Video: Mower test: Kverneland 3132 MT

The Kverneland-Taarup is a high-end machine. Its tall conditioner hood helps to aerate the forage and produce better dry matter results. It’s well made, too, with a bulky chassis and some sophisticated features like the position sensor.

Since Kverneland bought Taarup, all its mowers are now offered by the Nordic company (now owned partly by Kubota).

Watch the video and read the full report below.

 

Hitching and unhitching

Fitted with a Cat III linkage, it has two positions available to suit the tractor’s track width. The 3132 uses two hydraulic services – one double-acting for folding and a single-acting for entering into work mode and for suspension. There is also a three-pin electric socket that must be plugged in the cab to engage the position sensor.

The Kverneland can prove tricky to unhitch, especially for inexperienced operators. It must be dropped off on completely flat ground because the two park stands aren’t the same height. Even on concrete the detached machine leans, so we found having a block nearby was handy.

Once you’ve decided where you’re going to take it off, you must remember to lock the valve located on the machine’s suspension cylinder (on the opposite side to the tractor’s door) where there’s a sticker explaining what to do on the cylinder. You also need to have the three-pin socket plugged in at all times.

Folding

A double-acting cylinder behind the hitch folds the mower horizontally into transport position, which sees it positioned lengthways behind the tractor. Once folded the electric position sensor automatically locks the hydraulic valve in transport position.

Power transmission

Power goes to two transfer boxes before travelling through another two universal joint shafts. Power from the second transfer box drives the first disc bed, while a gear assembly inside the cutterbar drives subsequent beds. The conditioner is powered by three V-belts.

Protection

Protection is provided mechanically – if the mower hits an obstacle then a spring on the right-hand side of the hitch, set to a pre-wound torque, is triggered. That causes the mower to swing on a pin and lift slightly. It then returns to the original position once the machine has passed the obstacle.

Suspension

Again, like other mowers on test, the Kverneland’s suspension system is hydropneumatic and nitrogen-charged. Only this time a sophisticated sensor system frees the driver from having to monitor pressure changes. Two position sensors detect the location of the suspension cylinder and adjust the circuit pressure and the nitrogen accumulator accordingly.

It’s vital to connect these sensors, even if moving only a few metres, otherwise you risk damaging the machine with the pressure left in the circuit. The sensors must also be unplugged last when unhitching. An arrow allows the driver to check that the hitch is in the correct position from the tractor seat.

Conditioner

The conditioner is belt driven and can be adjusted to operate at either 600rpm or 900rpm. The rotor itself has 63 twin steel tines, spread across seven rows, each of which can swing through 180°. The corrugated conditioner plate has three settings providing a 2-4cm gap. To adjust, there’s a lever on the outside which requires a bit of elbow grease to get into the right position.

Swathing

Kverneland-Taarup is the only manufacturer to use a hood, which the company says aerates the forage more effectively because it turns it at a greater height. The machine’s favourable results in the dry matter test prove the system to be very succesful. The hood can also be retracted in order to work in a more conventional way, by simply twisting the spring-mounted handle to move or adjust the angle.

Cutter bar

The 3132 uses eight completely round discs, each fitted with two knives. Cutting width is 3.18m and each knife cuts a width of 7cm and rotates 250°. The Kverneland’s quick-change system also requires a special long-handled wrench to free the knives. Each is held in place by two springs which are easy to bend upwards, but the bolt holding the knife needs to be dead in line with the hole to allow the spring to return into place. There’s plenty of room to get to the mower bed as the protective skirt is fitted to a frame that can be retracted (although it can take a bit of a pull to lift it up).

• Working width: 3.18m

• Weight distribution: 150kg/80kg (inside/outside)

• Number of discs: 8

• Conditioner speed: 600rpm/900rpm

• Price: £16,965

Likes

• Position sensor

• Sophisticated weight distribution

• Quick lift on headlands

Gripes

• Awkward unhitching

• Swinging on the road

• Transport position