Farmer-built system improves vacuum tanker safety

Brothers Noel and Ger Hickey from County Waterford, Ireland, have designed a retrofit system for vacuum-type slurry tankers that swaps the pto drive for a hydraulic motor.

Installation involves bolting a 10mm thick baseplate between the existing vacuum pump and tanker chassis, before slotting in a hydraulic motor that provides the necessary rotational force required to replace the original mechanical pto drive.

Hickey brothers Ger and Noel with a tanker that has been converted to hydraulic Safeshaft-drive system

Hickey brothers Ger and Noel with a tanker that has been converted to hydraulic Safeshaft-drive system

See also: Mensch shows £150,000 self-propelled slurry vacuum

The easy-to-fit system requires just 40 litres/minute oil flow, so can be powered by almost any tractor regardless of age or specification.

Safeshaft-drive system’s makers say most tractors should be able to run it

Safeshaft-drive system’s makers say most tractors should be able to run it

Some clever hydraulic plumbing and valve work allow for a soft-start function to protect the vacuum pump and gearbox, and also avoid damaging the components by accidentally driving it in reverse.

A tanker converted to hydraulic Safeshaft-drive system

A tanker converted to hydraulic Safeshaft-drive system

Higher spec options include electronic monitoring of vacuum pump speed and electro-hydraulic control.

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