This Danish-built machine is simple and compact. Along with other mowers in the range, it will be soon be marketed by Kongskilde which recently bought JF-Stoll.
Watch the video and read the full report.
Hitching and unhitching
Cat 3 linkage is standard. The GXS attachment system requires two single-acting services, one equipped with float. Unhitching is problem-free; you just have to remember to drop the pressure to zero with the spool, which can be monitored from the cab using the gauge.
The parking stand is a leg with a pin to adjust the height, but is stable enough to unhitch in the field without fear of it toppling over.
A hook on the cylinder locks the mower in transport position and is activated by a rope pulled in the cab. When you go into work mode, the valve is opened at the same time as you unlatch the hook, allowing the hydraulic circuit to fold the mower into work position.
Power travels through a transfer gearbox to a second shaft, which in turn drives the cutterbar. This goes directly to the first disc bed, after which a gear assembly operates the subsequent beds. The conditioner is belt driven and a slip clutch protects the drive system.
Protection is provided by a mechanical system, however it’s a little different from the others on test. Two plates, located one on top of the other, are kept in place by a polyurethane block, which when squeezed on impact causes the plates to slide over each other, allowing the mower to tilt backwards. Since the test was conducted, the GXS is now fitted with hydraulic breakback which doubles up as a lateral folding control.
A hydropneumatic system allows the cutterbar to follow ground contours, with pressure being adjusted using the single-acting service. Although there’s a gauge on the hitch, there are no marks to show what level pressure has reached, leaving the operator to guess when it’s in a suitable position.
Clearance in the headland position is low at 15cm and the cutterbar sometimes goes under the swath when turning. A cam-type adjustment allows the operator to adjust this height for headland work. A spring helps keep the mower stable when turning. JF-Stoll now offers hydraulic suspension as standard.
JF-Stoll has been using nylon tines for twenty years. According to the company, plastic tines take less power and don’t affect the machine’s balance if any tines become damaged. Unfortunately, our dynamometer was damaged before the GXS was tested, so we were unable to substantiate this.
The 2.42m rotor has seven rows of nylon tines, totalling 68, each held in place with a bolt. These aren’t protected though, and could become worn. However they are straightforward to remove.
Speed of the rotor is 860rpm and there are three conditioning positions. There’s a lever next to the hitch that allows the operator to do this quickly and easily, however there are no markings to indicate if you’re opening or closing the conditioner plate. From this year, we’re told, there will be markings.
To switch between spreading and swathing crop, there are two round-headed screws that, once loosened, allow the shields to be slid back. The tool used for replacing the knives is ideal for undoing these.
Although not fitted with vanes, the position of the spreader plate can be adjusted using a lever on the back of the mower.
The cutterbar has eight discs that work in pairs and each is fitted with two knives. Like the Fella, each is double-sided so they can be swapped when worn.
Although the GXS has a quick-change system, removing blades can be fiddly as each knife is fitted with a rectangular hole, which remains in place unless you place the special wrench in exactly the right position. You also need two hands to exert the force needed, meaning a second person is required to grab the knife. Practice would make this easier.
Technical spec: working width: 3.2m
Weight distribution: 150kg/80kg (inside/outside)
Number of cutting discs: 8
Conditioner speed: 900rpm
Simple to set-up
Two single-acting cylinders
Changing knives awkward
Pressure needs to be released before unhitching
No scale on gauge