So I decided with all the planting I'm doing here and how the area is growing every year it was time to invest in some sort of a seeder.
The only one that people really recommend in my budget is the Earthway seeder (there are many other better ones but out of my price range for now).
I bought second hand, (around £40) but I had to buy the seed plates separately. Once they turned up I was desperate to try it. I got some old seed and ran through it, carrot and beet seed worked fine. Smaller seed not so much.
|Carrot seed being sown|
In fact small round seed was terrible, unusable in fact.
I was a little gutted, the seed would get behind the plastic plate and the hopper and then grind to a paste which would cause the plate to move further away and more seed to get in there.
I was disappointed as I had ideas of plating mustard and turnips with it for fast catch crops.
A quick search of the internet came up with a few answers, most involved buying a few bits, I decided to see if I could fix it with just a few scrapes in the workshop.
|Replacing the centre bolt|
The first thing I did was to replace the centre bolt for a much longer one. This doesn't affect it when using plates normally but it gave me a way to secure a spreader plate to hold the seed plates tight against the hopper body
|Gap down the side of the plate and the hopper (this is the carrot plate which it doesn't affect much but you get the idea)|
I then cut out a few rings out of 1/2" and 1/4 ply to go over the plastic "nut" that holds the plates in place (I cut it with a jigsaw) and a circle to go over the top of them with a centre hole in to go over the newly lengthened bolt. The outside diameter must obviously be less of a diameter than the seed holes on the plate!
|The three ply parts cut ready.|
|Gluing them up to make putting it on easier|
|The spreader plate in place doing it's job.|
I then glued these up and left them to go off over night.
Now when I want to seed small seed all I have to do is fit the plate then add my spreader, put the nut on and tighten up a bit. the seed goes round perfectly and because the pressure on the plate is so much nearer the edge nothing gets stuck behind it anymore, it holds flat to the hopper.
I will upgrade the nut with a wing nut welded to a washer once I get to my dads farm at the weekend and can borrow his welder for a few minutes, as that will remove the need for a spanner as well!
What do you think?
Do you use a seeder? What one would you recommend?