Wireless magnetic LED lights- a game changer
Peter Thomas Keaveney tried out the latest product from Sparex, a set of wireless magnetic LED lights that can be attached to any implement or vehicle.

Many farmers around the country have older trailers or implements lying around farmyards that may be very rarely used. However, after being left outside and not being used for a long period, it’s not unusual for the lights to have stopped working.

Sparex Ltd, a supplier of tractor parts and accessories, has recently introduced a new product called Connix to the market. This is a set of wireless magnetic LED lights that can be attached to any implement or vehicle.

Connix is handy for implements lying around farmyards that may be very rarely used or in the case of an emergency where lights suddenly may stopped working.

Once fully charged, we attached the lithium battery-powered LED lights to the back of a trailer and connected them to the tractor using a seven-pin plug. Sparex claims the maximum transmitting distance from the seven-pin plug to the lights is 20 metres. However, we found this distance to be much larger (in excess of 50 metres).

The LED lights act as rear lighting, indicators, brake lights and a side light will illuminate the number plate if situated in between.

The LED lights act as rear lighting, indicators, brake lights and a side light will illuminate the number plate if situated in between.

The lights take four hours to fully charge and have a 10-hour battery life with a display of the remaining charge. The lights can be recharged by plugging them into the tractor’s 12-volt supply. The units appear to be built quite well and seem to be durable. The magnetic force seems to be strong. It didn’t come off the trailer while towing it around the bumpy country roads. The light from the LED bulbs was also very bright.

A set of Connix lights would be suitable around any farm, especially when you’re in a panic and suddenly you notice the lights on a trailer aren’t working.

Connix is handy for implements lying around farmyards that may be very rarely used or in the case of an emergency where lights suddenly may stopped working.

Sparex recently picked up a gold medal award in the Online Innovation section for the product for the upcoming LAMMA show.

The RRP price of the Connix lights in Ireland is €118.50.

Top five picks at Millsteet Spring Farm Machinery Show
Tommy Moyles picked out his top five machines that stood out for him at the recent Spring Farm Machinery Show in Millstreet last week.

There was a solid attendance at the Q8 Oils Spring Farm Machinery Show at the Green Glens Arena in Millstreet, Co Cork, last week.

Describing activity for 2018, exhibitors said that there was a small bit of a lull when the drought hit last summer but activity picked up after that and they experienced a very good run up to Christmas.

Naturally enough, Brexit was in the back of everyone’s minds and while it created a little apprehension among customers, machinery dealers cautioned that it’s a bit early in the year to make a call on its true impact.

Some dealerships said there was a good run on industrial loaders last year.

They also reported a few tractor sales completed before the end of the year, with a number of deals and solid inquiries proving that despite the uncertainty created in Westminster, the show must go on at farm level.

Valtra T174

The T174 starts at 175hp and can boost to over 200hp.

Some specifications include front and cab suspension, 50km/h and air brakes.

This model has a powershift transmission, manual spool valves, load sensing and a hydraulic output going from 160l/minute.

Ballpark figure of €105,000 plus VAT.

Rauch AXIS M EMC 30.2 V8

This twin-disc spreader can give precise control of the application rate without the need for weigh cells fitted on the machine.

The left and right discs are individually monitored for flow rate as it will self-calibrate to ensure the same flow comes out each side.

Working off GPS for forward speed and taking field size into consideration, it will vary its width of spread, self-calibrate and turn on and off at the headlands.

This 3t capacity machine is proving a popular option for contractors and larger farmers through TAMS.

Guide price is €26,000 including VAT.

NC 4800

This high-capacity slurry pump has a 1,000rpm gearbox.

The mixing spout can revolve through a wide arc allowing slurry to be mixed in any direction and the jetting nozzle can be locked in a range of up to 26 positions.

Hydraulic controls mean the pump can be placed easily in the tank and also enable adjustment using the centre ram.

This pump requires a tractor of about 175hp to run it.

Price: €5,750 plus VAT.

Pöttinger seeder

The 1000 series power-harrow is rated at 250hp.

It had a Pöttinger Tegosem electric air seeder fitted on top for broadcasting grass seed.

It uses a GPS sensor for forward speed, a low-level seed sensor in the hopper and it uses a linkage signal worked from the top link for turning on and off the seed when you lift and lower the machine.

This means it’s totally independent from the tractor.

All it needs from the tractor is 12 volts.

It has a 200l hopper and can take up to 6ac worth of grass seed.

Price: €22,000 plus VAT.

Vredo launches monstrous VT7028 Multi-purpose Trac at LAMMA
Dutch-based Vredo launched a monstrous 687hp VT7028 Multi-purpose Trac at LAMMA last week.

Vredo, a Dutch-based company, displayed one of the largest new machines at the show.

Although it is very unlikely there will be many (if any) ever sold in Ireland, we had to cover the machine simply due to its scale.

The new machine is powered by a 16-litre Deutz V8 engine capable of churning out a significant 687hp.

The large machine comes with all round suspension, all-wheel steering and heavy-duty axles with external brake discs.

Although pictured with a slurry tank mounted on the platform to the rear, these machines can be retrofitted with a large number of implements such as spreader boxes (dung, lime etc), sugar beet boxes or even wood chippers.

According to Vredo, there was no suitable CVT transmission on the market for its new machine.

As a result the company opted to design and build its own VVT700 continuously variable transmission.

The transmission has two speed ranges, 0-20km/h and 0-50km/h. The machine is available to order in two- or three-axle configurations.

It’s rumoured that the list price for this fully specced machine is in the region of €850,000.

Armatrac launches higher horsepower tractor at LAMMA
Armatrac launched a new 125hp tractor at the recent LAMMA show.

Armatrac launched its new 1254 Lux tractor at last week’s show.

The 1254 Lux is the largest model in the company’s offering and is capable of churning out up to 125hp.

Armatrac decided to opt for a Deutz engine with the latest offering over the Perkins engine that they have been using in the majority of their other tractors up to now.

The company are sticking with the ZF transmission and rear axle, similar to what it has used in other models.

The 1254 is fitted with a 16x16 gearbox. The new tractor has stuck with what the company has become known for, simplicity and not over done with electrics.

The 1254 Lux can be equipped with air conditioning, cab suspension in addition to front linkage and PTO if desired.