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“Best Buy” MacDon Draper Head
“The used MacDon FD75 draper head we bought this year does a fantastic job harvesting beans and works smoother and more efficiently with much less field loss than the Deere 30-ft. auger platform we had before.
“The 4-year-old, 35-ft. MacDon runs on our Deere 9770 combine, using all the standard reel, belt speed and header adjustment controls. We installed a header height control kit from Headsight on the draper, which adds sensors to both ends of the platform. It integrates into the Deere Contourmaster controls to automatically sense field terrain and raise the cutterbar up and down or tilt it as needed. The header can also tilt the sicklebar up and down to cleanly cut lodged beans without having to travel in one direction. The reel adjusts up and down, fore and aft, on-the-go to draw beans onto the drapers.
“We cut beans just under 12 percent moisture during the 2019 harvest and saw very little head loss, about 1/4 bu. per acre. With Deere’s header we’d see losses of 2 bu. or more per acre in those conditions. More proof that the machine does a better job is looking at the top of the feederhouse. With the MacDon there was maybe a couple handsful at the end of a day compared to a couple ice cream pails with the auger head. With the MacDon we can also travel faster than with the auger head, usually 4.2 to 4.7 miles per hour, and the inflow to the machine is always smooth. Reel and belt speed are adjustable so stalks are always feeding evenly.
“Attaching and detaching the head on the Duo-Lift head cart is very easy. Two shelf brackets hold the base of the header and the bottom of the cutter bars rests on the cross beam of the cart. The adaptor on the platform for our combine adjusts perfectly to the angle of the feederhouse lift brackets. The single-point hookup brings all the header electric and hydraulic controls into the combine when it’s locked onto the machine.
“We chose the MacDon platform over the Deere after visiting with owners of both models who used them on Deere combines, including one farmer who recently traded his Deere for a MacDon. In his experience the MacDon was easier to operate, more flexible to varying field conditions and did a better job feeding evenly. After using ours for one season, we definitely agree with that assessment.”

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2019 - Volume #43, Issue #6