Many prairie farmers are familiar with the nervousness and sleepless nights that follow the storage of damp grain in bins without proper aeration – or any aeration at all.

It’s a problem Frank, Adolf and Albert Zacharias had long wanted to solve. And it just so happened that the Winkler, MB brothers noticed a gap in the market where they could address it. Already familiar with the agriculture industry given their background as farmers and grain bin installers, the brothers launched NorBin to produce their airflow products.

“There are thousands of hoppers being made all over Canada every year with 20 or 30 types of air systems, but none of them cover the whole floor of the bin,” explains Frank Zacharias, NorBin Co-Owner. Farmers are always worried about the tough grain in those pockets of the hopper that aeration doesn’t reach.”

Through a process of meticulous design and rigorous testing, NorBin was able to manufacture its state-of-the-art Full-Floor and Cyclone air systems for hopper-bottom bins.

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“As soon as we started testing, we realized this wasn’t as easy as designing aeration for flat-bottom bins,” says Zacharias. “That’s probably why it hadn’t been done before. It took quite a bit of prototyping, testing, and engineering to get it to where it actually works.”

Essentially, NorBin builds a second floor inside the hopper cone that leaves a gap between the axle cone and perforated Full-Floor system. The fan is then able to pressurize the entire floor, eliminating those dead pockets.

The Cyclone system, meanwhile, addresses many issues farmers have with their existing hoppers.

“A lot of guys approach us saying they have 15 or so hopper bins on the yard already. They don’t need more bins, but they need a good air system,” Zacharias says. “We figured there should be a product that’s easy to install and will fit any brand of cone.”

Cyclone aeration systems don’t cover the entire wall off the bin but are strategically located inside of the cone. And whereas some air systems fill up chaff and dust, this one empties cleanly. It also installs easily, as Zacharias points out, and none of the existing parts have to be removed from the bin.

Made of galvanized steel, the Cyclone comes in a kit and ships in a 3-foot by 4-foot box that can be hauled on the back of a pick-up truck.

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Interested producers will be able to see prototypes of both the Full-Floor and Cyclone aeration systems at upcoming farm shows in Regina and Saskatoon. They can also call the NorBin office at (204) 384-7850, and additional information about their products is available on their website.

Full-Floor and Cyclone systems are not only investments in dry, well-aerated grain, but also peace of mind.

“Farmers can sleep and relax because they know their grain is being aerated,” Zarachias concludes.