Coaldale, Alberta, Canada
BULK CAR LOADER WORKS FOR B-TRAIN TRAILERS
The B & D Walters grain handling system incorporates a ten-inch Grain Pump which functions as a bulk car loader and also works for B-train trailers. In addition to serving to load cars and trailers there is a drive-over facility that also operates as a railcar unloader to trucks.
With a large farm, a custom combining outfit and a trucking firm, B & D Farms requires a versatile grain handling facility. Their operation can load rail, unload rail, unload trucks, go from truck to rail, and from rail to truck. The idea of the rail inlet is to transload trucks. They can unload rail cars into trucks, eg corn or other products, rather than store it in the building. Flexibility is the word.
The half-million dollar facility, built in 1997 on the CP main line, provides an excellent location with plenty of opportunities.
The building itself is 300 feet long, 68 feet wide, and is divided into four equal compartments.. The height is 31 feet, with eight-foot concrete end and sidewalls and a 23-foot high steel building above the concrete.
Total capacity is 280,000 bushels of wheat, which would average about 70,000 bushels per compartment.
GRAIN PUMP SPECS
Grain moves with a 10-inch diameter grain pump that is 370 feet long, with a 38-foot lift. With a paddle every 13 inches on 816 feet of chain, the pump is rated at 6,000 bushels per hour.
A 40-hp three-phase electric motor on each top end powers the chain. Both motors are on the top corners -one lifting and one pulling. If there are any problems with the grain pump, there are side entries to each compartment to get to the stored product. There’s also a tunnel running the full length under the Quonset, for 370 feet. It’s four feet deep and four feet wide. The grain pump actually runs in the tunnel. As the wells are opened, the grain drops into the pump tube through a chute.
The grain pump runs past the north end of the Quonset, then loops around and underneath the railway track, providing both rail and truck loading and unloading.
Along the top of the Quonset, there’s 14 inlet spouts on electric gear-drive gates that are controlled from inside the control room. The inlets are closed or opened as needed, and fill right to the top of the Quonset.
Trucks or trains are loaded by drawing from the bottom of the building. Each compartment has five wells in the floor. The pump draws from one well at a time.
As the bins are taken down, it leaves a big V of grain. There’s a 13-inch bin sweep, powered by a 15-horsepower electric motor, in each compartment. It draws into the middle well and it leaves about 3″ on the floor. Then a Bobcat is used to clear that and the corners. While a fair amount of grain moves by truck, the preferred way is through producer cars.