Farm Ireland
Independent.ie

Tuesday 6 December 2016

Heavy duty attachments

Derek Casey

Published 13/05/2015 | 02:30

Cutting corners: The Quad X Power Shredder is an ATV attachment that can tackle hard to reach overgrown vegetation
Cutting corners: The Quad X Power Shredder is an ATV attachment that can tackle hard to reach overgrown vegetation
Versatile: The Quad-X-Plastic coated fertiliser spreader has the lowest fill height of any ATV fertiliser spreader

In recent years as ATV sales increased substantially, so too has the number of companies specialising in making ATV implements.

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The range of attachments available to go with the ATV is what makes it such a valuable tool. They are popular across a range of enterprises and can perform many heavy duty operations such as spraying, towing, spreading, mowing and yard scraping to name but a few.

Northern Irish manufacturer Blaney Agri, incorporating Quad X, is a good example of a company whose products showcase the versatility of the ATV This firm designs and manufactures a host of ATV implements to help with grassland management, which is essential when ground conditions make access with a tractor impossible. The list of implements produced by the Ballymena-based company is growing every year.

Last month they ran a number of demonstration events at venues in Cork, Kilkenny and Tipperary. The demos showed farmers how to get more from their ATV and make it a more versatile machine on the farm. Implements demonstrated on the tour included feeding, bedding, shredding, fertiliser spreading, mowing, hedge cutting, weed sensing and swathing machines.

Gillian Bonner of Quad X says machines that can tackle problems such as overgrown vegetation prompted a lot of interest at the demos.

"We know farmers are very interested in this topic at the moment so our design team have come up with a few novel machines to cater for that market," she says.

"We have machines that go behind an ATV that can tackle rush and scrub, including our new Power Shredder mower. Another machine that got a great reaction at the demo days was our new Wipeout 2 weed wiper, designed to cut back in chemical use while giving a high weed kill rate in one pass and saving valuable clover."

Fertiliser spreader

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It seems the benefits of ATV implements might extend beyond ground preservation alone. For example, the Quad-X plastic coated fertiliser spreader has the lowest fill height of any ATV fertiliser spreader and therefore saves on those back-breaking stretches to reach the hopper with 50kg bags balancing on your shoulder.

Ms Bonner says that an average man can fill the Quad-X seven-bag sower with the bag lifted to between waist and chest height. And make no mistake, this machine is not as small as you might think; with 350kg capacity and optional extension sides to carry 500kg or 600kg, the sower is ideal for using with large half ton or 600kg bags of fertiliser.

This machine is ground driven for towing behind a quad bike of decent power, and has a spreading width which is easily adjusted by changing the quad bike's speed.

In response to user demand for a stable sower that can work in wet conditions, the Quad-X spreader has an extra wide axle which, coupled with the low hopper height, makes for a sower that is very stable.

Crucially, flotation tyres make the sower suitable for softer ground. Quad-X have also recently re-engineered their handy six-bag sower to comprise 12 product improvements, including knobby tyres, wider wheel base and dished spinner for excellent spread widths.

If you don't like the idea of a ground driven spreader, Quad X also offer an Electro-Broadcaster. This unit can sow a wide range of seeds, granular fertilisers and slug pellets. It's the ideal size to sow a 50kg fertiliser bag, with a 25kg model also available. The Electro-Broadcaster is fitted with a low-profile 12-volt motor attached to the spinner and comes with a universal easy-mount system. This has a lower mount position for optimum spreading up to 24m.

The Electro Broadcaster can be easily fitted to an ATV and connects directly to the battery. With this machine the spinner speed is independent of driving speed and so has an advantage over ground driven spreaders, where slowing down can cause a significant reduction in coverage.

 dcasey@ independent.ie

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