Serendipity Chutes and Sorting Boards


Concrete Chute & Sorting Boards

On the left is a yellow chute extension for delivering concrete so we can get it further from the truck without using a pumper. Out in the south field we had built a very long wooden chute, a flume, for delivering concrete to the south field shed. This smaller aluminum one is handy as it is moveable. But they’re expensive at about $500 a pop.
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Archimedes & Sorting Board – That board is ~6′ long.

At one point we were moving pigs and then left our sorting boards lying next to the concrete chute extension. Light bulb time! The same method we used for making livestock sorting boards would work great for making concrete chutes!


Hope Putting Handles in Sorting Board

We make sorting boards by cutting the ends of 65 gallon plastic barrels, slitting the resulting tube and then flatting it under a heavy slab of stone in the sun for a few weeks. A saw and a torch make for the handles. The sorting boards have a little bit of curve to them as you can see in the photo above. This makes for great chute extensions and very cheap since we can get the barrels for free or $16 used at salvage places. (As an extra bonus, this cutting produce two shallow dish piglet or chicken feeders – don’t throw those away!)


Sorting Boards Discouraging Visitors

These chutes could be used to deliver all sorts of things besides concrete. Lapped they could extend long distances. Possibilities. Gotta love used and found things. Serendipity.

Also in the top photo you can see:

A plywood jig for making trusses for the ceiling of our on-farm butcher shop.

Growers in a garden. This photo was taken in the late fall, almost winter, when the smaller pigs were starting to move into the winter paddocks which are summer gardens.

Wooden wall is actually formwork for the concrete wall of the Lairage of our upcoming butcher shop.

Just to the left is the infamous Ramp for jumping concrete trucks over the butcher shop.

Outdoors: 9°F/-9°F Sunny
Tiny Cottage: 60°F/59°F

Daily Spark:
Serendipity is the art of making an unsought finding. -Pek van Andel

Serendipity is looking in a haystack for a needle and discovering a farmer’s daughter. -Julius Comroe Jr.

I had the serendipity of modeling during a temporary interlude between Twiggy and Kate Moss, when it was actually okay for women to look as if we ate and enjoyed life. -Cybil Shepherd

Serendipity. Look for something, find something else, and realize that what you’ve found is more suited to your needs than what you thought you were looking for. -Lawrence Block

Sometimes when you don’t get what you want, you get what you need. Serendipity. -Anon

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About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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4 Responses to Serendipity Chutes and Sorting Boards

  1. Mel says:

    May I quote a couple of your posts as long as I provide credit & sources back to your webpage? My website is in the very same niche as yours and my users would certainly benefit from some of the information you provide here. Please let me know if this ok with you.

    • Quoting small excerpts with a link back is fine – that is how the web works as well as traditional literature citations. For more than that, say you want to use a graphic or a full article, please contact me about the specific article and provide a link to what web site it will appear on so I can check that out.

  2. traye says:

    Looked under Google search for sorting but couldn’t find this answer.

    I’m going to use one of your tricks, allowing big pigs to enter a large weaning space (piglets will have been weaned a month by then). I’m going to set up a step over to block weaners from exiting but allow others to enter.

    How tall with respect to body height will a pig (usually) step over?

    • For an automatic pig sorter if you want an absolute sorter then give it side walls (posts) that are the width of the maximum pig and a height that is the height of the body (heart girth area) of your maximum pig. Then larger pigs can’t duck under. If you press them really hard they’ll try and squeeze through. But if you sweep faster then they sort better. Or just let them naturally sort. Any that are off can be hand sorted later.

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