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Thread: how to operate a square baler

  1. #1
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    how to operate a square baler

    due to the increasing price of hay this year i decided to buy an old square baler from one of my neighbours, its a new holland 274, he bought it at auction and didnt use it but was told it was in working order when sold, i have never used a baler before always bought in hay, can anyone explain to me how to use this machine

  2. #2
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    Re: how to operate a square baler

    Start with a handbook if you can find one for a NH or very similar model. I note the PTO shaft and fly wheel are not guarded properly so for christ's sake be careful. The baler is one very dangerous piece of equipment. 2 things do not get off the tractor seat without switching off the PTO and be very aware that the baler can free wheel at a certain point on the ram stroke and trap a hand, arm or head. Personally I would not use one myself without guards.

    This might be close: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/New-Holla...cAAOxywOtSXZcn

  3. #3
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    Re: how to operate a square baler

    Quote Originally Posted by essexpete View Post
    This one might be closer, Hayliner 274 https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/New-Holla....c100005.m1851

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    Re: how to operate a square baler

    Would it pay to hire someone experienced with balers (even someone retired and looking for some extra cash) to come in and teach you how to set it up and use it?

  5. #5
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    Re: how to operate a square baler

    Basically, the drawbar needs to be swung unto work position so you are picking up by running alongside a row.
    Lower the pickup reel so it's just above the ground.
    Put the PTO in gear at fast tickover and build up revs gradually as there's a heavy flywheel and lots of stuff hammering backwards and forwards.
    When picking up crop you need to be running at about 540rpm or everything will be stressed and you will break flywheel shearbolts, or block it completely - lovely job teasing bits out.
    You will likely break several shearbolts anyway especially if it's rusty inside when you start.
    There will inevitably be broken bales or incorrectly tied string aplenty, but generally things improve as knotters and chamber get shiney.
    Two screw handles near the back apply pressure making bales harder or softer
    Start with them pretty loose, and gradually tighten down one or two turns evenly each side. Usually you need to make a few changes as you advance over the field and the material gets drier or damper.
    It will be a lot easier if someone can start you off and shake out all the bales which need putting through again.
    If it won't tie try to watch what is gong wrong, it's not rocket science just try to understand what should happen and why it's going wrong.
    A common source of problems is twine running through too tight or not tight enough.
    Usually any knotter adjustments needed are very small - don't go mad.

    The large needles with twine threaded through MUST NOT be in the chamber when the ram is at the far end of it's stroke or bad things will happen.
    It can go horribly wrong if they are rusty and hay is not fit or bale is too solid.They should be locked out at that moment, but can stick inside if things are not right.

    There will be eleventy-million grease nipples and almost all are rather important to do at least once a day.

    As a novice hay maker establishing when the hay is ready will be an art in itself. It's getting rather late for hay but not impossible to bale dry for a few hours late in the day.

  6. #6
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    Re: how to operate a square baler

    have had the baler spinning over by hand and the shaft that pick ups the grass is not turning, there is what looks like a slip clutch on the chain end of this shaft, is there a shearbolt in this or pin or maybe the shaft is jammed or seized, have ordered a book for it of ebay and have found a local man who knows how these work so will hopefully help me out, yes will be careful with the guards for the shaft,

  7. #7
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    Re: how to operate a square baler

    baler only cost me £50 so need big deal if i cant get it working small bales are over£8 and big round hay is£63 where i stay so i am keen to try and make my own for next year

  8. #8
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    Re: how to operate a square baler

    Quote Originally Posted by aleary View Post
    baler only cost me £50 so need big deal if i cant get it working small bales are over£8 and big round hay is£63 where i stay so i am keen to try and make my own for next year
    £50 - if all else fails, you should be able to get that back by selling it for scrap metal

  9. #9
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    Re: how to operate a square baler

    If you get it checked over and running free have you got some straw you could run through it?

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