Mel Beck Precision Planters
Planting Information
IN-LINE SEED SPACING RATE CHART
Based on 72 Inch Drive wheel circumference
#40 ROLLER CHAIN
DRIVE DRIVEN SPROCKET (# OF TEETH)
SPROCKET 60 58 56 54 52 51 48 45 42 38 36 32 29
10 7.71 7.46 7.20 6.94 6.68 6.55 6.17 5.79 5.40 4.88 4.63 4.11 3.73
11 7.01 6.78 6.55 6.31 6.07 5.96 5.64 5.26 4.91 4.44 4.20 3.74 3.39
12 6.43 6.21 6.00 5.79 5.57 5.46 5.14 4.82 4.50 4.07 3.85 3.43 3.11
13 5.93 5.74 5.54 5.34 5.14 5.04 4.75 4.45 4.15 3.76 3.56 3.16 2.87
14 5.51 5.33 5.14 4.96 4.77 4.68 4.41 4.13 3.86 3.49 3.31 2.94 2.66
15 4.97 4.80 4.63 4.45 4.35 4.11 3.86 3.60 3.26 3.08 2.57 2.49
16 4.66 4.50 4.34 4.17 4.09 3.86 3.62 3.37 3.05 2.89 2.57 2.33
17 4.39 4.24 4.08 3.93 3.85 3.63 3.40 3.18 2.88 2.72 2.42 2.19
18 3.86 3.71 3.64 3.43 3.21 3.00 2.71 2.57 2.29 2.07
19 3.65 3.52 3.45 3.25 3.04 2.84 2.57 2.43 2.17 1.96
20 3.47 3.34 3.27 3.08 2.89 2.70 2.44 2.31 2.06 1.86
21 3.31 3.18 3.12 2.94 2.75 2.57 2.33 2.20 1.96 1.78
22 3.16 3.04 2.98 2.80 2.63 2.45 2.22 2.10 1.87 1.69
23 3.02 2.90 2.85 2.68 2.51 2.35 2.12 2.01 1.79 1.62
24 2.79 2.73 2.57 2.41 2.25 2.04 1.93 1.71 1.55
25 2.67 2.62 2.47 2.31 2.16 1.95 1.85 1.65 1.49
26 2.57 2.52 2.37 2.22 2.08 1.88 1.78 1.58 1.43
29 2.48 2.42 2.28 2.14 2.00 1.81 1.71 1.52 -
28 2.39 2.34 2.20 2.07 1.93 1.74 1.65 1.46 -
29 2.30 2.24 2.13 1.99 1.86 1.68 1.60 1.42 1.28
32 2.09 2.04 1.93 1.81 1.69 1.53 1.45 1.28 1.17
36 1.82 1.71 1.61 1.50 1.36 1.29 1.14 1.04
42 1.56 1.47 1.38 1.29 1.16 1.10 0.98 0.89
45 1.46 1.37 1.29 1.20 1.09 1.02 0.91 0.83
51 1.13 1.06 0.96 0.91 0.81 0.73
Formula to determine seed placement in inches:  measure the circumference of the planter drive wheel (normally 72 inches approximately), then divide by 56 (the number of teeth in the seed plate), then multiply that factor by the number of teeth in the driven sprocket (typically 51), then divide that factor by the number of teeth in the drive sprocket = the seed drop in inches. PLEASE NOTE: Drastic sprocket changes may require repositioning of the drive chain idler. Any sprocket change generally will require a corresponding addition or subtraction in the amount of drive chain.

RECOMMENDED SEQUENCE OF PLANTER ADJUSTMENTS

 

#1 Adjust tractor Top Link so that the front and back press wheels are not hindered from establishing depth of planting.

 

#2 Locate the Rear Shock absorber that regulates the downward pressure at the rear press wheel (this is attached to the second bar and connects on front of the rear press wheel, just behind the rear planting unit on each row). Adjust the lower locking collar to regulate the amount of downward travel. This is a very impartment adjustment! It will affect the amount of drive chain – if the drive chain is too loose at times, it may rap around the drive sprocket and bend the 3/4” drive shaft.

 

#3 Regarding the mounting bracket of the drive wheel frame on the back (second) bar. Adjust the jam nuts on each of the two 5/8 inch bolts to determine the range of the drive wheel floatation. Generally a maximum combined total clearance of 5/8 inch between the bolt head and the bar stop is sufficient.

 

#4 Now install the Unit Drive Chain and observe whether or not the correct amount of links are in the drive chain. The Spring Loaded T-idler should operate at slightly more than a right angle, assuring that there is tension on the drive chain at all times. The drive chain should neither be so loose that it comes in contact with the tie rods, nor so tight that the spring-loaded T-idler is cooked backwards while the planter is operating. Note: when the planter drive wheel is raised out on the soil, the tension of the T-idler is eased, allowing the drive chain to “free wheel” backward (reverse). On pelleted seed planters, this action can crack the coating of the seed that has already been picked up in the seed plate and enclosed in the housing. Under most conditions, the cracking of the seed will be limited to the planting unit that has the driven sprocket attached to it.

 

#5 Operate the planter a short distance and then stop and check depth of planting. On the standard model both the front and back press wheels have eight depth of planting settings. They are at 1/4 inch increments. The higher the setting, the deeper the shoe penetrates the soil and conversely the lower the setting the shallower the shoe penetrates the soil.

 

#7 Observe the back press wheels to insure constant contract with son and that it is floating freely. If there are any units that appear to be hanging up, this would indicate that the two sway stabilizers (one on the left end of the second diamond bar and one on the right end of the second bar) are improperly adjusted and therefore exerting either a tug-a-war or push-a-war upon the tie rods. Loosen sway stabilizer clamps and move in or out (depending which is required) equal distances, to maintain drive chain and driven sprocket alignment.

 

#8 Lubricate grease fittings on the unit aluminum housing once or twice daily. The 3/4 inch drive shaft requires only a light film of grease, so DON”T OVER GREASE! Generally a partial pump for each grease fitting is adequate. The grease fitting on the floating flexible fronts (located on clamps attached on the front diamond tool bar) can be lubricated several times a week.

 

#9 Regarding planting speed, a general rule of thumb is: For each inch of seed placement down the row, a maximum of 1 MPH. Sprocket ratio and ground speed determine unit RPM. 12 to 15 RPM of the seed wheel is recommended. 25 RPM is the maximum under most condition. To avoid plugging the shoe openers, lower the planter into the ground in forward motion, raise planter out of the ground before stopping.

 

#10 A 10.00 x 22 (ten hundred twenty two) large tire inner tube can be stretched over the expanded metal press wheels to prevent moist dirt “build up” on press wheels (which will affect the depth of planting), when planting under moist or sticky conditions.

 

#11 Regarding tie rods across the back of the planter, these should be set up in a lattice sequence, with the nuts being double nutted around the stud in front of the rear press wheel, leaving a slight clearance between a latticed tie rods, so that they are able to independently move and not hinder individual row floatation.

 

Regarding #2 and #3: You will reduce problems with the unit drive chain & spring loaded idler if you will limit flotation of the drive wheel & the floatation of the rear shock guide. This is accomplished by reducing the distance between the upper & lower shaft collar on the rear shock absorber.

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