Atkins Pottinger Demo Day

lunedì 10 ottobre 2022

Atkins Tillage Equipment Demonstation
To coincide with the grassland season drawing to a close, Atkins and Pottinger came together to present a tillage demo day near Birr, Co. Offaly to show off the manufacturer’s latest tillage equipment.

 Long live the plough
 Like all other plough manufacturers, Pottinger has not yet given up on the concept of total soil inversion as the fail-safe starting point for the growing season.  Moving away from the implement is fraught with difficulties and will, in many cases, increase reliance on other inputs.

On the day there was a five-furrow Nova with slatted mouldboards, which is described as a 200hp plough. This was mounted to a Fendt 724 Vario which moved the assembly effortlessly through the ground at a depth of 10in.
 The beam may appear a little too slim to cope with these power levels, however it has internal reinforcement back to the third furrow which enables it to work safely with bigger tractors.
 Pottinger plough developments

 Pottinger has updated its Servo range of ploughs to make them easier to attach and reduce fuel consumption. Although of a more robust build, it shares many features with the Nova units. These include hydraulic stone protection and the company’s traction control system that allows weight transfer to the rear wheels when fitted with a slotted headstock mounting for the top link.

 Mounting the plough is said to be easier, as is adjustment, with hydraulic alteration of the furrow width being available along with a front furrow track adjustment of 500mm.
 Secondary cultivation
 Disc sets are versatile tools and may themselves be used as a primary cultivation tool as well as seedbed preparation.
 Pottinger had an example of its Terradisc range in the shape of a trailed model of 5m width with a ring roller as a final packing tool.
 With wheels folded for field use the weight of the carrying frame sits above the discs
 Being trailed, the road wheels need lifting when in work, and the party piece of this model is to raise them to a position above the discs rather than leave them hanging to the rear.
 The advantages are that the weight of the road frame sits above the discs, enabling greater penetration, as opposed to the shifting of the centre of gravity to the rear, which can act to lift the tractor and makes for more uneven weight distribution.
Sowing the Crop
Two drills were working on the day: A 3mm mounted unit, the Fox 300 D, and a 5m Aerosem with a 2,400L front-mounted hopper. The smaller machine was equipped with a set of discs running in front of the coulters. This may not work the soil to the same degree as a powered harrow, but it is lighter, easier on the horse power requirement.

 The Fox 300 D can be used in minimum cultivation system using only the discs is when the soil conditions are right
 The Aerosem F series drills split the pneumatic drill into two parts. The drill and cultivation tool remain at the rear, while the seed is carried in a front tank, an arrangement which allows wider drills to remain tractor mounted.
 The Aerosem front hoppers can be equipped with packer wheels to help spread the weight. Overall transport width remains at 2.75m for this model when folded. The front tank is pressurised and may be split to accommodate both seed and fertiliser.
 Both drills have a maximum coulter pressure of 50kg. With two coulter mounting bars, all the coulter arms are the same length and can exert equal pressure across the whole width of the drill.

Following the success of the 5m Aerosem VT trailed pneumatic seed drills, Pottinger is now launching the same combination with a working width of 6m. The company claims that this range of trailed pneumatic seed drills is designed to increase productivity and profitability on different types of soil in varying conditions. The latest Aerosem trailed drill has a working width of six metres. Pottinger also suggests that it gives perfect consolidation with a large grooved tyre packer as well optimum seed placement, thanks to the dual disc coulters with excellent ground tracking.

Fendt is not to be forgotten
Although the working demonstrations centred around the Pottinger implements, the event was organised by Atkins of Birr, which reports growing sales of the Fendt brand in the area. Fendt tractors offer savings through greater efficiency and a rock solid resale price according to Trevor Richardson of Atkins Farm Machinery.  Both Atkins and Fendt believe that it is a premium brand which brings greater efficiency to farming through reduced operating costs and the deployment of the latest technology. Following on from the recent launch of the latest 700 series, the company also notes that diesel-powered tractors will be with us for a long time yet as other technologies take time to become established. 

A selection of videos of the demonstrations are available on the Atkins Youtube Channel - showing the preview, preparation and the actual day itself.  Click on the appropriate link to view the videos:
Preview; Preparation and Demonstration Day