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BinGator Zero Entry Bin Sweep Makes Bin Cleanout Safer

Prairie Land Millwright Inc • 815-538-3085

BinGator saves time during bin cleanup

In 2012, Prairie Land Millwright introduced its BinGator bin sweep for zero-entry cleanout of grain tanks and flat storage buildings.

Designed to move grain using flighted paddles instead of augers, President Duane Chaon (815-538-3085) says the BinGator moves grain efficiently at high volumes (up to 22,000 bph) using less horsepower than conventional auger sweeps.

“The paddles sweep the bin floor, greatly reducing the need for manual cleanout,” he says. “Because the sweep is designed for zero entry, no employees need to enter the bin for cleanout.

“There are no jacks to maneuver and no shoveling to get the sweep started, once the intermediates are all drawn down,” explains Chaon. “The BinGater allows you to empty your bins as easily as you fill them.”

Here are what some users of the BinGator zero entry bin sweep have to say:

Aaron Mosher | Manager | Rock River Lumber & Grain | Prophetstown, IL

“Before the BinGator, we were using a competitor’s augers. Our biggest reason for the switch to the BinGator was the amount of time we saved and increased safety for our employees. It was taking so long to sweep with the old augers, and people were in the bin basically all the time with those, watching them so they didn’t get buried. They weren’t very efficient. But the BinGator is a zero entry system. You just start it, and it goes around on its own.

“With our old augers, we were mostly doing larger tanks. In our 105-foot-diameter tank, the fastest we could empty it would be 36 hours, give or take. With the BinGator, it’s a six-hour process or shorter. With our 90-foot-diameter tanks, it used to be close to a 24-hour process, and now we can sweep those tanks in four hours.

“The benefits we’ve seen are with time, safety, and a lot less horsepower to get more bushels per hour. Our old augers had 25-hp motors, but the BinGator has a 10-hp motor and is getting a lot more bushels per hour out of it.

“So far, we haven’t had to do a lot of maintenance on the BinGators. We’ve never broken a chain. We’ve greased them, but that’s about it. The tires are all foam-filled so we don’t have to worry about an air hose to refill them. Our old augers would always seem to be flat when we needed them, so we’d always have to refill them with air.

“Every new tank that we build going forward will have a BinGator in it. We currently have 22 BinGators, and we are in the process of adding one or two a year into our older tanks.”

Gordy Lange | Northern Regional Manager | Ag Valley Coop | Edison, NE

“I think we got our first BinGator probably 10 years ago. Before that, we were using a competitor’s product, and it was in a 140-foot-high bin – the grain pressure destroyed it.

“I saw the BinGator in a farm magazine, and they mentioned how heavy it was. So I went and looked at one, and then we talked to the guys at Prairie Land about how large of a bin we could put it in, and they set up to a 150 feet high or so. The price was a little high, but we decided to go ahead with it. It turned out very well.

As for maintenance, just like everything, we’ve had a couple of small problems with it, but for the most part, they’re very low maintenance. Anything that we build new, we put those sweeps in them now. They seem to have good longevity.

Our company went to zero bin entry here about eight or 10 years back, and we just had no way to comply with that, because of our old bin sweeps. This BinGator gave us the opportunity hit our safety goal. Now, nobody enters bins for cleanout.

Another benefit we’ve seen is the durability. We have an older model of the BinGator still running up to 7,500 bushels per hour. They seem to do pretty close to what they say they’ll do. And most of the old auger-type ones would wear out over time. With these BinGators, the paddles don’t really seem to wear out.

“I recommend the BinGator to anyone who will listen to me. They’re a little bit higher priced, but when it comes down to it, you get what you pay for. Without mentioning names, we’re replacing a lot of the competition’s paddle sweeps with these. The BinGators are way heavier built, and we just have a lot less problems.

“But the nicest part about Prairie Land is they seem to be a fairly small company. You seem to talk to the same people every time, and they’ll work with you; they’ll help you decide what options would be right for what you’re doing. They’re very accommodating. They appreciate our business, and they know me by my name."

John Beetz | President | Meriden Grain | Mendota, IL

“We installed our first BinGator four or five years ago. I had one of the first ones, and I have nine of them now. Prior to that, we were using an auger with the little tractor that pushes it around the bin.

“We chose the BinGator because it’s very heavy duty. It looks like it will last the lifetime of the bin, and it actually works. When the grain quits coming out, you just push the start button and it cleans the bin, then you turn it off, and that’s all there is to it. You don’t have to enter the bin.

“The biggest benefit – and the reason I have BinGators in all of my bins – came as a surprise to me. For example, if you start filling a bin with corn and then decide you actually want to fill that bin with soybeans instead, it’s no big deal, because there’s no work involved to empty the bin. With an old sweep, you’d be thinking, ‘I don’t want to run the sweep,’ so you’re planning your inventory around not having to run the sweep.

Then sometimes, you leave old corn in the bin for a year because you don’t want to sweep it out. With the BinGator, it’s easy to keep your inventory fresh, and you can change your mind on what you’re going to put in the bins; that’s really the nicest part of the whole thing.

“Also, the electronics and the mechanical support is very good, and we haven’t had any trouble with it. I think we had trouble with a fuse once, and we called. They told us how to get it running again.

“I really feel it’s a good investment, and it really reduces your need for manpower, because there’s nothing to it. I have a bin that loads directly onto trucks, so the truck drivers turn on the conveyor, and then when the grain quits coming out, they have to turn on the conveyor and sweep. With the BinGator, the bin is empty and nobody opens the door into the bin – it’s really troublefree and reliable.”

Reprinted from Grain Journal May/June 2018 Issue

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