14 April 1995

Umbilical trend on rise

IT IS the year of the umbilical as far as slurry spreading is concerned.

Several manufacturers report significant sales increases of these systems which allow slurry to be applied without having to maul heavy tankers across wet fields.

And such interest has prompted companies to launch new kit on to the market. From Vallely Engineering comes news of a 1000m hose reel with a variable speed hydraulic drive. Smaller than the companys previous "contractor" models, this one is also aimed at finding favour with the farmer.

Supplied with ramps to allow vehicles to pass safely over the laid pipe when it needs to cross a road, a package comprising a tractor-mounted 3.6m (11ft 10in) spreader, pump and hose reel carries a price tag of about £25,000.

For Northern Ireland-based NC Agricultural Engineering the Muck 95 event provided a chance to launch the companys first entry into the umbilical market.

A six-spool, hydraulically-driven 1200m model, it incorporates a 200m length of strengthened "drag" hose connected to the tractor-mounted spreader. Complete with a pto-powered Bauer pump and spreader, the NC umbilical system is listed at £27,000.

New under the Spreadwise banner is a wheeled buggy to allow hose reels to be transported. Marketed by Shrewsbury-based Oakleys Irrigation, the buggy has been designed to carry all of the companys range of hydraulically powered reels. Price, depending on specification is between £2000 and £3000.

The NCAgricultural Engineeringumbilical system comprises 200m of drag hose connected to a tractor-mounted spreader. System price is £27,000.