It is a good idea to regularly check the knives in your diet feeder for wear and tear. Damaged or worn knives may result in a host of unforeseen costs. Even so, such costs can easily be avoided. It is recommended to check the knives each month and, depending on the number of operating hours, how the forage shaft behaves in the feed, etc. replace them every one to two years. Worn knives can have unpleasant consequences. That's why below we have listed the 5 most important reasons why you should check the auger knives in your feed mixer regularly.
1. Sharp knives ensure a better mixture
If the feed is not cut well, it is harder to achieve homogeneous mixed rations, and it's easier for cows to choose their feed. This means that not every cow may get the nutrition it needs. In turn, this has a negative effect on the animals' health and, ultimately, their milk production.
2. Sharp auger knives in your mixer wagon save fuel
It will come as no surprise that it is difficult to cut properly with a blunt, worn knife. If the knives are blunt, an unnecessary amount of power is drawn from the tractor, and it takes longer to cut the feed into well-mixed rations. This is why it is definitely worth taking the time to inspect the knives regularly and replace them where required.
3. Hardware disease may arise from damaged knives
Damaged auger knives may cause hardware disease. Loose metal parts may end up in feed and present serious health risks for the animals. This is why you should regularly check (preferably every month) that the knives do not show any signs of cracks. It is also a good idea to place magnets in the mixer wagon to filter metal out of the feed.
Magnets for feed mixers
Magnets can prevent animal suffering. Every year, a lot of cows are injured after having ingested sharp, metal objects that entered their ration. By installing magnets in the mixer feeder wagon, these metal objects can be filtered out of the feed. Trioliet offers a variety of magnets in its product range: 1. an auger magnet, 2. suspended magnet rods above the conveyor belt (or chain) and 3. a magnet strip on the discharge chute of the side discharge door.
4. Sharp knives significantly reduce mixing times
The cutting action is better if the auger knives are in good condition. Worn or blunt knives cut less effectively, meaning it takes longer for the feed to be cut to the right length and mixed properly.
5. Less wear and tear on the auger and mixing tub
Sharp auger knives cut feed better and more quickly, making it easier for the feed to be transported and mixed through the mixing tub. If the knives are worn and cannot cut the feed properly, feed may build up between the auger and the wall. As a result, the mixing tub and the augers could suffer more wear and tear. In addition, shorter mixing times with sharp auger knives mean that the mixer wagon will not show signs of wear so soon.
Alongside these five reasons to keep your auger knives in a good condition, it is important that the right knives are fitted in the correct positions in order to be able to cut certain types of forage properly. By way of example, processing round bales requires long knives instead of short ones in certain positions. You should therefore check whether the knives in the mixer wagon are suited to the type of forage. In this video, we explain the best positions in which to install the knives.
Self-sharpening Trioform auger knives
Trioform auger knives from Trioliet are unique in shape, meaning they remain sharp for a relatively long time. The blade in these knives is through-tempered on the upper side and not on the lower side. As a result, the friction of the feed on the lower side ensures the knives are sharpened during each mixing process. Furthermore, the Trioform knives are installed horizontally, enabling the feed to be cut optimally and with the least resistance at all times.