CROPS HAVE BEEN CONSISTENTLY GOOD,
AND KANSAS COOP NEEDED A
PLACE FOR THEM
The size of
Kansas crops can vary from year to year, depending largely on
the weather. But at Agri Producers Inc.’s branch elevator in
Lincolnville, KS the volume in recent years has
been consistently high. “Grain receipts have been good,” says
General Manager Stan Utting. “We’ve put milo on the ground
several of those years".
The Lincolnville location in particular, on the edge of the
Kansas Flint Hills region, is the farthest of all Agri Producers
locations from the area’s rail terminals. That means
transporting the crop out can be a challenge, so the cooperative
board decided to add some additional storage this year at
Lincolnville, which has siding for a maximum of eight railcars.
Specifically, the board spent $620,000 to build a new
288,000-bushel jumpform concrete tank right next to the main
construct the project, the cooperative hired the team of
McPherson Concrete Storage, McPherson, KS.
“They built our silos at Tampa in 1978 and at Durham three years
Utting says. “Also, we like the fact that they’re local, within
40 miles of
Construction on the tank at Lincolnville began in January 2005,
and the project was completed by June 1, in time for wheat
The new McPherson tank stands 60 feet in diameter and 116 feet
tall. The flat-bottom tank is outfitted with a 12-inch
Hutchinson sweep auger and 11-cable Rolfes@ Boone grain
temperature monitoring system.
A set of four 50-hp AIRLANCO centrifugal fans and four 2-hp roof
exhausters provide 1/11 cfm per bushel of aeration on coarse
grains and 1/12 cfm on wheat through in-floor aeration ducting.
Agri Producers loads the new tank from an existing outside leg
via a new 10,000-bph InterSystems overhead drag conveyor.
The tank feeds grain back to an existing house leg at 5,000 bph
via a Frisbie unloading auger.
“The new tank is in a good location, and it’s been a good fit
for us,” Utting comments. Ed Zdrojewski, editor
New Branch Elevator
KANSAS COOP MOVES FACILITY OUT OF TOWN
INTO WHEAT COUNTRY
Cairo Coop Equity Exchange had a
serviceable wood and steel branch
elevator in the town of Calista, KS on what is now the Kansas & Oklahoma short-line
railroad. However, that location had only 90,000
bushels worth of storage, little space to expand, and the
cooperative was doing its rail loading at two other locations.
“We decided it was time to move and build a new elevator at a
location right in the middle of some very good wheat country,”
says General Manager Ed Laing, who came to Cairo Coop five years
ago from Valley Cooperative in Winfield, KS. The new site is
seven miles south of Callista at the intersection of two paved
county roads, providing easy access for grain haulers.
says he and his board of directors admired the workmanship on
the jumpform concrete tanks built by McPherson Concrete Storage,
Construction began in March 2005. The smaller of the two tanks
was ready in time for wheat harvest and turned four times in
2005. The larger tank was ready June 23.
The New Elevator
The new Calista facility is a 300,000-bushel jumpform concrete
elevator featuring two tanks, one standing 48x120 feet and
holding 200,000 bushels,
and the other standing 36x120 feet and
holding 100,000. Both tanks have McPherson concrete hopper
bottoms at a 37-degree angle, truck sidedraws, and GEE screw
augers for emptying. The larger tank contains an eightcable
Rolfes@Boone grain temperature monitoring system and four 25-hp
Boone centrifugal fans that supply 1/5 cfm of air per bushel.
The numbers on the smaller tank are six cables and four 15-hp
The facility also includes a small wood-frame office building
adjacent to an 80-foot Mettler-Toledo pitless scale and JaHam
Incoming trucks then proceed to a 500-bushel mechanical pit that
into a 15,000-bph GSI leg. The leg is outfitted with 16x8
Maxi-Lift Tiger Tuff low profile buckets mounted on an 18-inch
Fenner Dunlop belt.
The leg feeds grain into a four-hole Patterson distributor. Two
of the holes are currently in use, reaching either tank via
gravity spout. The site has plenty of space to add two more
tanks in the future, as needed.
The hopper augers in the two tankscan carry grain up to a pair
for loading trucks. Alternatively, they can empty directly back
into the leg’s boot section. Ed Zdrojewski, editor
Move Into West Kansas
SCOULAR CO. DOES A SUBSTANTIAL UPGRADE AFTER ACQUIRING SULLIVAN
A little over a year has passed
since The Scoular Company purchased its Coolidge, KS
grain-handling facility from Sullivan, Incorporated. But what a
year it’s been.
Located on the Kansas-Colorado state line, the Cooledge facility
has undergone a major transformation, emerging as an upgraded
facility capable of loading or unloading 110-car shuttle trains
on the BNSF
According to Scoular Senior Vice President Chuck Elsea, “The
of the Coolidge facility enables our company to provide better
service and more consistent markets to area country elevator and
“Our ability to load out shuttle units provides our end-user
customers in both the United States and Mexico with an
additional reliable source of quality wheat and sorghum. And we
also have the capability of serving dairy and cattle feed lot
customers with inbound shipments of corn.”
Scoular added 480,000 bushels of upright concrete storage and
related grain handling equipment, a 60,000-bph bulk weigh loadout
system, and an approximately one-mile-long rail siding adjacent
to the BNSF line.
The company brought in McPherson Concrete Storage, McPherson, KS
as contractors on
“HABCO and Watson Electric have both completed various jobs for
Scoular over the years,” said Jim Foltz, Scoular’s senior
operations manager in Coolidge. “They have the size, capability,
knowledge of the industry, and a history in western Kansas. The
quality of McPherson tanks is well-known throughout the area.”
Work on the facility got underway in May 2005 and was completed
by the following October.
The new McPherson tank was deliberately designed to hold a full
trainload of grain to fill a 110-car BNSF shuttle train. The
concrete tank stands 72 feet in diameter and 128-1/2 feet tall.
The tank has an in-ground 37-degree concrete hopper bottom,
which is outfitted with a 24-inch HABCOmanufactured unloading
The tank has no grain temperature monitoring system, but it is
with Monitor level indicators and a set of four 40-hp AIRLANCO
centrifugal fans capable of supplying 1/15 cfm per bushel worth
of aeration on small grains.
A new 500-bushel gravity hopper pit was constructed on the rail
side of the elevator, with the capability of dumping both trucks
and railcars. This feeds into a 50,000-bph InterSystems leg
positioned between the new tank and the existing concrete house.
The leg is equipped with two rows of Maxi-Lift 24x8 Tiger Tuff
buckets mounted on a 51-inch Goodyear belt.
The leg empties into a series of two-way diverters, which allows
it to reach the new tank, the new bulk weigher, or a new
50,000-bph Hi Roller enclosed belt converyor running out to the
existing concrete structure. An existing 12,000-bph leg also can
send grain to the bulkweigher.
The 60,000-bph InterSystems bulk
weigh loadout scale is equipped with an InterSystems MasterWeigh
Millennium controller and is capable of loading a 110-car train
in about 12 hours. Foltz notes that Scoular has loaded several
trains at Coolidge since the project was completed.
The company brought in RailWorks Track Group, Jacksonville, FL
(866 905-7245), to build a milelong siding track adjacent to the
BNSF main line from used 112-lb. rail and wood ties. The siding
is long enough to hold an entire unit train without decoupling.
Also built adjacent to the new tracks is a 190-foot HABCO
trolley fall protection unit spanning the length of three
covered hopper cars. “We’ve had to do our share of finetuning
and personnel training (on the new construction),” Foltz says,
“but or the most part, it’s worked out real well.” Ed
NEW TANK HELPS NEBRASKA ELEVATOR PERFORM
UNDER THE PRESSURE OF FALL HARVEST
The fall harvest rush is a
challenging time for most elevator managers, but it was
particularly tough at the 1.3-million-bushel facility operated
by DeBruce Grain Inc. at
Manager Beay Heppler notes that prior to the 2002 harvest, the
concrete elevator had only 10 tanks for storage and one for
blending, which limited the facility’s flexibility when large
quantities of both corn and soybeans are coming in by the
It helped that the Clarks elevator had up to 4 million bushels
worth of additional space to store corn in a temporary pile
outdoors. “But we were still having to ship grain at harvest
instead of waiting on the market to keep the elevator from
filling up completely,” says Heppler, who became manager at
Clarks in April 2002 following three years as a merchandiser at
a DeBruce elevator in Fremont, NE.
Sometimes, all it takes to relieve the harvest pressure is a
little more storage space.
DeBruce management studied the
situation at Clarks and concluded that would be the case there.
The company built a new 360,000-bushel jumpform concrete tank at
the east end of the elevator, along a Union Pacific main line
and U.S. Highway 30.
DeBruce Grain hired McPherson Concrete Storage,
McPherson, KS to construct the new tank. McPherson recently had completed the
construction of two similar jumpform tanks at another DeBruce
elevator in Nebraska City, NE, and the company had been pleased with
their work there.
Construction on the tank at Clarks began in mid-April and was
completed on Sept. 25, just in time for the 2002 harvest.
Heppler comments that concrete was the way to go on the project,
given its durability when frequently filled and emptied. In
order to deal with unfavorable soil conditions, however, the new
tank required a series of concrete pilings 100 feet deep beneath
The new tank stands 60 feet in diameter and 140 feet tall. The
flat-bottom tank is outfitted with a Bobcat door to admit a skid
steer loader for cleanout. It also is equipped with a four-cable
Rolfes grain temperature monitoring system and Monitor
Technologies level indicators.
At this point, the tank is not aerated, but in-floor ducting and
fittings for aeration fans were included so that it can be added
later. The tank also has two 2-hp roof exhausters and slots or
three additional exhausters, for when an aeration system is
An overhead 20,000-bph Hi Roller enclosed belt conveyor, with a
belt, carries grain out to the new tank from the facility’s main
concrete house. A 40,000-bph Hi Roller, constructed
above-ground, takes reclaim grain back to existing legs.
Like the tanks built at Nebraska City, the new tank at Clarks is
equipped with a DeBruce “cushion spout,” which serves as a sort
of external grain
ladder for the tank. The cushion spout was designed by DeBruce
engineers, with assistance from HABCO. Unlike the spouts at
Nebraska City, which were 60 feet long and had one inlet into
the tank, the spout at Clarks is 85 feet long and has two
inlets, at 55 feet (A) and 95 feet (B) up the tank
Incoming grain drops down the
cushion spout to the 55-foot inlet (A), which interrupts the
fall of the grain and protects it from breakage. As the tank
fills, a level indicator shuts off the deadbox gate at the 55-
foot level and opens the gate at 95 feet. When the tank is
filled to that
level, a two-way diverter sends grain to another spout on top of
the tank. Ed Zdrojewski, editor
VENTURE ADDS CONCRETE STORAGE,
BULK WEIGH LOADER
The rich farmland
of north central Kansas presented a prime
marketing opportunity to ship hard red winter
wheat and grain sorghum to domestic and overseas
customers for Scoular Co., the regional grain
merchandiser based in Omaha, NE. That was the
prime motivating factor in 2002, when Scoular
purchased the privately-held, 625,000-bushel
Tetlow Grain Co. elevator in Downs, KS from
owner John Tetlow.
According to Curt Engel, general manager for
Scoular’s grain handling operations based in
Salina, KS, the Downs location offered a lot of
plusses for the company. “It was in a prime
location, with sufficient trackage to handle
100-car shuttle trains,” he says. The facility
is located on the Kyle Railroad, a short-line
connecting with the Union Pacific in Salina.
What the facility didn’t have, Engel notes, was
a high-speed bulk weigh loadout system,
sufficient upright storage for loading trains,
or enough truck unloading capacity for the peak
The Scoular Co. and Morrison Ventures Inc.,
Salina, formed a joint venture, Solomon Valley
LLC, to purchase and upgrade the facility. Cost
of the upgrade project is confidential.
Storage, McPherson, KS as the
builder of two new jumpform concrete tanks.
While the site already had sufficient trackage
to handle 100-car trains, numerous ties and
portions of track needed to be replaced to
handle newer high-capacity covered hopper cars.
Construction broke ground near the end of
December 2002, and the new tanks were ready to
be filled at wheat harvest in June 2003. Scoular
loaded its first shuttle train in September.
The Solomon Valley LLC rail-loading terminal at
Downs, KS includes a 1.12-million-bushel
jumpform concrete train-loading annex. McPherson Concrete built two new jumpform
concrete tanks at the east end of the property.
Both are 144 feet tall, but one is 76 feet in
diameter, holding 545,000 bushels, and the other
is 78 feet in diameter, holding 575,000 bushels.
The two flat-bottom tanks are equipped with
Bobcat doors, eliminating the need for a sweep
auger. Both tanks also are equipped with monitor
level indicators. A set of four Alanco 50-hp
centrifugal fans per tank provide 1/10 cfm per
bushel worth of aeration through a downdraft
system. Air enters the tanks through roof
HABCO crews installed a 900-bushel mechanical
receiving pit between the two tanks. A
20,000-bph InterSystems drag conveyor feeds grain from the
pit into the boot section of a 20,000-bph
leg. The leg is outfitted with 20x8 Tiger Tuff
heavy-duty, low-profile buckets on 7-inch
centers, mounted on a 22-inch Goodyear belt. The
belt is driven by a pair of 75-hp Siemens motors
through a pair of Dodge speed reducers, and is
operating at a belt speed of 720 fpm. The head
section of the leg delivers grain directly to a
eight-hole Hayes & Stolz distributor. The
distributor discharges to the new tanks either
via gravity spouts, down a pair of 20,000-bph
InterSystems drag conveyors with several
into the tanks or directly to the CompuWeigh
Each of the new tanks have side-draw spouts to
conveyors leading to both the rail-loading and
truck receiving legs. Alternatively, they empty
onto 20,000-bph InterSystems drag conveyors in
below- ground tunnels, which transport grain
back to the receiving leg. The 45,000-bph
shipping leg, which is outfitted with two rows
of 20x8 Tiger Tuff low-profile buckets mounted
on a 44-inch Goodyear belt. This leg delivers
grain directly to a 50,000-bph CompuWeigh bulk
weigh load-out system, under the control of a
CompuWeigh GMS-4000 control system.
includes CompuWeigh’s SmartLoad option which
automatically cycles the first two drafts of the
succeeding car to minimize equipment shutdown.
A trackside 240-foot HABCO trolley-type rail
system protects workers atop railcars for four
HABCO crews also installed a 20,000-bph Hi
Roller enclosed belt conveyor, running
above-ground from the main concrete workhouse to
the loadout leg, providing another option for
moving grain to the bulkweigher.
In addition to the loadout annex, Solomon Valley
installed a new 80-foot Apollo pitless truck
scale for weighing incoming grain trucks. Ahead
of the scale is a new Gamet truck probe.
Shorter Lines, Happier
KANSAS COOP ADDS STORAGE,
FASTER GRAIN HANDLING EQUIPMENT
During the 2004 harvest, the truck lines during
the summer and fall harvest seasons at the Two Rivers Consumers
elevator in Geuda Springs, KS, sometimes
took as long as an hour and 40 minutes to negotiate.
“This caused a lot of tension for our producers, especially
between haulers using semis and haulers with smaller trucks,”
comments General Manager Kevin Kelly, a 22-year veteran of the
Arkansas City, KS-based coop.
The long lines, as much as anything, was the reason the Two
Rivers board of directors authorized a $1.3 million project to
add 320,000 bushels worth of upright concrete storage, install
new 15,000-bph grain handling equipment, and reroute truck
traffic through the property.
Making these upgrades necessitated the removal of two steel
buildings from the south side of the Geuda Springs property. One
was used for inventory and equipment storage, while the other
housed a liquid nitrogen and chemical blending operation.
The coop moved the fertilizer plant into another building on the
north side of the property that had been leased to a local
This building was remodeled to include a regulation concrete
containment with sloped floor. The new containment holds all of
the plant’s fertilizer and chemical storage tanks, mixing
equipment, and truck-loading equipment.
For the new construction, Two Rivers hired McPherson Concrete
Storage, McPherson, KS to construct two
160,000-bushel jumpform concrete tanks.
"We’ve used McPherson tanks for
a lot of years and have been really happy with them,” Kelly
comments. “Leaming is located only 12 miles away, across the
state line, and they’ve provided excellent service in terms of
maintenance and repairs over the years.” Teardown of the old
buildings began in November 2004. The project was completed in
June 2005, in time for wheat harvest.
McPherson built a pair of 160,000-bushel jumpform concrete tanks
standing 44 feet in diameter and 120 feet tall. These
flat-bottom tanks are outfitted with 10-inch Hutchinson/Mayrath
sweep augers, five-cable Rolfes@Boone grain temperature
monitoring systems, Binmaster level monitors, and sidedraw
spouts for truck loading.
A pair of 20-hp Tiernan centrifugal fans on the bottom and a
2-hp exhaust fan on the top pull air up through the grain mass
at a rate of approximately 1/12 cfm per bushel. Adjacent to the
new tanks, a pair of 250-bushel mechanical receiving pits feed
grain to a 15,000-bph leg manufactured by Leaming Construction.
The leg is outfitted with two rows of Maxi-Lift HDMax 12x8
buckets mounted on 10-inch centers on a 27-inch Scandura PVC
belt from Rubber Belting & Hose and is powered by a 100-hp
Baldor motor and Dodge speed reducer.
The leg deposits grain into a sixhole Leaming Construction
rotary distributor. From there, grain can reach the four new
tanks or a 3,500-bushel overhead truck-loading surge tank via
16-inch gravity spouting with highimpact Rhino-Hyde urethane
liner from Rubber Belting & Hose. Grain also can reach two
existing tanks via an overhead conveyor.z
The new tanks are emptied by Hutchinson/Mayrath augers, which
convey grain to one of the new receiving pits. In addition, Two
Rivers installed a 30-foot-tall dryer leg, which takes grain
from an existing dryer and boosts it into one of the new tanks.
“So far,” Kelly notes, “we’ve reduced the waiting time to
deliver grain to less than 15 minutes and have created
substantial savings.” Ed Zdrojewski, editor.
New Shuttle Loader
NEW TANK, BULK WEIGH SCALE LETS COOP LOAD
CORN AND SOYBEANS BACK TO BACK
Prior to 2003, United Farmers
Cooperative was able to load 100-car shuttle trains at its two
elevators in Shelby, NE, but it couldn’t quite make the Union
Pacific Railroad’s (UP) 15-hour time limit to avoid demurrage
Fixing that problem was the focus of a major expansion at the
coop’s east elevator in Shelby, says General Manager Jerry
Johnson, completed in September 2003. The coop added a huge
440,000-bushel jumpform concrete tank, roughly doubling the
elevator’s storage capacity, and installed a 60,000-bph bulk
weigh loadout scale.
“Now we can load a corn and a soybean train back to back, and we
can load a 100- car train in under 10 hours,” says Area Manager
After reviewing design proposals from four construction firms,
United Farmers selected Frisbie Construction Co. Inc., Gypsum,
KS (785-536-4288), as contractor and millwright on the project
and McPherson Concrete Storage, McPherson, KS as
concrete tank builder.
Construction broke ground in February 2003. Cost of the project
McPherson constructed the new tank at the west end of the
elevator. It stands 72 feet in diameter and 124 feet tall. The
flat-bottom tank is outfitted with a 12-inch Vault sweep auger
but no temperature monitoring system. A set of four Tiernan
30-hp centrifugal fans provide 1/10 cfm per bushel worth of
aeration in corn. Meanwhile, Frisbie crews installed a
1,000-bushel enclosed mechanical receiving pit on the south side
of the elevator, outfitted with a E.J. Heck & Sons dust
A 20,000-bph GSI enclosed belt conveyor from the pit feeds into
a new GSI 60,000-bph combination receiving and loadout leg
located between the existing elevator and the new tank. The leg
is equipped with three rows of Tapco 20x8 heavy-duty,
low-profile buckets, mounted on a 64-inch Scandura belt,
supplied by Rubber Belting & Hose.
The leg is powered by dual-drive Dodge Reliance 200-hp motors,
which allows the leg to be operated at half capacity if one of
the motors should fail.
At the top of the leg, a three-way diverter valve can send grain
either to the new tank, to the bulkweigher, or to the existing
concrete house via a pair of 20,000-bph GSI drag conveyors. The
new tank empties at 60,000- bph via gravity spout into the new
leg boot. A Frisbie 15,000-bph auger is used to complete
A new 30,000-bph Hi Roller
enclosed belt conveyor in an existing tunnel collects grain from
the east two tanks and takes it to the new leg, while the west
two tanks gravity directly to the boot section of the leg.
The leg, operating at full capacity, can deliver grain to a new
60,000-bph InterSystems bulk weigh loadout scale under the
control of AGRIS oneWeigh® software. The system includes an
AGRIS SmartPassTM RF tag reader. Ed Zdrojewski,
KANSAS COOP EXPANDS BRANCH LOCATION TO
IMPROVE BASIS FOR MEMBERS
Producer-members of LeRoy Coop
Association have made their wishes quite clear – they prefer to
hold their crops locally than ship them to a rail terminal. That
saves on fuel costs and often provides a better basis.
That was good reason for
expanding storage at the cooperative’s Westphalia, KS branch
elevator but not the only one, says Westphalia
Manager Butch Ludolph. (Ludolph joined the coop in 1996 after
managing a trucking company.)
Producers are planting more corn acreage than they used to,
which yields a higher bushel volume of grain than wheat or
sorghum. Ludolph notes that corn has a higher feed value than
the other two grains, and the construction of a new ethanol
plant nearby in Garnett, KS, will boost demand for corn even
further. And adding a new, higher-capacity receiving pit will
move the trucks in and out of the coop’s in-town location faster
during harvest. And the site on Warne Street has space for four
more upright concrete tanks, in addition to the two constructed
LeRoy Coop hired McPherson Concrete Storage, McPherson, KS
to build a pair of 200,000-bushel jumpform
Construction on the project began in late May 2004 with the
demolition of an old warehouse, a building that had stood on the
site since 1892 but was not in salvageable state. (The coop is
building a new warehouse for equipment one block to the east.)
The project was completed in
early August 2005 just in time for fall harvest. The cost is
The two large tanks stand 52 feet in diameter and 112 feet tall.
The flatbottom tanks are outfitted with 12- inch Hutchinson/Mayrath
sweep augers, eight-cable Rolfes@Boone grain temperature
monitoring systems, and BinMaster mechanical full-bin
A set of two 30-hp AIRLANCO
centrifugal fans per tank provide 1/10 cfm per bushel worth of
aeration through infloor ducting in an “H” pattern, with the
assistance of three 2-hp roof exhausters per
tank. Adjacent to the new tanks, crews dug a new 400-bushel
mechanical receiving pit. The new pit feeds a 15,000-bph Frisbie
leg, which is outfitted with 18x8 Tapco heavy-duty buckets on
9-inch centers, mounted on a 20-inch IBT PVC belt.
The leg deposits grain into a six-hole Schlagel electronic
rotary distributor, which in turn, sends grain onto a pair of
15,000-bph InterSystems drag conveyors running out to the new
The tanks are outfitted with sidedraw spouts for truck-loading
or can be emptied by Frisbie augers back into the new leg. The
distributor also can reach a 2,300-bushel surge tank, which is
used for overhead truck loading. “It will take 4-1/2 to five
minutes to unload a semi load of 1,200 bushels of corn,” Ludolph
says. Ed Zdrojewski, editor
NEBRASKA COOP REPLACES OBSOLETE STORAGE
WITH NEW CONCRETE
Back in the 1970s, when the
Commodity Credit Corp. paid grain handlers to store government-
owned grain, many elevator managers found it profitable to erect
a lot of small, inexpensive, steel storage tanks to hold that
Those days are long gone, and until last fall, Farmers Union
Co. found itself in possession of nearly 200,000 bushels worth
of obsolete steel tanks at its truck house in Friend, NE.
Last year, the cooperative board agreed to replace those tanks
with a new 200,000- bushel jumpform concrete tank. General
Manager Ed Menke, who took over his position in January
following the retirement of 13-year veteran General Manager
Dennis Heng, says the board also decided to add a new receiving
pit and leg. “An extra dump pit helps keep the trucks moving,”
For the project, Farmers Union Cooperative hired McPherson
Concrete Storage, McPherson, KS to build the jumpform concrete tank. Menke notes that this
team has built two other concrete tanks at Friend.
Work on the $800,000 project got underway in September 2004 and
completed by December.
The new tank, officially rated at 183,000 bushels capacity,
stands 50 feet in diameter and 116 feet tall. The flat-bottom
tank is outfitted with a 10-inch Klean Sweep sweep auger and
seven-cable Rolfes@Boone grain temperature monitoring system. Up
to 1/10 cfm per bushel of aeration on corn is provided by a pair
of 50-hp AIRLANCO centrifugal fans and three 2-hp roof
The new 300-bushel mechanical receiving pit is located between
the new tank and the two older McPherson jumpform tanks. It
feeds a new 10,000- bph GSI leg, which is outfitted with 13x7
Maxi-Lift HD-MAX Hypro buckets mounted on a 14-inch Scandura
rubber belt supplied by All-State Belting.
The leg empties grain into a six-hole CMF rotary distributor.
One of the holes is capped off for now. The rest of the openings
allow grain to move into the two older jumpforms via gravity
spout, onto a 10,000-bph GSI drag conveyor running out to the
new tank, or onto an existing drag conveyor running back to the
The new tank has a pair of sidedraws for loading trucks or
another sidedraw that empties back into the new receiving pit
“So far, everything has worked great,” Menke commented in June,
noting that the new tank had been filled with corn over the
winter and has not yet been emptied. Ed Zdrojewski,
River Terminal Expansion
DEBRUCE GRAIN ADDS STORAGE, UPGRADES
RECEIVING AND LOADOUT IN NEBRASKA
DeBruce Grain Inc.’s Missouri
River barge- and rail-loading terminal in Nebraska City, NE, has
been one of the regional grain company’s larger facilities. At
the beginning of 2001, DeBruce Grain had roughly 850,000 bushels
worth of upright concrete storage and about 2.5 million bushels
worth of flat storage.
According to Area Manager Marvin Hachmeister, at DeBruce Grain’s
headquarters office in Kansas City, MO, the terminal needed more
storage capacity and faster equipment in order to continue
serving farmer-customers. “The size of farming operations
continues to grow, and more farmers are driving semis,” he says.
“We needed more speed to
handle the volume of grain that was surging during harvest.”
In the summer of 2001, DeBruce Grain undertook a year-long
project to add roughly 1.27 million bushels of upright concrete
storage at Nebraska City, upgrade receiving capacity in the
existing concrete house, and upgrade rail and barge loading
capacity, and additionally, a 2-million bushel ground pile
For this project, the company
hired McPherson Concrete Storage, McPherson, KS to build a pair of 635,000-bushel jumpform concrete tanks.
The tanks were completed in time for fall harvest. All work on
the project is scheduled for completion in July 2002.
According to Nebraska City Location Manager Ray Pinney, the new
McPherson flat-bottom tanks stand 80 feet in diameter and 140
feet tall. They are equipped with Bobcat doors to admit front
end loaders for emptying the tanks. Because DeBruce Grain
anticipates quick turnaround
the new tanks, they have neither grain temperature monitoring
equipment nor aeration. However, the concrete floors contain
ductwork, and aeration could be added as needed in the future.
Adjacent to the new tanks is a 750- bushel gravity receiving
pit. As of press time, HABCO was in the process of installing a
dust collection system utilizing a cyclone-type dust reclaim
system, plus an oil-type dust suppression system on the pit. The
pit feeds a 20,000-bph GSI receiving leg, which is outfitted
with 20x8 Maxi-Lift Tiger-Tuff low-profile
At the top of the leg, grain has two routes into the tanks,
separated by a two-way diverter valve. To fill the bottom half
of the tanks, grain is sent down Rhino-Hyde-lined spouts running
down the side of each tank, entering the tank about halfway
down. By breaking the grain’s fall, this reduces damage and
Once the tanks are filled to the level of the spout entrance,
grain is diverted onto a pair of 20,000-bph InterSystems drag
conveyors to fill the balance of the tanks. The tanks empty onto
a below ground, 50,000-bph Hi Roller Hi- Life belt conveyor,
with a 42-inch belt.
The conveyor takes grain to a new 50,000-bph InterSystems
loadout leg, which is outfitted with three rows of 16x8
Maxi-Lift Tiger-Tuff low-profile buckets.
At the existing concrete house, workers nearly doubled receiving
capacity to 10,500 bph for an inside leg and 15,000 bph on an
outside leg. This was done by switching from standard to
low-profile buckets and installing new, higher-horsepower
Siemens motors and Falk speed reducers.
Still being installed as of press time was a 50,000-bph
bulk weigh loadout scale, which will be run by CompuWeigh Grain
Management System (GMS) software. The GMS will utilize RF tag
readers to calculate origin weights for each railcar, thus
speeding up the loading of shuttle trains on the Union Pacific.
“The new tanks are in operation now, and they’re working out
really well,” Pinney comments. Ed Zdrojewski, editor
Rebuilding with Concrete
AFTER TORNADO, OKLAHOMA ELEVATOR ADDS
RAIL RECEIVING OPERATION
The morning after Memorial Day in
2001, workers at the W.B. Johnston Grain Co. elevator in
Shattuck, OK, arrived to find that much of the elevator was
gone. In the middle of the night, a tornado had destroyed some
700,000 bushels worth of steel grain storage, a leg, and an
overhead fertilizer loadout structure. The facility’s original
1970s-era concrete workhouse survived the storm more or less
While losing so much of the facility was a disaster, it was also
an opportunity says Troy Rigel, merchandiser for the privately
held, Enid, OK-based grain company. The Shattuck facility could
be rebuilt with more storage than it had before and the ability
to load 110-car trains on the Burlington Northern Santa Fe. In
addition, the company decided to install rail receiving
equipment to serve area livestock producers in this “grain
deficit” part of western Oklahoma.
steel storage once stood, now stand three jumpform concrete
tanks holding more than 1 million bushels among them. Also new
at Shattuck are two 25,000 bushel legs, a new scale, new rail
shed and rail unloading pit, new conveying equipment, and half a
mile of new siding track.
W.B. Johnston Grain served as its own general contractor on the
rebuild. The company hired McPherson
Concrete Storage, McPherson, KS was brought in
to construct the jumpform concrete tanks.
Construction began in August 2002, and everything was completed
by August 2003.
McPherson Concrete built three jumpform concrete tanks holding
450,000 bushels each. The tanks, which have 37-degree concrete
hopper bottoms, stand 72 feet in diameter and 132 feet tall.
HABCO fabricated an inclined auger to assist with unloading.
The tanks contain no grain temperature monitoring system or
aeration, though cutouts are available to install an aeration
system later, if needed. They do have Monitor rotary level
monitors and a Kistler-Morse
ultrasound level detection system.
Grain Handling Equipment
Between the new tanks and the old concrete house, two new
25,000-bph InterSystems legs were installed. “We wanted the
flexibility to empty two tanks at once or to handle wheat and
corn simultaneously,” says Rigel.
The legs are outfitted with 20x8
Maxi Lift Tiger Tuff low-profile buckets on 7-inch centers. At
the top of the legs, grain passes through a Rapat distributor,
which can send it via gravity chute to the old concrete house,
to loadout, or onto a 50,000-bph Hi Roller Hi Life overhead
enclosed belt conveyor running out to the new storage tanks. The
operator has the option of running grain through a 10,000-bph
GSI screenerscalper located on top of the old concrete
The grain receiving part of the project included the
installation of an 45-foot-long rail receiving pit underneath a
rail shed structure.
The pit empties onto a 50,000-bph InterSystems drag conveyor
leading to the new leg boot sections. The new legs also receive
grain from the new tanks, which empty onto 50,000-bph Hi Roller
Hi Life enclosed belt conveyors outfitted with 48-inch belts,
housed in a below-ground 12- foot-x-10-foot tunnel to provide
easy access to maintenance crews.
The facility utilizes a new 50,000- bph InterSystems bulk weigh
scale, under the control of Unibridge software. For grain
receiving, the system includes a trackside RF tag reader, which
provides car capacity to the bulk weigh system. Grain inspectors
working in an adjacent shed can access the software to input an
official grade, and the data is downloaded to W.B. Johnston’s
grain accounting software for final settlement.
Incoming truck deliveries also make use of electronic
technology, as a bar code reader on a card issued to truckers
reads tare weight and truck ownership data prior to weighing.
Ed Zdrojewski, editor