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Northstar Hydraulic Chutes

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Silver

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No, but their Q-Catch manual chue is sure quiet. The manual head gate is whisper quiet and catching 400 head is like a day off. No comparison to an automatic head gate.
 

cowsense

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Nicky; A friend purchased a NorthStar portable tub, alley & manual chute for pasture AI. He is not satisfied and has found a couple of other makes that are more user friendly, better designed & cheaper to buy. He runs 500-600 cows through an AI program so he's used it lots but is looking at trading off on another make.
 

RSL

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Cowsense - what didn't he like about it?
We are looking at a double alley, alley and possibly a manual squeeze to replace the old stuff at the end of our new bud box.
We have a portable setup from REAL but don't really like it, mostly because I can't vaccinate or process 8-10 at a time and we don't like crowding tubs too much, but it does work OK.
 

Nicky

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Hereford76 said:
you must be christmas shopping nicky - rockwell scales, northstar chutes... what else is on your list?

Corral improvements and a pickup with a bale bed...among other things :p

Still have a load of heifers to sell so would rather improve things than pay uncle Sam! Going to the accountant on tues to have a visit.
 

perfecho

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RSL, have a portable Northstar and it's decent, probably had it for 5 years now. Chute is good once you get the hang of it, think their silencer may be better. When we have weigh in for 4-H, new people seem to have a problem with the handles, etc, but when you are used to it, works good. Really like the rear operating part. Sliding doors are good, maybe a little noisy, but seem strong, so far haven’t bent any so they won’t open or close. Older, bigger bulls have a hard time to get through the system.....but then we are purebred breeders and feed way toooooo much ;-0
Vet preg checking really likes the system. If I were to do different, would have longer alley, low enough walls to get rid of walkway (especially as I get older). Would like to try a double alley. Since this is a solid unit, my weigh scale is in the alley, so animals have to step up onto it...not a big issue, but a little cumbersome. If scales needed, would certainly have them under the chute...just can't do that in this system.
 

RSL

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perfecho said:
RSL, have a portable Northstar and it's decent, probably had it for 5 years now. Chute is good once you get the hang of it, think their silencer may be better. When we have weigh in for 4-H, new people seem to have a problem with the handles, etc, but when you are used to it, works good. Really like the rear operating part. Sliding doors are good, maybe a little noisy, but seem strong, so far haven’t bent any so they won’t open or close. Older, bigger bulls have a hard time to get through the system.....but then we are purebred breeders and feed way toooooo much ;-0
Vet preg checking really likes the system. If I were to do different, would have longer alley, low enough walls to get rid of walkway (especially as I get older). Would like to try a double alley. Since this is a solid unit, my weigh scale is in the alley, so animals have to step up onto it...not a big issue, but a little cumbersome. If scales needed, would certainly have them under the chute...just can't do that in this system.
Thanks Perfecho. That is pretty helpful. We are looking at the 26' alley because I hate walkways and the working side is down low so we can vaccinate cows without squeezing them. The walkway on our portable is a pain after the first two trips up and down, and the solid all the way up sides I find really difficult. Psychology works better than steel around here most of the time (human and/or animal).
After working with a long alley for a lot of years, I don't think I could handle catching every cow. We have had a self catch headgate since around 1981, but we are looking at/debating the squeeze. Without the rear handle to run it, I think the slider type headgate would be challenging as you would be directly in the flight zone trying to catch the cow before she backed up.
I see their videos include large continental type cows, so we might have to shrink the alley up a bit for our cows (although we do have some wide ones).
 

perfecho

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The back handling lever is certainly good, but the most animals catch themselves....these darn pampered cows sometimes need a tail twist to get them to move up.....sometimes just do whatever without putting them into the head gate. Don't use the squeeze much, just if are real jumpy and nervous or if 4-H kids are handling animals.
Have always wanted to try open bars on the off side for an alley and just sheet in the working side, especially if it curved slightly into the off side, so as the girls could see the other ones "getting away."
Glad to hear that even the "young bucks" don’t like to go up and down the catwalk steps!
Off to the Gelbvieh Wishlist Sale in Ponoka with some consignments. Hopefully Hillsdown will make it to one of these and introduce herself.
On a windy day like this, I would rather be travelling with an old steel trailer than the aluminum.....it’s a bugger out there!
 

cowsense

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RSL said:
Cowsense - what didn't he like about it?
We are looking at a double alley, alley and possibly a manual squeeze to replace the old stuff at the end of our new bud box.
We have a portable setup from REAL but don't really like it, mostly because I can't vaccinate or process 8-10 at a time and we don't like crowding tubs too much, but it does work OK.

RSL; Kind of hard to remember as we looked at it in the dark as he was finishing heat detecting; main complaint was the design of latches....just awkward to use (looked to me like you might have to remove heavy gloves in cold weather to open). He really wishes that he would have looked at a TUFF portable setup; seem to be well designed and priced a bit more reasonable.
We will need to replace our handling chutes; was advised against a double alley as it isn't adjustable (we mainly process calves & yearlings) & the cows only go through for preg checking & Ivomec. Have looked at a lot of setups and will probably go Stampede Steel......manual chute;manual headgate; long alley (prefer circular over S type but may have to compromise).
I hear you on the crowding tub but used properly (not overfilled) they do work but can be challenging as you are forcing cattle. I do appreciate a tub when working bulls & some cows.....basically for safeties sake!
 

Silver

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RSL said:
We have had a self catch headgate since around 1981, but we are looking at/debating the squeeze. Without the rear handle to run it, I think the slider type headgate would be challenging as you would be directly in the flight zone trying to catch the cow before she backed up.

The beauty of the sliding headgate is that cows don't tend to back up, even when you stand up front. They don't feel the need to take a run at it, the chute is open and looks like a natural place to go as opposed to a self catch head gate that is always partially blocked and provides a narrow opening that cows always feel they need to lunge at to get through. I find cows just walk up nice and quiet and are easily caught. No clanging and banging headgate. Cattle are easily released, and just step out, way less stress on the crittur.
Now that we have one I wonder how we got by with the old automatic headgates all those years.
I probably sound like a Q-Catch salesman, but I can't help myself, I've been converted :oops: :lol:
 

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