Machinery enthusiasts travelled in numbers to the 91st National Ploughing Championships in Laois, with the event also providing punters with the first look at the new McHale Fusion 4 range.

The Mayo manufacturer presented its new range of Fusion 4 baler wrappers units, with the line-up including the 4 Standard, the 4 Pro and the 4 Plus with film binding.

Peter Thomas Keaveney spoke to McHale’s Irish sales manager James Heanue, who talks through the manufacturer's new Fusion 4 range in more detail.

What’s new?

The manufacturer said it has designed its highest output pick-up to date for the new range. Dubbed as the Profi-Flo, McHale says its new pick-up reel is designed to increase crop intake through more efficient crop flow.

Behind the two feed augers, a tapered feed channel is designed to encourage the crop to flow from the pick-up, towards the rotor and into the chamber.

The pick-up is now also fitted with a heavier drive line, to reduce chain load. The rotor size has been slightly increased, as has the torque on the rotor.

Options include a five-tine bar cam track pick-up or the optional six-tine bar camless pick-up, the latter of which has become slightly wider.

The new adaptive intake feature has been designed to allow the intake area to automatically adjust to changes in material flow, meaning it will better handle lumpy rows.


The range is equipped with a 540rpm gearbox as standard, while a 1,000rpm gearbox is an optional extra.

McHale says the 1,000rpm gearbox results in an increase in PTO speed with reduced torque, to reduce sharp loads on the drive line and provide the clutch setting with 10% more capacity.

The manufacturer says that the option to select 540rpm (if available) on the tractor results in easier restarts, if it becomes blocked.

It also says that better fuel economy is achieved due to lower tractor engine revs by running the machine at the recommended PTO speed of 890rpm when using the 1000rpm gearbox.

Increased density pressure

McHale said it has increased the density pressure across the range, which results in well-shaped and tighter bales.

A larger net/film brake has been fitted to all Fusion 4 Plus machines, which McHale says provides up to 25% more stretch to be achieved.

It added that this is especially effective when operating in cold weather with NRF that requires a higher stretch percentage.

New cut and hold slider brushes reduce friction to eliminate plastic tearing, particularly in hot or wet conditions. The cut and holds also features a hydraulic tap to lock the cut and hold in the open position for the ease and safety of maintenance.