- There are too many variables to put an exact timeframe on roll life. Roll type, environment, hours of use, crop being harvested, and nutrition goals are all factors in determining when a roll has reached the end of its life.
- Every Horning roll is heat-treated to harden the steel for enhanced wear resistance. Heat-treated rolls with chrome plating have up to 3x more life than heat-treated only rolls.
Here are some things to look for:
- Reduction in processing quality (lower KP score)
- This is probably the clearest indicator of worn-out rolls.
- If you are seeing any whole kernels (or even large pieces of kernels) in your silage and your KP score is trending downward (in spite of proper adjustments), your rolls may be nearing the end of their life. An ideal KP score is 70 and above, while below 60 is poor.
- Depending on the material that you are processing, plugging can happen even with newer rolls. Some weeds, especially dead foxtail (or similar grasses) on a wet morning, tend to create these problems.
- If you are having any plugging issues, the problem will likely get progressively worse till the rolls are replaced.
- Inconsistent diameter
- New rolls will have a consistent diameter.
- As they wear, you may notice that the gaps at the ends of the rolls are no longer as close as the centers
- Dull cutting edges
- Unless you have purchased chrome-plated rolls, when your rolls are new the cutting edges will be sharp and pronounced. As they wear down, they will start to feel dull and the edges will become flatter. (Chrome-plated rolls do not have the razor-sharp edge that other rolls have.)
- If you find a lot of areas on the rolls that have been chipped or broken by foreign objects, you will need to start planning for replacements.
- Vibrations in your processor may be caused by several problems. On models using springs or washers, check to see if they are broken. When you remove the spring or washer stacks from the processor unit, measure them to see that the free length is still correct. If there is too much play or too little spring pressure, the roll will move excessively when feed is flowing through, causing a buzzing sound.
- A bent shaft will vibrate all the time it is rotating, not just under a load. But a loose bearing may or may not vibrate. If the bearing journals are worn or the shaft is bent, you will likely need to replace the shaft or install a new roll if the shaft is too badly worn.
- Having optimum cob grip and aggressive kernel processing action, Fibertech Chevron rolls are one of the best when processing corn silage.
- While a 20% differential was common in earlier machines, most current processor units but have been stepped up to a 30% differential. In the self-propelled industry, a 40% to 50% differential is common. This delivers the optimum processing action.
- Sawtooth roll configurations running at a 40% to 50% differential produce top kernel processing scores. Keep in mind that there are two ways to figure your differential speed.
- A tooth spacing combination of 3.5 or 4 grooves per inch on one roll and 4.5 grooves per inch on the other is optimum for corn silage in the self-propelled industry.
- For small-grain, whole-crop processing, testing has shown 6 grooves per inch using a Fibertech Chevron roll with a straight tooth roll produces excellent grain processing results.