Finishing up soybeans by Round Lake, Minnesota.

Christy: Transmission trouble

Round Lake, Minnesota – We can say now that we have completed one customer on their bean harvest. We still have lots to go in other areas, but it means harvest is moving right along. By Round Lake, we will be switching over to corn pretty quickly. Before doing so though, we’ll finish our own beans while this machine is set up for it.

Three combines in beans by Hartley, Iowa.

Three combines in beans by Hartley, Iowa.

By Hartley, Iowa, this crew has seen some really awesome beans. They are probably the tallest plants I’ve seen, reaching up taller than my waist. I’m not a really tall person, but beans aren’t usually that tall. I immediately asked Parker when I brought him supper how these beans were doing. He said they were 84 bushel per acre beans. That’s a great yield. I’m not sure how much more beans this crew has to work on, but I think they should be getting close to wrapping up on beans and will also be switching over to corn.

I don't think the picture really does these beans justice, but they are so tall. This is the field where beans averaged 84 bushels per acre, and yes, Zoey is eating a pickle.

I don’t think the picture really does these beans justice, but they are so tall. This is the field where beans averaged 84 bushels per acre, and, yes, Zoey is eating a pickle.

Our crew by Elkton, South Dakota, is still steadily covering soybean acres. They’ve seen averages vary as much as 20 bushels per acre in one field to around 70 bushels per acre in others. This area did not see quite as much rain as around home, but it’s great to hear they are still seeing average crops in places.

Two machines in Elkton left for Roscoe, South Dakota, this week. It hasn’t been a great start out there as the transmission went out in Patrick’s machine. His isn’t the only one we’ve seen go out this year. We had a combine lose its transmission during wheat, and just yesterday a third machine in Hartley met the same fate. Hopefully the third is the charm and no more combines go down.

This is a very troublesome situation because some of the parts needed for repairs are really hard to find, much less trying to find the same parts times two. Out in Roscoe, Case gave Patrick a new loaner so he could at least keep going and now by Hartley, I’m not sure what’s going to happen. Breakdowns like these are a lot of the reason we run new equipment each year. Our farmers are counting on us to be dependable, and we need to run equipment that’s dependable.

As soon as bean harvest is complete in all areas, we will start to park some of our combines. In corn harvest’s quick pace we need extra grain carts and trucks to keep up. If parts continue to be scarce, I’m wondering if the machines to be parked might end up being the ones who haven’t been repaired yet. Things usually work out, but it’s tough working with it when we’re busy.

The sunsets don't get any better than fall harvest.

The sunsets don’t get any better than fall harvest.

I think we’re all looking forward to start really going on corn this next week. It’ll be great to see how all the corn crops do, and get it all out while the weather is still cooperating.

Christy Paplow can be reached at

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