14 April 1995

Stirrer attachment is flexible solution

LOW-lying slurry lagoons and underground tanks, previously inaccessible for traditional tractor-powered mast mixers, can now be stirred with a telescopic handler-mounted unit.

Designed by Wiltshire dairy farmer/contractor Robert Laugh-lin, the Telestirrer attachment is based on a conventional MixIt mast mixer which he uses to contract stir about 200 slurry towers around the UK every year.

Mr Laughlin explains: "Not all towers are suited to stirring with mast mixers, which are built to work over high sides – not into deep pits. Some towers may be just 5ft above ground, but then extend down 8ft beneath the surface.

"Attaching the stirrer to a telescopic handler makes the system more flexible and able to cope with these more awkward sites. We can get the propeller anywhere within the handler booms travel arc."

The Telestirrer attachment comprises a standard MixIt propeller and 6m (20ft) long drive tube, to which is mounted a 110hp Deutz engine. The air-cooled unit drives the propeller tube at up to 700rpm via a kevlar toothed belt.

"We chose an air-cooled engine to keep unit weight down to 30cwt; that allows the boom to be extended to its full reach. We also had to modify the engines sump so lubrication still took place, even when operating at 45í."

Mr Laughlin moves the Telestirrer between farms on a two-wheel trailer behind his car, and carries with him mounting adaptors to fit JCB, Manitou, Matbro and Sanderson handlers.

He also plans to build production versions of the Telestirrer for sale to other contractors and farmers. Price is expected to be about £11,000. &#42

This slurry lagoon stirrer attachment can be supplied with adaptor brackets to fit most leading makes

of telescopic materials handler.