Mark Daniel reports on McIntosh's impressive Double Bale Feeder.
The company says the new SL360X is the result of 12 months in New Zealand.
This new multi-purpose machine is rated at 1.25 tonnes capacity – 8% heavier and 30% stronger than previous models.
The addition of another fence gives it 1 cu. m capacity; it will pit, loose and maize silage, fodder beet and cut grass.
Improvements have been made to the auto connect and release system using a patented Snaplox coupler. This ensures accurate connect and disconnect every time and incorporates a double latching set-up that is stronger and eliminates stress on the loading spears.
Its bale spears have forged points for easier bale penetration. This counters the need to push bales along the ground and risk soil contamination, which can be a major problem with blunt tines.
A new thermo-formed floor design increases height around the feed platform. It also encloses the machine driveshafts to prevent crop build up, reducing maintenance downtime.
A redesign of the machine's headstock makes it easy adaptable to fit to high-capacity frontloaders or telehandlers, opening up the possibility of feeding over barriers or into mixer/feeder wagons. An optional side-shift system allows up to 180mm of offset to the left or right and helps ensure accurate placement of feed in all situations.
Other upgrades include bearing covers, motor protection on the head unit and self-aligning bearings used extensively. These require less greasing, extending the routine maintenance schedules.