Thursday, 21 September 2023 07:55

Baler for the hills

Written by  Mark Daniel
Swiss farm machinery company Lisibach Maschinenbau latest offering - SF 132. Swiss farm machinery company Lisibach Maschinenbau latest offering - SF 132.

While New Zealand might not have the hills associated with Switzerland, the concept of a self-propelled round baler makes an interesting proposition.

Over in Europe, Swiss farm machinery company Lisibach Maschinenbau, already known for buiing static maize balers and wrappers, has pulled out the stops to meet customers special requests, with their SF 132, whose wide tyres and low centre of gravity, allow it to operate on slopes of a “buttock-clenching” 45 degrees.

Described as compact, manoeuvrable and with a low weight of around 6.0 tonnes, the high-output machine is said to be ideally suited to working in small or wet fields, typical of the region.

Power for the project is supplied by a 4.4- litre Perkins 92kW/132hp four-pot block – hence the 132 designation. Configured with front wheel steering, all four wheels are powered, while the four-range hydrostatic transmission offers a maximum speed of 40 km/h. With an overall length of length of around 5.0m and a height and width of about 2.5m, the centralpivoting chassis allows the machine to turn sharply on headlands. Operation is via an armrest mounted joystick, with the cab providing heating, air conditioning, a Grammar air suspended seat, radio and a cooled drink holder.

The SF 132 is the fourth machine that Lisibach has built, since making the first for its own contracting business in 2005, utilising a Welger RP235 baler. That same baler was used for the contractor’s second machine in 2013, with another machine built in the same year for a Swiss farmer, based on a Kuhn I-Bio baler/wrapper combi. The latest incarnation is mated to a Kuhn FB 3135 fixedchamber baler. Dairy News understands that Lisibach charges around €250,000 (NZ$455,0000) for the SF132, without the price of the baler.

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