Dryland knows that the first design on the drawing board is never the final product, many alternatives must be worked through.  So we at Dryland focused on designing and building a test platform allowing for different openers/boots, row cleaners, followers/closers to be tested.  We are excited about the ability of this platform to provide quick learning opportunities.  Dryland wants to learn what works or doesn’t work for each region in eastern Washington State, weather conditions (drought or wet) and specific field prescription.  It’s all about building a body of knowledge to prepare us for whatever the next the 10 or 20 years will bring.  

When Dryland SA began, our focus was on designing a new frame that could change row spacing on-the fly that would allow straw to pass through, and fold up for easy transportation.  Once we finished the detailed concept drawings, we had enough data to build the cost model and determined that the changing row spacing on-the-fly was not going to be a reasonably priced option to present to the dryland wheat farming community, so we stepped back and pivoted slightly to stay within our target cost mode goals, $275,000.00 for a 48-foot deep furrow grain drill.

Not wanting to reinvent the wheel for things like handling seed, seed metering, etc. we made the choice to build off John Deere’s planter platform.  Our founder, Chris Wood,  travelled back to Paton, IA to the Deere Bauer plant and met with the chief engineer of planting and seeding.   Deere was very supported and provided two MaxEmerge openers with seed meters.  This allow Dryland to build around the Deere platform of planters that offer the best technology on the market today.  

See why Dryland SA has the best performing deep furrow grain drill on the market.  Watch how well it clears the 85 bushel chem-fallow stubble in this You Tube Video  -

See why Dryland SA has the best performing deep furrow grain drill on the market.  Watch how well it clears the 85 bushel chem-fallow stubble in this You Tube Video -


During this phase of design we assessed alternatives for openers, doing extensive investigation of research from around the world.  Based on the assessment of alternatives, our choice of opener was based on .  We found one body of research that showed the double bevel of the disk would benefit soil moisture retention in the seed zone.  As noted in the technical paper titled, Soil Translocation by Narrow Openers with Various Blade Face Geometries, by Jacky Desbiolles out of the Barbara Hardy Institute, School of Engineering, University of South Australia.   Here is a chart from the paper showing how the soil moves off varying opener face configurations.   

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Many in the region question the ability of double disk openers to function well in the deep furrow chem-fallow ground, but our testing has shown that this approach out performs the single knife openers that just throw moist soil up out of the furrow that other companies are offering.  We designed a 26-inch double disk opener with 26-inch packer wheels.  This design is the simplest and best performing design to pass through the heavy straw of chem-fallow field.  Each opener is it's own individual unit so they can be staggered on the frame or tool bar.


Each 26-inch packer is mounted on it's own individual swing arm that allows for a tight fit to the surface of the disk and allows for it to float with changes in field conditions and obstacles it may encounter.

Design Platform

To meet the contractual and tight budgetary requirements of the Franklin Conservation District's Concept Deep Furrow Grain Drill project we choose to just build the minimum required width drill of 10-feet.  We purchased a used John Deere 1700 8-row planter out of Arkansas for it's tool bar, seed meters, seed boxes and vacuum system.  In the pictures below you can see how we stripped it down, reconfigured it for the Dryland openers and added back upgraded meter drives plus the seed meters, boxes and vacuum system.

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Field Testing Lessons Learned

Dryland tried to use as many off the shelf parts a possible to keep the price in the target range.  We learned that the standard Deere seed tube was not going to work just before we had to participate in the Franklin Conservation Districts concept deep furrow grain drill testing.  We began the redesign as soon as we learned of this issue and now have a solution that places the seed down the moisture.

Unique Features of Drylands SA’s Deep Furrow Drill

The Dryland SA design offers many benefits beyond just the ability to pass through heavy and difficult residue.  Here are other very key points of commercialization efforts to be aware of:

  1. The Dryland SA design is very simple and safe.  There is no safety issue with unguarded flail blades, does not require excessive hydraulics or horsepower to operate.
  2. The Dryland SA design has been designed to adapted to any Ag OEM planter -  Case IH, Grain Plains, Deere or any others.
  3. The Dryland SA drill uses seed meters and commodity systems from the OEM’s that can precision plant beans, peas, corn, canola and basically any possible small grain.  Farms with both irrigated and dryland crop ground will have single drill-planter that can cover all their needs saving them capital expenditures on multiple pieces of equipment.
  4. The Dryland SA drill will have OEM backed spare parts and service over the entire life of the equipment.  This will also boost the resale/asset value of the drills.
  5. Banks and other lenders will be willing to finance the Dryland SA drill because the drill is built on a large OEM’s planter platforms (Deere, Case IH’s, Great Plains, etc.…).
  6. Because the Dryland SA drills will be financeable and will have a high resale value, leasing companies will offer high residual values allowing for better leasing programs.

Our first production offering will be a 48-foot double disk opener split packer deep furrow grain drill with 18-inch row spacing built on the Deere’s DB planter series platform.   It would look like these representative pictures but with the 26-inch double disk packer assemblies shown on our concept prototype.  We believe this is the best design on the market for our hillsides, the tongue is retractable to shorten up the length and all commodities are on the frame, not a caravan of carts like other companies are offering who only farm in the flatlands. We have also included a picture of the drill folded up in the transport mode.

DB 60 in stubble.jpg

We have also included a picture of the drill folded up in the transport mode.

Folded from the seat of your cab and ready to hit the road saving critical hours during the seeding season

Folded from the seat of your cab and ready to hit the road saving critical hours during the seeding season

Those other companies products just represent "Dumb Iron".  The farmers that want to have the highest yields in their region know they need something more then a prayer, they know they need to time their seeding methods just right and need to have the right smart drills to achieve that. 

You can't control the weather and crop prices but you can use smart machinery and you can control your operating expenses to improve your profits.  Dryland SA provides you with the smart machinery...from design to operation. 

Is there any reason why you shouldn't call (509) 220-4990 today and order your own Dryland SA Deep Furrow Grain Drill?