Will a disc mower cut and leave a long stubble?

steveR

Member
Mixed Farmer
Something of a long title, but needed to get it right :)

I am going to have fair few ha of herbal leys in two years time with a % being cut for conservation every year, probs as wrapped haylage for cattle.

All the guidance seems to say leaving a long stubble is paramount to preserve the species mix, as many plants really do not like a short stubble type cut being left. This makes perfect sense, so I am casting around to consider the best option for next season as the 1st year in HL and on into the future (if we are still keeping bovines by then!)

I usually cut with an aged but tidy 1.65 drum mower and have been contemplating an upgrade with the acreage increase, or getting my Contractor to knock off the leys and then Fusion the crop, chopping and baling as he goes. However, on chatting with him this morning, he said that they can carry the mower bed easily enough, but that the quality of the mowing was poor if the cutter bed was not on the ground. Contour following is a particular problem.

So I am wondering what others have done to resolve this? First thought is for me to buy a disc mower, but narrower one and cut slowly as opposed to contractor speeds.... Trailed or 3 point?
 

farmerm

Member
Location
Shropshire
need 2 more drum mowers... one runner, one scrap... cut the skid pans off the scrap one, weld them under the skid pans on the other and this would allow it to follow the contours but with the knives positioned higher off the ground 🤷‍♂️ Or a McConnel rotary topper, and then row up the cuttings :ROFLMAO: had to finish cutting a field out hay with ours once after a mechanical issue with the mower... only a small triangle in center of the field... conventional baler pickup wasnt a fan of the longer stubble though.
 

steveR

Member
Mixed Farmer
We use topping skids, as much to save the mower bed from wear as anything else. You could build up the skids to give you whatever height you want. Ours is a Krone trailed mower

The contractor said that a tall stubble led to poor quality cutting, I assume because the blades were not getting below crop that has gone down a bit.

I had spoken with a Dealer who said about high clearance skids, but 6" was an unknown to him... :)
 

steveR

Member
Mixed Farmer
need 2 more drum mowers... one runner, one scrap... cut the skid pans off the scrap one, weld them under the skid pans on the other and this would allow it to follow the contours but with the knives positioned higher off the ground 🤷‍♂️ Or a McConnel rotary topper, and then row up the cuttings :ROFLMAO: had to finish cutting a field out hay with ours once after a mechanical issue with the mower... only a small triangle in center of the field... conventional baler pickup wasnt a fan of the longer stubble though.

I had actually wondered about a topper... I have a Teagle I used to use on grounds maintenance that is great for long topping, but only 2m wide :)

I like the drum idea... Would go to 5" easily enoughI reckon?
 

Bury the Trash

Member
Mixed Farmer
Disc with extra skids under the bed will go nicely at 4 inches or so not tried one higher.

i have had a mounted drum mower higher than that way better cut than a topper just not as robust and remember they are designed to bear weight of the mowing bit on their saucers so an deviation from that might shorten its otherwise life span
a topper is an inefficient relatively blunt instrument even when sharpened regularly
yrs ago i had a pz165 that i put a wheel behind the drums on and a frame to carry the drums off the ground
ill have a think and see if i can remember how i did it, it involved a wheel at the back and the drums were carried ,
iirc it came about after the bottom saucers got damage out of balance and i could be troubled to replace them.

current drum mower has longer allen set screws and spacer bushes between the saucer and drum hes mowing at about 80 mm i guess thats not high enough?
 
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Andrew

Member
Location
Huntingdon, UK
Disc mowers have counter knives so should cut cleanly enough, but they really need the skids on the floor, so get some topping skids. Never seen any 6” ones though.
 
Location
southwest
The contractor said that a tall stubble led to poor quality cutting, I assume because the blades were not getting below crop that has gone down a bit.

I had spoken with a Dealer who said about high clearance skids, but 6" was an unknown to him... :)

Get a contractor who knows what he's doing.

What does he use to cut undersown wholecrop?
 

neilo

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Montgomeryshire
My Malone disc mower came with a pair of topping skids with it, that you just bolt on when needed. I put them on this summer to see if topping with a mower really was better than using my proper topper (Spearhead Batwing), as lots seem to claim. It was absolutely no different.

Anyway, those skids basically just lift the bed up an extra 2", so you could easily cut at 5" I'd have thought. Sharp blades and a slower forward speed would surely make for a clean cut, unless the crop was already slumped below that height of course.

Why cut so high? Plenty of red clover is cut at 3-4" isn't it?
 

steveR

Member
Mixed Farmer
Disc with extra skids under the bed will go nicely at 4 inches or so not tried one higher.

i have had a mounted drum mower higher than that way better cut than a topper just not as robust and remember they are designed to bear weight of the mowing bit on their saucers so an deviation from that might shorten its otherwise life span
a topper is an inefficient relatively blunt instrument even when sharpened regularly
yrs ago i had a pz165 that i put a wheel behind the drums on and a frame to carry the drums off the ground
ill have a think and see if i can remember how i did it, it involved a wheel at the back and the drums were carried ,
iirc it came about after the bottom saucers got damage out of balance and i could be troubled to replace them.

current drum mower has longer allen set screws and spacer bushes between the saucer and drum hes mowing at about 80 mm i guess thats not high enough?

I have a spacer set on my current drum mower, (but not the full height), as I really don't like cutting down to very short stubbles on my PP. I think the tractor will carry the mower happily enough, but your point about them being designed to have the weight on the saucers is an excellent one.

Extra tall skids can be manufactured in the workshop I'd think...?
 
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steveR

Member
Mixed Farmer
My Malone disc mower came with a pair of topping skids with it, that you just bolt on when needed. I put them on this summer to see if topping with a mower really was better than using my proper topper (Spearhead Batwing), as lots seem to claim. It was absolutely no different.

Anyway, those skids basically just lift the bed up an extra 2", so you could easily cut at 5" I'd have thought. Sharp blades and a slower forward speed would surely make for a clean cut, unless the crop was already slumped below that height of course.

Why cut so high? Plenty of red clover is cut at 3-4" isn't it?

How simple are the skids on your tool?

Couple of the species, but chicory and some of the legumes get very unhappy I am told... But TBH, I'd have thought 5" should be enough...
 

JD-Kid

Member
used to mow with topping skids on a class disc mower. all the time. did leave a bit behind were crops had fallen over
light areas can sit on the cutter bar tho and some mocos if going down hill will throw the toppings forward and start to block the cutter bar
think I had 4 topping skids on a claas 3 meter mower
way season has gone here in some places alot of paddocks need topping at 4-6 inch. to take out crap seed heads and allow paddocks to thicken up in the base
 

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Man fined £300 for bonfire-related waste offences

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Written by William Kellett from Agriland

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A man has pleaded guilty at Newtownards Magistrates’ Court to waste offences relating to a bonfire next to the electrical sub-station on the Circular Road in Newtownards, Co. Down.

Gareth Gill (51) of Abbot’s Walk, Newtownards pleaded guilty to two charges under the Waste and Contaminated Land (Northern Ireland) Order 1997, for which he was fined £150 each and ordered to pay a £15 offender’s levy

On June 25, 2018, PSNI officers went to Gill’s yard, where they found a large amount of waste consisting of scrap wood, pallets, carpet and underlay.

Discussion with Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) officers confirmed the site...
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