piece by piece on Machinery Talk.. Since many friends use them and one has planted many of my crops, I understand what he is saying. It is sad to spend so much money and have a piece of equipment almost perfect but certain engineering design lets the whole thing fail.
"I have to go on a little rant. We have been seeding for the past couple weeks and I have a couple enhancements that Deere Seeding group must not be aware of. First of all I would like to state that although Deere is not perfect I would say that they have a pretty good product with the 1890 and 1910 cart. With that being said, there are a couple of design flaws that seem to get overlooked with each new version. I thought that since they were fresh on my mind I would just try and let them know my frustration.
First, let's talk about the cart. We are running two, one with a 8" auger and the other with a conveyor. Other than the weight difference the conveyor is awesome(and smokes the auger for filling), however, the top mounting bracket is a JOKE! It is the same as the 8" auger. Now how am I suppose to rest the weight of a 300lb conveyor bouncing through the field on four 12mm bolts that are in a slot that is 5" long with 1/4"of material around it(take some 1/4" key stock and tell me how much weight it can hold with a 12' lever arm). The slot will just deflect, then the bolts break or come loose and then the weight of the conveyor is on the arm that it pivots on and then the welds will crack out on the main frame of the cart. I feel like every time I fill the cart I have to look to see if bolts are missing and replace them. This is only if you can keep the mickey mouse mechanism tight that the bottom of the conveyor rest on to transfer the weight to the transport brackets. One bolt and a bolt through a round disc is not what I call a positive locking system. I can think of several designs that wouldn't add any cost yet would actually work in keeping the latch at the appropriate height and be able to carry the weight of the conveyor.
Next on the cart is the cheap strap that holds the telescoping spout up. Since clearance is such a premium on the top of the cart(or so you make it to be), and the lids are full of obstructions that keep hooking the spout when you fold the conveyor out, these straps should be cables, or better yet remove the obstructions. Flexicoil figured that out 15 years ago. Finally on the cart, in which many people have commented on this, put a hopper on the auger or conveyor to get under a semi. Just if you haven't figured it out yet, we are using them, and guess what you can even charge us $2600 for the option, b/c we are paying that anyway (no offense to the air seeder hopper, I am thankful that someone has seen the need for this market. All of our carts have them and we are quite pleased with them). How else do you plan on us to fill up a 350, 430 or even 550 bu cart. We aren't using 1 ton trucks with a scoop anymore.
Second, let's talk 1890 seeder. How can your engineering department let such an important designed part like the main frame wheels go out and fail. Especially on a brand new drill. Everything else seem well thought out and designed, but the guy that did the main frame wheels failed. I worked as a engineer for a couple of years and I had to tell management several times that all the engineers can use the equations, but it is the numbers that you use and the educated decisions you make to get the numbers is what makes you a good engineer or not. It was a concern of ours first time we looked at it. We just looked at the spindles on the front of the cart and knowing the weight that has on it and then look at the wheels on the drill and with just visual FEA we could tell you that it was going to fail (since they were already deflecting).
For those that don't know what I'm talking about, on the 50 and 60' drill they have walking wheels on the main frame and they used the same spindles and walking cast arms from their chisels. Needless to say they had a PIP and put the spindles on the drill like what is on the cart. I would like to congratulate you on improving the design of Flexicoil's easy flow header. The new towers are very nice and work quite well. Finally, I have a fix for the overheating problem that many are having around here with your air seeders. I am talking about a fix not a band-aid( you think a cooler in front of the fan is a fix). Once you understand hydraulically what is happening, the fix is simple. I have a valve that I made on my drill and my tractor does not overheat anymore and I am saving 1-2 gal of fuel per hour. It is amazing how much fuel you can save when to take 35hp worth of heat out of the hydraulic system.
My email is in my profile if you want to discuss to the solution. If anyone has a overheating issue with there Deere air drill, just let me know. I am going to put a valve kit together and make it available for people to purchase so their tractors don't overheat. I know I said finally, but I do have one more thing, bolts are awesome fasteners when used correctly. However bolting through a 7" tube is not a good design. Bolts don't like to go through stress cycles, they like to be stressed(torqued) with multiple solid members, and then they stay at that point, and this can not be accomplished with square tubing. Clamping open air doesn't work very well, but welding to square tubing is a good alternative or using bushings through square tubing is an alternative it you have to bolt it. We replace at least 6-12 bolts a year on the main frame of our 42' drill( and don't worry, we are not getting them from you, so you can't say that you are getting the part sales). Unfortunately it is the same design on the 60' as well, so I can't wait to get to start replacing those as well.
Sorry for my rant. I just feel like things don't get through and that this is our voice to those that are in charge. I may be the only one with these concerns, and if so I guess I know where I stand.