Thursday, 08 February 2024 13:55

Wet harvest spawns clever solution

Written by  Mark Daniel
With a powered axle and larger tyres this Richard Western SF18 trailer can handle wet harvest better. With a powered axle and larger tyres this Richard Western SF18 trailer can handle wet harvest better.

With a wet autumn and even wetter winter, Northern European farmers and contractors are coming up with novel solutions to get the harvest in and plant next year’s crops.

Reports suggest that the forage maize harvest has been particularly difficult, with some crops expected to be harvested in late September or early October, still being chopped just before Christmas.

While swapping harvesters’ front tyres set up for tracks has meant that harvesters keep moving, the biggest issue has been the ability for tractors and trailers to run alongside. One Danish contractor, Gads Maskinstation, has addressed the situation with a powered axle and larger tyres on his Richard Western SF18 trailer.

Typically, the SF 18 trailers leave the east of England factory on tandem axles fitted with 560/60R22.5 tyres or a 600/55R26.5 option. Seeing a developing pattern of harvests getting wetter, Maskinstation looked at a different configuration and now runs four SF18s with a single hydraulically powered axle and extra-large 800/65R32 VF boots.

Supplied by the customer and fitted by the Suffolk-based trailer manufacturer, the drive axle with planetary driven hubs have come from a loading shovel or dump truck, while the trailer builder has also incorporated an additional cross member for the hydraulic motor mount which drives the axle.

Danish contractors are not alone in struggling with water-logged maize, as similar situations in the UK and Ireland means there appears to be increasing interest in the single axle/large tyre solution.

A spokesman for Richard Western says, “We can offer trailers from 11t to 18t with single non-powered axles in the wide- or standard body width format with 750/60R30.5 tyres. For powered axle configurations, we can either source the axles or fit units supplied by the client”.

The company also notes that one of the best options for wet conditions are BWT20 trailers with tandem axles and 650/50R26.5 tyres, commonly found in sugar beet and maize silage harvest operations.

Back in Denmark while the solution is working well, the contractor’s New Holland T9.560 tractor has been called upon on several occasions to keep the T7.315 and bespoke SF18 alongside the forage harvester.

More like this

PM opens new Power Farming facility

Morrinsville based Power Farming Group has launched a flagship New Zealand facility in partnership with global construction manufacturer JCB Construction.

Made in NZ: TRS Tyre & Wheel Ltd

Made in New Zealand looks at the wealth of design and manufacturing ability we have in New Zealand, creating productive and cost-effective products for the agricultural sector. This week machinery editor Mark Daniel takes a closer look at TRS Tyre and Wheel Limited with managing director Nigel Sherborne…

Success for Argo tractors

The judges at last year’s Agritechnica event picked the Italian-built Landini Rex 4-120GT Robo- Shift Dynamic as the Best of Specialised category at its Tractor of the Year 2024 Awards.

New name, new ideas

KGM New Zealand, is part of the London headquartered Inchcape Group, who increased its NZ presence in August 2023 with the acquisition of SsangYong distribution and five retail outlets.


Learnings from tractor incident

A near miss experienced by a North Island farmer worker when their tractor ‘park’ gear failed, has been shared as the latest Safety Alert from Safer Farms.

Frontline biosecurity 'untouchable'

Biosecurity Minister Andrew Hoggard has reiterated that 'frontline' biosecurity services within Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) will not be cut under the Government's plan to reduce the public service.

Migrant farmer 'lets the side down'

An appalling case of migrant worker exploitation on a Southland farm isn't acceptable, says Federated Farmers dairy chair Richard McIntyre.

Milk price certainty

Westland Milk has reaffirmed its commitment to pay farmer suppliers 10c above Fonterra farm gate milk price for the following two seasons.


Share farmers with big plans

With only about eight weeks to go before their cows are dried off, the 2024 Manawatu Dairy Industry Awards Share…

Team effort brings results

For the team at Westmorland Estate Limited in Waikato, it has been another year of everyone working together to achieve…

Machinery & Products

New name, new ideas

KGM New Zealand, is part of the London headquartered Inchcape Group, who increased its NZ presence in August 2023 with…

All-terrain fert spreading mode

Effluent specialists the Samson Group have developed a new double unloading system to help optimise uphill and downhill organic fertiliser…

Can-Am showcases range

Based on industry data collected by the Motor Industry Association, Can-Am is the number one side-by-side manufacturer in New Zealand.

» Latest Print Issues Online

Milking It

Exploited by one of their own

OPINION: Milking It believes a recent Employment Relations Authority ruling on the exploitation of three migrant workers from Indonesia highlights…

'Not our fault!'

OPINION: Milking It wasn’t too surprised to hear Kiwis’ trust in media has sunk to a new low.

» Connect with Dairy News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter