Equipment Maintence on Gravity Flow Wagons
Friday, August 31, 2018
Safety is everyone’s number one concern when it comes to harvest season. Properly maintaining and operating your equipment is essential in preventing injury and property damage.
1. Know the limits of your Gravity Flow Wagon. This means to never overload your wagon more than it was designed for. Doing so can be dangerous and cause extensive damage to both the box and running gear. Do not add sideboards or extensions to the gravity box, beyond the standard factory manufactured parts. The wagon is not designed to handle the added weight.
2. Check box for structural damage. Over time your gravity box can show some wear. It is important to periodically check for cracks in welds or other structural damage. Be sure to fix cracked welds immediately or they could cause extensive damage to the gravity box and reduce its life.
3. Be secure when pulling wagon behind tractor. When pulling gravity box and running gear, be sure that is is fastened securely to tractor. Be sure the emergency brake chain is connected properly and all the lights are working correctly.
4. Check bolts, lug nuts and tire pressure. Periodically check all bolts and nuts to ensure proper tension or torque. It is a good idea to torque lug nuts daily (see your manual for proper torque amount). Pefore leaving the yard, check the tire pressure on the gravity flow wagon. It should be 60 PSI.
5. Inspect the actuator and braking quality. Before towing be sure the master cylinder is full of brake fluid and check lines for leaks. Inspect the actuator for bent or worn parts and replace parts as necessary. Make sure the actuator mounting bolts are tight. Test your braking quality periodically. If they are a little soft, check the movement on the actuator. If it moves more that 7/8”, the brake shoes need to be adjusted.
6. Keep your grease zerks lubricated. It is important to use a good quality lubricant on your grease zerks prior to each use of the gravity flow wagon. This will keep your equipment moving properly and not drying out.
7. Keep the actuator and wheels clean. Keeping the actuator and wheels clean is especially important in corrosive conditions. They should be thoroughly washed out with high pressure water. When the actuator parts are dry, oil all moving parts and repack the wheel bearings.