FS Construction Services safe harvest

Five Simple Tips for a Safe Harvest

Large grain bins capable of storing thousands of bushels of crop and grain dryers that are able to quickly dry such huge amounts are a necessary part of agriculture. Unsurprisingly, proper safety and care taken in and around these structures and equipment is a must for any successful harvest season.

How to Have a Safe Harvest

It’s hard to believe, but we are quickly moving through harvest season. For many of our clients and many in our community this means weeks of high stress, little sleep, and hard work. At FS Construction Services we know a thing or two about working under these conditions. In the interest of keeping you safe and productive during this busy season, here are some harvest-time suggestions and safety tips for your grain bins, dryers, and other equipment.

  1. Never enter a grain bin without de-energizing (turning off) and disconnecting, locking out and tagging, or blocking off all mechanical, electrical, hydraulic and pneumatic equipment that presents a danger, particularly grain-moving equipment (OSHA). Grain is not a stable surface, and when it’s moving, pockets can develop that will cause grain to act like quicksand.
  2. Do not enter a grain bin without alerting others. Make sure the person inside the bin always has someone keeping tabs on them, as well as a safety harness or boatswains chair should they need assistance.
  3. Be sure to regularly clean surfaces, filters, and other areas where excessive dust may accumulate. Grain dust is very flammable and the more dust you have, the higher the chances for an unwanted fire.
  4. Be careful not to overfill bin with grain. Not only does this prevent ventilation, but it can put unnecessary stress on your structure.
  5. Plan regular inspections. Make sure chains and bearings are properly lubricated, ladders are secure, safety shields are present, etc.

Finally, be sure to get as much rest as you can during this busy season. When you’re out in the field, be sure to pack protein and calorie-rich food to keep your energy up and combat the tiredness such a hectic time of year often brings.

We wish you a safe and successful harvest! As always, if you have any equipment questions throughout harvest let Gateway FS Construction Services know. With more than 40 years of grain system expertise, from grain drying to grain storage to grain handling and transfer, we are always happy to help. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you today. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.

FS Construction Services tips for harvest grain systems

5 Tips to Prepare for Harvest

We here at FS Construction Services hope you had a great summer, whether you stayed close to home or decided to travel. Since we are once again at the beginning of harvest, we thought we would take some time to discuss five helpful tips to best prepare for the upcoming harvest.

 

Time Again to Get Ready for Harvest

 

Clean Up

We know that large-scale cleaning jobs are no one’s favorite task, but sometimes they really do have to be done. Sweeping out and vacuuming any remaining grain from your bins so they are ready for new grain is a necessary step. We also recommend spraying your side walls with an insecticide to kill any remaining bugs or eggs that the sweeping didn’t clear out.

Check for Cracks

You will want to make sure there aren’t air gaps in your walls. Incoming cold or moist air can cause damage to your stored grain. Seal any cracks with caulk and check under the ceiling lip and for small cracks in the foundation. Any foundation crack over half an inch long may point to a larger structural problem, so you will want to inspect your foundation carefully.

Electrical System

Make sure all your switches, fans, spreaders, and other electronics are functioning as they should before it’s too late. If mice get into your bin, they can chew through wires, and that’s not something you want to find out late in the game. Additionally, birds are known for building nests in spreaders, so be on the lookout for birds’ nests.

Cooling Plan

Temperature control is one of the most important parts of the storing process. Having a plan to consistently, systematically even and cool your grain is crucial. Also keep a close watch on grain that was harvested early. Grain that stays longer in the field may have fewer bugs since they will have died if there was a freeze.

Be Ready

This may seem obvious, but keep a constant eye out for maturing fields. The timeline will change depending on weather and crop stress, so simply basing it off of the previous year won’t do.

 

We wish you a safe and productive harvest this year. If you have any grain system needs, please let Gateway FS Construction Services know. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you are looking for. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.

FS Construction Services tips for choosing custom grain storage system

5 Tips for Choosing a Grain Storage System

At FS Construction Services we know that when it comes to upgrading your grain storage, there are a lot of questions to answer. And of course, when it comes to any significant cost, you want to make sure you’re getting something that meets your present needs while still giving you options for the future. Thanks to our wonderful partners, such as Sukup, we are able to provide a wide variety of customization options for grain storage, so we wanted to focus on some tips that you may find helpful if you’re nearing an upgrade.
 

Keys to Choosing Custom Grain Storage Systems

 
Size

This one is obvious, yet it bears much of the consideration. Whether you’re building in an unused plot or next to existing structures, there are some fundamental questions to answer. You’ll want to think about how much physical space you have to work with and if you need to connect to a pre-existing structure. You’ll also want to decide if you need a contingency plan for an unexpectedly big yield.

Accessibility

Where are you planning on building your new storage? Is it easily accessible for both you and the utilities it will need? If you’re working with an empty space, you’ll want to think through grading, distance from power lines, etc. If you’re not building on your own land, then you will need to consider transportation along public roads.

Storage

This is also part of size considerations, but it will be important to know if you’re going to store grain for a short term or a long term. Unfortunately, since you don’t control your yield or the price you get for it, you’ll want to consider the option of holding onto your grain until a more advantageous time comes.

Durability

These grain systems are exposed. Wind, rain, hail, and even more come crashing down on these structures each year, so you’ll want to make sure that yours is up to the task. Keeping a tight, sealed system has long-reaching effects.

Recommendations

These considerations are broad and don’t even scratch the surface of the complexities involved in making this decision. So utilize the expertise of our grain systems team. See what has been successful for others to make an informed decision.

If you are ready to move forward with a new system or if you have some questions you need answered first, please let Gateway FS Construction Services know. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you are looking for. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.

FS Construction Services grain storage systems solutions

Project Profile: 20,700 Bushels of Grain Storage

Here at FS Construction Services we know that every job is a little bit different, even if on the surface the product or the outcome are similar to jobs that have come before. It’s important to us to approach each new grain storage project with fresh eyes and a careful consideration for what will work best in this particular instance and not just what generally works best in instances like it.
 

Choose the Right Grain Storage Solution for You

 
When it comes to building grain storage, while the final structure may look exactly like other grain structures, each new build is its own unique experience. The slope of the ground, access to roads and power, surrounding structures and more, are all things that have to be taken into consideration for every project. If you have further questions on what things are worth considering when planning for grain storage, be sure to read this grain storage site planning article.

It was with all these things in mind that Nathan Koester and his team approached this latest grain storage project. They built a 36’ in diameter, 6-ring tall Sukup grain storage bin with a capacity of 20,700 bushels. Additionally, they installed a 10hp centrifugal fan to create ideal airflow as well as a 10” vertical unload. Finally, they added stairs around the outside of the bin for easy and safe roof access.

At a glance, this project looks like many others, and yet it was all completed to meet the specific needs of our client in conjunction with the reality of the site’s resources. If you are in need of upgrading your grain capacity, or if you are looking to add, update, or expand on your grain drying or grain handling capabilities, please let Gateway FS Construction Services know. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you are looking for. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.

FS Construction Services new grain bin

Decisions, Decisions: Selecting a New Grain Bin

At FS Construction Services we know that there is a whole lot that goes into the process of constructing a new grain bin. It would certainly be simpler if all you had to do was choose between the big one and the smaller one. And while the number of available options may feel overwhelming at first, they can pay out dividends in the future if done right. So we’re going to talk a bit about some of the things you will want to consider before moving forward with a new bin purchase.

 

Three Things to Consider for New Grain Bin Purchase

 

Site Selection

Where you place your bin may be a quick or long decision based on a number of variables, but it’s certainly not a decision you want to make without considering the future. Choosing a site that can fit a single bin may seem like a great choice now, but if you experience significant growth years down the road and suddenly need additional storage, you’re now looking at a second site, with its own power supply and access.

Bin Capacity

Similar to site selection, choosing the right size bin needs some future consideration. It may be that 50,000 bushels is enough right now, but in five years maybe you need 70,000. If possible, you will want to leave yourself some room to grow and avoid the future headache and cost of having to play catchup.

Build and Features

Will you be storing your grain for a short time, for a long time? How much airflow do you need? How accessible do you need your roof access to be? These questions could go on and on, but the point is, when it comes to building a grain bin you have a whole lot of factors to consider.

 

Like any investment, the cost that is heavy at first may save you thousands down the road. Finding the right site, size, and everything else is a careful dance, but if done right, you can set yourself up for the present and the future. If you have any questions on getting started, please let Gateway FS Construction Services know. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you are looking for. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.

FS Construction Services doubles grain bin storage

Project Profile: Doubling Grain Bin Storage is an Easy Fit

Over the years here at FS Construction Services we have pretty much worked with every variety of client in every variety of situation. We have worked with blank slates and empty slabs and we have worked with old equipment to make it new again. Each job is different and each job site has its own set of obstacles. And while we love a good challenge, we also enjoy the occasional job that comes along that is simply as straightforward as it sounds. Last year we had the opportunity to work with a client on a wonderfully simple, though no less meaningful project, grain bin storage.
 

Installing Grain Bin Doubles Storage

 
The world of agriculture is large and hard to plan to for. Sometimes you think you’ll be able to push something off to the next season and then all of a sudden you need it right away. Sometimes the growth you were expecting doesn’t happen and you have to push your plans back. Sometimes we have to jump through significant hoops and other times, things nicely fall into place. In this case, we were able to come alongside our client’s existing storage bin and install a brand-new 36’ diameter, 7-ring tall Sukup bin with a bushel capacity of 23,950. We installed stairs between the two bins, providing safe access to both in addition to two fans to provide enough air flow for successful drying as well.

Doubling someone’s storage capabilities isn’t always such an easy task, however, our job is to figure out how to make your needs work. If you are in need of grain storage updates, or you are looking for new grain drying or grain handling equipment, please let Gateway FS Construction Services know. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you are looking for. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.

On-site grain storage FS Construction Services

Three Reasons On-Site Grain Storage Might Be for You

At FS Construction Services, we understand that even with all the planning in the world and despite everyone’s best intentions, so often there are things that are simply outside of our control. Having worked with so many people in the agricultural industry over the years, we have seen this play out time and time again. And while we know there is never any solution that is without a caveat or a concern, we always like to encourage options that bring just a little bit more control into our clients’ hands. So we wanted to take a little time to talk about the benefits of on-site grain storage.

On-Site Grain Storage Provides More Control

Financial

Obviously, whichever way you decide, there are costs involved. Installing grain storage and drying equipment can be expensive. Initially, it will be more expensive than transporting your grain to a mill or elevator. But as with most things, given a little time, the long-term outcome can beat out the short-term gain.

Storing your grain on site gives you flexibility and options regarding when you want to sell it and how you want to sell it. Waiting to sell your grain until after the harvest rush can save you money on freight costs and increase the profit you make from the sale itself. Additionally, it gives you the option to market the grain where and how you want. Changes in the market, unpredictable weather, unforeseen demand can all throw off the price of grain. Holding on to it yourself gives you the option to sell when the time is right.

Animal Feed

Perhaps not the most obvious benefit, but on-site grain can be used as animal feed when needed. Rather than buying bulk feed with a short shelf life, on-site grain can be made fresh each week, providing for your livestock and eliminating waste.

Efficiency

Waiting in line at the elevator or mill can eat into your day. On-site storage gives you the ability to work the hours you want or need to and immediately begin the drying process to avoid spoilage or rot. Ideally, the increased flexibility will give you the option to work around bad weather or other unforeseen circumstances since you won’t be at the mercy of someone else’s hours.

 

While we know it might not be for everyone, we think the increased control and flexibility of on-site grain storage are certainly worth consideration. If you are in need of a new grain system or additional grain storage, please let Gateway FS Construction Services know. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you are looking for. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.

FS Construction Services grain bin

Project Profile: Expanding a Site with a 42’ Grain Bin

At FS Construction Services we know both from personal experience and from so many of the clients we work with that it takes a lot of foresight and planning to effectively grow an operation. Fast growth is great, unless you don’t have the resources to handle the sudden increase. And building new equipment is a great idea, unless you don’t have the intake to justify the expansion. Like pretty much everything else in life, there’s a balance to be found. Recently, we got to work with come clients who had a smart plan for their growth and we were happy to set them up with the grain bin equipment they needed to get it done.
 

Planning for Growth with a New Grain Bin

 
While it’s always fun to break new ground, working on an existing site always allows for exciting retrofitting and repurposing opportunities. Which was exactly the case this time. We built a brand-new 9-ring tall, 42’ in diameter Sukup grain bin with a bushel capacity of 41,800. We added a T20 Sukup dryer, which can handle a significant amount of grain at a time. Additionally, we installed a 5” air system with a selector valve.

To add to the project, our clients were transforming an existing bin into a wet tank, and we installed an auger and an optional bypass kit for them. Together, with a little bit of old and a lot of new, our clients were setting themselves up for a vastly expanded and more efficient operation.

If you are in need of upgrading or updating your existing grain systems, whether you need grain drying, grain handling, or grain storage equipment, please let Gateway FS Construction Services know. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you are looking for. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.

FS Construction Services Grain bin project profile

Project Profile: A 36’ Grain Bin Gives Some Certainty

Something that is always true for our friends and clients in the world of agriculture is that for them to succeed at their jobs, a number of things outside of their control must also happen. Not enough rain, too much rain, late frost, early frost, hail, invasive pests, etc., can all come without a moment’s notice and dramatically impact a growing season. And that’s just the natural side of things. On top of that there’s equipment that can break down, an aging grain bin can cause mold and rot, and on and on.
 

Replaced Aging Grain Bin Before Harvest

 
At FS Construction Services, we know that this can be stressful. Which is why our goal is always to provide a little guarantee into a world full of uncertainties. This was the case last September when a client needed a place to store their soon-to-be incoming grain. Thanks to our expert team, we were able to construct a 36’ diameter, 7-ring tall Sukup grain storage bin with a 24,000 bushel capacity. Additionally, we installed a horizontal power sweep unload, an axial fan, a spreader, and an exterior ladder with a safety cage. All of this was constructed within the month, ensuring our client would be able to move into harvest with one less what-if hovering over them.

We know that in this line of work all you can do is be as prepared as possible and then deal with whatever comes when it comes. Our job is to limit as many of those variables as possible by providing quality equipment and knowledgeable installation. If you are looking to update or upgrade your grain storage, grain handling, or grain drying equipment, or if you want to see what kind of equipment we would suggest for your situation, please let Gateway FS Construction Services know. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you are looking for. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.

FS Construction Services Preseason Discounts

2022 Preseason Discounts

It’s that time of year again! What feels like two straight months of back-to-back holiday festivities and gatherings are now in the rearview mirror along with the year 2021. And while we certainly hope you got some meaningful time and relaxation in over the past month, there’s no way around the reality that a new year is here with new demands and expectations. So we wanted to provide our annual reminder about preseason discounts and that when you’re ready to start thinking about what your needs are for this year, so are we.
 

Preseason Discounts Available Now

 
One of the benefits of getting the jump on this is that you can take advantage of the variety of preseason discounts offered by our manufacturing partners. If you know you will be in need of new or updated grain storage or other grain systems, now is the time to move. Reach out to us now and we can help you find the right equipment and the right deal. Additionally, as our calendar can fill up quickly throughout the year, you can also take this opportunity to secure your spot on our schedule. That way, you know you’ll have the right equipment at the right time.

If you have any questions about what deals are available or want to talk through the updates you have in mind, don’t hesitate to let us know. You can always contact Nathan Koester, our FS Construction Services grain systems expert, at 866-551-3454. And be sure to check back with us often, we like to let our customers and clients know when there are new deals available.

If you are in need of grain storage, grain drying, or grain handling and transfer equipment, please let Gateway FS Construction Services know. Give us a call at 866-551-3454, and let our specialists help you find exactly what you are looking for. We look forward to providing you the best customer service experience.