Worm Harvester Warranty

Worm Harvester Limited Warranty

This warranty extends only to the original customer purchase of a Brockwood Worm Harvester.

This warranty is based on normal usage of two hours per day.

What the Warranty Covers and How Long: If a Brockwood Worm Harvester is defective in material or workmanship, return the defective part to us within two years*(see exception below) of the original date of purchase on the invoice, and we will repair or replace it (with the same or an equivalent part), at our option, with no charge to you. It is the customer’s responsibility to remove the defective part and re-attach the replacement part. *This warranty does not cover normal wear parts.

How to exercise your warranty or obtain service: You may arrange for service or for warranty repair by calling Brockwood Farm at 812-837-9607 or Email: shifte47448@gmail.com

Return defective parts to: Brockwood Farm 7867 Axsom Branch Road, Nashville, IN 47448

There will be no charge for warranty replacement service except for your PRE PAID Shipping cost to our location. When returning a defective part, please be Sure to include: your name, address and phone number.

We cannot assume responsibility for loss or damage during shipping. After we repair or replace (at our option) a defective part under warranty, you will be shipped the replacement part at no cost to you.

What this Warranty does not cover: This warranty does not cover damage resulting from accidents, alterations, failure to follow instructions, misuse, unauthorized service, fire, flood, acts of God, or other causes not arising out of defects in material or workmanship.

What we will not do: WE W1LL NOT PAY FOR LOSS OF TIME, LOST PROFITS OR SAVINGS, INCONVENIENCE, LOSS OF USE OF THE WORM HARVESTER, WORK OR ANY OTHER INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES. 

THIS WARRANTY SETS FORTH ALL OUR RESPONSIBILITIES REGARDING THIS WORM HARVESTER. REPAIR OR REPLACEMENT AT AN AUTHORIZED SERVICE LOCATION IS YOUR EXCLUSIVE REMEDY. THIS WARRANTY IS THE ONLY ONE WE GIVE ON THIS PRODUCT. THERE ARE NO OTHER EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, FROM BROCKWOOD FARM.

TheWorm Harvester, a new high quality piece of worm farming equipment.

Worm Harevester built to last for many years

Other Conditions: We may use reconditioned replacement parts or materials. If we replace your defective part, we may replace it with a reconditioned part or functionally equivalent part. Replacement parts will be warranted for (90) days from the date the part is shipped back to you or for the remaining warranty period on the Product, whichever is longer.

  • The Leeson Electric Motor is warranted by the manufacturer for one year.
  • Tie rod ends are normal wear parts
  • Metal roller wear rails are normal wear parts
  • Type A 28 Drive belt is a normal wear part.

 

 

 

Worm Sifting Screen

The Worm Sifting Screen on the Brockwood Worm Shi*fter was designed with these attributes in  mind:

worm siftintg screen frame

Bare Bones Wood Screen Frame

  1. Grid Size and Selection
  2. Strength and Durability
  3. Fast Efficient  Sifting
  4. Weight and Balance
  5. Availability of Material
  6. Quality of Material

 

egg chute
Flexible Naugahyde Cocoon Chute

We selected the 1/8″ and 3/32″ hole grid for casting separation and a 1/4″ and 1/8″ hole grid for cocoon separation. We make two specialized screens, for night crawlers 1/8″ & 1/4″ perforated aluminum panels and for red worms 3/32 and 1/8″ perforated aluminum panels. Night crawler eggs are larger than red worm eggs so two different screens are necessary.

 

three chutes for worm siftint

All three chutes installed

Perforated aluminum panels are not prone to clogging like the wire screens because they are flat and smooth, easy to keep clean. The Aluminum panels are also not prone to rusting and developing jagged broken wires that will cause worms to hang up and get injured or cut your fingers when you clean them. Aluminum screen panels are lighter and stronger than hardware cloth.

 

 

cocoon screen

1/4′ grid cocoon screen

The combination of the angular pitch  and velocity of the worm sifting screen assembly causes the worms, castings and cocoons to move from input to output efficiently in about 20 seconds. There are three chutes to direct the three products of harvest into their respective bins and or buckets. It is typical to sift two 3.5 gallon buckets per minute or 120 buckets per hour.

 

 

casting screen

Adding the 1/8″ casting screen panel

The weight and balance of the worm sifting screen are very important to the longevity of the wear parts and the noise level of the operation. This is why the screen frame is built with wood instead of steel and the output chutes are made with Naugahyde instead of sheet metal. Metal chutes are noisy and prone to stress fractures. They are also more time consuming and costly to replace if needed.

 

Deluxe worm sifting machine

Complete machine with optional tamping platform

The availability of this combination of wood, perforated Aluminum and Naugahyde is good. Perforated Aluminum is  not as cheap as wire mesh but much more desirable in all aspects. Each worm sifting screen is carefully built from the highest quality parts we can find. After being assembled they are tested “dry” for a sufficiently long enough time to assure it meets our high standards. They are then disassembled and packed for shipping. We know when we ship that all the parts fit together and work properly.

Worm Harvester from Brockwood Farm

Me and my Worm Shi*fter all ready to pack and ship

 

 

 

 

Earthworms Effect on Woodlands

Contain those Crawlers! Invasive Earthworms in Our Forests

Contain Those Crawlers poster This link leads to an external site.. This poster explains the harmful effects of earthworms on hardwood forests. 

 

What’s the big deal about earthworms in Minnesota?

All of the terrestrial earthworms in Minnesota are non-native, invasive species from Europe and Asia (There is a native aquatic species that woodcock eat).  At least fifteen non-native terrestrial species have been introduced so far.  Studies conducted by the University of Minnesota and forest managers show that at least seven species are invading our hardwood forests and causing the loss of tree seedlings, wildflowers, and ferns.  See “What are the harmful effects of non-native earthworms” below for more information.

Why aren’t there native earthworms in Minnesota?

We have no evidence that earthworms ever inhabited Minnesota before European settlement.  Even if they did, the glaciers killed any native North American earthworms in our region.  For the last 11,000 years since the glaciers receded, Minnesota ecosystems developed without earthworms.

There are over 100 species of native North American earthworms in unglaciated areas such as the southeastern U.S. and the Pacific Northwest.  However, native species have either been too slow to move northwards on their own or they are not able to survive Minnesota’s harsh climate.

How did the 15 earthworm species get here?

The first earthworms probably arrived with soils and plants brought from Europe.  Ships traveling to North America used rocks and soil as ballast which they dumped on shore as they adjusted the ballast weight of the ship.  During the late 1800’s and early 1900’s many European settlers imported European plants that likely had earthworms or earthworm cocoons (egg cases) in their soils.  More recently, the widespread use of earthworms as fishing bait has spread them to more remote areas of the state.  All common bait worms are non-native species, including those sold as “night crawlers,” “Canadian crawlers,” “leaf worms,” or “angle worms.”

What are the harmful effects of non-native earthworms?

Minnesota’s hardwood forests developed in the absence of earthworms.  Without worms, fallen leaves decompose slowly, creating a spongy layer of organic “duff.”  This duff layer is the natural growing environment for native woodland wildflowers.  It also provides habitat for ground-dwelling animals and helps prevent soil erosion.

Invading earthworms eat the leaves that create the duff layer and are capable of eliminating it completely.  Big trees survive, but many young seedlings perish, along with many ferns and wildflowers.  Some species return after the initial invasion, but others disappear.  In areas heavily infested by earthworms, soil erosion and leaching of nutrients may reduce the productivity of forests and ultimately degrade fish habitat.

Photo without earthworms: a lush forest.
Without earthworms a lush forest floor.
Photo of bare forest floor after earthworms invade.
After earthworms invade, much of the beauty is gone.

Aren’t earthworms good for soil and gardens?

It depends.  Earthworms create a soil of a certain consistency.  For soils that are compacted due to heavy use by agriculture and urbanization, for example, earthworm tunnels can create “macro-pores” to aid the movement of water through the soil.  They also help incorporate organic matter into the mineral soil to make more nutrients available to plants.  However, in agricultural settings earthworms can also have harmful effects.  For instance, their castings (worm excrement) can increase erosion along irrigation ditches.  In the urban setting, earthworm burrows can cause lumpy lawns.

Relative to simplified ecosystems such as agricultural and urban/suburban soils, earthworm-free hardwood forests in Minnesota have a naturally loose soil with a thick duff layer.  Most of our native hardwood forest tree seedlings, wildflowers, and ferns grow best in these conditions.  However, when earthworms invade they actually increase the compaction of hardwood forest soils.  Compaction decreases water infiltration.  Less infiltration combined with the removal of the duff and fallen tree leaves results in increased surface runoff and erosion.

If non-native earthworms are already here, isn’t it already too late?

No.  Without humans moving them around, earthworms move slowly, less than a half mile over 100 years.  If we stop introducing them we can retain earthworm free areas for a long time.  Also, there are many other non-native earthworms available for sale that could have even more harmful effects.  Even in areas with earthworms already present, we don’t want to risk introducing any of these other species.

What about worms in compost piles?

Non-native “red wiggler” earthworms are sold and shipped all over the country for home compost piles and vermicomposting (worm composting) operations.  Thus far, they are not known to survive Minnesota winters.  However, if they or other species are able to survive winter and escape from compost piles they could further harm native forests.  If you have a compost pile in a forested area, do not introduce additional non-native earthworms.  If you are concerned about spreading non-native worms with your compost, you can kill worms and their eggs by freezing the compost for at least 1 week.  See the brochure “Composting with earthworms… the right waypdf This link leads to an external site. by Great Lakes Worm Watch for more info.

Can earthworms be eliminated from forests?

Currently there are no economically feasible methods.  Preventing earthworm introductions is the best protection.

What can I do to help?

  • Don’t dump your worms in the woods. It’s illegal to release most exotic species into the wild (Minnesota Statutes 84D.06).
  • Dispose of unwanted bait in the trash.
  • Tell others “the dirt” on invasive earthworms in Minnesota.

For more information on invasive, non-native earthworms and other ways to help, visit Great Lakes Worm Watch

Written by Andy Holdsworth, Cindy Hale, and Lee Frelich (University of Minnesota Center for Hardwood Ecology) and reviewed by the Minnesota Interagency Exotic Earthworm Team – March 2003. Updated May 2012

African Nightcrawlers

Submitted by Tim Herron, Herron Farms  706-531-4789

African Night Crawlers  are by far the Best earthworm for vermicomposting with the exception of the European Nightcrawler,  Both Worms put the Red worm to shame. There is a whole lot of misinformation on the web about these worms and how to raise them, they have proved to me, they are one of the easiest worms to raise, period.

These Worms are awesome for Fishing, they are and act like huge red worms, no refrigeration needed, mater of fact they like it Hot, 80 deg. is pretty fair. but they stand the cold much better than thought or reported on the net. I have been steered away from these worms for years, I wish I knew before, what I know now.

African Nightcrawlers are one of the most sought after worms for their worm castings. Although the quality of the worm castings are the same as other worms, the African nightcrawler produces the prettiest looking to the naked eye. African nightcrawlers also make an excellent fishing worm as they are smaller than the Canadian nightcrawler, however are much more livelier as well as tolerant to warmer waters.

Moisture Content

Moisture Content

One of the questions I often get about the Worm Sifter is how does it work with wet clumpy material. The answer is it doesn’t work well with wet material. If the castings and bedding are wet they stick together and will not sift very well at all. It is important that when you sift that the material is dry enough to crumble and fall through the 1/8 inch holes in the sifting screen.

moisture meter

general purpose moisture meter

If you have an indoor worm farm operation you stand a much better chance of controlling the moisture than if you have an outside operation. The maximum recommended moisture level is 85%. A worm breathes through its skin and it will suffocate if it is too dry, below 60% from what I have been told. If your moisture content is too high your material won’t sift properly and if it is too low your worms cannot breath.

 

double handful of worm poop

Sifted Castings are Crumbly and loose

It’s hard to tell from pictures and experience is the best teacher. This is about what your castings should look like when you are done sifting the worms and eggs out. Get yourself a moisture meter and measure the moisture range of castings that work well and those that don’t work well. Once you get a feel for it you won’t forget.

 

Too dry worms die, Too wet you won’t forget.

A good rule of thumb on testing for moisture without using a moisture meter is the “Squeeze Test”.  Grab a handful of your bedding/feed mix and squeeze it as hard as you can. (with no worms in it.) If you can get more than one or two drops of water out of it, it is too wet.

Using Worm Casting Conveyor

Many people have asked me about using the Worm Sifter with a worm casting conveyor system so that castings and cocoons would be transported directly from the casting and egg/cocoon chutes to the intermediate storage bins.

casting conveyor

Flexible Screw Conveyor

I think the most efficient way to do this would be to put the Worm Sifter on raised platform directly over a casting chute and a cocoon chute that directly feeds onto a worm casting conveyor to transport the product to large bins.  Today you can purchase flexible screw conveyors that are designed for transporting granular and powdered material through tubes so they are clean and spillage is not a problem. In this way large operations could use multipal Worm Sifters in series and parallel to process thousands of pounds of castings a day.

This system would be modular in design and Worm Sifters could be added or removed as needed. Not only would it be possible to use a worm casting conveyor for the output of the system, but over head input hoppers could also be fed by gravity from a main supply bin with feeding tubes routed over each individual machine that would meter the worm, casting and cocoon mix to the Worm Sifters at just the right speed.

conveyor system

Example Flexible Conveyor System

The advantage of such a system is its modularity. If one sifter broke down another could be rolled in to replace it or it could simply be turned off and rolled out for quick repair. I am getting a little ahead of myself here and don’t have any mechanical drawings for the system but I have a logical block flow in mind. I will add drawings at some future date as the idea matures in my mind.

Red Worm Eggs

Many people have asked me if the Worm Shi*fter will separate red worm eggs from castings like it sifts night crawler eggs from castings and the answer is YES. The most popular Red Worm is commonly called the Red Wiggler, the botanical name, Eisenia Fetida.

Nightcrawler eggs are larger than nightcrawler castings so they won’t fall through the 1/8 inch holes of the casting screen and instead move on down to the 1/4 inch holes of the egg screen where they will fall through. This isn’t true for the small Red Worm egg which measures 2 mm to 3 mm that will easily fall through the 1/8″ casting holes which are 3.17 mm.

We have developed a red worm screen which is similar to the night crawler screen. Instead of using 1/8″ perforated aluminum followed by 1/4″ perforated aluminum we use a 3/32″ perforated screen followed by a 1/8″ screen. Below is a picture of Red Worm eggs relative to one thin dime.

Castings fall through the 3/32″ holes but the cocoons and hatchlings pass over that screen and the cocoons pass through the 1/8″ perforations of the following screen. Hatchling worms, the tiny babies, will pass over the 1/8″ holes and most will fall off the end with the red worms.

How many Red Worm Eggs can you put on the face of a dime?

red worm eggs