2019 - Volume #43, Issue #1, Page #18[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Spring Steel Gauge, Closing Wheels
Poly Tech’s Pat Reinhart says Australian farmers really like the coil wheels because they provide uniform closing and depth control in all types of field conditions. Looking like springs coiled into the shape of a wheel, the coil wheels vibrate to shake off sticky soil or crop residue that might otherwise ball up on rubber planter wheels as a machine moves across a field. Reinhart says the coil-type wheels work especially well for no-till farmers who are often planting into more moist soils because of residue cover.
The wheels also work well when conditions are ideal because they leave a firm but porous surface that doesn’t crust or cake so young seedlings can easily penetrate it. In dry sandy soils the wheels pinch the seed into the ground, but leave a soft surface that won’t crust.
Reinhart says his company was sold on the wheels because field units they viewed had covered more than 8,000 acres and didn’t show any signs of losing spring tension or breakage.
The wheels are built with heavy-duty hubs and tapered bearings that are designed to outlast wheels with roller bearings. Cost of the rear gauge wheels is $260 and a set of 2 front closing wheels is $480. The wheels bolt directly onto the existing row units, replacing the OEM solid rubber wheels. The deep V openers aren’t affected by the coil wheel design.
Australian agronomist Brad Cogan says farmers may be able to plant a little faster with the coil wheels without compromising their planting operation. He feels the coil gauge and closing wheels give better seed-to-soil contact, which is a major advantage. Australian farmers have also used the coil wheels with good success on air drills with small grains.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, RFM Ag Technology, 90 Mann St., Coolamon, NSW Australia 2701 (ph +011 61 3 5310 5933; www.rfm.com.au); or Pat Reinhart, Poly Tech Industries (ph 507 296-1976; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.polyskid.com).
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