One of the biggest equipment investments that crop producers make are combines. When considering a used purchase, it is important to approach the situation with confidence and a thorough understanding of what you are looking for. While researching and previewing used combines, keep these things in mind.
It should be the right size for whatever your project is. A bigger combine can accommodate higher levels of production, but it might not be best to reach for the stars for your unique operation. You need to have the proper resources to transport your harvest or you risk leaving the machine waiting for a pickup. It's a good idea to go as small as possible for the amount you need handled.
Be sure to check the total amount of hours on the engine and separator. This will let you know approximately how long the machine has ran and how much work it has done, respectively.
Wear and tear
This type of machine needs to be judged by its cover. If you see visible wear on belts, cylinder bars, concave, chains and sprockets, it is an indication that it suffered poor maintenance or overworking.
The capacity shouldn't be more than its gathering header can handle. How much it can take will be a key factor in determining how much grain you can successfully harvest and how much will be wasted or damaged.
Make sure that it's comfortable enough in the operator's station for you and take note of any features you were looking for. Harvest season involves long hours inside the machine, so check for storage and entertainment options as well.
Try to start the engine to check for audible problems, such as grinding or screeching sounds.
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Combine harvesters are a huge investment - make sure to get the most out of it!