Moisture sensor

Joe in Ohio

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Joe has had a Dryer Master for 20 years. He started with a DM500 and recently updated to a DM510 model. His site dries about 500,000 bushels a year of corn and wheat and sometimes soybeans with their Zimmerman dryer. The first photo is of the outlet sensor installation.

Why did you buy a Dryer Master in the first place?
The Dryer Master allowed us to have an inlet sensor which helps with anticipating the speed of the dryer whether in automatic or manual. Before we were chasing and guessing but after it was installed it allowed us to be a lot more consistent in our drying.

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How often do you typically calibrate your outlet moisture sensor? And what is your calibration procedure?

Depending on time, help and operator we usually calibrate it every hour to once or twice a day. The calibration process is so easy we have incorporated it into our dryer checks.

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Do you use DM-Mobile? If so how do you use it (phone/PC/home/at night?), how often do you use it?

We do use the DM-Mobile, mostly though a PC but occasionally with a smartphone. Anytime we leave the dryer to go to another part of the plant it allows us to monitor the dryer. We found that the biggest help is it allows you to take your experienced guys and use them where they are needed but they can also work through and teach less experienced personnel and  while still keeping an eye on the dryer.

Any other advice or comments you would like to pass on to someone ?
The Dryer Master team does a great job providing service and technical support to their customers. It is reassuring knowing that during the middle of harvest you can call and troubleshoot a problem with a person who knows the product and cares.

Chris in Illinois

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Chris has a Grain Handler 2416 dryer that he uses to dry about 500,000 bushels of White and Yellow Food Grade Corn. He has had his DM510 for 2 years now. His DM510 is conveniently located right next to where he does his manual moisture tests.

Why did you buy a Dryer Master in the first place?

We bought the DM510 to automate and remotely control our Grain Handler 2416.

How often do you typically calibrate your outlet moisture sensor? And what is your calibration procedure?

dryerpicDuring harvest we sample and calibrate every 1 to 1.5 hours.  We press the sample button, run it through our Perten tester three times, average the results, and enter the moisture into the DM510.

Do you use DM-Mobile? If so how do you use it (phone/PC/home/at night?), how often do you use it?

Yes, I monitor the dryer via an IPad while in the combine during the day and use my IPhone at home after work.  It is used all the time the dryer is running.

Brian in Indiana

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Brian is a long time Dryer Master user, having used Dryer Master systems for over 25 years now. He dries over a million bushels a year of Non-GMO waxy corn and has a wealth of experience to share.

Brian recently updated his two DM500 systems to two new DM510 systems to go on his two Zimmerman grain dryers, one a AP4500 and the other a Zimmerman VT3026.

Why did you buy  Dryer Masters in the first place?

We were looking for a way to take the guesswork out of drying.  Because we are a long term storage facility with minimal outbound blending capabilities, we needed consistent moisture and quality going into storage.  The Dryer Master has been able to take the peaks and valleys out of our moisture content.

How does the Dryer Master change the way that you dry, or alter your drying operations from an operational perspective?

We had to learn to let the Dryer Master do it’s job.  I tell my operators that every adjustment they make when drying, is probably undermining what the Dryer Master has “planned”.  We had to learn not to react to what was happening with outbound samples (unless it’s a long term trend)…for instance, if the outbound sample isn’t correct, that adjustment should’ve been made 2-3 hrs ago.  We watch the hourly trend and trust that the DM knows what’s going in and what’s coming out and will adjust dryer speed accordingly to hit the average target moisture.  Operators have to understand that the DM is always trying to average to the target…if corn is coming out a little dry for an hour, expect the dryer to speed up and you might see a little bit of wetter corn for an hour. My main advice to operators…”don’t over-react, let the DM dbrian-1o it’s job”.

What drying tips (if any) would you like to pass on to other dryer owners about how to get the most out of their dryer and/or their Dryer Master?

During harvest, we often can see a 5-10% spread in the moisture of inbound grain.  While the Dryer Master can handle those ranges of moisture, we try to “help” it by making the inbound wet grain stream more consistent.  We have 3 wet hopper tanks and will divide those into 3 moisture ranges.  We then blend those grain streams to the dryer to get a more consistent moisture content on the inbound side of the dryer.  This helps the Dryer Master by not making it “react” to those big swings.  It also helps us narrow the range that it takes to get to our average outbound target moisture.

Have you fobrian-3-aund a financial difference in your drying performance using Dryer Master? In what way?

Yes. Anytime we overdry corn or underdry corn and have to recirculate, we are not getting efficient use of our utilities expense or our drying assets.  The Dryer Master minimizes those situations and helps us stay within a very narrow +/- range of our target moisture.

How often do you typically calibrate your outlet moisture sensor? And what is your calibration procedure?

We sample every 30-45 minutes while the dryers are running.  We keep a log sheet comparing DM sample to Moisture Meter (Dickey-John) sample.  If we have 3 samples in a row that are off more than .5% in the same direction…then we calibrate.

Aaron in Illinois

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20161205_102523Aaron has a smaller 1610 Grain Handler dryer that he uses to dry about 200,000 bushels of oats and corn. He has now had his DM510 for 2 seasons and uses the Dryer Master moisture sensor chute with a rotary feed which helps provide a consistent flow of product past the outlet moisture sensor.

Why did you buy a Dryer Master in the first place?

I had not heard anything about Dryer Master but my bin dealer and the Grain Handler folks recommended it.

How does the Dryer Master change the way that you dry, or help your drying operations from an
operational perspective?

It allows me to be a little freer to do otaaron-1her tasks.

How often do you typically calibrate your outlet moisture sensor?

All throughout the first day, then if it is staying close to the bench tester, just once a day.

How much difference does it make to have real time moisture information versus having to go out and take a sample?

A lot. I’m able to check the moisture of the dryer discharge no matter where I am.

aaron-2Do you use DM-Mobile for remote access.

Yes, I use it on my smartphone all the time, day and night.

Brian in Pennsylvania

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brian-pa-1Brian dries  about 250,000 bushels of corn and soybeans with his Grain Handler 1610 dryer. He has now had a Dryer Master DM510 for 3 seasons. In the photo of the DM510 panel, on the right there is a small black device. This is part of the remote wireless I/O setup option. This option simplifies installations where the DM510 panel is located at a far distance from the dryer, or where a conduit run would be difficult.

Why did you buy a Dryer Master in the first place?

It was recommended by the Dealer and Rep from Grain Handler

Did anything surprise you about how your Dryer Master worked when you first used it? 

I was surprised how it could compensate for different input moisture after it had run long enough to build the data it needed. Compensates better for large input changes than any other controller I have used.

How often dbrian-pa-2o you typically calibrate your outlet moisture sensor? And what is your calibration procedure?  (Note: The photo is of the outlet sensor installation. Brian diverts a portion of the outlet flow to a pipe where the sensor is mounted. The product flow past the sensor is kept constant by the auger that returns the product to the main stream. )

Check / Calibrate several times daily especially if we changed varieties of corn. Also check before overnight. I recalibrate if its more than a couple tenths off. I push the calibrate button mounted near sensor and take a sample over about 20 to 30 seconds. Gives me enough grain to run two tests on my moisture tester. If both tests are close to the same, I average and recalibrate. If the tests are not close, I start over.

Dryer Master Experiences: Larry in Ontario

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Larry dries about 15,000 tons a year of corn, wheat, soybeans and canola and he has used Dryer Masters for the last 3 years.

Larry has a rather unique setup with 2 Dryer Master DM510s on his Grain Handler 4020 grain dryer (40 feet long, 20 sections high). Each DM510 controls one side of the dryer, with each side having its own separate drive. And yes, the two sides of the dryer will often run at different speeds. The picture to the side shows two of the newest Dryer Master sensor chutes with a rotary feed (highlighted with the black circles).

Why did you buy a Dryer Master in the first place?
To get a reliable controller for the dryer.

How does the Dryer Master change the way that you dry, or help your drying operations from an operational perspective?

Makes life easier not having to keep adjusting the output of the dryer.

Did anything surprise you about how your Dryer Master worked when you first used it?

We had had one on our older dryer (an MC 1195) but with the Grain Handler it seems to want to take control faster and is more consistent.

How much difference does it make to have real time moisture information versus having to go out and take a sample.

It’s a huge difference because at harvest time it gets busy unloading trucks and grading samples. I used to take moisture samples every hour but now with where the inlet and outlet sensors are, they are really accurate, so now if there is a lull with crop coming in I will take a sample, maybe twice a day.

What drying tips (if any) would you like to pass on to other dryer owners about how to get the most out of their dryer, their drying operations, and/or their Dryer Master?

After talking to Wolf at Dryer Master we started using 2 wet bins, so we dry the corn that came in yesterday, today (having let it sit a day). Really made the corn easier to dry – especially the first of the harvest. It seems to bring the moisture closer to the tip of the kernel.

Dryer Master Experiences: Jon in Ontario

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Jon is relatively new to Dryer Master but he is great example of how moisture control is no longer just for big elevators, and how more and more it is making its way into smaller operations.

Jon has a DM510 system and has had it for 2 seasons now. He added it as a retrofit onto an MC dryer and dries about 300,000 bushels a year of corn and soybeans.

Why did youimage7 buy a Dryer Master in the first place?

We had been having issues with the original controller, the dryer had to be babysat 24/7. With just myself looking after the elevator during harvest it became very necessary to find a controller that I could trust so that I could get some sleep and be functional the next day.

How does the Dryer Master change the way that you dry, or help your drying operations from an operational perspective?

It has given me a lot more confidence in my drying system which allows me focus on other parts of the system which need my attention during the course of the day. Once its up and running I check the calibration once in the morning and once more before I head to the house for the night. With the Dryer Master running I just don’t stress about my dryer anymore.

Did anything surprise you about how your Dryer Master worked when you first used it?image11

I thought it would be more complicated to run than it is. I was completely comfortable running the system within just a couple of hours. The over the phone support is great, everybody at Dryer Master seems to know the system like the back of their hand.

What drying tips (if any) would you like to pass on to other dryer owners about how to get the most out of their dryer and/or their Dryer Master?

Give the system time to react if you make changes to the settings. 1-1.5 hours depending on how fast the dryer is running. Too many changes in a short period of time will have you frustrated and chasing your tail. Once the Dryer Master is up and running it takes very little interaction to keep it going. Let it work and find something else to fuss over.

Have you found a financial difference in your drying performance using Dryer Master? In what way?

The biggest financial gain for us would be the accuracy that it can discharge grain at the correct moisture. We have noticed that when shipping grain out, our bins are much more even top to bottom, with no wild swings in moisture. Over and under drying used to cost us every year, now its pretty much a non issue.image4

Do you use DM Mobile? If so how do you use it (phone/PC/home/at night?)

Yes, definitely. This is a huge benefit to my operation. I use it throughout the day from my Iphone, and also at night from my Ipad or Iphone. I can wake up a couple times through the night, see whats happening and get back to sleep. It has made the harvest season mush easier to get through. My days run much smoother because I’m not completely exhausted from being up all night with the dryer.