Agricultural Engineering Department
baler, hay, forages, field baler
Few farm machines have met with such rapid acceptance as the field baler. Baling machines have been in existence for many years, but were usually considered as a necessary part of the equipment needed to process hay for shipment. It was not likely that the individual farmer thought baling a necessary step in preparing hay for farm consumption. Today, the field baler, with pick-up attachments and self-tying mechanisms, has became a farm tool to process the hay crop to be feel on the farm. The hay baler compresses the product and facilitates its transportation. Loose hay weighs from 4 to 5 pounds per cubic foot, but when baled weighs from 12 to 14 pounds per cubic foot. The held baler also is used in a system of farming operations whereby the hay is cured, baled, and hauled in the summer months to the shipping point or feed yard, thus eliminating the winter hauling problems of former years. Many custom operators make baling possible for individuals who do not own their own machines. At present there are several makes of twine-tie and several brands of wire-tie field balers. Some are driven by power take-off, and others by mounted motors. Following the World War II period, a machine was marketed to make cylindrical bales wrapped with twine. Today this machine is in common use and is of the power-take-off driven type.
South Dakota State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts, Agricultural Experiment Station
DeLong, H. H., "The Field Baler: Operation and Costs" (1951). Agricultural Experiment Station Circulars. 84.