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Hi All,


In the 1940's, these glass lined, air tight silos were a symbol of prestige throughout the Midwest. Then, they began to exhibit defects, especially in the conveyor systems. This, coupled with farm failures in subsequent decades, led to the familiar glossy blue silos symbolizing something else; A farm in financial trouble, facing foreclosure. This is how they got there current nickname, a Blue Tombstone.





Details and weathering are still needed to complete these. They are HO Scale 20 feet in diameter and 56 feet high. A common dimension.


Read more at engineerkyle.com
 

logandsawman

Well-Known Member
Those are some nice looking silos. The actual first one of these came into service in 1949, and the dealer organization came in the 50's.

The classic glass fused steel tanks were far more expensive then the cement block types. The cheaper cement ones were still in widespread use in Minnesota in the 60's. The Harvestores were most popular on dairy farms at that time. A friend of mine in College was the son of one of the executives of the company (that was 1976).
 

Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
In the 1940's, these glass lined, air tight silos were a symbol of prestige throughout the Midwest.
The actual first one of these came into service in 1949, and the dealer organization came in the 50's.
I had no idea that these were that old. Of course being in relatively dry Colorado and Kansas I suppose they weren't quite as necessary, so I only saw them occasionally. In the semi-arid climate here they just often just dump the grain in pyramids on a slab of concrete. It if is going to rain they might throw some tarps over it.
 
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whowey

Member
I worked in their factory for a few months while in college. We kept very busy even in the early 90's building Harvestore silos. My grade point averaged suffered greatly from the amount of overtime I worked there.

The issues they suffered from was that the conveyor system in the bottom were hard to service and would not get much maintenance on them.
They were popular on dairy farms as more and more automation came into use. They were perfect for automatic feeding systems like Surge and other companies were offering. The idea of of pressing a button and having your silage or feed brought down and dispensed to each cow in the proper amounts, was really appealing. At least it was to a teenager that had to climb that concrete silo ladder twice a day and fork down wheelbarrow load after wheelbarrow load of silage.
 
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RBMNfan

Member
We still have these in PA. They form interesting silhouettes during sunset. Every year several teenagers suffocate from the methane while getting the feed out.
 

Burlington Bob

Well-Known Member
The same thing happens here in Illinois, as well. Unfortunately, many people don't understand the dangers that a confined space represents, or even what constitutes a confined space. We have to go through training every year to be qualified to work in a confined space and to be aware of and how to deal with an atmosphere that is IDLH (Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health).

One of the saddest things is when you hear about someone dying because of an IDLH situation and then a buddy or co-worker dies because they went in to rescue the first victim. One of the hardest things would be to have to watch someone go down and all you can do is call for the rescue team and wait. But by making that call and not going in after them you quite possibly saved two lives.........theirs and yours.
 

RBMNfan

Member
Manure pits also have the same hazard. 6 people from the same family passed away after one was overcome last year. Its human nature to think you can help but it's one of those times reasoning needs to override your emotions.
 




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