In pictures: a wrap-up of the FTMTA show's combi balers
Machinery reporter Gary Abbott takes a look at the the range of baler-wrapper combinations on display at this year's FTMTA Farm Machinery Show.

Pöttinger Impress 125 FC PRO

Pöttinger’s Impress combination baler is at the heart of the stand, located in pavilion four. Starting with crop intake, the baler is fitted with the “Flexcut 32” retractable short-chop chopping unit, consisting of 32 double-sided blades. Pöttinger’s "liftup" rotor spiral configuration allows forage to enter the chamber at an angle, claiming to improve intake capacity of the baler.

Inclusion of the "Easy Move" retractable knife bank ensures ease of maintenance of the chopping unit from the operator’s point of view. On the wrapping side of things, the new compact wrapping unit sees fully automatic wrapping capabilities, working at 36rpm.

Pöttinger Impress 125FC PRO.

John Deere C441R

John Deere has its latest integrated baler wrapper unit, the C441R, on show. A new feature to the machine is its heavy-duty drive system rated at up to 210hp with 1,000rpm PTO.

It is equipped with a new 18-roller bale chamber with increased width, from 117cm to 121cm. The machine comes with a choice of a 2m or an optional 2.2m pickup reel, feeding the MaxiCut HC rotor with either 13 or 25 knives.

John Deere claims the wrapping unit features a 15% faster wrapping arm working at 40rpm, and an 18% faster table transfer system. It is available as standard on a single-axle or with an optional tandem-axle chassis.

John Deere C441R.

Kuhn FBP 3135

Kuhn has its FBP 3135 combination baler on show alongside the new FB3135 solo baler. The FBP 3135 is available with two different intake rotors, the Opticut 14 or Opticut 23. Both feature Hardox tines. Each version shares the same 2.3m pickup. The 18-roller chamber produces bales 1.25m in diameter and 1.22m in width. The baler features Kuhn’s IntelliWrap 3D wrapping unit, whereby both wrap dispensers rotate during the wrapping process, allowing for a more even coverage of wrap Kuhn claims.

Kuhn FBP 3135.

McHale Fusion 3

The McHale Fusion 3 Plus integrated baler-wrapper consists of an 18-roller fixed-chamber baler and an integrated vertical wrapping ring. It uses film-on-film technology to apply film to the barrel of the bale in the bale chamber.

The latest updates include bale moisture sensing whereby the chamber-mounted sensor displays live crop moisture values when the PTO speed is above 400rpm, displayed on screen throughout the baling process.

Bale weights can also now be recorded. Both moisture and weight readings can then be accumulated for the particular job giving average weight and average moisture of the bales.

The new optional receipt printer allows the operator to print a detailed receipt outlining the work completed for a specific customer.

McHale Fusion Vario.

Massey RB 3130F Protec

The new offering from Massey includes a camless pickup with five tine bars allowing for high speed intake, followed by two 25cm diameter feeding augers in which Massey claims create the best bale shape possible by directing the crop to the centre of the 18-roller chamber.

Xtracut models are available with 13, 17 or 25 knives where the 17 and 25 knive bank versions feature two sets of hydraulically operated knife banks, enabling the operator to choose a single knife-bank, both knife-banks or no knives.

Hydroflexcontrol offers a two-stage protection system against blockages, using “automatic mechanical floor cushioning” for minor blockages or hydraulically controlled floor lowering for major obstructions.

Massey RB 3130F Protec.

Kverneland FastBale

Kverneland has its FastBale on show, a non-stop fixed chamber combination baler originally launched back at Agritechnica in 2015. Operating as a pre-chamber, the first section of FastBale produces two-thirds of the bale. As the pre-chamber reaches its preset density, crop flow is diverted into the main bale chamber allowing baling to continue. It features an 800mm intake rotor with a 25 knife chopping unit, capable of net or film binding the 1.26 x 1.27 diameter bales.

The bale moves on to the wrapping table, twin satellite arms which rotate in a vertical plane, wrapping the bale.

Kverneland FastBale non-stop baler.

Contractors aim for 5% charges lift
The Association of Farm & Forestry Contractors in Ireland (FCI) has published its Contracting Charges Guide for 2019.

The Association of Farm & Forestry Contractors in Ireland (FCI) has published its Contracting Charges Guide for 2019.

FCI is satisfied that this averaged price guide will act as a fair and reasonable guide for both contractors and farmers.

However, it must be remembered this is only a guide.

These guide figures are produced on an annual basis and are compiled by collating an average figure for each operation from a panel of FCI contractor members from across Ireland.

Because of the local differences, the actual guide charge may vary considerably between regions, across soil types, distance travelled, size of contract undertaken, size and type of equipment used as well as the amount of product spread.

This year sees contractors quoting a 5% increase in charges, rounded off in order to meet with the increases in costs of machinery and higher labour costs since the start of 2019.

Helpful

FCI chief executive officer Michael Moroney said: “FCI always advocates working out individual charges based on the cost of the operation; this guide is helpful to both contractors and farmers in highlighting a national average.”

Costs such as depreciation, finance costs and machinery purchase costs will transcend all regions.

Claasy beefed-up Torion impresses punters
Claas exhibited the Torion 1410 wheeled loader near the parade arena coupled with a large silage fork at the show.

The Torion is the first wheeled loader from Claas to be specifically designed for agricultural use.

It represents a new market sector for Claas and the FTMTA Farm Machinery Show marks its second public outing in Ireland.

The Torion is a collaboration with Liebherr, the German crane and loader giant.

The range includes 10 models with load capacities from 3.45t up to 12.4t.

The 1410 on display is powered by a four-cylinder Deere Power Systems (DPS) engine capable of turning out 155hp.

The 1410 on display is powered by a four-cylinder Deere Power Systems (DPS) engine capable of turning out 155hp.

This loader has a tipping load capacity of 9,100kg and an operating weight of 13,900kg.

Its 40km/h VariPower hydrostatic transmission features three ranges: 0–6km/h, 0–16km/h and 0–40km/h.

Will we see some of these wheeled loaders in an Irish agricultural contractor’s fleet this year?

Mean green stylish Deere attracts punters' attention
John Deere had an impressive stand at the FTMTA Farm Machinery Show but the 9600i forager stole the show.

John Deere showcased two 9600i foragers. The scale and new design features meant they attracted a lot of attention at the show.

The 9600i model is powered by a 625hp, 13.5-litre six-cylinder John Deere PSX engine, while the three larger models in the range are powered by a V12 Liebherr engine.

The 9600i model is powered by a 625hp, 13.5-litre six-cylinder John Deere PSX engine

The new forager range has a reinforced drivetrain and an improved mainframe.

The machines are also fitted with a larger crop channel with a width of 850mm, allowing them to handle a higher throughput.

The harvester is equipped with John Deere’s fully automatic ProDrive transmission.

The machine comes with a choice of 40, 48, 56 or 64 knives. It has a fuel tank capacity of 1,100 litres.

The machine comes with a choice of 40, 48, 56, or 64 knives.

The new 9000 Series foragers feature the latest forage harvesting technology.

According to John Deere, the new series will provide customers with 10% more productivity while consuming 10% less fuel, in comparison to John Deere’s current higher-spec machines.