Farmer Built Compost Turner
Compost is the cornerstone of nutrient management in a organic environment.
The object of this grant was to design a compost turner that could be built by a farmer that has a hydrostatic drive allowing the turner to be used with an older tractor. This turner took ~ 300 hours and $12,500 of materials to build. A comparable commercially available turner with a hydrostatic pusher option would cost over $30,000.
A construction manual for this project and plans for the compost turner in PDF format are on-line on the SARE website.
Farmer Built Spelt Dehuller
Spelt and other ancient grains, which do not dehull when they are combined, are gaining popularity. There are commercially available spelt dehullers, however the cost of them and their ancillary equipment means a farmer would have to raise over 100 acres of spelt annually to justify their purchase.
The objective of this grant was to build a small spelt dehuller that would allow a small farmer to dehull his spelt and emmer. The goal was to create a dehuller that would dehull 30-50% of the grain per pass. (The actual dehulling rate in my test runs ranged from 86.4 to 91.8 %.) The machine would also have a simple aspirator to remove the hulls after the grain and hulls left the dehulling chamber.This turner took ~ 215 hours and $13,000 of materials to build. A comparable commercially available dehuller would cost over $45,000.
A construction manual for the spelt dehuller, plans for the spelt dehuller in PDF format and plasma ready drawings for the spelt dehuller in PDF format for this project are on-line on the SARE website.
Farmer Built Pearling Machine
To remain profitable small farmers need to focus on adding value to their agricultural products. The ability to pearl (partially or completely remove the bran from grain kernels) represents a huge opportunity for small-scale grain farmers in the Northeast. Pearling reduces the cooking time, a major constraint to consumers’ use of many specialty grains. Pearling can also be used as a management tool for vomitoxin/DON (deoxynivalenol), which is all too prevalent in small grains grown in the Northeast. Vomitoxin, produced by Fusarium graminearum, is located in the bran. By removing the bran, pearling presents an opportunity to control the DON level in grain. After extensive research, no locally grown pearled grains were found in North America. Previous to this project, a pearling machine that has power requirements (10 hp or less) appropriate for use on most small-scale farms was not available.
A construction manual for the pearling machine is available on the SARE website.
CAD Drawings for Farmer Built Compost Turner and/or Farmer Built Spelt Dehuller
CAD drawings for these projects are available. To read the drawing files, you will need to download a CAD reader, which can be downloaded here.
Elizabeth Dyck of OGRIN can share the CAD plans with you via dropbox. To get the plans via dropbox, please email Elizabeth.
Finally, if you have any questions, please email me.