffolk
    Isn't it always the same though, we argue about the weight of the harvester, tyres, tank size and then the worst damage is done by the trailers anyway? I remember our cyclone used to lift every day all winter unless it was too wet, it went ok but the headlands and any low ways were completely trashed. Now the beeteater quite often leaves a drillable surface but every trailer wheeling needs loosening,
     
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  19. Exfarmer

    Exfarmer Member

    Location:
    Bury St Edmunds
    Remember the first day we had a tracked Grimme lifting overwintered Carrots. Incredible machine hardly cut in an inch.
    Then along came a 25 tonne actic trailer pulled by two 8400 JDs. :(:(:(
     
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  20. Hindsight

    Hindsight Member

    Location:
    Lincolnshire
    Bunker potato harvesters have revolutionised the way land is left. Clearly apparent now which bit of the lifting operation harvester or trailers that creates ruts.
     
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