The new Earthmaster from M&W combines disking and ripping functions on a stronger and larger frame. The new implement features rear shanks that penetrate up to 16 in. deep to lift and shatter compaction. Two shank styles are available for either minimum crop residue disturbance or maximum soil distribution. Front tandem discs, operated on a separate hydraulic system, will cut and mix crop residue into 8 in. of soil. Growers may adjust the disc action from 3° for little crop disturbance to 18° for major crop incorporation. A flexible coil tine leveler may be added to the implement to increase soil leveling. The first Earthmasters will be available this fall; prices will start at $26,500. Contact M&W, Dept. FIN, 1020 S. Sangamon, Gibson City, IL 60936, 877/408-3297, www.mw-gear.com.
If you need a fall tillage tool to handle tough stalks and heavy clays, check out the new Reel Till seedbed conditioner from McFarlane Manufacturing. The new tool is really four tools in one: a coulter for soil and residue cutting, a spiral reel stalk chopper, a five-bar flexible spike tooth harrow, and a leveling board. According to the company, a grower can turn hard-packed stalk stubble soil into seedbed condition in one pass. The Reel Till is available in cutting widths from 12 ft. 8 in. to 31 ft. It folds to transport widths from 12 ft. 8 in. to 17 ft. Price: $17,286 to $37,765. Contact McFarlane Mfg. Co. Inc., Dept. FIN, Box 100, Sauk City, WI 53583, 800/627-8569, www.flexharrow.com.
Equipment Technologies introduces a moderately priced, 500-gal. mechanical-drive sprayer. The Cherokee "Plus" sprayer with a mechanical drivetrain features a 140-hp John Deere engine, 48-in. crop clearance and 72- to 120-in. axles with manual adjustment. Booms are available in lengths of 60, 75, 80 and 60/80 ft. Retail prices range from the upper $70,000s to the mid $80,000s. The company expected to begin production of the sprayers in late March. Contact Equipment Technologies Inc., Dept. FIN, 2201 Hancel Pkwy., Mooresville, IN 46158, 317/834-4500, www.apachesprayer.com.
A new 2055 grain drill from Sukup handles no-till or conventional fields and has an optional no-till cutting coulter that allows a switch to pasture drilling. The planter features accurate seed depth adjustment with a T-handle design. It also offers a quick-adjust seeding rate system and easy clean-out seed meters to let growers quickly change seed. The 3-bu./ft. hopper is moisture-proof and easy to fill. Cost of a 7-ft. drill with 71/2-in. spacing is $6,335. The 10-ft., pull-type model for no-till with a grass seeder costs $18,580. Contact Sukup Mfg. Co., Dept. FIN, 1555 255th St., Sheffield, IA 50475, 641/892-4222, www.sukup.com.
Triple seeding width
Brillion introduces its new Sure-Stand Alfalfa Seeder that stretches 36 ft. — triple the standard 12-ft. seeder width. The extra width reduces passes through the field. The seeder plants 20 lbs./acre at a speed of 5.5 mph and holds 69 bu. of seed in its hopper. As a result, the planter will cover 24 acres/hr. and 207 acres between refills. The seeder uses Brillion’s Micro-Meter fluted feed cup system that delivers seeding rates as low as 4 lbs./acre and as high as 94 lbs./acre. It includes 102 seed meters set on 41/4-in. spacings and a double-roller seedbed conditioning system to ensure seed placement in the top 1/2 in. of the seedbed. Suggested list price: $69,600. Contact Brillion Iron Works Inc., Dept. FIN, 200 Park Ave., Brillion, WI 54110, 800/409-9749, www.brillionfarmeq.com.
Natural grain dryer
Growers switching to specialty grains may want to try natural grain drying. Edwards Grain from Alberta, Canada, is now marketing a dryer in the U.S. to handle small batches of grain. Called the Rocket, the dryer will fit in any hopper cone bin. Under ideal conditions, it will reduce the moisture level of grain by about 1%/day, excluding the first day. The company recommends putting grain into the dryer at a maximum moisture level of 6% above the desired moisture level. A grower wanting grain dried to 14% would put grain into the dryer at 20% moisture or less.
Natural drying works best at temperatures 50° and higher. Natural drying is ideal for specialty grains such as popcorn, organic corn, rice, edible beans and chickpeas where the crop is harvested at slightly higher moisture levels to prevent harvest damage. A Rocket designed for a 2,000-bu. bin costs $900, and one designed for a 10,000-bu. bin costs $2,000. Contact Edwards Grain Guard, Dept. FIN, 3102 5th Ave. N, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada T1J 4A2, 800/565-2840, www.edwards grain.com.
If you’re looking for even manure spreading, check out the Hydra Ram 790 spreader designed by Pik Rite. The spreader with a unique sliding floor design hydraulically carries manure along the 16-ft. bed and pushes it out the beaters on the back. Because it has no augers or apron chains, it has fewer moving parts to service. The spreader is built with corrosion-resistant, high-strength steel throughout and poly-laminated floor and side panels. A slurry pan is standard to keep roadways clean. It holds 400 bu. of manure and is rated with a 11.3-ton load capacity. Price: $16,500. Contact Pik Rite Inc., Dept. FIN, 101 Fairfield Rd., Lewisburg, PA 17837, 800/326-9763, www.pikrite.com.
According to Great Plains, its new Kent seedbed conditioner will firm the soil, reduce air pockets, incorporate chemicals and break up clods. The new conditioner has heavy-duty, 16-in.-dia. reels and ten 1-in. spiraling rods. The wing sections flex up or down 15°, and the gangs overlap to provide a smooth seedbed for planting. A telescoping tongue and adjustable reel sections allow the conditioner to fit behind any tillage equipment. It is available in working widths ranging from 12 to 35 ft. Retail price: $4,000 to $7,700. Contact Great Plains, Dept. FIN, Box 5060, Salina, KS 67402, 785/823-3276, www.greatplainsmfg.com.
AGCO says its newly acquired Challenger MT865 is "like steel on steroids." And who can argue? The biggest of four new Challenger tractors pumps 500 gross engine horsepower, with 365 drawbar horsepower. Paired with a newly improved global positioning system, speed-sensitive steering, and upgraded track suspension, the big brute is still agile enough to tread lightly and keep its power in line between the rows. Prices start at $240,000. Visit www.cat.com.
Take care of your spraying needs with one of the new sprayer models and a controller from Hardi. The new Commander 1500 boasts a 1,500-gal. tank capacity along with a totally redesigned frame, spray system and wheel size to make it an affordable, high-performance sprayer. Boom lengths run from 80 to 120 ft. fully extended. Prices range from $45,000 to $55,000 for the pull-behind sprayer.
The Delta 3-pt. sprayer is a tractor-mounted sprayer boom for Cat. III wide and narrow quick-hitch connection. The hydraulic front-fold booms extend 80 and 90 ft. Price: $13,800 to $20,000, depending on accessories.
The Mustang 3500 electronic rate controller takes on more functions than any other controller in the industry, according to Hardi. The fully integrated sprayer controls the sprayer booms and foam markers as well as application rates. It will work with many precision farming terminals and pocket PCs. Price: $2,565 to $2,900. Contact Hardi Inc., Dept. FIN, 1500 W. 76th St., Davenport, IA 52806, 563/386-1730, www.hardi-us.com.