How to remove bale wrapping when using a bale unroller

Published 19th June 2017
New Zealand

There are many ways to unwrap balage bales prior to feeding them out, and most farmers would have perfected a technique for their bale type and equipment. We take a look at the pro’s and con’s of the most popular methods, and a video of a Taranaki based dairy farmer. 

Depending on the type of bale feeder used, some farmers prefer to unwrap bales prior to loading, and remove the net-wrapping when loading and others prefer to just load the complete bale then unwrap both silage film and net wrap at the same time in the field, there’s pro’s and con’s either way…


2-Step Unwrapping

Unwrapping silage film at the bale stack, transporting the bale with net-wrap holding the bale together. This method is great for separating the net from the film wrap when recycling. Typically operators who travel longer distances from the stack to the paddock prefer this method, it saves them needing to carry bulky wrap back to the recycling pile. Some farmers using this method will remove the silage film from all the bales they plan on using for the day prior to feeding out, this can save time. This is the most common method used with tube-wrapped bales, and is recommended when feeding square balage bales

Recommended for – 

  • Square bales
  • Tube-wrapped bales
  • Square bales
  • Recycling when using net-wrapped bales


1-Step Unwrapping

With this method bales are loaded with both film and net-wrap intact, and once ready to feed out, the top half of the wrap and net is cut off, the bale is then rotated 180 degrees so the remainder can be removed. This is the most common method used when feeding film-on-film wrapped bales with no net-wrapping which also overcomes the recycling problem with having to separate net from film. This method makes loading up at the stack much quicker, because the operator doesn’t need to leave the tractor cab. This method works equally as well with tube-wrapped bales.

Recommended for – 

  • Film-on-film bales
  • Tube-wrapped bales
  • Short distance from stack to field
  • Quicker loading

Ashley Beattie 002.jpg 

We recently delivered a SL700X double bale feeder to a dairy farmer in the Taranaki who chose the single step method, so we snapped a quick video of how it works and to demonstrate Hustler’s patented Total Control Self-Loading System on the trailed bale feeder range.