Swivel Reduces Maintenance On Manure Injectors

Installing the new Contour Master Swivel (CMS) from Vertical Till Injector (VTI) reduces maintenance and replacement costs, according to the company. The new swivel is a torsion rubber design that handles contours better with no grease points.


     “We’ve had a swivel on our row units for 8 or 9 years, but it’s been replaced with the CMS,” says Matt Bonebrake, VTI. “It’s lighter, with no greasing needed and no springs or bushings to wear out. It eases contouring, protecting bearings and reducing blade replacement due to breakage.”


     The torsion rubber allows the row unit to swivel with contours or when turning as much as 20 degrees. When the unit is lifted out of the ground, the torsion rubber doesn’t snap back to center, but when the toolbar is lowered, the blades are engaged back to center or contouring, as the case may be.


     Bonebrake explains that even a slight pressure or curve in direction can put pressure on the bearings that are inside machined hubs. “Introducing side load into the hub is about the worst thing you can do,” he says. “Trying to turn without a swivel puts pressure on the bearings or snaps off the injector blade or both.”


     The harder the ground, the more magnified the problem becomes. Given the hard, dry soils in much of the Midwest this year, Bonebrake expects a lot of bearing and blade replacements. The problem will be exacerbated with cold temperatures, as dry ground tends to freeze faster and deeper.


     “Conditions will make it nearly impossible to do manure injection without swivels,” says Bonebrake.


     The CMS has another benefit for owners. In an economy where experienced operators can be hard to find, the torsion rubber swivels are more forgiving and make the equipment easier to run.


     “They make it less likely the inexperienced operator will mess up,” says Bonebrake.


     VTI also recently introduced the Switchback coil pack row unit with a single hub design. The Switchback swivels on its own and offers as much as 10 in. vertical travel. The single-hub design makes changing blades and row spacing much easier and requires less time.


     Eliminating the need for a swivel reduces the weight by 235 lbs. for every two rows. On a 12-row 30-in. row toolbar, which saves 1,400 lbs., a weight that’s magnified by the long tongue. Replacing standard, double gang units with the single hub row unit reduces row unit weight by 60 lbs. per row.


     “On these larger systems, the tank with the toolbar behind it can be 46 to 50 ft. behind the tractor,” says Bonebrake. “Toolbar weight adds significantly to stress on the system.”


     Check with local dealers for pricing on both the CMS and the Switchback.


     Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, VTI LLC, 201 Airport Rd., Washington, Iowa 52353 (ph 319-591-2222; info@vtillc.com; www.vtillc.com).