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UER Forum > UE Encyclopedia > Grain Elevator (Viewed 7579 times)
Entry: Grain Elevator
originally posted by Parteimitglied


Grain elevators are a prairie icon, used for the storage and transfer of grain after the harvest. The traditional ones are very unique structures in that they were made ingeniously with a minimum of materials. Built on a concrete foundation a grain elevator stands 70 to 80 feet tall, within it would be 16 to 18 bins that would accommodate the grain. All inner and outer walls were made of wood; sometimes reinforced with metal brackets to ease the pressure placed by the grain.

When a truck enters the elevator it is weighed and dumps its load through a metal grate in the floor. From here a belt and buckets lift the grain to the top of the elevator and it falls into the bin wanted. When a train comes to pick up the grain, a door is opened in the bottom of the bin and the grain falls under the same metal grate where the trucks unloaded. Now when the grain is lifted to the top it is directed to a chute leading to the train instead of one of the bins. Using this system a grain elevator only needs one motor and belt to function.

In peak days there were 5700 elevators built in western Canada and they were placed roughly 8 to 10 miles apart along the rail lines. Today that number is at 1000 and falling fast as the structures decay and are replaced by larger concrete terminals.

These are fairly easy places to find however their height and the fact that most are decaying make them a dangerous place. Caution should be used if you are going to enter one and beware of high winds should you venture onto the roof.



Text based on: http://ct.essortment.com/prairiegrainel_rmrl.htm
Diagram from: http://waltonfeed.com/elevator/picindex.html
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