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Thread: Contemplating new parlour equipment

  1. #1
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    Default Contemplating new parlour equipment

    Well, it'll be 20 years this November since we have been using our double 12 parallel parlour, and we haven't been able to get new parts for our surge omni meters and neck tags for a few years now, so we are looking at upgrades to the identification and meters, possibly take offs and pulsators too....

    We are looking most seriously at either the Metatron system from GEA Westphalia or the flow through meters from Delaval and SCR. The local DeLaval dealer is actually becoming a SCR dealer as well, so that is interesting to see how that will play out.

    It seems like the metatron system is tried and true, especially in regards to their meter bodies. Their control screens are likely more than we need, we have a fair amount of part time college kids in the parlour, so simple is fine. It will be the data analysis on the back end and in the office where the real value will be.

    The flow through design of the SCR/Delaval units really intrigues me. Are they really as maintenance free as their salesmen suggests? Do they really restrict milk flow like the competing salesmen suggest?

    Either way, I think combination activity and rumination monitoring will be bundled in. The SCR tales are the same ones they make for Lely so I would guess they should perform well. Is anyone using the GEA cowsense collars that do activity and rumination? Are they accurate and reliable? Long lasting?

    So yeah, big decisions ahead of us and I'd love any and all feedback and questions!
    We are milking 300-350 twice a day if that's relevant for anyone. There is a bible college across the highway, so good help is a blessing and robots seem fairly expensive.....

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by flatlander View Post
    Well, it'll be 20 years this November since we have been using our double 12 parallel parlour, and we haven't been able to get new parts for our surge omni meters and neck tags for a few years now, so we are looking at upgrades to the identification and meters, possibly take offs and pulsators too....

    We are looking most seriously at either the Metatron system from GEA Westphalia or the flow through meters from Delaval and SCR. The local DeLaval dealer is actually becoming a SCR dealer as well, so that is interesting to see how that will play out.

    It seems like the metatron system is tried and true, especially in regards to their meter bodies. Their control screens are likely more than we need, we have a fair amount of part time college kids in the parlour, so simple is fine. It will be the data analysis on the back end and in the office where the real value will be.

    The flow through design of the SCR/Delaval units really intrigues me. Are they really as maintenance free as their salesmen suggests? Do they really restrict milk flow like the competing salesmen suggest?

    Either way, I think combination activity and rumination monitoring will be bundled in. The SCR tales are the same ones they make for Lely so I would guess they should perform well. Is anyone using the GEA cowsense collars that do activity and rumination? Are they accurate and reliable? Long lasting?

    So yeah, big decisions ahead of us and I'd love any and all feedback and questions!
    We are milking 300-350 twice a day if that's relevant for anyone. There is a bible college across the highway, so good help is a blessing and robots seem fairly expensive.....
    The flow thru meters seem legit. I was going to put them in until they told me I needed all new Id boards at every stall because my old delaval ones are not compatible. I was willing to replace them one by one but couldn't come to an agreement with the dealer


    www.dairyhack.com

  3. #3

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    If you go the metatron route, get the Dematron 70 or 75 since you dont need data at the parlor. Get the push button start so you dont wear out the faceplates.

    Also, Lely is currently seeking options other than SCR because of reliability issues so dont use them as a guideline.

    The Delaval flow through meter is licensed from scr so choose by dealer support between those.

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  4. #4
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    Our local GEA dealer is hesitant to get excited about the dematron side of the product line, they have only sold and stocked from the metatron p21 side of things so far, not sure if they even have the s21 version. They likely would if push came to shove....

    Are the collars the only components that SCR supplies to Lely? Is it a battery life thing or...?

    Right now the Delaval dealer is also the SCR dealer, although they have just picked up the SCR line in the last month. SCR initially approached us with our Semex salesman (they sell standalone activity systems from them) and we were interested but hesitant with no boots on the ground. Now that there's a dealer (and they will honour the very aggressive pricing SCR gave us initially) it seems like an option worth doing our due diligence on.

    I guess I should also ask if anyone has used the Delaval activity monitors? Are they fairly reliable? No rumination I think? They'd love to sell us the Herd Manager though!

  5. #5
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    Chilliwack,British Columbia Canada
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    We have GEA CowScout at work for activity monitoring and Bunktime(similiar to ruminatio but it measures the amount of time a cow eats during the day by recording the motion a cows head makes when eating). We find it very help full. Its picked up drycows that were sick and not eating. All this data is collected wirelessly so you habe real time data at computer and dont need to wait for milking to complete to recieve the info.

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  6. #6

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    The Dematrons seem to be more reliable than the P21 ??

    I wouldn't go with S21 as replacement boards are virtually the same price.

    Lely was using SCR pulsators also, but the tags is the main item, with battery life being a big issue.

    When SCR signed up Delaval to sell flow through meters they gave them exclusive rights (in the US) to the calibration guarantees that allow them to be used for DHIA etc. Check your local conditions if such things are an interest to you.

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  7. #7

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    I would recommend picking a system based on the detachers, dealer support, etc.
    Activity monitoring systems are hardly mature yet with intense competition between companies for new features and longer tag life. Choosing detachers based on tags will likely give you buyers remorse in a couple years as new technologies are introduced.


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  8. #8

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    Currently have the scr activity collars and they work but they dont last. They are a fiddle to get on and off the cow, they are a pain to enter into the system compared to other makes and I dont think id buy the system again. Can your dealer link the SCR activity to the delaval delpro? if not you will always be working on two seperate herd management systems which is alsoa pain.

    Im on the same boat as youreslf, thinking of a new parlor, but undecided to go with Gea or delaval. I think the delaval delpro is a great operating system and the hardware is pretty good as well. I also like their BCS camera. their old delaval activity system was not that good but they have a newer system but I havent spoke to any farmers yet who have it in to know if it is much of an improvement.

    SCR sell their flow meters to Milfos and delaval , although they have two types of flowmeter and only delaval has the rights to sell the better one which is very accurate.

    Would be keen to hear what people think of GEA , I hear their parts are quite expensive, but supposed to good equipment.

  9. #9
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    So what kind of lifespan or battery life is realistic with activity collars? Or which brands have replaceable batteries?

    And has anyone been able to use any of the ear tag based activity and monitoring systems much yet? Any initial reports?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by flatlander View Post
    So what kind of lifespan or battery life is realistic with activity collars? Or which brands have replaceable batteries?

    And has anyone been able to use any of the ear tag based activity and monitoring systems much yet? Any initial reports?
    My old MooMonitor system had replaceable batteries. Never again. Battery life was OK, about a year or so. But we were constantly changing batteries anyway and it was a pain in the neck.

    I moved to SCR's ear tag system and couldn't be happier. Mentioned to my Semex rep today that we've lost a total of six tags in seven months out of 580 tags. With all the maintenance I paid to have done on my old system, that's a drop in the bucket as I was spending money on batteries and time for somebody to perform the maintenance which wasn't a simple task. All the tags we've lost I believe were due to having them hang off the ear too much. If we have the tag completely covered by ear, I don't think it can catch on much and fall off.

    Saw some nice results from rumination monitoring. Death loss this year has been cut in half. I'm finding cows that need to go so much earlier and also finding cows that can be saved so much earlier. Drug purchases have been cut in half. I don't treat every little fever anymore. If they are ruminating well, they are fine.

    Can't comment on any of tie in with milking systems as I don't have that.

  11. #11
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    Flatlander, the flow through meters are in the DeLaval robot. I am yet to have any problems with my 16 meters (4 on each robot) in 6 years. They are consistent and accurate.

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    DiederichFarm
    "You are only as good as your next success, not your last" Sir Jock Stirrup

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by drdiederich View Post
    Flatlander, the flow through meters are in the DeLaval robot. I am yet to have any problems with my 16 meters (4 on each robot) in 6 years. They are consistent and accurate.

    Sent from my SM-G930R4 using Tapatalk
    I had heard that they are quite trouble free. The competitors salesman was suggesting that they are only ideal in that situation and not in parlours because they restrict slightly inside and that causes vacuum fluctuations. Can anyone objectively confirm or deny that?

    Also interested in what kind of activity system you are using in conjunction with the Delaval robots. Their collars I assume? No rumination? Herd manager in the future or....?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by flatlander View Post
    I had heard that they are quite trouble free. The competitors salesman was suggesting that they are only ideal in that situation and not in parlours because they restrict slightly inside and that causes vacuum fluctuations. Can anyone objectively confirm or deny that?

    Also interested in what kind of activity system you are using in conjunction with the Delaval robots. Their collars I assume? No rumination? Herd manager in the future or....?
    DeLaval activity, no rumination. I'm unsure on if I'd get full value from rumination. I'm happy with the results I've seen from my activity. We've had them since 2011. Most of the units still with. Originally battery. I never take the collars off.

    I guess I can't comment on the meter use with one per cow instead of one per quarter.

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    DiederichFarm
    "You are only as good as your next success, not your last" Sir Jock Stirrup

  14. #14
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    We've got the SCR collars with our Lely system. Work great, can't comment on the battery life as we've just had them for a year now. They've got a 4 1/2 year warranty on them so I guess we're good for that long. Rumination is almost more valuable than activity. Also it more accurately detects heats because rumen activity is factored in to the heat detection algorithm. If you're putting collars on already, you might as well spend a little more and get something with rumination.


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