How do I get a better relationship with my milking machine?

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by fmg, Apr 12, 2012.

  1. fmg

    fmg New Member

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    I am milking 7 goats by hand currently. Sometimes I use my machine, but I don't feel comfortable with using it for anything but kid/animal use milk. It seems like I can get the equipment cleaner that I hand milk with than the machine milking equipment...I don't know if I'm right about that or not. Also, it really doesn't seem any faster to milk by machine, even when I do two goats at once. I am using a surge bucket milker. Here is how I use it and clean it, based on what I have read here mostly:

    Clean the teats on the goat(s) I'm going to milk.
    Milk that/those goats.
    Turn off the valves and dip in bleach water, and hang the inflations on a ladder (that's what I had handy).
    Get the next goat ready.
    When finished milking, I pour out the milk and clean it by:
    Run water with dishwasher soap through the tubes.
    Run bleach water through the tubes.
    Do a couple other things while I let the bleach sit in the lines.
    Rinse with water.
    Empty everything from the bucket, rinse with water, wipe with a rag, wipe off lid, remove gasket and wipe it down.

    The tubes never seem to dry, even though I leave them hanging. I have no where that is not dusty to store my bucket and tubing. :( Maybe I could eventually come up with something. I have water at the barn now, but no hot water (not sure if that's important?).

    How do you get the milk chilled quickly for human consumption? Pour it out between each goat? When hand-milking, I pour through a filter into a tote that is in an ice-water bath, between each goat. I thought about just putting the bucket into an ice water bath, but for one it would be floating, two it is really wide, and three the milk would be much harder to filter cold. I hate the way the milk tastes if it is not chilled very quickly, and don't want to sell yucky tasting milk. The dairy inspector said that the milk only needs to come down to 45 in 2 hours after milking the last goat, but that seems like way too long a time.

    :help2
     
  2. Rambar Ranch

    Rambar Ranch New Member

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    If your worried about filtering, they sell in-line filters that connect to the hoses so they sit between the hoses and the lid. Usually though, milking by a machine is much cleaner than milking into a bucket. If your wishing to still chill fast, I would get the in-line sock filter then empty after each doe or 2 into your ice water bath bucket. Especially if you milk 2 goats at a time this would work well without dumping to many times.

    Ray
     

  3. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Dipping your inflations in bleach water between does is doing nothing. I use two, two gallon buckets, one is a squirt of automatic dishwashing liquid to water filled up in the bucket, the other is the 1/4 cup bleach to 1 gallon of water. Between does, I turn off the inline shutoff and dunk the inflations in the soapy water, it contains cymethlocone which sheets the milk fat out of the inflations, then now that it is clean I dunk it into the bleach water and hang.

    I have 4 milkstands and milk the four does, I then empty my can....what is in your milk if you have clean teats and clean lines that needs to be strained...the milk is not getting debrie dropping in it from bellies or barn air, or flies that need to be filtered out. So my totes which are food grade plastic have frozen soda bottles in them to cool the milk. I milk the next four does and then to clean......I dump the milk, use the sink to clean out the can, especially the rim....at the two buckets I clean the lid and gasket, so I am putting a clean lid onto a clean bucket to flush water through to clean the lines. I drop the inflations with the claws and inline valve open and let it suck through the soapy water, I then drop them into the bleach water and pull off my airline and unplug my machine...it sits there like that while I get the last 4 does down and take my milk into the soaproom. I come back out and hang my lines, rinse with water my inflations, clean my can (I simply use a green scrubber, and turn my can upside down on the rim of my sink drain board. Before I use my can or lines the next time, I simply run water through them.

    It's about getting a good practical routine down, there is no way anybody can milk as clean as you can with a machine...figure the only time air from the barn let alone flies or hair or dander or manure can touch you milk is when you pour, do it in the sink or on the sink drain board. I also have a friend who has plastic lids for his deLaval cans, when the lid comes off one because it is full it gets a plastic lid and is put on the tote (this wagon he has) he get out another can and fills it....all the cans go to the milkroom to be poured...milk only has barn air in it for the few seconds it takes to put the plastic lid on. I do something similar with colostrum and transitional milk, I have a small can I use when I get to a doe who has just freshened, so I do not have to dump my larger can just to milk her. They are called wetcow cans or something like that.

    There is nothing you are doing during milking chores that needs hot water.....now I do take my lines and inflations and lid into the soaproom to clean on Saturdays so I can use hotwater to soak them.

    And multitask, I got all my kids discriptions written out on their paperwork while I was milking this morning, fed two lambars after I cleaned both of them...all things I would have to do after I finished hand milking. Vicki
     
  4. fmg

    fmg New Member

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    Lol, well there is some multitasking I could do, like paperwork like you said, but if you saw my set up and hills, you would know I can't really feed the kids while milking. LOL. Just ask Tracy about my hills. ;) I will show this to my husband...he is the one that is more worried about the machine than me, hehe. And of course, my milk is tested monthly by the state for bacteria counts, coliforms, scc, etc, so I will know if the machine is not getting clean enough.
     
  5. fmg

    fmg New Member

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    And I have no sink, just a spicket (sp?), so I still need to come up with some place to keep my bucket, lid, gasket.
     
  6. Trysta

    Trysta New Member

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    I'm a sucker for hot, hot water and a chlorine based pipeline/bulktank cleaner for my milk pails too. Then once a week I use an acid based detergent.
     
  7. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Do you build a lot of milkstone or something Marion? I have asthma, no way am I using stuff like this, and with our well water and washing twice a day in cold water we get no milkstone. It just doesn't have to be that expensive either.

    Nancy we have all been there, my first wash area was a gravel area that was kept in place with treated wood....treated wood landscape timbers made into a square and filled with gravel, under it was PVC pipe with holes in it covered in mesh so no dirt or gravel came in the holes, buried and went out with plain pipe to the bucks woods pen (It is still there only my wash water for my soaproom and laundry room go out there now.) My hoses hang over my sink on horse shoe hangers, during the summer when it gets very dry and dusty I put a towel over them to cut down on the dust. I have an open barn for my asthma, so my milkroom doesn't have 4 walls and a door.

    Try to figure it out, it saves your hands, you back and gives you time to do more. I finish each doe off by hand even if it's just a few squirts, on several of my does since I have been machine milking, the machine simply does not empty them all the way. Plus I massage udders right before I take inflations off....so you still have a real hands on with the udders.

    Course, I find no pleasure in sweating/milking a doe by hand when others really do...never got that. I honestly would rather trim feet than hand milk. Vicki
     
  8. Trysta

    Trysta New Member

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    Yes, if I wouldn't do the acid I would have limestone build up. I don't like the stuff either, but I can't get around it. I guess it depends on your water, but our water kills my best friend the coffee maker pretty quickly if I don't run vinagre through it regularly! The acid I use for my pails and air system once a week and for my bulk tank as second wash is real strong and a beast on the lungs when I'm 'hanging upside down' in my bulktank scrubbing, but with milk only being picked up once a week and no fancy pipeline/bulk tank cleaning system I have to really dot my i's, so I use very hot water when I clean.

    I realize how lucky I am to have the hot water heater in my barn (required for grade A), because: believe me: I've been there for several years juggling very sub-ideal milking-cleaning situations (dusty barn without water, etc.). I did leave my milk pails upside down in the barn then, but pre-rinsed my pails before milking (home use only in those days). I had a 2x4 with hook ups for 6 does where I milked (flat barn-style) and the pails sat upside down on that 2by4 leaning against the wall when I wasn't milking. My husband screwed some of the large hooks into the barn wall so I could hang my milk claws and hoses and I had rubber matting on the dirt floor in the milking area to reduce dust and just keep everything relatively clean.

    You know, it's true that when you don't have too many does you don't win that much time with machine milking plus cleaning vs hand milking, but I'm a multi tasker, too. Wish I had ever thought of doing paperwork during milking (haha, there's my weak spot!!!), but I feed hay to milkers and water and feed my kids and dry does while I milk. I DO like hand milking though, so even though I switched over to machine milking when I went from 13 to 14 does (and then more) milking, I can still do the job. Last year we lost electricity twice and rather than going to pick up a tractor somewhere and run the generator I milked 36 does by hand by myself. It can be done, but not as a daily task, please! :biggrin
     
  9. MF-Alpines

    MF-Alpines New Member

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    And if you have a doe that is a good milker, but has small orifices, the machine is your friend!

    And Nancy, it's spigot. :) Sorry, couldn't help myself.

    I completely agree with Marion. Our water here is mineral-heavy. Even cleaning the coffee maker regularly, we buy a new one about once per year. Milkstone can be a big problem here.

    So Vicki, you don't strain your milk that you drink or sell to customers?
     
  10. swgoats

    swgoats Active Member

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    We have hot water and a sink, cabinets, fridge in the garage, so my plan was to put my bucket on a wagon and wheel it to the garage to put away the milk and clean the bucket. It's just across the driveway. I don't really like the idea of doing anything but milking *in* our barn.
     
  11. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    I do when the does are first fresh, and again those who machine milk, maybe not Marion with a pipeline system and bulk tank, but inflations into lines into milkcan...what exactly are you seeing in your strainer?

    Marion this is the first time in I do not know how many years that ALL of the kids born were disbudded, tattoed and their paperwork done ....hell I have 4 dry yearlings who are not tattoed and didn't get their paperwork into ADGA until this year!!
     
  12. MF-Alpines

    MF-Alpines New Member

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    I have Hoegger's belly pail. I have to take off the top and pour milk into a tote before I can milk the next doe. If there's anything on the top thingy, sometimes it gets dumped in the milk (oops). At least I think that's how it is happening here.
     
  13. Trysta

    Trysta New Member

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    I do milk into milk pails, I do not have a pipeline yet. But I almost never have anything in my strainer (I do strain, though, kind of feel like I have to since my milk leaves in bulk). I clean teats real well (pre-dip and then paper towel, then pre-strip) and am paranoid about keeping does out of the tank if I don't like what I see when pre stripping. I almost never use antibiotics (in fact, I have only used tomorrow on one doe when drying her up in the past 5 years of goat keeping, never have used antibiotics for mastitis on a milking doe so far) when I see something in the milk, but instead keep the milk out of the tank, milk the doe out very well for several milkings and that usually cleans up any problem (if there actually was one, did I mention I am a bit paranoid?). Fresh does always stay out of the tank for 3 days and then I CMT for possible high counts, and wait until they totally clear if needed.

    Thanks Vicki for the 'tale of horror', I am glad I'm not the only one who misses stuff occasionally.... :blush
     
  14. fmg

    fmg New Member

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    Do your does' have good tasting milk after 3 days, Marion? Mine don't seem to taste good until they are like 2 weeks fresh it seems like.
     
  15. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Cindy why not just put something like muslin or even a fine mesh straigner right on the container you are pouring into, that way your tote can hold cold frozen pop bottles to start cooling it? If your milking into a can, you cleaned the teats, the can was clean, your lines are clean, your tote is clean, then there is nothing to strain. Vicki
     
  16. Horsehair Braider

    Horsehair Braider New Member

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    I'm just going to start the adventure with machine milking this year, so maybe this would not work, but... The bucket I'm getting holds seven gallons, and this year anyway I won't be milking many goats. I would imagine I could just put some (very clean) frozen packs right in the can, and milk right on to them?

    I don't plan to strain, as I don't think anything will get in there. In my case, I will not be pouring milk out of the bucket until I am in the house. That's where the sink is, and where I'll have to go anyway to wash up.
     
  17. swgoats

    swgoats Active Member

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    Hey, there's an idea! I like that. I won't be filling my bucket either. It couldn't interfere with the vacuum, could it?
     
  18. JamieH

    JamieH New Member

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    I haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaate my milk set up. I don't mind hand milking so far, but the dust and flies are killing me. I can't sit anything milk-related down for five seconds without it getting dusty. There is no place to put anything. I need a table or something. Also I had no idea I'd get all sweaty when I was milking. I am thinking about putting a fan on me while I do it. If I ever get my own barn it will be concrete concrete concrete all over the place.
     
  19. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Have you lifted a 7 gallon stainless can? Now put some milk in it, each gallon is 8 pounds, you may be able to lift and pour it for awhile, but fast forward 25 years and you will be crippled or getting very expensive elbow and shoulder replacements. Just because you can dead lift with one hand, how smart do you think it is to do this over and over twice a day for 10 months out of the year?
     
  20. fmg

    fmg New Member

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    My barn is buried in dirt, and the part I milk in is concrete, it's great (other than the limited space because I am sharing the shop to milk in). I put all the goats outside when I milk, and let them in one way, then back into the barn when done, so that they kick up less dust. The goats that are finished eating and being milked are much less restless than they are before milking.

    7 gallons times 8 lbs per gallon, that's 56 lbs of just milk, not counting the weight of the can. Yeah, I could see how that would be tough. I can haul around 50 lb feed sacks, but I try not to too much, and the weight is more distributed than the handle of a can. Also, you will have to have a second can and lid for cleaning the lines when done milking if you don't want to pour off the milk until you get to the house.