2017 Yield Monitor Calibration Checklist — Part II

(EDITOR’S NOTE: This is Part II of Tim Norris’ Yield Monitor Calibration checklist, Part I of which was published in print in our August 2017 issue of PrecisionAg® Professional, as well as online here.)

In The Field Steps

  1. Vibration Calibration: Improperly calibrated vibration can either cause you to not record real low grain flows, or it can cause you to record and count bushels when the combine is running but no grain is flowing through it, so it’s important you do a vibration calibration prior to harvest and anytime you make adjustments to your combine that could add to the vibration level.”
  2. Speed Sensor Module Calibration: For this step we want to avoid fields with waterways, because we want you to just lower the head once, harvest enough, and then raise the head once and not have the combine clean out. We want you to do one where you’re pretty much pushing and maxing that combine out, so it calibrates for the high-end, and then do one that’s the absolute lowest (bushels per hour) that you’re planning to harvest. Say you’re typically running 2200 bushels per hour, we kind of want to see you do one at 300 bushels per hour, at 400 bushels per hour, and then anywhere in between. You need to do at least 4 calibration loads, that’s the bare minimum, in both corn and beans. And we’d really like to see you calibrate your corn at 23% moisture and above, and when you get below 23% we’d like to see another calibration. For soybeans one calibration should be sufficient.
  3. Calibrate Moisture Proximity Sensor: You want to do this with the grain chamber empty and the sensor clean. We like you to get enough grain in the tank that you feel like you can get an accurate sample of the grain to do moisture calibration. Get good average moisture; test on certified moisture tester and then type that moisture in for that load. Call that load or region moisture test and continue to harvest. But you don’t want to add to that load or it will mess up calibration.
  4. Combine weight sensor calibration: you can calibrate weight one of three ways: use a weigh wagon; a grain cart with scales on it; or use a wagon or truck that you take to certified scale. The certified scale is our preference. We want to use that scale on as flat and level of ground as we can find, and dump a full load of grain in the middle of the weigh buggy so not overloading any one sensor, try to dump in the middle. After each dump we’d like to see you clean the tank out because it could read differently each time. Stay consistent and keep everything the same.
  5. Next, we’d like to have you run 4 to 6 calibration loads (of grain). They should vary between three and six thousand pounds of grain harvested, and we would like to have it at a consistent grain flow, so we would want to avoid the raising of the head for a waterway, so picking the right field is important. Ag Leader monitors feature a non-linear calibration process, so you have to calibrate for low, normal, high, and really high grain flow; You’d want to see one at 2600 bushels per hour (max capacity) 2300 bushels per hour (very high) 1800 (slightly below normal) 1500 (low) and 1000 (very low) and I’d like to have you name those regions (in the monitor) accordingly.

Ag Leader Announcement

According to Norris, Ag Leader has announced that it’s updating the calibration procedure, effective with InCommand version 2.5 or newer. The update will be released for fall harvest, and it will feature either a one or two load calibration. There will be no changes needed to any modules or hardware on the combine, it is purely a change to the operating system. “Depending on how accurate they would like to be if they want to be able to have the same level of Ag Leader accuracy that they are used to they can do a two load calibration,” Norris explains. “If they’re not concerned with the data being accurate within 1 to 2% go with the one load calibration.”

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