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setting combine rotor speed for an efficient corn harvest

Properly setting rotor speed on your combine is critical to an efficient corn harvest. Rotor speed can result in un-threshed ears or cracked grain in the tank, and we want to help you identify the various effects rotor speed has on performance.  To properly adjust, increase rotor speed until cracked kernels appears in the grain tank, then slowdown by 10 RPM. This adjustment applies to all color of combines. 

Identifying Factors for Setting Rotor Speed

One way to identify if rotor speed is too high is to evaluate the stream of grain traveling from the rubber shoot into the grain cart. If you see a small stream of ‘corn meal’ or fines in the sample, ease up on rotor speed.

Combine settings & Refinements
For Corn Harvest

Click any item to watch the video of Marion talking through each combine tip

Sieve Settings for Corn

Our most watched video on YouTube. Harvest with the bottom sieve wide open! Watch the discussion here.

Corn Head Angle

The right angle of attack improves wear life and effectiveness of the stalk rolls. Park the combine on a level surface and lower the header until the lowest point of the row unit is approx. 2-inches above the ground. Place a protractor on the plates to measure the angle. Try to achieve 23-25 degrees in standing corn. 

Gathering Chain Speed

Begin calibration with initial gathering chain speed of 55 RPM.  If you are seeing butt shelling, slow down the corn head until it starts to bulldoze cornstalks then speed back up until bulldozing stops.

Cross Auger Adjustment

Fine tune your cross auger to prevent ear slicing and cracked grain. Adjust vertically to have 1 3/4-inches of clearance between flighting and the tray. 

Stripper Plate Gap

Pull a stalk from the field to test your stripper plate gap. Ensure the stripper plates are wider than the the third cornstalk node from the brace root. Watch our video for full settings. 

Feeder House Chain

During your pre-harvest maintenance routine, adjust the feeder chain to maximum length and as close as possible to the cross auger. Run at maximum speed to reduce the potential of ears piling up during the handoff from the corn head to the feeder house. 

Rotor Speed

Increase your combine's rotor speed until you can see the first cracked kernel in the grain tank then reduce speed by 10RPM.

Fan Speed
in Corn

Increase fan speed until the red chaff and pieces of broken leaves are no longer showing up in the grain tank.

Case IH
Transport Vanes

Adjust transport vanes to the slow position (bottom of the vanes to the back of the combine). This will reduce kernel loss from the rotor area. 

Click any of the links below to access the full list of videos and combine tips! 

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