FS Construction Services Fourth of July

Finding the Celebration this Fourth of July

It’s no stretch to say that this year has been unlike any other that has come before. For many, it has been difficult, stressful, and if nothing else, strange. For many, it has been a time of waiting, and counting the days until it might all be past. But in the midst of all that waiting, life continues to move forward, including the Fourth of July, and we move with it.

Holidays are often times to slow down, take stock, and consider the previous year. It’s easy to imagine that many of us will be doing that this year, whether we are with family, friends, or by ourselves. There will be a lot to think about, perhaps most of all, how much everything has changed. And yet, despite the year’s struggles, despite the new rules and disruptions that have been added to our daily lives, despite the pain you or your loved ones may have gone through in the process, we hope that there will still be some cause for celebration. Even if it’s a different kind of celebration than we’re used to.

At FS Construction Services, we are grateful for the family, friends, and clients we get to live with, work with, and serve alongside every day. We celebrate the time that we have had and we celebrate the time that we will have. We know with some strength and some grit we will persevere and see better days. And we believe that too is a cause for celebration.

As always, you can reach out to us for any buildinggrain systemseed systemroofinggarage door, or other service needs. We are always happy to work with our clients on finding the best possible solutions, whether it’s a complex job or a simple task, and we’re happy to answer questions and troubleshoot problems when they arise. Please feel free to reach out to Gateway FS Construction Services. You can 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 next generation grain storage systems

Project Profile: New Grain Systems for the Next Generation

Each year at FS Construction Services we get to interact with so many different clients, each with their own specific needs, hopes, and problems to solve. It’s not unusual with our agriculture clients for us to be working late in the summer, or even early fall, to get new grain storage systems installed or repaired as harvest quickly approaches. And we get it. Things break, yields are different than expected, the market changes. Farming will always have a certain unpredictability to it and sometimes all you can do is roll with the punches. Occasionally, however, we get the chance to work with someone who finds themselves in a position where they have the time and the resources to put some equipment in place to help navigate the unplanned things when they come.

Last summer, we had the opportunity to work with a client who was looking to add to his existing grain systems for future farmers. Initially, he was only looking to add a drying system to an existing bin, but as he began to think about the next generation of farmers on his land, he decided to do a little more planning. So we also built a brand-new 42’ tall, 7-ring grain bin with a bushel capacity of 34,000. This new structure would be an ideal cooling bin for the new drying system. As for that drying system, we installed a 30’ Shivvers system, which is able to dry 10,000 bushels per day. Additionally, we added two Blue Flame Fan and Heaters with Turbo Boosters.

Thankfully, our client was in a position to act on his forward thinking and should now be comfortably set for quite a long time. If you are in need grain storage or grain drying equipment, whether you’re looking to build something from the ground up or retrofit an existing structure, we have a wide variety of options and our expert team works quickly and efficiently. Additionally, if you have any questions about 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 systems

Project Profile: 36’ Bin Brings a Little Certainty to an Unpredictable World

36’ Grain Bin Brings a Little Certainty to an Unpredictable World

At FS Construction Services, many of our clients earn their living in an unpredictable world and industry. It may seem like we say it all the time, but for all the advances in technology that agriculture has seen over the past couple decades, farming is simply never something that is completely in a farmer’s control.

New Storage Grain Bin Prevents Spoilage of a Good Crop

This client, a fourth-generation farmer, probably knows that better than most. So last year when he saw himself facing down a good crop in a less than ideal market, he knew he needed to do something or risk losing what he had worked so hard for. With harvest looming, Nathan Koester and his team constructed a 36’ tall, 15-ring commercial storage grain bin with a capacity of 50,000 bushels. This storage bin, which also featured two 10hp fans with shutters, temperature cables, a power sweep, and an air system, will ensure our client has plenty of room to hold his crop for however long he wants to while keeping it at the temperature and humidity level he needs to prevent spoilage.

Sometimes, in the face of uncertainty, it’s helpful to have options. With some quick thinking and a call to us, our client now has some flexibility and a little extra peace of mind. Controlling the weather may be out of the question, but with good equipment and a thoughtful approach, it is possible to weather the storms when they inevitably come.

If you are in need new or updated grain storage, grain drying, or grain handling equipment, we have a wide variety of options and our expert team works quickly and efficiently. Additionally, if you have any questions about 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

Project Profile: A 42’ Bin Just in Time

Project Profile: A 42’ Grain Bin Just in Time

At FS Construction Services, we often work with clients who experience a truly unique kind of time pressure in their jobs. Despite the advancement of seed and equipment technology, there will always be an element of farming that is completely out of the hands of those planting and harvesting. Time, for a farmer, whether it feels like there’s not enough or too much of it, will always be of the essence.

New Sukup Grain Bin Provides Storage for a Good Harvest

This was the case for a client of ours last August who found himself staring down an impending harvest with not enough storage to contain it. While this less than ideal scenario had an obvious solution, that didn’t mean it was an easy solution. Luckily, the client reached out to our team and we were able to begin and finish the job well within the client’s timeline.

Nathan Koester led the team responsible for constructing a 42 ft. tall, 9-ring Sukup grain bin capable of holding up to 42,700 bushels. In addition to the added capacity, we also installed two 10hp centrifugal fans, a spreader, stairs, and a horizontal unload.

More than just providing raw space, this grain storage unit will help keep the grain protected and well maintained so it can receive top dollar when the time comes. The structure itself has been designed to stand the test of time and weather, ensuring our client’s equipment will continue to work for him and not against him.

If you are in need of new or updated grain storage, grain drying, or grain handling equipment, we have a wide variety of options and our expert team works quickly and efficiently. Additionally, if you have any questions about 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 new partner Farm King

Excited to Announce Our New Partner, Farm King

There are many things that have contributed to our success and longevity over the past 40-plus years, but one of the most important has been the many partners we have had the pleasure of working with during that time, and adding a new partner from time to time. These wonderful companies and manufacturers allow us to provide our customers with the highest-quality products at the best possible prices. Our grain systems have been some of our most popular products and, to continue to meet the need of our clients and make use of the most recent technology, we have regularly expanded our offerings and services provided, particularly in the field of grain drying, handling, and storage.

New Farm Equipment for Grain Drying, Handling & Storage

With this in mind, FS Construction Services is excited to announce that we are adding another manufacturer to our professional family. Farm King is an agricultural equipment company based in Canada with a network of warehouses and distributors throughout North America. Their expertise and top-tier product range make them an ideal partner for us.

Farm King is committed to durable, top-of-the-line equipment and we can’t wait to begin selling and installing their impressive line of augers. From conventional to utility to bolt-on hopper to backsaver to unloading augers, their catalog comes in a wide variety of features, sizes, and functions, to make sure that you have the exact equipment you need for the job. Their wide variety of augers will no doubt provide a great deal of options and customization for our customers for many years to come.

If you are in need of a new auger or are looking for any other kind of 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.

FS Construction Services preventative maintenance grain systems

Pre-Season Maintenance in an Uncertain Season

This has been a strange year so far to say the least. And with schools, many businesses, and social gatherings on hold for much of the spring, it has felt at times like the world has stopped spinning. But, of course, we know that isn’t the case. The temperatures will continue to go up and the rains will come and the crops will grow. Farmers can’t put their season on hold for a few months and pick it back up again, and so, like always, they must go on, including pre-season maintenance.

However the season may look for you, the fact remains that farming is a hard job, and farming equipment has to stand up to a bit of a beating each year. At FS Construction Services, we know that the wear and tear adds up, and few things are more disastrous than your grain system breaking down on you in the thick of harvest. Unfortunately, these things don’t come with a check engine light, but there are a number of signs that can tell you it’s time for a little pre-season TLC.

Grain System Maintenance Tips

Here are a few indicators that your grain bin might need a little pre-season maintenance.

  • Excess dirt and debris. Look especially close around roof panels, vents, and connections
  • Moisture buildup. Check manholes, caps, and any other opening to make sure everything is sealing properly
  • Unsafe electrical connections. Make sure your wiring is secure and not weathered or damaged
  • Loose anchor bolts. Tighten anything that’s loose and see if the foundation is still level
  • Rust, old grain, other junk. While you’ve still got some time and an empty bin, make sure it’s clean and free of things that could cause rot

Now most of these are pretty obvious tasks that most people are going to be able to perform on their own. But if you’re working with some older equipment or it’s been a while since you’ve had work done on your grain dryer or you’re just the better-safe-than-sorry type, you can let us know. We’ll send a trained technician out to you to perform an inspection on your dryer. Specifically, our techs look at six key areas:

  1. Burners
  2. Fan housing and blades for dirt buildup
  3. Belts for wear
  4. Bearings
  5. Electrical controls and switches
  6. Gas pressure regulators and LP gas vaporizers

It is a little bit of time and money, but we’ve seen time and time again how a little bit now can save a lot in the future. If you would like to schedule an inspection, or if you would like to browse our selection of stir dryers, counter mix-flow dryers, or counter-flow dryers, 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.

Gateway FS Construction Services crop yield

2019 Crop Yield Stats Show Perseverance

For many people, 2019 now probably feels like it was four years ago and not four months ago. But if you can remember back to earlier in the year there was another big, but different, problem we were all trying to sort through: rain. In fact, the first six months of 2019 were the wettest on record for the state of Illinois. And of course, a record-breaking wet season leads to another record no one wants, prevented plantings.

According to an article in FarmWeek, “Crop plantings in Illinois last season totaled just 10.5 million acres of corn, down 5% from 2018, and 9.95 million acres of soybeans, down 8%.” One of the more remarkable stats pulled from the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) is that it took until June 4 for progress on corn planting to reach 50%. Naturally, it’s just not possible to be that delayed on planting and not experience a reduction in yields, which is exactly what happened. Soybeans faired a little better than corn at 9.5 bushels per acre off the previous year’s count to corn’s 29 bushels per acre difference.

And yet, the article goes on to say, with record rain and drastically-delayed planting, the yields, though down, were surprisingly strong all things considered. Illinois still went on to lead the nation in soybean production. As for our specific neck of the woods, Washington county pulled in the highest corn yield on average at 167.4 bushels per acre, and Monroe had the highest average soybean yield at 47.2. These totals sit a little lower than the state average 181 for corn and 54 for soybeans.

And yet, thinking back to last year, when it seemed like the ground just couldn’t take any more and almost every field looked like a lake, it’s amazing these numbers are as high as they are. If there’s anything to take from all this, besides some interesting numbers, it’s that we know how to weather the storms, which will always come in some form or other. So many of our friends, neighbors, and clients simply continue to persevere, no matter how dire things look. And sometimes, even after record-breaking storms, things can turn out alright after all.

As always, we are here for any of your building, grain system, seed system, and garage door needs. If you need anything at all, 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 managing soybeans grain systems

Drying, Storing and Managing Soybeans

The process of drying soybeans has evolved significantly over the years. While the fundamental principal is largely the same (store large batches of grain until it dries), the specifics of how it’s done, and the degrees to which it has been fine-tuned, have changed quite a bit. All drying methods that work for corn can be adapted to soybeans, though the differences between the two are important to bear in mind. So in the interest of helping out, we’re going to go over some helpful hints on drying and managing soybeans. You can find more information on any of these tips in our Grain Drying Manual.

6 Hints to Soybean Drying Success

  1. Soybeans are more fragile than corn and can be damaged by air that is too hot or too dry. Too much heat can cause seed cracking and splits. High drying temperatures can cause 100% splits in as short as five minutes. To prevent coat cracking, the drying air should be kept above 40% relative humidity. In commercial drying, when splits are less of a concern, soybeans can be dried with a maximum temperature of 130-140°
  2. In-bin drying systems designed for corn can work for soybeans too. However, in-bin continuous-flow systems and stirring devices can damage them as moisture drops to 12% or below. Grain spreaders will work for commercial soybeans, but not for seed beans. When not using a spreader, several loads can be removed from the bin’s center during filling to keep grain level and help remove the fines.
  3. To keep in-bin moisture as even as possible, it’s best to use shallow batch depths of 2-3’ when drying.
  4. Run soybeans through a grain cleaner to help remove weed seeds and fines. Too many of either will increase airflow resistance and promote mold and pest growth.
  5. Soybeans have a high oil content, which means they spoil more easily than corn. It’s recommended to keep moisture at 13% for winter storage.
  6. A good aeration system is necessary for safe storage. Ideally, it will be a system with a full floor. Whenever the grain temperature is 10°F above the outside air temperature, the grain can be cooled until the bin temperature is 35-40°

Obviously, there is a lot more that can go into safely drying and storing soybeans, but hopefully these tips will prove useful. As always if you are in need of grain drying, grain storage, 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.

FS Construction Services grain storage systems

Project Profile: Grain Bins Prepare Client for Future

At FS Construction Services we understand that each new project is different from the one before. Some projects require more problem solving, some require an extra level of finesse, and some just require a whole lot of space and a whole lot of size.

This was the case early last year when Grain Systems Specialist Nathan Koester led his team on a pretty massive undertaking. The job was to build not one, but two, 12-ring tall, 48’ Sukup grain bins, each with a 73,700 bushel capacity. These bins were built to share a staircase and are connected at the top for easy and safe roof access. In addition, each bin was outfitted with three, 15hp centrifugal fans as well as a 10” unloading Sweepway Power Sweep.

Ready for Agricultural Expansions

This wasn’t the end of the project though, because our client knows that at some point, they will want to keep growing their operation. In preparation for this, we helped the client start the site of this future expansion, including making a space for more electrical work, and helping them prep for 150,000 more bushel capacity and an eventual dryer with a receiving pit.

When all was said and done, our client gained two huge, fully-loaded grain bins. But they also got more than that. As these new structures help them continue the success they’ve already experienced, they have also gained the ability to keep expanding and keep growing in the near future.

If you are interested in any new grain systems, contact the professionals at Gateway FS Construction Services now. You can depend on us to provide the best products and services at the best possible price. For more information on your next grain storage, grain handling, or grain drying system, contact us at 866-551-3454. We look forward to providing you with the best customer service experience.

FS Contruction Services tips for grain storage

Four Tips for Storing Grain in the Winter

One of the realities of farming that many people don’t always think about is how actually getting something to grow, through flood, drought, and storm, is only part of the battle. After grain is actually harvested, there’s an equally involved process that goes into simply storing it that can be just as time consuming. Unsurprisingly, there is a different protocol for storing grain effectively in the summer than in the winter.

Tips to Cooling Grain for Storage

Since the winter season is fully upon us, it seems like as good a time as discuss some tips for how to cool grain for proper winter storage. If, after reading this article, you’d like more information on any of these tips, take a look at our Grain Drying Manual.

  1. Effectively-stored grain requires aeration. When it comes to winter storage, you’ll want to aerate to cool the grain to somewhere between 35 and 40˚F. When the outside day-night air temperature is 10-15˚F cooler than the grain itself, you’ll want to start an aeration cycle. This cycle can be repeated whenever the average outside air temperature drops another 10-15˚. It can take up to three cooling cycles to get the grain to be properly cooled.
  2. When it’s time for an aeration cycle, choose a clear, crisp day when the air and grain are close to the same temperature.
  3. Inspect the grain every couple weeks during the winter months. Get in the bin and look for signs of crusting or wet, sticky, or frozen grain. Additionally, look for hot spots and probe for hard spots. Running the fan will stir the air. If there’s a musty smell, you can check for mold or spoilage. If spoilage is found, move the grain. If it begins to go out of condition, run the fan right away, as long as the outside temperature isn’t more than 10˚F above the grain temperature.
  4. Do not cool grain below freezing. Frozen grain chunks can plug unloading systems and restrict airflow.

The importance of grain drying can’t be overstated and there is a lot to take into consideration, and we will get more in depth as we continue this series. As always if you are in need of grain drying, grain storage, 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.