CASE IH has replaced its flagship model range, the Axial Flow 240s, with the 250 models which promises updates to protect quality and boost productivity.

The updates include a number of automated features for the three new 250 series Axial-Flow combines for 2019, the 7250, 8250 and 9250 models. “These upgrades focus on improving both combine and operator productivity,” explained August von Eckardstein, Case IH’s harvesting product marketing manager for Europe, Middle East and Africa.

“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.”

At the heart of the changes is the AFS Harvest Command automation. This completely new technology package takes data from 16 sensor inputs around the combine to continuously monitor and adjusts seven different performance settings to optimise performance.

Managed through the in-cab AFS Pro700 terminal, this can be adjusted according to crop type and conditions to allow the operator to set the machine to produce a desired outcome. The basic version features the proven Automatic Crop Settings (ACS) system, which sets operating items such as fan speed and concave clearance according to the crop type selected on the AFS terminal screen. The operator is able to adjust the combine on the go and save the settings for future use.

An uprated version includes Feedrate Control, which adjusts ground speed based on crop load. With this, the operator sets the target maximum engine load and ground speed, the system operates up to those limits by controlling forward speed.

The top specification option is full AFS Harvest Command automation, which automatically makes threshing and cleaning system adjustments based on the same desired outcomes as Feedrate Control, but with the addition of grain quality monitoring. This uses camera-based technology and sieve pressure sensing to provide guidance to the machine’s automatic adjustment processes to minimise impurities in the grain sample.

“The AFS Harvest Command automation grain camera utilises a patented multi-spectral light emission – visible and invisible – to more accurately identify broken grains and impurities,” added Mr von Eckardstein.

“This patented technology helps the grain camera more accurately monitor sample quality, illuminating it with UV, blue, green, red and infra-red light. Combining the five light spectrums provides enhanced detection of the exposed starch in broken grains. The AFS terminal alerts the operator if dirt affects camera clarity.”

With full automation, the top spec’ can be used in four different ways.

Performance: the combine operates at a speed to ensure an acceptable level of grain loss from the rotor and cleaning system.

Fixed Throughput: the combine maintains a target throughput by varying its speed and adjusts settings to minimise losses.

Maximum Throughput: the combine operates up to the speed or power limit set by the operator, while adjusting settings to minimise grain loss from the rotor and the cleaning system.

Grain quality: the combine adjusts settings to maintain a targeted grain quality and impurity level, while also minimising losses.

The top system also gets from-the-cab adjustable rotor cage vanes and 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 especially when handling damp crops.

The automation package also features new in-cab pre-sieve adjustment, according to feedback from the loss sensors, grain camera and sieve pressure sensors.

Also, sieve pressure sensors provide AFS Harvest Command with sieve loading data, allowing the system to understand impending losses and make adjustments before they happen. These help the system discern the difference between sieve overload and blow-out losses, and adjust fan and sieve settings accordingly.

The 250s also get a new hydrostatic transmission, with ‘field’ and ‘road’ modes. Its on-the-move two-speed range control, provides increased 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, this uses a closed-loop speed control which maintains the set speed in changing ground conditions, while a new differential lock upgrade replaces the previous mechanical pedal with a floor-mounted electrical button. Maximum respective speeds in range one and range two are 18km/hr and 40km/hr, although reduced maximums can be set according to operator preference and field conditions.

An optional in-cab-controlled face plate fore-aft feature allows the operator to alter the header fore-aft angle, with a total of 11.9° of angular tilt to improve harvesting efficiency in low-growing and high-growing crops. Header height control function upgrades also mean improved responsiveness and flotation.

  • AFS Connect allows two-way file transfer between combine and office PC via a web portal. All the 250s are pre-wired and have antennae to receive the required modem and where a combine is ordered as telematics-ready, it will have the modem fitted.