THREE new combines will make up the Axial-Flow 250 series just launched by Case IH.

The new models, the 7250, 8250 and 9250, replace the Case IH 240 series and will go into production this October ready to be rolled out for the 2019 harvest.

There will be a number of new automated features within the 250 series which the manufacturer says will allow operators to ensure they are driving the combine at maximum efficiency, whilst ensuring grain quality is also the best it can be.

Replacing the 7240, 8240 and 9240 models, the newcomers will focus on more automated changes to settings when tackling varying crop conditions during harvest.

Sam Acker, Case IH’s global product manager for the flagship combines, said the new machines will be ready for most markets ahead of the 2019 season.

“Production of the Case IH Axial-Flow 250 series combines will start this October in time to have machines ready for the global 2019 harvest season,” he told The SF. “The US, Canadian and UK markets will have the 250 Series machines ready for work next year.”

August von Eckardstein, Case IH’s harvesting product marketing manager for Europe, Middle East and Africa, added: “The 250 series Axial-Flow upgrades focus on improving both combine and operator productivity. Our aim has been to aid decision-making and make front-to-rear settings easier for a particular desired outcome.

“In this way, the combine can not only help to enhance an experienced operator’s performance, but can also help a less-experienced one to quickly gain confidence and get the most from the machine.”

New AFS Harvest Command automation

One of the major changes for the new 250 series is completely new technology in AFS Harvest Command automation which utilises 16 sensor inputs to continuously monitor the machine and adjusts seven different settings to maximise combine performance.

Operators can manage this new technology through the in-cab AFS Pro700 terminal. The automation system is currently capable of working in wheat, oilseed rape/canola, corn/maize and soyabeans. Just a few selections according to crop type and conditions will allow operators to set the machine to perform to a desired outcome.

There are a number of options on the AFS Harvest Command to suit the level of experience of the operator, the crop condition and type, as well as the harvesting conditions.

The basic version of AFS Harvest Command features the proven Automatic Crop Settings (ACS) system. This adjusts operating items such as fan speed and concave clearance according to the crop type selected on the AFS terminal screen, eliminating the need to make individual element settings. Operators can adjust the combine on the go and save settings for future use.

The next version, with Feedrate Control, adjusts ground speed based on crop load to cater for a desired outcome, performance to control losses, maximum throughput, or fixed throughput. The driver sets the target maximum engine load and ground speed, and Feedrate Control operates up to those limits. This is said to more accurately control ground speed based on crop and ground drive load.

The top spec’ option is full AFS Harvest Command automation. This automatically makes threshing and cleaning system adjustments based on the same desired outcomes as Feedrate Control, but with the addition of grain quality monitoring, using camera-based technology and sieve pressure sensing. That provides further guidance to the machine’s automatic adjustment process to minimise impurities in the grain sample and maintain the best grain quality, a trait for which Axial-Flow combines have earned a reputation.

Rotor cage and sieve upgrades

The 250 series combines with AFS Harvest Command automation are fitted with in-cab adjustable rotor cage vanes, actuated from a right hand console switch when not using the automation facility, or automatically adjusting themselves when AFS Harvest Command automation is engaged.

The rear six vanes are linked, include a greater range of adjustment, and can also be manually adjusted from ground level. By changing the pitch of the vanes, the crop will move faster or slower through

the rotor cage, tuning threshing and separation performance to crop conditions for improved efficiency.

In conjunction with upper and lower sieve control, the full AFS Harvest Command automation package also features new in-cab pre-sieve adjustment, allowing AFS Harvest Command automation to automatically adjust all sieve settings according to feedback from the loss sensors, grain camera and sieve pressure sensors. This can also be manually activated when AFS Harvest Command is not in use.

The in-cab adjustable pre-sieve is also available as a stand-alone option, which includes a remote switch allowing setting from the removable side covers.

Unique sieve pressure sensors provide AFS Harvest Command automation with sieve loading data, allowing the system to understand impending losses and make adjustments before they happen.

Transmission changes

A new hydrostatic transmission, featuring field and road modes, with on-the-move two-speed range control, provides better traction and means there is no need to stop and shift while working or travelling on hills.

Operated via a scalable multi-function handle speed controller, it features a closed-loop speed control which maintains the set speed in changing ground conditions. Maximum respective speeds in range one and range

two are 18km/hr and 40km/hr, though reduced maximum can be set according to operator preference and field conditions.

Using uprated hydraulic drives, this transmission upgrade boosts gradeability when road travelling by

36%. Meanwhile, a new differential lock upgrade replaces the previous mechanical pedal with a floor-mounted electrical button, and braking moves from an external disc to internal oil-cooled brake, reducing required pedal pressure for the same braking effort.

The X-tra Chop straw chopper package is now fitted with a new remote switch for ground-level spreader board actuation, to make accessing the engine deck easier for fuelling and maintenance.

Feeder/intake elevator upgrades

In addition to the existing feeder/intake elevator lift capacities of 4.5 tonnes

and 5.2 tonnes, a new 6.1 tonne lift capacity is available on the largest Axial-Flow models, to enable them to handle 13.5m draper heads and 18-row corn heads.

Factory-fitted dual lateral tilt can now also help to provide enhanced control of 13.5m draper heads.