In any year we receive approximately 400 – 600 instruments for service/repair. The vast majority of those come to us during the harvest period so that over a period of about 2 – 3 months we get anywhere between 200 – 400 instruments. It’s physically not possible to repair all these instruments within a week of receiving them and so turnaround times lengthen.
Much of the work we undertake is due to the lack of maintenance and care of meters and spears. Having paid several hundred pounds for the unit when new, many farmers then proceed to abuse them and do not have them serviced. They use them to the end of the harvest and put them away, without cleaning them, in leaky sheds until next year, fully expecting them to work when they get them out again when the next harvest begins. A check of the unit in about February or March would probably let you know in plenty of time if it’s going to work, or not, when you need it.
Take advantage of our range of service contracts, which can include a loan instrument whilst yours is away, or the reduced cost service offer we run every year. Please call our Service Centre to discuss your requirements.
The best way is to send it back to the Sinar Technology Service Centre where we have all the correct equipment and calibration standards to check and adjust the instrument across it’s entire range of functionality.
There are two possibilities.
- All the instruments require recalibration.
- All instruments have a +/- range of error tolerance, typically between 0.3% – 0.5% depending on model, and the differences you are noticing are could be due to this.
All our instruments have the ability to have MINOR adjustments made to them by the user to remove these differences. Any major adjustments really do require a visit to our workshop to ensure that there isn’t something more fundamentaly wrong with the instrument. A minor adjustment would be up to the range of error tolerance for the individual instrument.
Purchase a known calibration standard from us (part No 1900-6352) and check your meter against them to determine which, if any, require recalibration, or in the case of GrainSpears, one of our Field Test Devices (part No 1900-6280).
Meters that are regularly calibrated by us should give reliable results. Getting an unexpected claim does not always mean that your meter is wrong but is an indication that something may be wrong. A good way of ensuring that your meter is correct is to purchase known calibration standards from us (part No 1900-6352), and check your meter against them regularly throughout the harvest. At the first sign that your meter is incorrect contact the Sinar Technology Service Centre and we will help you solve the problem.
Checking your meter against another meter of different manufacture and unknown accuracy is not recommended as this can give misleading & confusing results.
By this do you mean how do we set the initial calibration for a commodity or how do we calibrate an instrument when it’s back for service or repair?
If it’s the former, then over the last 20 years or so, each harvest we’ve collected samples of all the commodities we measure with our meters and oven tested them. The results of these tests are then used to adjust the programming within the meters to make the results you get more robust with time.
If it’s the latter, then firstly we calibrate the hardware to ensure that the mechanics and the electronics are performing to their specifications. Then we check that the moisture results are within specification against a range of known calibration standards. Finally we put each instrument through a final check procedure with a different set of oven tested, calibration standards to confirm the calibration.