Monday, 13 February 2017 10:55

Bale wrapping taken to new heights

Written by  Mark Daniel

While much of the baleage in New Zealand seems to be baled and wrapped in combi-style machines, there still seems to be a place for standalone machines which follow the baler around the paddock.

Specialist Irish manufacturer McHale has seen huge success with its Fusion machines, and says it made sense to use the wrapping technology from this series to develop the new Orbital machine.

The heart of the machine is the patented, high-speed vertical wrapping ring. This results in increased stability for the film dispensers, meaning the machine can run at about 40rpm and apply six layers of plastic to a 1.25m diameter bale in about 25 seconds. This achieves output of 100 bales per hour.

This certainly seemed, pre-Christmas, to be the case in a Waikato paddock where the first machine in NZ was being demonstrated by product specialist John ‘JP’ Chapman. He believes this high output allows the machine to work alongside two balers with ease.

In operation, the machine is offset to the right of the tractor and once contact is made with the lift arm, a fully automated cycle takes place, firstly with the bale being lifted into the wrapping ring. A patented-design sees the forward roller ‘dropping’ to allow a smooth transition from the ground to the wrapping position and a resultant lowering of the centre of gravity, which helps promote stability on sloping ground.

The vertical wrapping ring carries twin 750mm film dispensers, equipped with film break monitors to notify the operator. It also cleverly automatically slows bale rotation speed to allow one applicator to finish the job, while ensuring consistent overlap.

Once wrapped, the bale is gently lowered to the ground, with the option of a vertical tipper to place the bale on its strongest face.

The Orbital can wrap bales from 1.1 to 1.45m diameter, by way of its patented tip roller; that can be adjusted to maintain a position to ensure dispensers stay central to the mid-point of the bale to ensure the correct overlap is maintained always.

Film loading is accessed via the left-hand side through a safety gate. After the first film roll is replaced, an index button automatically brings the second dispenser into position.

The Expert Plus control console oversees all machine functions throughout the wrapping cycle, as well as recording individual jobs, daily and seasonal outputs, and monitoring any fault or failures.

Weighing 1850kg, the Orbital is equipped with 480-45R17 tyres to carry the combined weight of the machine and up to two bales. It is said to require a tractor of only 50hp and a minimum oil flow of 35L/min.

www.powerfarming.co.nz

More like this

V8 - a baler with a grunt

Following three years of testing with clients worldwide, Ireland-based manufacturer McHale has added a bigger model to its range of variable-chamber round balers with the new V8 series. 

Suits all

Front end loader and implement manufacturer Quicke has introduced a new, multi-purpose bale grab call the Quadrogrip.

Fusion 3+ adds more tech features

Dominant in the New Zealand baler/wrapper combi market, the McHale Fusion Series distributed by Power Farming Wholesale has been popular with contractors and large-scale farmers for many years.

Kuhn Merge Maxx added to the mix

Twin or four rotor tine-based swathers tend to dominate the market for machines that will satisfy the voracious appetites of self-propelled foragers and large balers.

Featured

 

Lely offerings for the future

Dutch robotic specialist Lely launched a new farm management application called Horizon at its recent Future Farm Days 2020.

Designed to connect data from a range of on-farm equipment and suppliers into one management system, it creates a real-time decision-support platform, to make the farmer’s life easier, the herd healthier and the farm more profitable, says Lely.

Developed over a 24-month period, with over 100 test farmers in seven countries, working with 75 engineers, designers, farm management advisors, veterinarians and AI specialists, the new application will eventually replace the current Lely T4C management system. It uses smart algorithms and the cloud to deliver data that is processed into actionable information that is always accessible on any device in a user-friendly way.

Lely claims the Horizon application unburdens farmers from routine decision making and helps them optimise their workloads, using integrated routines based on easily scheduled cow ‘touches’, create logical and more efficient workflows. It is also possible to assign a certain task to an employee and to schedule a time slot for the cow touch, rather than analysing different reports and filtering long lists.

Horizon is also able to connect and combine data from non-Lely sources into a complete solution for the farmer removing the need to enter the same data twice, while scrutinising individual data streams in different applications will no longer be necessary. Currently, connections with farming applications such as Dairy Comp, Uniform-Agri, CRV and Herde already enable farmers to synchronise information about calving and inseminations between applications. Lely’s ambition is to connect with more partners over time, to hand the farmer more smart data.

To ensure full support in the migration to Lely Horizon, existing Lely T4C customers will be personally informed by their Lely Center before the end of 2020.

The migration is planned in a phased approach, from country to country, over the year 2021.

Also launched at the event, Lely Exos is an autonomous concept for harvesting and feeding fresh grass to the herd.

The company suggests that feeding fresh grass makes better use of available roughage, suggesting “fresh” has between 10 and 20% more nutritional value than grass silage, as there are minimal losses typically seen during mowing, tedding, raking, harvesting and feeding.

Lely suggests that feeding fresh grass over an extended season reduces the amount of silage that has to be conserved, reduces the need for concentrates and bought-in feed and increase the margin made on each litre of milk produced.

Based around an all-electric vehicle that mows and feeds, Exos is light weight and uses soil friendly technology, that can be exploited throughout the growing season. Design to work 24/7 as feed requirements change, the system places no constraints on labour or time, while it is also designed to work in tandem with the Lely Vector automatic feeding systems.

In operation, Exos also collects field data as it goes about its job, giving framers live data on grass supply and lending itself to a further concept of delivering a targeted liquid fertiliser as it passes over a harvested area.

Goat farming on the rise

Dairy goat milk processors, looking to increase their supplier numbers, are helping to drive interest among farmers in New Zealand’s growing goat milk industry.

TB fight goes on

The total number of TB-infected herds in Hawke’s Bay has risen to 20, following the recent reclassification of a new herd in the Waitara Valley.

Milking cows behind the barbed wire

A recent field day at the Waikeria Prison Farm near Te Awamutu offered farmers the chance to see what goes on “behind the wire”, alongside introducing the idea of farmers employing offenders near the end or after the term of their sentences.

National

Dispelling wool's myths

Paul Alston believes that when comparing wool and synthetic carpets, wool wins every time.

Not all GHGs are the same

The New Zealand Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (NZRSB) is calling for a new, more accurate, method for calculating methane emissions.

Machinery & Products

Weeds in for a shock

WIith an increasing focus on reducing chemical herbicides, largely because of crop resistance and a potential build-up of residues, new…

V8 - a baler with a grunt

Following three years of testing with clients worldwide, Ireland-based manufacturer McHale has added a bigger model to its range of…

Virtual CV valuable tool

With a 12-year history of recruiting specialised operators from overseas to service the agricultural contracting industry, Hanzon Jobs typically brings…

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

Tough gig!

OPINION: This old mutt has a fair amount of sympathy for Ag Minister Damien O’Connor with the two associate ministers…

Cow killer

OPINION: The Hound was not surprised to hear well-known end-of-the-world doom-merchant ‘Dr’ Mike Joy is still as joyless as ever…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter