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April 2009 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.

Dancing JCB Diggers

Apr 29, 2009
When talented operators are matched with their machine, there are some entertaining results.

(I wouldn’t try this at home)


¼-scale Tractor Competition

Apr 24, 2009
The word downsize doesn’t resonate positively in today’s headlines, but students of ag engineering are just fine with their downsized projects–in the form of ¼-scale tractors. The American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) is sponsoring its 12th Annual International Quarter-Scale Tractor Design Competition.
Student teams have designed and built their utility or recreational pulling tractor for the competition, which will take place in May in Peoria, Il. For more click here. The tractors display and the pulling competition are open to the public.
To pick a top award winner, a panel of industry experts will judge each design for innovation, maneuverability, sound level, serviceability, ergonomics, safety and manufacturability. In the 2008 competition the team from Kansas State University brought home the top prize for the 7th time, so we’ll see if the Wildcats can make it a back-to-back winning streak.  

Dealership Sprawl

Apr 16, 2009
Ag equipment dealers have a growing footprint. Recently, Farm Equipment magazine and Currie Management compiled a list of the largest farm equipment dealership based on number of store locations.
Titan Machinery and RDO Equipment Company top the list, and there aren’t many surprises in the top 10. (click here for the full report)
According to their research,
  • 8 dealer groups have more than 15 ag store locations
  • 29 dealer groups have 10 to 15 locations
  • 47 dealer groups have seven to nine locations
  • 68 dealer groups have 5 or 6 locations

The list includes dealers of AGCO, Case IH, John Deere, Kubota and New Holland machinery who have five or more store locations.
By manufacturer:
  • 73 John Deere dealer groups have five or more store locations
  • 39 AGCO dealer groups have five or more store locations
  • 30 Case IH dealer groups have five or more store locations
  • 11 New Holland dealer groups have five or more store locations
  • 6 Kubota dealer groups have five or more store locations

A Silver Anniversary of Sorts

Apr 13, 2009
For the company’s anniversary, Gehl took a model 7810E skid loader and covered it in chrome.

The machine’s exterior received chrome plating treatments in gold, black and mercury, using a highly specialized chroming process. Its design includes a reflective gold and black finish and laser-cut Gehl logos in the ROPS side screens. The history of the company is illustrated on the lift arm with decals of its manufacturing milestones. Even the seat got full treatment with leather upholstery piped in silve with an embroidered Gehl 150th anniversary logo. Large decals on the lift arm display historical milestones of Gehl Company. Milsco, a long-time
Started in 1859, Gehl Company’s roots were laid as a blacksmith shop in West Bend, Wis.

The Original Rebel

Apr 09, 2009
Ten years ago Vermeer differentiated their baler models and introduced the Rebel balers. The company recently reconnected with the very first owner of a Rebel baler. Scott Grey owns and still makes hay today with a Vermeer Rebel with the serial number 101. He works full time as a HVAC specialist for Delta Airlines, but he also maintains a small farm southwest of Atlanta.
Grey was making square bales for his horses, but then he bought the Rebel in July 1999 from a sales rep from Outdoor Power Equipment. He had been looking for a round baler that could operate with a 40 hp tractor for two years before the Rebel was introduced. This year he replaced all the chains, some bearings and the haysaver wheels, but the belts are original although they’ve been shortened just enough to put new hooks in for re-lacing. He says his only complaint with the machine is more storage for string.

Monsanto's Machines

Apr 07, 2009

In the latest issue of Farm Journal, we showed part of Monsanto's machinery fleet. The company heads to the field and hits the road with its unique machines.

Monsanto Company uses more than 50 harvesting machines to collect its seed plot data from millions of plots across the U.S. Combines, such as the twin-row New Holland (pictured) can simultaneously harvest two plots. On average, the twin-plot combines can harvest a plot in 10 seconds. The high-tech combines can cost up to $500,000 and are outfitted with state-of-the-art data collection tools.

As for putting the plots in, Monsanto employs custom-designed plot planters. The planters don’t require dumping extra seed, switching row spacing or recalibrating for population changes. The plot protocols are laid out and delivered via a computer and GPS mapping.

The company says it is using the equipment for faster translation of research to commercial products. The more field testing the company has done, the higher the rate of success in finding the unique genotypes it is searching for.

 Monsanto's unique Mobile Technology Unit -- a 53' 18-wheeler that can run on biofuels -- is touring the U.S. to showcase the company's innovations. You can view a video of it being built here:

Tractors Go to the Ends of the Earth

Apr 02, 2009
It’s -58ºF, but there’s a load to deliver. For the past six years the National Science Foundation (NSF) has put Challenger tractors to the test in Antarctica.
The first project was a feasibility study to transition cargo movement from air to ground transport. In the project, supplies were moved from a field station on the coastal edge to a station located in the center of the continent. The Challenger Model 95 used tallied more than 2,056 miles and delivered nearly 110 tons of cargo.
This past year, the Challenger MT865B models currently tracking across the south pole delivered to the the Amundsen-Scott station, which was dedicated in January 2008. The ice this research station sit on is more than two miles thick–talk about a compaction layer!
To learn more about how 30 Challenger MT800 Series tractors have been used in this arctic environment, read the latest issue of Challenger Revolution magazine.  
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