Do you have an idea you’d like to share with other dairy producers? Send it our way! We pay $50 for Handy Hints printed in the magazine.

To be considered, all submitted hints must include a clear, print quality photo (at least 240 dpi and approximately 4" by 6” in size). Please send items to Hoard’s Dairyman, Handy Hints Department, P.O. Box 801, Fort Atkinson, WI 53538. You can also email your Handy Hints to editors@hoards.com. Please include your name, full mailing address and a short description of the handy hint with each submission.


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a collection of Handy Hints from our readers.



Here are a few Handy Hints from fellow readers.

March 31 2011
Handy Hint: April 10, 2011 Plywood, nails, and tags track calves We found it difficult to tell employees which calves to feed, what type of milk, and how many times a day to feed each calf. Our solution...
March 15 2011
Handy Hint: March 25, 2011 Dishwater rack screens water We always had problems with twine getting into sump pumps. We then started thinking of a way to make a sturdy filter that wouldn't easily clog but...
March 8 2011
Handy Hint: March 10, 2011 Cable prevents cows from getting caught in stalls After constructing their recent free stall barn, Jay and Amy Krahn of Brillion, Wis., advised their builder to include a cable...
Feb. 21 2011
Handy Hint: February 25, 2011 They use silo to store wheat straw The Krahn Family of Brillion, Wis., uses wheat straw for bedding. "As our herd grew, getting enough straw blown into the old tie stall barn...
Jan. 26 2011
Handy Hint: February 10, 2011 Screen Protects Truck Since the farm truck at the Steve and Carl Ayers Family farm in Perryville, Ohio, goes through many crossing guard gates, they added a frame around the...
Jan. 12 2011
Handy Hint: January 25, 2011 Bracket keeps ball hitch handy Never look for the ball again. I took a piece of angle iron and bolted it to the cage of my skid loader. That way whenever I need the ball to...
Jan. 5 2011
Handy Hint: January 10, 2011 Wire stops for calf hutches We found that filling discarded 15-gallon soap containers with a little sand makes for great stops for calf hutches. They can easily be cleaned,...
Dec. 16 2010
Handy Hint: Jan 10, 2010 Colored Tape Marks Distance During the winter months, my employees are so bundled up that they have a hard time turning around inside the skid loader to see behind them. This led...
Dec. 13 2010
Handy Hint: December 2010 Skid moves calves to heifer operation To help move calves across the road to their heifer operation, the Steve and Carl Ayers Family of Perryville, Ohio, designed this small calf...
Nov. 5 2010
Handy Hint: November 2010 Cow Shower Clay McQuiddy, Mountain Grove, Mo., rigged an inexpensive cow shower for his pastures. He taped a 3/4-inch plastic polypipe to a 3/16-inch cable that loops over the...
Oct. 18 2010
Handy Hint: October 25, 2010 Neck rails that give A local builder created a neck rail that has some extra give to it. As shown in the photo, the rail is mounted above the feed aisle and equipped with a...
Oct. 7 2010
Handy Hint: October 10, 2010 Colored buckets identify calf sex We have finally found an easy way to identify the sex of our calves when they are in hutches. Heifer calves are given a pink water bucket,...
Sept. 15 2010
Handy Hint: Sept 25, 2010 Easy access four-wheeler battery Rather than replacing the hard-to-reach battery that's under the fender on our farm four-wheeler, we made our own battery bracket by welding angle...
Sept. 3 2010
Handy Hint: Jan 10, 2010 Recalibrated seeder saves time We decided to recalibrate our seeder so we wouldn't have to pour excess alfalfa seed into it. Additionally, we could ensure that we were getting...
Aug. 24 2010
August 25, 2010 Handy Hint Trailer built for easy fresh cow travel Fresh cows are ferried back to the milking string with this low-rider trailer. Designed by Lorin Berge, Valders, Wis., the tractor-drawn...
Aug. 9 2010
August 10, 2010 Handy Hint Brush-moving attachment For trimming and hauling brush, this device, which fits on my skid steer, is by far the best labor- saving item I have ever constructed. It could be almost...
July 15 2010
June Handy Hint: Durable esophageal feeder We made this esophageal feeder from a one-gallon mayonnaise plastic jar. There is a hook on the lid that holds a leather neck strap (freeing your hands). On the...
July 15 2010
July Handy Hint: When to breed heifers At the Hoard's Farm, we created this quick detection method when a heifer is in the chute to determine if she is eligible to breed. A line was drawn on a 2 x 4 at...
June 16 2010
May 25 Handy Hint: Whiteboard tracks ketosis testing At Summitholme Holsteins in Lynden, Ontario, a simple dry erase board is used to track ketosis testing for fresh cows. The whiteboard is labeled with...
June 1 2010
May 10 Handy Hint: Train wheels pack bunker We made a silage packer from 10 old iron train wheels. It works very well when packing our corn silage and haylage bunkers. The total weight of the packer is...