Farm Ireland

Saturday 25 November 2017

Custom-built farm toy models for kids (and big children)!

Ciaran Dunne's perfectly finished model of a Armer Salmon beet harvester
Ciaran Dunne's perfectly finished model of a Armer Salmon beet harvester
Derek Casey

Derek Casey

Ciarán Dunne of Perfect-32 Farm Models launched his latest creation at the Kilkenny model toy show over the weekend; a 1:32 scale model of Irish manufacturer, Armer Salmon's twin row belt-lift beet harvester.

Like all of the Armer Salmon harvesters, the twin row machine was named after an animal - in this case the Armer Salmon 'Beaver' model.

To create a perfect replica in 1:32 scale, Ciarán spent hundreds of hours on the project. He had to measure a full sized Armer Salmon Beaver in immense detail.

Once he had that done, he had to design all the models parts - creating drawings for parts for brass etchings, CNC machining and 3D printing.

On top of all that was miniature lathe work, sticker designs and printing plus the moulding and casting of the wheels and tyres.

Once all the various components - including brass etchings, mouldings and stickers are at the ready for model construction - building the actual Armer Salmon Beaver takes a total of seven days. Just like the full size version, the beet tank tips to unload into a trailer. The lifting rails and ploughs, raise and lower in and out of work.

The hydraulic draw bar moves to line up the lifting gear in the beet drill. Wheels of course spin and the bogie axle with two wheels operates like the real thing. The yellow covers can be removed to display the detail underneath.

Spinning carousels

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In real life the cleverly designed Armer Salmon was a big hit with farmers because it was efficient and gentle on the crop. Plough legs running under each lifting rail got under and lifted the beet, while belts squeezed the beet leaves (tops) and transferred them into the machine. Spinning discs at the top of the rails then cut the leaves off and the belts transferred the leaves rearwards out on to the ground.

The newly crowned beet then dropped on to two spinning carousels which cleaned and transferred the root crop to and elevator and up into the beet tank. Once the tank was full, it was tipped into a waiting trailer.

Ciarán is able to custom-build an Armer Salmon Beaver beet harvester to match a customer's own full sized version if desired. Just supply him with photographs of the detailing/changes required and he'll happily do what's possible.

Two years ago, Ciarán created and built a limited run of the iconic single row Armer Salmon Cheetah machine.

Just twenty models were made and sold out in two hours, also at the Kilkenny event. There are not so many limitations on the Beaver production; he will be making batches of ten at a time as demand dictates.

Ciarán thinks this is definitely the most complicated and best model he has ever produced. "We have never put so much time and effort into making a model before but I think the results speak for themselves."

Contact Ciarán Dunne at or +353(0)87 7947352.

Indo Farming