Keeton Seed Firmers for Drills
- Improves plant emergence uniformity
- Helps ensure all seeds germinate at same time
- Helps get seedlings established (seeds not loose in furrow)
- Don’t rely on a rain to bring the crop up
- When used with Exapta’s Mojo Wires, Keetons stay clean and are trouble-free.
Keetons have long been available for many models of grain drills, and now that we have Mojos for them, you can actually get some serious seed firming out of them. Most grain drills (except JD 50/60/90s, and some SDX drills) completely lack an in-furrow seed-firming mechanism to apply a small but consistent pressure directly onto the seed at the seed’s location in the bottom of the furrow. Instead, these drills use trailing packer or ‘press’ wheels that run on the soil surface to compress all the soil above the seed to try to obtain sufficient seed/soil contact. As with planters, this method is problematic in the more structured soils of no-till cropping, and often causes mediocre to poor emergence if it doesn’t rain right away. Hence, many farmers install Keetons on these drills, which help, but often don’t have enough pressure.
Note: Although Keetons are available for JD 50/60/90 drills, we do not recommend them. This is because the angle of the opener changes so dramatically during field operation (no parallel link) that the Keeton often has little to no pressure on it, even with a Mojo Wire installed. Much better to use the seed-lock firming wheels on these drills, which supply a continuous pressure of about 20 lbs on a similar surface area as a Keeton—so long as a sufficiently narrow firming wheel is installed (well-designed firming wheels include Exapta’s DuraLok, Case’s SDX; also acceptable are Needham V8, and Deere’s narrow seed-lock wheel introduced in 2005—although it still rides on the sidewall too much due to being on a rigid rim, but is vastly superior to what Deere had prior to ’05). Even the Fin, a sliding plastic firmer that uses the Deere firming arm, is much better than a Keeton for the Deere 50/60/90 drills.