The latest product to come to market from Forfar-based ScanStone is the lightweight and nimble onion and bulb harvester, the ScanStone Panther.

Equipped with a specially designed front lifting unit, the configuration comprises of an onion lifting unit at the front end, complete with a square bar and paddles for gently conveying the crop into the machine. Its unique selling point is individual hydraulic control of each of the lifting unit’s independently controlled functions of the square bar, the intake web and flappy paddle.

The square bar is also market leading because it is driven via a sturdy belt, this means that in dusty conditions there is no abrasive effects with an oil and greasy chain mixing with dust, sand or earth, said Scanstone's William Skea.

The belt also allows the square bar to drive at the optimum height without having a hydraulic motor too close to the ground. Manual depth wheels carry the lifting unit to a set height.

Following on from the lifting unit, the crop is then conveyed to a longer main web, with a rocker agitator to help separate any last bits of soil, or root balls. The crop then passes onto another mechanically driven web before going onto the hydraulic transfer web and then into the cart elevator.

A new design of cart elevator uses higher and stronger active fingers on the sides to keep all the crop safely inside the elevator before it reaches the trailer.

A self-centring lane adjuster ram is at the operator’s finger tips on a joystick control. This ensures the crop is always loading exactly into the middle of the lifting unit without missing anything at either side. Once the joystick is released the machine automatically recentres itself. This can be switched on or off from the cab.

The Panther's robust turret style steering system is fully controlled from a proportional joystick on the control box, this allows precision steering if the machine is being controlled manually, but the steering gear on the Panther, like all ScanStone trailed machines, comes GPS ready.

The turret system has eight stud axles, which are simply adjusted to suit various track widths.

The Panther is fitted with the usual ScanStone premium features such as LED road lights, working lights and centralised grease banks for bearings as part of the standard equipment. The colour screen control box features an auto levelling system, full headland management system and simple joystick controls

The ScanStone Panther’s retail price is £99,500 as at August, 2021.