Vertec Grain Dryer
The Vertec grain dryer designed and manufactured by George Daugela and the family firm Vertec
Industries was made specifically for Canadian crops and climate. Though grain dryers had been developed in
North America prior to Daugelas design, these models were manufactured primarily to accommodate American
crops like corn.
The need for grain dryers was well established by decades of Western Canadian agriculture;
fall rains often delayed harvest of damp grain while the value of the crop declined due to losses from field
rot. Farmers who harvested damp grain faced daunting storage problems, including dealing with losses due to
accumulated moisture and grain mold.
The Vertec design was built to be portable, including a hitching mechanism for transport by
tractor or grain truck, meaning it could be moved around a farmers yard from granary to granary or in the field
where the harvest was underway.
The Vertec grain dryer was essentially two vertical grain transport chambers, separated by
hot air channels, with a wet grain input auger and a dry grain output auger. The dryer also included a cool
air fan which helped cool the dried and heated grain before it was sent to the output auger. The dryer was a
continuous flow model, meaning that wet grain could be loaded in at the top and dry grain could be taken from
The Vertec grain dryers hot air burner was powered by propane heaters, and the grain
transport systems were activated by a connection to a tractors power takeoff drive. Temperature and moisture
monitors let the dryer operator know when the specific moisture and temperature combination for particular
grains was reached.
The performance and dry grain output of the Vertec VT 5600 R Grain Dryer was field-tested
in 1982 by the Alberta Farm Machinery Research Centre, and the Prairie Agricultural Machinery Institute. The
dryer was rated very good for drying wheat, barley, canola and corn. It was rated with a drying capacity of
9.1 tonnes (334 bushels) of wheat per hour, 8.1 tonnes (372 bushels) of barley per hour, and 3.7 tonnes(163
bushels) of canola per hour.
The Vertec VT 5600 grain dryers were approximately 3.1 metres wide and 4.8 metres high;
roughly the same size as some recreational vehicles.
In 1991, an American firm, Nebraska Engineer Company (NECO), purchased the manufacturing
rights for the Vertec grain dryers. The firm continues to make grain dryers based on the Vertec design.
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