3000 Series Cracker Plate Installation

K37441 HP Cracker Plate

In need of a new cracker plate for your 3000 series John Deere® forage harvester? Kooima® Ag can help you get the parts to fit! Follow along as we go over how to install a cracker plate on a 3000 series John Deere®. Both cracker plates to fit the 3000 series forage harvesters are installed the same way.

When you order the K37442HP Cracker Plate or the K37441HP Cracker Plate from Kooima® Ag, it will come with a few things. The cracker plate, a bulkhead and written instructions. We found it easy to do some of the pre-assembly outside of the machine rather than going inside and working on it that way.

You will have a 4” adjustment bolt and a 3” lock bolt. We put the adjustment bolt in first (outside hole). Then, run your nut down to where it will kind of be adjusted. Add on all the pieces you will need (see instructions). Next, add your 3” lock bolt to the inside hole. Add the necessary pieces for this also. There should be 2 big 3/4” bolts for the front.

Now that the pre-assembly is finished, open the machine to get started assembling it. Place the cracker plate under the cutter drum. Once it is in position the trick is – there are 2 holes on the frame right underneath the feed rolls. This is where the 3/4” bolt will go. You should be able to feel where the cracker plate is and line it up with the holes. To do this, go to the back of the machine and move the cracker plate, keeping a finger on the front to feel where the holes line up. While carefully holding the cracker plate in the back, use your free hand to insert one of the bolts. Only hand tighten these bolts for now, we will go back and tighten these ones last. There is a bolt on the other side as well, but to ensure that the holes will match up on the other side, we are going to finish the back side first.

Next, we are going to take the cracker plate and put the adjusting bolts on. Tighten the bottom bolt so that the two bolts are tight around the cutter. Take the time to move the cutter head and make sure you are not hitting the cracker plate.

Once the bolts are in place in the back, go the front of the cutter and insert the last 3/4” bolt. This last bolt on the left side of the machine is kind of tricky to get at. There is a bushing that goes on the side wall, a lock washer and a nut welded to the cracker plate. Once that bolt is in place, go back to the back of the machine and see where the knives are in proximity to the cutter drum. The knives on the cutter we worked on were about half worn, so we needed to have about half of the adjustment. Once you have to cracker plate adjusted properly, you can adjust your lock bolts.

When adjusting, the trick is that you cannot see space between the cracker knives and the cutter knives at any spot on the machine. So, you will need to go to the side of the machine and put your hand down below looking out for the auger. Find the spot where you can feel one of the knives and feel out 1/16 to 1/8” clearance between the cutter knives and cracker plate knives. If you don’t hear any noise while moving the drum, it means you are not hitting the cracker plate. From here, you can adjust your cracker plate to the right level while keeping a good clearance for optimum performance.

Finally, all that is left is the tightening. First, you should tighten your long adjusting bolts. Next, we are going to lock the cracker plate in place. Use your lock bolt and nuts to do this. The top nut is to lock it at the top and the bottom nut it to lock it at the bottom right above the cracker plate. Move the bottom nut down to get enough pressure and then snug it up. Once you have done the bottom nut, make sure you do the top nut also.

Once everything is tightened in the back, grab your 1 1/8” wrench and tighten the 2 3/4” bolts in the front. Tighten the right side first then move to the left. Once all the bolts are tightened, move the cutter drum to ensure the knives are clearing the cracker plate knives. Shut the hood and your ready to crack some kernels!

Let us know how we can help you with your 3000 series forage harvester cracker plate installation! Call us at 800-522-8874 or email us at sales@KooimaAg.com.