The dangers of lifting and loading round bales on steep hillsides led Dan Monahan to invent an accumulator that can drop three bales at a time on a safe field spot.
The Bale Positioning System, or BPS, hitches behind a round baler. After two bales roll onto its trailer and a third is net-wrapped, the operator drives to level land and triggers a bale release. All three bales roll next to each other for fast and convenient loading, says Monahan, of Plainview, MN.
“Then, as you travel back and forth across the field, you just keep adding bales to the existing group of bales. Pretty soon, you’ve got a whole semiload of bales in one area.” That also reduces field traffic and soil compaction “because you’re not running over the entire field to pick up bales,” he says.
A cattle hoof trimmer by day, Monahan also raises hay, corn and soybeans on 200 acres with his father, Francis. He and his wife, Linda, are selling the patent-pending implement through their business, called Ag Iron Concepts.
Monahan has tested and improved the accumulator the past two years. Sometimes, as he’s baling, he can dump bales next to where he’ll wrap for baleage. “That’s very convenient and saves a lot of time.”
If a bale should break as it moves onto the BPS, it can easily be driven to where it can best be used, he adds.
The unit fits with any round baler, using brackets that mount to the baler’s axle. Operated by a simple electrical system, the accumulator boasts a bolster that allows it to follow rough ground without putting stress on the baler. Swivel wheels on the back of the BPS easily follow the baler, Monahan says.
“If you’re on tight corners in the field and you’ve got a bale to come out of the baler, just go ahead and kick it out, because this piece of equipment is always in the right place to catch it.”
The unit is durable, too. “It doesn’t matter how wet the bales are, the frame is designed to take the weight,” he says.
A camera is mounted on the back of the BPS. “The idea of having a camera there was to show where bales are located. After a long day, you kind of forget how many bales are on the machine,” he confesses. The camera, hooked to a cab-mounted monitor, can also alert operators of baler malfunctions or broken bales.
Monahan worked with Paul Wingert of Wingert Sales & Service, Plainview, to make his design a reality. The machine costs $20,000. See it in action.
For more information, email Monahan at email@example.com, or call him at 507-272-3447 or 507-534-3897.
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