Fancy round bale feeders

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Fritz3410

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Does anyone have any experience with these new zero waste feeders? We currently have the cheap ones, which work great, and are cheap to replace. But I wonder really what the $ amount of savings there might be with the nicer feeders. I am going to do my best to keep some good numbers this winter, then hopefully talk my partner into getting a few of the expensive ones for next year in order to compare. I have to think, if they do truly work, and not waste any of the bale, some serious cost savings have to be associated with that. Anyone keep any numbers on something like this??
Fritz
 

backhoeboogie

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Caustic posted a pic of one he built a few years back. I took an old tampoline frame and built two. They worked so good I built more. I have 14 now built out of 7 old trampoline frames. There is virtually no hay wasted.

I was wasting something like 30 percent with the rings. After the hay gets down to about half, the cows push the ring off of the hay, lay in it, poop in it, squash it down into the dirt etc. That never happens any more.

All the old trampoline frames were given to me. I've probably got 6 hours and $10 into each of the feeders. Most of the cost is wire panel pieces and welding rod.

If this photo link works, it is one of the first ones I built. Everything there is scrap or short iron (drop pieces from jobs I've done) except for the wire panel piece welded into the bottom of the cradle. (edited as the pic is now posted below)
 

backhoeboogie

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By the way, there are two or three threads from way back talking about these things. You may want to try the search feature on this board.

You can spend a lot of nickels on the store bought ones. I guess I am too cheap to do that. But if you are feeding 500 round bales a year, and you only save an additional 10%, you're saving 50 bales. I feel I am saving 30% versus the rings. Especailly so on really wet winters.
 

dun

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Is that what they are actully called, the elevated type? Zero waste feeders?
 

backhoeboogie

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Dun, The ones I have seen in person look like a concave merry go round. I have seen others on the net.

I call mine hay cradles. Don't know if that's right or not but everyone familiar with them (family etc) knows what I speak of.
 

dun

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backhoeboogie":clppg7co said:
Dun, The ones I have seen in person look like a concave merry go round. I have seen others on the net.

I call mine hay cradles. Don't know if that's right or not but everyone familiar with them (family etc) knows what I speak of.
That was kind of the problem. Whehe term "new zero waste" was used I wasn;t sure and still aren;t what exactly they're talking about
 

backhoeboogie

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After googling "zero waste hay feeders" a lot of hay cradle designs came up. Also a lot of hits for land fills :D
 

BeefmasterB

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dun":14iv9zgn said:
backhoeboogie":14iv9zgn said:
Dun, The ones I have seen in person look like a concave merry go round. I have seen others on the net.

I call mine hay cradles. Don't know if that's right or not but everyone familiar with them (family etc) knows what I speak of.
That was kind of the problem. Whehe term "new zero waste" was used I wasn;t sure and still aren;t what exactly they're talking about

It looks like the cradle (good idea, BTW!) suspends the hay so it doesn't draw any moisture from the ground like a traditional hay ring would allow-------therefore---zero waste. I saw one similar to this near Belleville except it was installed under an open sided shed, was lower to the ground and had a swing gate at one of the concave ends for inserting the round bale.
 

dun

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backhoeboogie":1xik5df6 said:
After googling "zero waste hay feeders" a lot of hay cradle designs came up. Also a lot of hits for land fills :D
I did that yesterday and all I came up with were goat and horse feeders. Maybe I misplled hay or zero
 

backhoeboogie

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1982vett":3iq16qvd said:
Zero is a stretch for sure. :nod:

Indeed. There is waste when the hay is put into an aisle and protected as much as possible. That hay in the pic is an old bale used to test and as you can see fines fall through. But with good quality hay, calves seem to pick up the fines off of the ground.

There is definately less waste. I am going to try this pic again. Note that it takes 8 gussets at the corners and two off of the bottom. The gussets are what give it strength. They are light but strong and I can load one in a pick-up by myself.

feeder3.jpeg
 

1982vett

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backhoeboogie":3lun423p said:
1982vett":3lun423p said:
Zero is a stretch for sure. :nod:

Indeed. There is waste when the hay is put into an aisle and protected as much as possible. That hay in the pic is an old bale used to test and as you can see fines fall through. But with good quality hay, calves seem to pick up the fines off of the ground.

There is definately less waste. I am going to try this pic again. Note that it takes 8 gussets at the corners and two off of the bottom. The gussets are what give it strength. They are light but strong and I can load one in a pick-up by myself.

feeder3.jpeg
I think that is what Dun is getting at. I know I was.
 

backhoeboogie

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Vett, Since I have the welder and can weld plus had the time to do it over a couple of year's time, my cost is very little. If it were only a 5% savings over 300 bales, that's 15 bales a year more I could sell. I could sell another 225 right now if I had them.

The next factor is teeth wear from eating the hay off of the ground in the sandy loam. I have no way to measure that either. I just assume there may be less grinding since it is so sandy is some of the pastures.

They are easier for me to handle versus the rings.

I am thankful CB put me on to this concept. It is too bad I can't tell you more or give you actual savings. There's no way to prove anything except observation and swag.
 

OLF

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Hay_feeder.jpg


Here is what we use. I wouldn't call it zero waste, but it is much better than a hay ring on the ground. The design is a good one. It holds the hay up in the air, and the slanted bars are supposed to stop the cows from taking a bite and then pulling their heads out and dropping the hay on the ground. The dropped hay should stay in the tub below the hay, so they have a second chance to eat it. The quality of the hay makes a big difference. Great hay, they'll eat every bit of it. Poor quality hay and they leave what they don't want in the tub. As you can see, they also get the hay on the ground. Cleaning that tub after it has filled up and been rained on many times is no fun. I guess a cover over it would be ideal, but it would be difficult loading the bales.
 

backhoeboogie

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Busterz":17f2zm7g said:
This is what I thought he might be refering to:
http://www.gobobpipe.com/goBobOrangeOxH ... Feeder.htm

Looks like they've added some bale cradles too which makes it similar to the ones above.

What I do like are the ones you could flip over to clean out. Also the lighter ones would be easy to move pasture to pasture as I do with my others now.
 

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