Farming systems sowing seeds of change

New Flexi-Coil precision air cart

Machinery
REAPING THE BENEFITS: Farmer Sam Correll from Arthurton in South Australia with his Flexi-Coil 5560 aircart. The aircart allows section control across the bar, opening up options for variable rate seeding and fertiliser.

REAPING THE BENEFITS: Farmer Sam Correll from Arthurton in South Australia with his Flexi-Coil 5560 aircart. The aircart allows section control across the bar, opening up options for variable rate seeding and fertiliser.

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New Flexi-Coil precision air cart

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Changing trends in farming are driving manufacturers to update their seeder technology and offer a range of new features to suit various farming systems.

CNH Industrial brand leader for Flexi-Coil and Horwood Bagshaw Steve Mulder said the release of the Flexi-Coil 5560 aircart was in response to a trend towards precision farming and section control.

"People are trying to save on inputs, and precision technology is increasing rapidly," he said.

"Variable rate and section control are becoming more popular, both for fertiliser and seed, with older technology you couldn't vary the rate across the bar, whereas now we can."

Mr Mulder said he believed there had been an increasing trend toward dry seeding, which had implications for seeder build.

"Dry seeding has become more routine, which means equipment needs to be designed to handle that, customers need to understand there is a cost associated with dry seeding, in terms of the impact on the machine," he said.

"To address this we are looking at high break out, the soil strength for dry seeding means there is a higher requirement than sowing into moisture.

"The hydraulic tyne is more suited to dry seeding, as it has a soft return stroke, so its a lot less harsh on the machine, it is easier on the ground engaging tool as well, increasing lifespan and you can vary the breakout from the tractor cab."

Mr Mulder said increased wear and tear on seeders was also compounded by a heavier workload.

"We are seeing farm size increase, which means they start earlier and go longer, with one machine, so machines are doing more hectares per year," he said.

"A lot of these guys are putting 15,0000 to 20,0000 acres in with one rig, so they go 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

"Dry seeding and increased usage have an impact on replacement cycle."

Mr Mulder said another significant trend he had seen was the move away from zero tillage.

"Herbicide resistance and weeds are driving some areas back to tillage," he said.

"The other thing set to come full circle is soil renovation, as we are starting to see more soil renovation, or deep tillage, in an attempt to improve their soil structure. A lot of people don't realise they have compaction."

Mr Mulder also predicted road regulations would mean seeding gear able to fold to transportable widths would become increasingly standardised.

"Even though people want a 24 metre bar the want it narrow for legal road transport," he said.

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