Krone and John Deere launch revamped harvesting units

Deere's 9000 series foragers have a fresh new design and feature twin exhausts.
Deere's 9000 series foragers have a fresh new design and feature twin exhausts.
Derek Casey

Derek Casey

Krone's Big M 450 self-propelled mower (pictured above) has been redesigned from the ground up following the success of the Big M 420 model.

It has been built around a 450hp Liebherr engine with a 9.95m cutting width. Some 20 years on since the first Big M was launched at Agritechnica, stand-out design features of this latest incarnation include a new cab and engine, new running gear and redesigned mower units.

With cutting widths of 9.95m, the new model offers the potential of achieving huge work rates of up to 17ha/hour.

The steel V-tine conditioners on the side mowers are single-piece now, which Krone says eliminates the central drive unit and positions the pto shaft and gearbox on the side - a solution that results in a more uniform crop flow.

Now suspended in their centre of gravity, the new models feature an impact protection system which swings the machines up and to the rear when hitting an obstacle. Hydraulic cutting height control is standard specification.

The self-propelled high-capacity mower conditioner is powered by a 12-litre Liebherr engine which is Emission Stage 4 compliant and offers extended 1,500-hour service intervals. Krone say trials have shown the mower travels at up to 25km/h in the field and up to 40km/h on the road. Engine speed is 1,250rpm in road mode and 1,650rpm in field mode. In road mode, the speed is automatically controlled relative to the current ground speed and the load on the engine. This means the engine is not constantly revving at high speed but reduces the speed automatically when the machine is waiting at a road junction, for example.

Machine functions are set and monitored on a high-resolution 10in touchscreen terminal. A full LED light package is an option that enhances the panoramic view by adding LED lights to the roof, the side guards, the steps and service points. Krone importers for Ireland, Farmhand Ltd, say the latest Big M has been received well by Irish contractors so far.

"It was at the centre of many bigger contractor's operations last year and is getting great reviews so far," says Farmhand sales director David Borland.

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JOHN DEERE 8000 SERIES John Deere has announced four new self-propelled forage harvester models ranging in output from 625hp up to an impressive 970hp. The 9000 Series features the latest forage harvesting technology and, according to Deere, will provide customers with 10pc more productivity while at the same time consuming 10pc less fuel, compared to the firm's current top of the range machines.

Deere claims these impressive performance figures have been verified through numerous field tests, both in house and by independent research institutes.

The foragers (pictured right) have undergone a fresh design with striking elements including twin exhausts. Deere has opted to use Liebherr 24.2-litre V12 engines at the heart of the three biggest models in the new Series - the 9700, 9800 and 9900.

This high-performance power unit is designed to operate efficiently at lower engine speeds; beneath 1400rpm it still provides high torque capacity and copes easily with peak loads. The entry model in the range, the 9600 Series, is powered by a John Deere 13.5-litre engine.

A large crop channel width of 850mm is tailored to handle the throughput of these machines, to ensure the best possible forage quality and chopping efficiency. Because of the higher engine power, these new foragers feature a reinforced drivetrain and improved mainframe.

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