From ploughs to shallow-working tillage implements, a number of new developments in cultivation equipment give farmers new options this autumn, writes Martin Rickatson.

PLOUGHS

Kuhn’s new Vari-Master L series of on-land ploughs, available in four-, five- and six-furrow versions, is designed for use with 200-300hp tractors, including those on wide flotation tyres or tracks.

The implements are claimed to feature a design that reduces the effects of drift whether working on-land or in-furrow, to maintain ploughing accuracy and fuel efficiency, and minimise and wear and tear.

Skimmers are manually adjustable in three dimensions without tools, with each being sheath-mounted to reduce the risk of it being twisted out of alignment. Protection for each leg is via shearbolts rated to 1800kg.

Hydraulic front furrow adjustment is standard, and hydraulic depth adjustment optional. Each model also features Kuhn’s NSH (non-stop hydraulic) safety system, an auto-reset protection arrangement that can be upgraded with the addition of the firm’s Varibar and Maxibar systems which enable share point release pressure to be adjusted on-the-go.

For smaller farms, Amazone has added a new two-furrow reversible Cayros M model to its range, suiting tractors from 50hp upwards, while also adding new three-furrow Cayros XM and XMS variants.

The latter can be had with either mechanical stepped or hydraulically stepless furrow width adjustment, to suit farms with a mix of medium and heavy soils where furrow width may sometimes need to be reduced.

Two- to five-furrow Cayros models can be equipped with an extendable plus-one beam system instead of the standard one-piece tube, allowing extension by an additional furrow unit with the aid of a specific fitting kit, should a higher-powered tractor be purchased during the plough’s life.

It remains possible for the ploughs to be delivered with the additional plus-one furrow unit. The XMS and XS series extendable ploughs use the same beams made from 12mm-thick steel that are an established feature of the bigger versions.

The Diamant 16 (up to nine furrows) is the new successor to Lemken’s Diamant 11 at the top end of its large semi-mounted plough range. Fuel consumption reductions of up to 10% and operating comfort benefits from eliminating the need for counter-steering are the claimed benefits from the new OptiLine feature, said to be the first and to-date only adjustment system for this type of plough design to prevent lateral pull during ploughing.

This system uses a pressure-controlled cylinder to transfer additional torque to the tractor and shift the tractor/plough traction line towards the centre of the rear axle. It is possible to reduce pressure at the headlands to further contribute to fuel savings.

Other features include continuously-variable hydraulic working depth adjustment and Hydromatic overload protection.

Kverneland’s response to the continuing increase in average tractor power is to introduce a new ES250/LS250 mounted reversible plough series for machines up to 250hp, slotting in above the existing ES200/LS200 models.

Available in five, five-plus-one and six-furrow variants, the series incorporates a heavy-duty Category III clevis-type lower hitch assembly and square-section cross-shaft to match this type of tractor. A fully induction-hardened turn-over assembly is claimed to offer greater strength than that on the ES200/LS200 without any weight penalty.

From larger Kverneland ploughs, the new models also inherit a memory-type 100mm vari-width control cylinder. Underbeam clearance on the ES250 measures 75cm, with an 80cm figure for the LS250.

All models can be specified with 85cm or 100cm point to point clearance, to suit the surface trash conditions most commonly encountered on-farm. ES bodies are auto-reset protected, while those on LS models feature shear bolts.

Further specification can include hydraulic front furrow width adjustment, quick-adjust maize skimmers and an 18in plain rear disc.

Courtesy of parent firm CNH Industrial’s purchase of Kongskilde’s tillage equipment business, New Holland now offers a range of mounted and semi-mounted reversible ploughs from three to eight furrows, available in fixed and variable-width furrow versions.

Tracing their lineage back to the designs of Overum – one of the firms previously purchased by Kongskilde – key features of the ploughs include 90cm or 100cm point-to-point clearance and 75cm or 80cm underbeam clearance. Existing Kongskilde dealers, meanwhile, continue to sell their products unchanged, under that brand’s badging and red livery.

OTHER EQUIPMENT

The CNH Industrial/Kongskilde deal also means New Holland also offers a range of stubble, seedbed and powered cultivators.

The 3-4m ST stubble cultivators are straight-tined models, while the 3-7m ST C series has C-shaped tines, and the 3-7m STX V extra heavy duty range incorporates vibrating tine, all with either shearbolt or a hydraulic auto-reset protection. There are also seedbed cultivators up to 8.3m with a wide range of different tine types. For New Holland power harrows span 1.0-4.0m with one/two/three-speed transmissions.

There are also rotavators from 1.0-3.55m with standard chain or optional (standard on larger models) gear drive. Meanwhile, New Holland Rotalabour rotary tillers (2.55-3.55m) are equipped with standard four-speed gear drive.

New features of Lemken’s latest compact disc harrow design, the Rubin 10, include a revised disc arrangement to produce forces that are more symmetrical and ensure directional stability without lateral pull for lower fuel consumption and improved pass-to-pass alignment.

The three central discs are offset along the longitudinal to ensure even cultivation across the full working width. The discs engage across their full surfaces from a working depth of 7 cm.

Surface-hardened 645mm DuraMaxx discs are said to have a 30 per cent longer life than conventional units, and there are new 30mm thick legs. Each concave disc now features overload protection with damped return to minimise frame loads. There is an integral harrow behind the first row of discs and a rear impact and levelling harrow.

Kuhn has added two mounted versions to the lower end of its Optimer stubble cultivator range in 3m (for 105-165hp tractors) and 4m (140-220hp) working widths. The new Optimer XL 100-series machines feature two rows of independent discs followed by a roller bar which can be equipped with a variety of press options.

Both models feature 6mm notched discs with a diameter of 620mm capable of working from 5 to 15cm. Standard depth adjustment is manual, with a hydraulic option. Each disc is mounted on four elastomer blocks to allow for independent movement. Adjustable soil retaining discs, which can be angled by 14 degrees either to the front or to the rear, and by up to 12 degrees vertically, prevent soil being thrown onto uncultivated land.

The second row of discs is followed by a roller bar which can be equipped with tube or ring rollers, all on no-maintenance bearings.

The trailed three- or four-row GX Terrano models complement Horsch’s FX, MT and FM models. Available in 4.0-6.0m working widths, GX cultivators can be specified in either three- or four-row configuration, and with 28.5cm or 31.5cm tine spacing.

Fitted with the firm’s third-generation TerraGrip tines, frame-located springs have a 550kg release force and maintenance-free pivot points. A range of single and double packer options is available.

Also from Horsch are new 5m and 6m Cruiser XL trailed cultivators, slotting between existing smaller mounted models and 10m/12m trailed versions. Specification includes a six-row design and 700mm frame height.