From the US comes the Spartan seeder from Great Plains Manufacturing, one of several implements from the manufacturer being shown for the first time by its European subsidiary, Simba International.
Simba Great Plains’ Spartan drills offer high output from machines that fold to 3m for transport – an ideal combination for professional farmers and contractors using reduced tillage and direct drilling.
At Cereals 2011, the company will show two models – the Spartan 6m, which typically suits tractors of 170-260hp and the Spartan 9m (270-415hp).
Both drills achieve highly accurate seed placement via Great Plains’ 07 opener. This uses a leading Turbo coulter disc to cultivate a 30-50mm wide strip of soil ahead of two 4mmx380mm offset disc blades, mounted on triple-lip seal bearings, that slice through surface trash and penetrate hard ground very efficiently.
Seed is delivered via Great Plains’ Clear-Shot (R) seed tubes, which ensure it is placed in exactly the desired position in the soil displaced by the discs. A wide range of following press wheels is available to match individual farm soils and conditions.
Consistent drilling depth is maintained via hydraulic down pressure and parallel linkage on the row unit toolbar, which guarantees all openers stay in work and provides excellent contour following.
Hydraulic weight transfer from the seed cart to the drilling coulters and from the centre section of the drill to the wings ensures that all rows have the same amount of weight on them to maintain even penetration, even when working on undulating fields.
Both drills offer a range of different row widths, with the Spartan 6 being able to drill at 150mm (40 rows) and 188mm (32 rows) centres, while the Spartan 9 can additionally drill at 250mm centres, and so offers 60, 48 or 36 rows.
They also offer a range of hoppers for both seed-only and seed/fertiliser systems. The Spartan 6m can be supplied with a 5,280-litre seed-only hopper or two 2,885-litre hoppers – one for seed and the other for dry fertiliser.
The Spartan 9m has two 3,500-litre hoppers, which can be used for seed only, or one for seed and the other for dry fertiliser.
Selected Great Plains machines are being made more widely available in the UK and western Europe following the company’s purchase of Simba in 2010. Great Plains’ regional operations are now based at Simba’s Sleaford factory, Lincolnshire, which also hosts assembly of Great Plains equipment coming to western Europe and will be the site of a new training facility.
• Cereals 2011 exhibitor information as supplied by Simba International.