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October 2012 Archive for Machinery Journal

RSS By: Aimee Cope, Farm Journal

The Machinery Journal blog is your place to find the latest machinery updates, industry news, and interesting tid bits.

Your Tractor Is Like a Roller Coaster

Oct 31, 2012

In a recent issue of the magazine Trelleborg tire company produces, they put the spotlight on an interesting application for a special tire they manufacture. Majestic Rides, which supplies attractions for traveling carnivals, uses Trelleborg tires on the Catch ‘N Air ride. You can learn more about it here in T TIME magazine.


These are different than the Trelleborg tires you might have mounted on your farm equipment. They are made from solid rubber and designed for heavy-duty use on internal combustion or electric vehicles.

The Catch ‘N Air can tally up more than 10,000 rides each season, and these tires can last up to two seasons on a ride before they need to be replaced during the off-season. During the ride, tubs carrying up to 1,100 lb. of passenger weight travel up and down a slope, making regular jumps before slamming into an airbag. Tires used to accelerate roller coasters out of their launch gates or carry circular rides around their trajectory must also be able to handle the intense sun and heat of summer fair season. 

Nutty History

Oct 26, 2012

The post-war years are often heralded as the golden years of home-making. Signature brand names are still on the shelves today (doesn’t Betty Crocker pop to the top of your head?), and Case IH is working to reintroduce its legacy brand-bearing woman, Irma Harding.

In 1947, International Harvester developed refrigerator and freezer lines and created Irma Harding as the character spokeswoman. Her authentic and rural “personality” was expanded upon as International Harvester hired five home economists to answer inquiries and conduct cooking and testing experiments in company kitchens on Irma’s behalf. In addition, 70 home economists and sales women were hired throughout the U.S. to travel regionally and educate homemakers about freezing and preserving food. Irma also appeared on packaging and “authored” many cookbooks.
And recently, Case IH announced it will offer Irma Harding peanuts at Tractor Supply Company and other retailers.
Case IH is partnering with Whitley’s Peanut Company, a traditional nut and snack food company, for this product. These peanuts are the first licensed item in the food and food-related product category under the heritage International Harvester brand.
For more information on Irma Harding, visit

Side-by-Side Machine Surfacing

Oct 25, 2012

When researching a story, I use a lot of sources, but more often than not, the internet is included in serving as a resource. It’s quite easy to look up the most current specifications on machinery directly on the manufacturer’s website.

And recently, while on the Challenger site, I was surprised to see that I was being watched—virtually at least.
After digging through several pages and clicking on various links, a window opened that offered a live chat feature with a Challenger expert.
AGCO implemented the live chat on for its Challenger and Massey Ferguson websites. This feature becomes available to users to help with their information-seeking prior to dealer-level engagement. 
After some simple standard questions for the user, the chat feature allows us to quickly identify how to further assist them.  Do they want a brochure mailed to them or do they want a demo, etc.  Based on their needs, the interaction can point them in the right direction, including connecting them with their local dealership. 
It’s one step closer to making their website like a virtual dealer lot.

Fendt Has More Horsepower

Oct 19, 2012

Since 2006, AGCO has focused its machinery on four cornerstone brands–Challenger, Fendt, Massey Ferguson and Valtra. The first three are the company’s lineup for us here in the U.S., and AGCO has set its sights on increasing the presence of the Fendt brand worldwide. (for a little Fendt history, you can read my blog about its onsite museum here.)

In September, the company unveiled the final result of the Fendt Ahead2 project. This project included a more than $300 million investment and expansion of the Fendt locations in Marktoberdorf and Asbach-Bäumenheim (both in Germany). This was a four-day event attracting 3,500 suppliers, dealers and distributors, journalists and other guests.

web 1 factory Marktoberdorf

Fendt took the opportunity to show off its latest autonomous technology—GuideConnect. (video below and more info here 

The company had already increased production more than 60% in the past ten years. Sales for 2011 were 18% above 2010. For 2012, company officials are forecasting a 17% increase in sales.
With the Fendt Ahead2 project, the company aims to produce 20,000 tractors a year at its Marktoberdorf headquarters. Also, the facilities can product up to 28,500 Continuously Variable transmissions and 20,000 cabs which are used in multiple AGCO products.
web factory Marktoberdorf
And the production in Bavaria will reach across the world with the help of the 1800 Fendt dealers worldwide.
At the Asbach-Bäumenheim site, which focuses on cab production, the cabs are now assembled in the same sequence as the tractors in Marktoberdorf, according to customer order, and delivered directly to the tractor factory in sequence.
The construction started in March 2011, and in September 2012, the first tractor left the assembly line. (check out my blog about my visit in November 2011 here.)
From 2001 to 2012, the Fendt expansions have created 1,500 jobs in the three German locations, and another 227 new jobs have been created from 2011 to June 2012.
Fendt tractors range from from the smallest specialty tractor for vineyards to the high-horsepower tractors with 390 hp. Each tractor is made of an average of 10,000 components.
Outside the U.S., the brand extends beyond tractors to include the Fendt Katana 65 forage harvester and the new C-Series combines–the brand has rotary and straw walker combines–as well as big square balers. The Katana has been introduced in Germany this year with 25 machines, and the French introduction is underway as well.

249 Combines in a Single Field

Oct 08, 2012

Two days ago, 249 combines gathered in a single field in Saskatchewan, Canada. This large-scale harvest effort was to raise money for Childrens Camps International.

This gathering is said to be the new world record as 245 combines were harvesting simultaneously. Pictures below, and more information can be found by following this link.

Win a Free Kubota Tractor

Oct 05, 2012

At the very least, you could receive a free hat! But the grand-prize in this giveaway is the first Kubota L series tractor that will roll off the brand-new factory line in Georgia. (to learn more about Kubota's latest developments in larger tractors and more tractor made here in the U.S., click here.)

KubotaTractorGiveawayThis contest is in celebration of Kubota's 40th anniversary in the U.S. Here's the scoop on how to win:

Kubota’s 40th Anniversary Tractor Giveaway Facebook Promotion


1.       Visit Kubota on Facebook at

2.       On the “40 Years Strong Dream Contest” tab (mobile/tablet users can enter at, fill out the entry and tell Kubota why you want a new Kubota tractor in 100 words or less. The first 10,000 people to submit an entry will receive a Kubota 40 Years Strong limited edition hat.

3.       On the confirmation page, you will receive a unique code. Print your confirmation page (mobile/tablet users can email their confirmation code to themselves and print) and head into your local dealership ( to enter to win the grand prize or one of three additional prizes:

a.       Grand Prize: One (1) 4WD fully loaded L3800 Kubota tractor – the first one off the line at Kubota’s new Georgia plant

b.      First Prize: $5,000 Kubota Bucks to be used toward purchase of Kubota equipment

c.       Second Prize: $2,500 Kubota Bucks to be used toward purchase of Kubota equipment

d.      Third Prize: $1,000 Kubota Bucks to be used toward purchase of Kubota equipment


Good luck!

Fendt Tractor Plays Simon Says: Video

Oct 04, 2012

The trend of autonomy seems to be in every manufacturers R&D budget. Earlier this fall I saw the Kinze solution in action, and just last week at the opening of the new Fendt factory in Marktoberdorf, the company showed off its GuideConnect technology.

As one Fendt tractor made its way around a track, the second tractor—without an operator in it—followed its every move. Watch the video here:

Set up through the Vario-Terminal, the system links two tractors together, so that they act as one unit. The driverless tractor performs the same operating procedure, turning at the headlands and avoiding obstacles.
As the tractors travel through the field, the distance between the two rigs as well as the clearance off to the side can be set. The system requires RTK correction, and it uses an encoded wireless connection to ensure accurate positioning and that only those two machines are affected.
Just like the children’s game simon says, tt the headland, implements are automatically raised and then lowered into operating position. If an obstacle is encountered, the operator can briefly disconnect the mimicking motion of the following tractor, and then the following tractor can be routed manually.
Another safety feature is an emergency stop.
The guided vehicle not only accepts commands, but also reports to the guidance vehicle about errors or operating status, such as a low fuel level, or the engine speed or the ground speed.
And more coverage of the Fendt factory opening and autonomous systems to come…

New Holland Gives Discount to Military and First Responders

Oct 02, 2012

For those who have served our country, New Holland has a special offer to recognize their service and provide a discount on a blue tractor.

Effective September 11, 2012 through Veterans Day, November 11, 2012, New Holland will offer active and retired military personnel, veterans, paid and volunteer firefighters, police officers, and their families, a $911 discount. This is good on New Holland  New Holland Boomer™ compact tractor 20-50 models, T1500 Series compact tractors, WORKMASTER™ Series, PowerStar™ model T4.75 and T4000 Series tractors sold by an authorized New Holland dealer.
New Holland will also donate $250 to the Fisher House Foundation for each of these tractors sold in the United States during the discount period. Remember when New Holland partnered with Jay Leno to sell his Lil Tug tractor for more than $500,000that money also went to Fisher House charities.
Veterans, military personnel and first responders will need to show a valid, government-issued military ID card or other proof of service to receive the discount. See your local New Holland dealer for details.

New Holland and NASCAR

Oct 01, 2012

There was mention earlier this spring when I was with company leaders of the fact that many of the country’s race tracks have a blue tractor that works around its grounds. And then in September, New Holland became the Official Agricultural Equipment of NASCAR.

This partnership came to be as both organizations have an interest in using and promoting biofuels. The announcement was made at the NASCAR Fuel for Business Council meeting in Chicago. In 2011, NASCAR announced a switch in its three national series to Sunoco Green E15, made with corn grown in the U.S. New Holland has named itself the Clean Energy Leader and manufactures ag equipment used in the crop production and harvesting of corn used to produce the biofuel.   
Growth Energy and the National Corn Growers Association created the American Ethanol partnership with NASCAR to push for broad acceptance of a renewable domestic fuel for American motorists. New Holland will work to support this partnership throughout the remainder of the 2012 NASCAR season to support the farmers who play a vital role in the ethanol industry.
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