7 May 1999

Spread from the rear

FRASER has introduced a new range of rear discharge muck spreaders for the 1999 season.

Designed, says the company, to be operated in the toughest conditions, the range comprises models with capacities of 12t, 10t and 9t with each employing twin vertical beaters.

Features include use of a one-piece gearbox at the rear which is claimed to offer much greater performance and reliability than the traditional three individual gearbox arrangement.

Standard equipment includes a sprung drawbar while options extend to guillotine or up and over doors, oversize tyres and hydraulic jack.

Price of the 12t model is £17,846, the 10t £16,562 and the 9t £14,645.

Cutting input

costs

You can spread it, squib it or

inject it. Muck 99

presented visitors with

opportunities to observe all

three methods

– and more besides.

Andy Collings reports

MUCK is either considered an inconvenient by-product of farm stock enterprises or a useful source of plant nutrition which can help to reduce fertiliser costs.

At Muck 99 the emphasis was on the latter option and more than a few companies offered advice on how this could be achieved.

Noble as such intentions clearly are, using muck as part of a specific fertiliser programme is not just a matter of emptying the contents of a lagoon on to a field of wheat and cutting down on the fertiliser.

The problem is that the analysis of muck is rarely constant and application methods are, in the main, far from being a precise science.

It is a problem host farming company for the event, JSR Farming Group, has wrestled with over the years as it has attempted to fully utilise the nutritional value of the 4m gallons of slurry produced by its pig unit.

Latest system under review is based on Hydros sensor controlled variable N application system – a tractor mounted system which uses sensors to record the reflection and colour of the crop and, as a result, apply varying amounts of N in respect of these reflection/colour changes in the crop.

Trials last year called for a field of wheat to receive an initial dressing with N at two different rates followed by an application of slurry – again at two different rates.

At about growth stage 35 in the middle of May the Hydro N sensor was used to assess and apply varying rates of N to bring the whole field to a uniform N application rate of 216kg N/ha – the farms target rate.

The JSR Farming Group intends to hold further trials this year and believes that the nitrate topping up system used after applications of slurry could be a possible route to fully exploiting the value of its slurry.

Hydros Nsensor is now a more compact unit and can be attached to the roof of a tractor using suction pads. The unit is equipped with four sensors – two point to the rear and two to the front – and arrangements which avoids the sensors operating in shadows created by the tractor.

Making a change from conventional chain and slats is Hillam with its new 10t capacity muck spreader. A plate is pushed by a hydraulically powered linkage system to move muck to the units twin vertical beaters. Still in the finer points of its development stage this unit still awaits a coat of paint.

Undercover spreader…

MAKING its debut appearance at the muck event was an umbilical fed surface slurry application system claimed to minimise nitrogen loss, cut odour drift and keep machinery cleaner.

The tractor-mounted Albatross unit has been developed by Spreadwise of Nantwich, Cheshire, and is currently available with a working width of 10m (33ft) with plans produce 12m (40ft) versions.

Basically a vinyl curtain which contains the throw of the slurry and protect it from wind, the units single jet spreader nozzle uses a stainless steal jetter plate to distribute the slurry across the machines width.

Spreadwise claims use of a rubber nozzle helps to eliminate risk of blockages – the nozzle expands if the pressure builds up to release any large material.

Price of the 10m version is listed at £3995 and the 12m at £4500. Both fold hydraulically for transport.