Thursday, June 5, 2014

Homemade Milk Measuring adapter

Managing a herd of dairy goats requires some reliable way to measure the amount of milk each goat produces each month. That way it is possible to tell when their natural cycle is coming to an end, and when to rotate them around a rest / breeding cycle that is best for them as well as maintaining the milk production constant year round.   To do this, we recently purchased a Waikato milk meter.

This is a simple manual device that goes inline with the milk tubes, and captures 2% of the milk into the graduated tube in the front. IT works great... for larger goats. With the mini nubians it does a wonderful job as is. BUT for the Nigerian dwarfs, 2% is not enough milk to .. measure! SO i took it upon myself to modify it. or rather to create an adapter that will capture 90% of the milk instead.

First, heres how this device works:

The milk flows up the middle pipe, entering the chamber at the top in the center with force. It splashes against the dome which has a ring on the inside. This ring serves to direct the milk down. On one side is a square pipe that captures 2% of the milk and sends it down to the measuring tube. The rest of hte milk exists at the bottom back towards the vacuum.

From the top you can see the center tube, the ring around it in the dome, and the tube on the left (the front) that captures the milk

With the dome removes you can see the center tube and square milk capture tube.
So now the "adapter". I took the lid from a mason jar, a plastic lid, and drilled a center hole, then cut a square on one end, to fit over the pipes. This then slides down over the pipes and forms a catch cup that catches most of the milk. I then cut a slot in the side of the square tube at the base of the adapter, which allows the milk to flow into the square pie and the measuring cylinder.  the slot should not bother the use of hte device without the adapter, so it can go back and forth from a nubian to a nigerian measuring device.

View of the "adapter"
Here are some shots of it in place:

So tomorrow morning we shall see if this works!

1 comment:

  1. UPDATE: it worked beautifully! It could use a slightly larger hole to allow the milk to flow from teh adapter to the tube, but it worked perfectly. We measured all the goats and were able to plan a good rotation for them.