2009 - Volume #33, Issue #6, Page #26[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
European Speed Tillage Catches On
"The Joker compact disc combines speed with effective shallow tillage, whether in conservation tillage or as part of a full tillage program," says Hughes. "Growers like the combination of high speed, excellent residue sizing and great incorporation of residue. "
The Joker is ideal not just for shallow (up to 4-in. depths) tillage, but also for incorporating a cover crop, fertilizer, residue or manure before planting. It is available in 13, 17, 20 and 25-ft. working widths. Pull the 25-ft. Model 8RT at 12 mph, and you will eat up the ground at more than 35 acres per hour. Power requirements vary from 120 to 320 hp.
The secret to the Joker's design is the small, but numerous -in. thick, 18-in. dia., notched blades. The small blades turn faster for better mixing. Spade discs at each end of the blade sections eliminate soil ridging, leaving a level seedbed.
Each pair of blades is mounted on a single arm torsion bar for independent action on rocks and flexing over uneven terrain. Instead of a gang axle, a rubber torsion bar ensures that the blades maintain blade angle and uniform depth. High residue that can plug up a gang axle flows through. If a disk is damaged, it can be replaced by removing only five bolts, not an entire gang.
Instead of greasable bearings, the Joker uses oil-filled bearings more common in European disc tillage systems. The oil filled technology means lower wear and less maintenance.
The Roll Flex system at the rear of the Joker completes the tillage pass, smoothening the surface. It also lightly packs or consolidates the soil for an ideal seedbed. Colored spacers on the packer assembly make depth settings for the tillage tool easy.
Thanks to a vertical fold mechanism, the Joker folds up to 10 ft. or less for highway transit. Prices range from $30,000 to $62,000.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Horsch Anderson, 14118 414th Ave., Andover, S. Dak. 57422 (ph 605 298-5663; www.horschanderson.com).
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