3 March 2000

Beet tramline marker adds to spray accuracy

By Andy Moore

FINDING the correct sugar beet drill tramlines can sometimes be a difficult operation when carrying out pre-emergence spraying operations.

To help avoid spraying inaccuracy, Garford Farm Machinery has introduced a pre-emergence tramline marker system, designed for use with its Kleine Unicorn-3 drills with up to 18 rows.

Working with the drills synchro-drive control system, the marker system uses a spray nozzle to make a series of paint marks next to the drills tramlines which are later followed by the sprayer operator.

To indicate the start of each tramline, an initial mark 5m (16.4ft) long is made 10m (33ft) after each drilling bout is started. This mark is followed by a 1m (3.2ft) guidance mark sprayed at intervals of 100m (328ft) along the length of the field.

When the drill is 15m (49ft) away from the end of the bout, the system sprays another 5m mark to indicate the end of the pass – the drill records the length of the previous bout to enable the drill to know when it is approaching the headland. Visibility of the marks on different soil types can be enhanced by adjusting the length and frequency of each mark.

Paint used in the system is claimed to dry quickly to become rainfast, and remain visible for up to three weeks.

In operation, paint is pumped from a 60-litre tank and distributed to the nozzles fitted to each of the sowing units along the width of the drill. A control module activates the required solenoid valves to create the tramline marks. The ability to change the nozzles used enables the marker system to adjust to incompatible drill/spraying tramline widths.

Suitable for standard sprayer tramline widths up to 24m (78.7ft), the marker system is priced at £3412 and £4206 for a 12- and 18-row marker system, respectively. &#42

The Kleine Unicorn-3 range of sugar beet drills from Garford Farm Machinery can now be fitted with a tramline marker guidance system.