Not satisfied with the no-till planter setups he’d tried, Keith Thompson of Osage City, Kan., decided to create something better to meet his needs. He believes the custom-built components he created could deliver to other no-tillers the improved results he now enjoys, and he’s put them on the market.
Here is his description of the planting challenges he faced and the modifications he made to overcome them.
Four basic challenges have to be overcome with no-till planters: Cut though residue and soil (takes weight and sharp discs); get seed into the bottom of the trench; firm seed into the soil at a uniform depth; and close the furrow by chopping the sidewall (this allows the seedling to emerge with little or no resistance).
By following these rules, we were able to do away with row cleaners, another plus. We tried several of the available spoked closing wheels on our early planting systems. It’s hard to think of anything on the market that we didn’t hang on the back of our planter from time to time.
It seemed that in our soils, they all were inconsistent. Seed would either be tossed out of the trench or stick to a clay buildup on the closing wheel teeth. So we decided to build a closing wheel that would work for us.
After trial and error with several different cutting patterns, my son Ben and I came up with one we liked. After testing it thoroughly, we were pleased to get…