Part 4: Closing Systems
Closing Wheels This particular planter is equipped with cast iron closing wheels, which do a pretty nice job in most situations. Just the weight of the wheels themselves can give you a lot of closing pressure. And you can adjust your spring tension to increase that pressure. It's rare that you need to put maximum tension on the down pressure on the closing wheels. If you do that what you'll often find see happen. The pressure down is so great here that it can start to lift the planting unit up out of the ground and you won't get even depth of planting. So if it's not closing, either extra hard soil or wet soil you may need to go to some other kind of closing wheel other than the rubber or the cast iron to get the job done in rough situations rather than trying to increase the tension which is going to compromise your ability to do a nice even planting job especially depth placement.
We're looking again at the closing wheel set up on this planter. Cast iron closing wheels and they need to be tracking the planting unit in a very true track. So and that can be adjusted with bolts here on either side. You can bring it left or right to get it tracking accurately. Down pressure on this unit is with a bolt into the head of a spring inside this housing. And there's a view slot right here that you can look down and see how tight that springs being tightened. Again there's a clearance on this; a minimum and maximum settings. You don't want to over tighten the closing wheels because that has a tendency to put too much down pressure on to lift up the planting unit. You won't get good even planting depth and so whatever the operators manual says, don't go beyond the maximum setting for down pressure or you're going to get all kinds of problems and it will throw other things off of the planter. At the end of the season be sure you back off this bolt so that you have no tension on this spring, so you don't get a fatigued spring over time. Spike closing wheels enhance the closing wheel system when planting in non-optimum soil conditions. Care should be taken to maintain the leveling of the closing wheel housing so it is parallel to the soil surface. When operated at an angled position the spike closing wheels can begin to have some row cleaning action rather than 100 percent positive seed row closing action. Ok we have here the Schlegle type posi-closing system wheel. And as these wheels turn they do a positive closing system of your seed trench. This particular set does not intermesh and they can be installed either way; that they would intermesh from one unit to the other or they can be separated far enough that they will not intermesh. The Schlegle posi-closing systems have performed well.
The object is to obliterate the side-walls of the seed furrow so you don't have the seed furrow opening up after a few wetting and drying cycles. An open seed furrow can be a super highway for slugs, cutworms and other potential corn pests. Additionally seed furrow side-wall smear is broken up with the use of the Schlegle type posi-closing closing system. If the closing wheels are mounted on the planter, to inner mesh they may not do a good job of closing the seed furrow from one and a half to two inches deep or deeper.
Regular mounting where the wheels do not intermesh permits positive seed furrow closure all the way to a 2 to 2 and a half inch depth. Drag chains are used by some operators as row finishers to help level the soil over the row. If the seed furrow was not adequately closed by the closing wheel system modifying the closing wheel system is the answer. Drag chains should not be dependent upon to finish the closing wheels job of seed furrow closing.