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Early Harvest Calculator

Harvesting Early Can Help Protect Yield and Your Bottom Line

Harvesting corn at 17% moisture may be costing you more than you think. That’s because there are two potential phantoms lurking in your field: phantom or invisible yield loss and machine or mechanical yield loss.

By getting in the field just a little earlier, you can minimize the chance of invisible loss caused by corn drying down in the field and lessen the chance of mechanical loss from the combine.

Invisible Yield Loss

What is Phantom or Invisible Yield Loss?

  • Any yield loss before harvest takes place.
  • Typically, this happens between physiological maturity (black layer) and harvest.
  • Can include lodged grain that becomes unharvest able, dropped ears, broken stalks, and potential lost dry-matter in the kernels.
Invisible Yield Loss

What is Machine or Mechanical Yield Loss?

  • Includes cracked or broken grain that’s expelled from the combine.
  • Grain that might fall through the rotors or sieves.
  • Ears that are removed from the stalk, but not effectively pulled into the combine.
GSI - Yield Loss Calculator

How much yield and money am I leaving in the field?

To help quantify the impact of phantom and machine yield loss on your farm, enter your corn acres, anticipated yield/acre and harvest price into the calculator to see what you may be leaving behind in the field.

Data calculations based on data from Mississippi State University. The yield loss results are intended to bring awareness to how much grain you could be leaving in the field. The data in no way represents a true calculation for your farm.

All fields are required

Must be a number 1-100,000
Must be a number 1-500
Must be a number $1-$25
Calculator Image

Harvest Moisture

  • 15%
  • 17%
  • 20%
  • 25%
  • 30%
  • Phantom Loss (darker area)
  • Machine Loss (lighter area)

What can you do?

Consider harvesting your corn crop earlier in the 20% to 25% moisture range and drying down in an on-farm dryer for storage. On-farm drying costs are not as much as you think.

The following chart outlines potential drying costs assuming the following:

  • Dryer is operated at 200 F and 95 cfm/bushel
  • Ambient temp of 60 F
  • $5.00 corn and $1.50 for LPP
Moisture Content Drying Efficiency BTU/Pound Pounds of Water Removed Drying Costs (Cents/Bushel) Drying Costs (Cents/Bushel/Point)
30 1160 12 25 1.47
25 1510 7.47 19.4 1.92
20 1950 3.5 11.7 2.34
17 2320 1.35 5.38 2.69

Source: Dr. Sam McNeill, University of Kentucky

Owning your own dryer has many advantages beyond helping reduce phantom and machine loss. Early harvest can also…

  • Widen the harvest window, resulting in less stress and bottlenecks
  • Eliminates drying and shrink charges at the elevator
Dealer showing a customer a GSI centrifugal fan

Connect with a GSI Dealer today

GSI offers a wide range of grain dryers from 400 to 12,000 BPH to fit any on-farm application. Contact your GSI dealer today to stat a discussion about how harvesting earlier and using on-farm drying can help you harvest more bushels.

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