Riley Built Chute Maintenance
As with any equipment, whether it’s your truck chute or trailer hoof trimming chute, it is important to keep your chute clean. A decent washing daily or after use will suffice with a deep cleaning monthly.
Wheel bearings should be checked for tightness on at least a monthly basis. This is simply done by putting the trailer up on its outriggers and trying to wiggle the tires back and forth. No looseness should be detected when doing so. Brakes should be tested at least weekly. This is easily done with just a hand trailer brake and using a grease gun with the bearing buddies that are already installed on the unit.
Lighting should be inspected daily before leaving your yard. Hydraulic rollups should be greased at the grease zerks at least monthly. I suggest simply doing it the first of every month. That way, you will not forget. All door hinges should be sprayed with a product such as WD-40 after each use or each washing. Also, grease points should be done monthly on pivot points which have grease zerks.
Tire pressure should be properly maintained on a regular basis. Batteries should have posts and cables cleaned and water checked every three months. I would strongly suggest the first day of each quarter and do this as well as refilling the batteries with either distilled water or electrolyte. In reality, these rigs will last a good 20 years with simple maintenance.
Operating the Chute
Now, let’s move on to the instruction manual portion on how to run your rig properly. The most important thing for you to remember is never let somebody help you run the cow. It only takes one person with the pusher unit. That pushes the cows in for you. If you let somebody get behind you, it then would become possible that someone closes the pusher on you, catching you in the unit.
Also, it is important for you never to operate the pusher unit without the door being in a full open position. Otherwise, the door could swing out in very fast order hurting the operators. It’s important here to note that the control valves, as I am sure you have probably mastered by now, operate in one way. That is, every valve lever pulled outward brings every valve to the out or down position. And in the proper order, for instance, assuming that the shoot is in the laid-over position, and you want to bring it down with the animal in it, he would pull the top lever far out as it will go and then hit your power button.
Never feather your levers while under power. Only feather them while they are coasting with the power button off. Otherwise, you would not be running the chute correctly. So pulling the top lever out full going under power, but only to the break over position, then release the power button and feather the unit to the ground.
Now going to your second lever down pulling it outward letting your belly bands down, then your third lever down and hold outward. This can be done in conjunction with the fourth lever down and will open your front door and head stanchion at the same time, releasing the animals head and releasing the animal from the chute entirely.
Keep in mind that your outrigger being your bottom lever is only used to set the machine up for stability. The bottom lever is only used during set up and tear down and then turning off the high-pressure valve located behind your medication and wrap holder, and which is only to be worked with when you set up or prepare for leaving.
Preparing for the next animal pushing, the fourth lever down all the way in closing the front door and setting your back chain by hanging out through the front opening on the outside of the chute or belt system. You are now prepared to load your next cow by walking behind her until her front shoulders pass the pusher bar. You can give her a gentle tap behind the front shoulders and she will slightly squat and go forward in a rapid motion putting her head through the head stanchion.
At this point, the cow’s head should be through the stanchion and you can push the third lever in, locking her in place. Next, push the second lever in pulling up the belly bands* to the desired tightness, and then close the rear door, pushing the top lever in until the cow is barely over the break over point stopping the unit in this position. Then doing likewise with the left rear leg and left front leg and finally the right front leg returning back to the control valve. Then, bring the shoot to the horizontal position by pushing the top lever in coasting not under power.
If any of the legs appear to be loose, simply push in on your second lever down tightening the belly bands until you are satisfied that the hooves are tight and secure. You are now ready for trimming. After trimming release the feet in this order: left front right front left rear and standing behind the back door finally the right rear. Pull the top lever out under power until you get to the break-over point again, and then let go of the push power button and feather the hydraulics to the ground thereby standing the animal erect in a gentle manner. You are now ready to repeat everything you have just read again and again and again. The whole process should take 30 seconds.
Riley Built Hoof Trimming Chutes
I hope this helps you with your Riley Built truck & trailer hoof trimming chute.
Visit our home page for more information on hoof trimming chutes from Riley Built.
If you have any further questions please feel free to drop me a line or call me personally.
*Everything said about the belly bands is unnecessary if you have the belly pan instead.