What is in this article?:
- Prepping sprayers for 2014: newest tech on the market
- Tricking out your sprayer
- What’s on your turret?
On-farm sprayers are gaining value due to crop protection, productivity improvement tasks. Maintaining your farm’s sprayer means working through numerous details. Look at key factors when considering an update or a trade for better performance.
Tricking out your sprayer
Better controls, greater precision and other enhancements are available from third-party players.
Your existing sprayer, whether pull-type or self-propelled, is a significant investment. Keeping it modern and efficient starts with calibration and proper nozzle selection, but these days there are other tools coming on the market. The list is long, and what follows is a look at some key product areas that offer the opportunity to push up sprayer efficiency and value.
Making your sprayer ‘digital’
You’re going to be hearing more about pulse width modulation, or PWM, as sprayer makers work to offer a wider operating range for sprayers. TeeJet is just one company rolling out new technology in this area with its DynaJet Flex 7120 system. It offers enhanced rate control and speed-independent sprayer consistency. With PWM, the spray pulses through the nozzle at a constant rate that can easily compensate for sprayer speed changes and with a wider range of flexibility than a standard system.
For example, with a constant pressure system and a standard controller, your speed range may be pretty fixed between 5 and 15 mph. With PWM, that range widens to as much as 2 to 20 mph, giving you much more flexibility under a range of spray conditions.
TeeJet is also rolling out a droplet size monitor, the Sentry 6120, that can provide real-time views of just how your spray nozzle is performing. A compact standalone monitor can show you, based on pressure and flow, just want kind of droplet pattern you’re getting as you roll through the field. Learn more at teejet.com.
Enhanced nozzle control
Altek, a European company, is moving into the U.S. market; on its home turf, the pull-type sprayer is much more common. The firm offers Smart Nozzle nozzle-by-nozzle control, and this year has enhanced the system controller to use an Android tablet for better performance. The Elektra all-electric nozzle control is replacing the air-over-electronic control the company has offered in the past, and is just entering the market.
The system works with both pull-type and self-propelled sprayers. And that tablet control links to the system using a Bluetooth connection. That eliminates a wiring harness in the cab just to have that display with you. Learn more about the Elektra by visiting h-agtec.com.
Consistent boom height over the crop canopy can enhance sprayer efficacy, and Bestway offers the AutoGlide system as an aftermarket add-on. The system uses ultrasonic range sensors mounted on the spray boom to continually monitor and maintain height of the booms above the crop canopy.
The system ties into your machine’s existing electric-over-hydraulic controls for simpler installation, and a compact in-cab controller uses a straightforward menu for setup and calibration. You can also adjust the height on the go. Learn more at bestway-inc.com.