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HarvesTimes The journal for agricultural professionals

CLAAS News Product News Customer Stories


“The boss of the job” Customer Matthew Harrison December 2017

NEW AXION 920-960 325 hp - 445 hp.



Pure Power

Integral Strength

12" touchscreen display combined with CMOTION multifunction control lever.

Multifunction armrest with CMATIC DRIVESTICK and A-pillar colour display.

325 hp - 445 hp. Full engine output available at all times, in all applications. CLAAS leading torque.

Integral cast sump provides strength and added manoeuvrability.




Cover Story: Noticeable benefit from SHREDLAGE®

Contents CLAAS News.............................................................................04-08 Dealer News..............................................................................09-10 Product News...........................................................................11-14 Customer Focus Pat O’Connor, VOLTO 55.................................................................. 15 Jim Mair, GREEN HARVEST KIT........................................................ 16 Charles Knifton, TUCANO 570 HYBRID............................................. 17 Andrew Paton, JAGUAR SHREDLAGE®.......................................18-19 Tom King, JAGUAR SHREDLAGE®.................................................... 20 Paul Frater, JAGUAR 860 ................................................................. 21 Richard Metcalfe, JAGUAR 980....................................................22-23 Harold Chapman, NEXOS............................................................24-25 Daniel Harries, ARION 460 PANORAMIC........................................... 26 David Carnegie, ALL CLAAS FLEET.................................................. 27 Kennedy Brothers, ARION 600 & JAGUAR 800............................28-29 Gordon Cairns, JAGUAR and AXION............................................30-31 Dave Green, LEXION & SCORPION..............................................32-33

We are at Grassland Grassland UK, West of England Showground, Shepton Mallet – May 10th. FTMTA Grassland & Muck, Gurteen College, Birr – May 17 We are at both the Grassland UK and FTMTA Grassland & Muck events, where we are demonstrating the latest additions to the CLAAS range of Green Harvest Machinery. Following the UK introduction at LAMMA, both the new TORION wheel loader and SCORPION telescopic handlers are on display and being put through their paces on the clamp. CLAAS JAGUAR, Green Harvest kit and balers can all be seen on the CLAAS plots, from the smallest mowers and tedders, up to the largest 4-rotor rakes. Completing the line-up are models from the newly extended CLAAS tractor range, including the latest ARION and AXION models launched last autumn, featuring the new CEBIS Touch and CIS+ control systems. We look forward to seeing you.

Andrew Robinson, SCORPION 736..............................................34-35

06 12 32 18

Contact us on: 01284 763100 Email: or visit



CLAAS report profitable growth

First TORION sold The first TORION wheel loader to be sold in the UK has been bought by North Yorkshire farmers and contractors Metcalfe Farms, based at Leyburn. The sale of the top-of-the-range TORION 1914 was confirmed on the first day of the LAMMA Show in January. Metcalfe Farms are long established customers of CLAAS EASTERN at Sinderby, and operate a fleet of CLAAS JAGUAR forage harvesters and LEXION combines in their farming and contracting business. The company has been operating wheel loaders for 33 years, and made the decision to change brand and invest in the new CLAAS TORION, partly due to the high level of customer service and support they receive from CLAAS Eastern, but to also benefit from the higher capacity the TORION 1914 provides, combined with lower ownership costs.

During its 2017 financial year, CLAAS was able to increase sales to €3.76 billion from €3.63 billion in 2016, while profit before taxes almost doubled to €184 million, up from €93 million.

The TORION range comprises a total of seven models, in three body sizes, with tipping load capacities ranging from 12.4 tonnes for the TORION 1914 to 3.45 tonnes with the smallest TORION 535. The TORION is the first wheel loader designed specifically for agricultural use and a particular feature of the TORION range is its low operating cost. This is as a result of a combination of high engine torque, peaking at 1433Nm, and the efficiency of the CVT transmission which provides a higher loading capacity. Allied to this is the TORION’s significantly lower maintenance cost, with service intervals on the highest capacity TORION 1914 and 1812 models of 2,000 hours, and the hydraulic system only needing to be checked at 3,000 hours. The oil does not need changing until 6,000 hours, which is three times longer than any comparable machine on the market.

• Sales revenue up by 3.6% to €3.76 billion • Profit before taxes almost doubled to €184 million • Spending on research and development at a very high level • Record sales in Eastern Europe • Outlook for 2018: Positive sales trend, stable earnings “We were able to hone in on growth in a stabilising agricultural engineering market and significantly improve our profitability at the same time. The strong boost was largely down to the Eastern European market, where good harvests led to a noticeably higher demand for modern agricultural technology,” explained Hermann Lohbeck, spokesperson for the CLAAS Group Executive Board. Research and development is very important to CLAAS, and this is reflected in the €217 million that was invested in this aspect of the business and which has doubled over the past ten years. More than eleven percent of CLAAS employees now work in R&D. During 2017 CLAAS not only invested in new products, but also in a working environment that promotes innovation. This is embodied by the completion of the new electronics development centre in Dissen, Lower Saxony. A new test and inspection centre is being built in Harsewinkel along with the ‘Greenhouse’ - a co-working space for the development of future-oriented business models. Overall the number of employees around the world fell slightly to 10,961, with an apprenticeship quota of 7.9 per cent.

David, Richard and Tom Metcalfe of Metcalfe Farms in Yorkshire were presented with their new TORION 1914 by Trevor Tyrrell, CEO CLAAS UK, at LAMMA 2018.


MONTE CARLO OR BUST Fund raising for British Heart Foundation












Casino Monte-Carlo

On 31st August 2017, our good friend and colleague Patrick Wells passed away suddenly, despite being in good health. He had been looking forward to retiring with his wife Karen in a few years, after a long and rewarding career with CLAAS and MANNS of Saxham, that started on 31st July 1971. Sadly, it was not to be. For 2018, the CLAAS UK chosen company charity is the British Heart Foundation (BHF), in fond memory of Patrick. He was an avid car racing fan, and on the first anniversary of his death, four Directors of CLAAS UK will recreate the 1960s classic movie “Monte Carlo or Bust” and attempt to drive a 16 year old, £900 London Black Cab Taxi nicknamed “Little Nellie”, with 350,000 miles on her clock, from CLAAS MANNS at Saxham to Monte Carlo and back, in under 48 driving hours. The only spare part they will carry for the 2,000 mile round trip is a single fan belt. Little Nellie can cruise fully laden at just 65mph and she achieves 25mpg, but like Nellie the Elephant she does struggle on the hills!

The target is to raise £10,000, there are several ways we hope to achieve this goal and you can be part of it by making a donation online using their JustGiving page or in cash. • For a £10 donation you will be included in a raffle for some great prizes donated by some of our partners. • For a donation of just 1p per mile (£20), the Team will send you a personalised postcard from Monte Carlo as a memoir. • £100 gets your name printed on the side of the taxi • £200 gets your personal message in memory of Patrick as well. • Companies donating either £500 or £1,000 get their logo on the side of the taxi in either a large or small size. If you think it sounds more like “The Grande Farce” than “The Grand Tour”, then you may be right. This “Bottom Gear” team will consist of Retail Director Richard Vaughan, CFO Thomas Spiering, Property Director Paul Butcher and last but not least CLAAS UK CEO Trevor Tyrrell.

Patrick’s wife, Karen, will fire the starting gun at Saxham, and the route will take them through 6 capital cities and 8 countries – London, England; Paris, France; Monte Carlo, Monaco; Italy; Bern, Switzerland; Germany; Luxembourg, Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and finally Brussels, Belgium. They aim to arrive back in Bury St Edmunds during the morning of Sunday 2nd September, if all goes according to plan!!

Follow their progress on the CLAAS Facebook page www.facebook. com/CLAAS

The Taxi has been christened “Little Nellie” in recognition of the famous James Bond autogyro in “You Only Live Twice”, because so many James Bond movies were filmed in Monte Carlo and the surrounding area, and the team plan to follow the road taken by James Bond in Thunderball and Golden Eye.

Thanks for your support!

Go to the team’s JustGiving page to make your donation: and remember to gift aid it to maximise the benefit for the British Heart Foundation.

In the car: CFO Thomas Spiering, Property Director Paul Butcher, Retail Director Richard Vaughan, and CLAAS UK CEO Trevor Tyrrell.





Factory Visits

DJI Phantom 3 Drone WINNERS Our ARION 400 competition to win one of 6 Drones was a great success and we recieved a large amount of entries. Thank you to all who entered. We have 6 lucky winners listed below... • Mr Ian Bowler, Reynalls Farm Loughborough (Sharnford Tractors) • Mr Heinz Eggert, Sheplands Farm Kildare (Alan Douglas) • Mr Martin Petch, Whitegate Farm Middlesbrough (EASTERN Wilberfoss) • Mr Andrew Hurford, Hornshyane Farm Devon (HAMBLYS Honiton)

Loermanns Farm We have taken 14 CLAAS dealers and over 246 of their customers to visit the CLAAS headquarters and factory in Harsewinkel over the past 6 months. The visits are always great success, giving customers the opportunity to see the CLAAS production line, Technoparc, Hamm – The Parts Logistics Centre and CLAAS Industrietechnik at Paderborn. There is also the chance to test drive some of the machines at Loermanns – the CLAAS Farm, together with enjoying a little German hospitality.

• Mr J Drinkall, Manor House Farm Lancashire (RICKERBY Carnforth) • Mr David Raymond, DJG & WD Raymond Pembrokeshire (RIVERLEA)

Mr Nick Bowler receiving his drone from Sharnford Tractors Sales Manager Simon Toone.

Andrew Hurford and family collecting their prize from Mark Hoare FSM for HAMBLYS Honiton.

CLAAS Technoparc

GDPR – We want to stay in touch… You will be receiving or may have already received a letter from CLAAS UK, in light of new legislation on how we communicate with our customers. Can we please ask that you give the letter and accompanying reply form a few minutes of your time and return the form to us, indicating how you would us like to keep in touch with you.

Subscribe... Make sure you never miss out! By subscribing to the CLAAS UK YouTube channel, you can rest assured you will stay up-to-the-minute with all the latest and greatest CLAAS UK video news.

Never miss a CLAAS UK video.


New CLAAS UK Headquarters at Saxham Work is progressing steadily on the Saxham site, with the least amount of disruption as possible to daily life for CLAAS UK and MANNS employees and customers. Steelworks will be on the site at the end of April for the new offices and this Phase 1 project is scheduled for completion in October 2018. Phase 2 is planned for completion January 2020.

CLAAS Service and Parts starts warehouse expansion CLAAS Service and Parts is investing almost 22 million Euros in the expansion of its central warehouse in Hamm. “With this investment we will brace the parts logistics centre for the future growth of the CLAAS group. The expansion will not only give us additional storage space, but also allow an extensive restructuring of storage processes. The focus is to meet the high demands of our customers with our spare parts service,” says Dietmar Dusing, Head of Logistics. The plans for the biggest expansion so far are in full swing. “On an area of around 11,700 square meters, we are going to build a fully automatic high rack for pallets, crates and steel containers. The building will be about 30 meters high and will have nine alleys offering space for an additional 56,000 pallets,” explains Sven Wagner who is managing this vast project on behalf of CSP.

The project team, from left: Sven Wagner, Yusuf Kaya, Dr. Ralf Lüning, Ulrich Timcke, Michael Huhn, Torsten Ley, Dietmar Düsing, Rüdiger Mohr and Sarah Knödler.

Future Service and Parts warehouse





Integrated machine support with REMOTE SERVICE

CLAAS UK in-field product training at Cirencester

Users of CLAAS products fitted with TELEMATICS as standard will be able to benefit from a completely new, free, function – REMOTE SERVICE, as from June 2018.

Despite difficult weather conditions, a 2 week intensive in-field training event was attended by over 170 salesmen from our dealerships around the UK and Ireland earlier this year in March. Focusing on the full range of CLAAS tractors, telehandlers and TORION, the sales teams were bought right up to speed with the very latest updates and technological innovations to these product groups, with the opportunity to try it all out first hand in the field.

A high level of service and support has always been an important element in the relationship that CLAAS has with its customers. Through the intelligent networking between machine and dealer, the new REMOTE SERVICE package will enable CLAAS dealers to take this to a new level and provide an even higher level of service to customers, so helping reduce downtime especially during peak periods. The new REMOTE SERVICE function has been incorporated as standard on all CLAAS LEXION, TUCANO, JAGUAR, XERION and AXION models from October 1st 2017, and the system will go live with dealers by the end of June 2018, so that its fully ready for this year’s harvest. The service will be free-of-charge and applies for the first five years of the machine’s life, irrespective of whether the owner decides to subscribe to the full TELEMATICS machine monitoring package. All they have to do is register the machine when purchased and agree to the use of REMOTE SERVICE with their machine. Using REMOTE SERVICE, the dealer will be able to continuously monitor the machine to ensure that it is functioning correctly. In the event of a problem, the machine will initially alert the operator and simultaneously send an error message to the dealer. When they receive the alert, the dealer will be able to assess the severity of the problem and remotely diagnose the fault, establish whether any parts will be required and arrange for the fault to be quickly rectified. A further benefit of REMOTE SERVICE is that it will enable routine service and maintenance to be planned and carried out. Ahead of time, the machine will flag up with the dealer any upcoming routine maintenance requirements. This ensures that routine maintenance is not only carried out when required, but can also be planned in advance, saving time particularly during crucial harvesting windows.


MANNS appointed greater East Anglia dealers for Stewart Trailers James Stewart (centre) with Richard Vaughan, Director of Retail Operations at CLAAS UK (left) and Chris Chilvers, Franchise Manager for MANNS Ltd.


MANNS has added Stewart Trailers to its range of franchises, for whom they will provide sales, service and support for the complete Stewart trailer range from their branches covering greater East Anglia. Stewart is widely recognised as a premium brand and as such is a good fit with the existing MANNS business. The trailers are built to a high quality standard and live up to their marketing tag line of BIGGER STRONGER TOUGHER. Manufactured in Aberdeenshire, Stewart’s comprehensive range includes Tipping Trailers, Dumper Trailers, Flat Trailers, Livestock Containers and Low Loaders. All Stewart Trailers products are manufactured to order so the customer can specify which of the wide selection of optional extra items they want to have on their trailer. In addition to the standard ‘GX’ range, Stewart also produces a range of trailers built with Hardox wear plate. Stewart Trailers have been licensed Hardox manufacturers since 2013 allowing them to display the distinctive ‘Hardox in my Body’ logo on their PRO Series trailers. The flagship of the Stewart tipping trailer range is the ‘Road King’, a three axle trailer running on air suspension.

New purpose built MORRIS CORFIELD Hereford branch MORRIS CORFIELD, who are one of the largest agricultural machinery dealership’s in the west of England, has opened a new purpose-built branch at Ocle Pychard near Hereford.

building that provides our staff with a bright, modern work environment, which is important if we are to provide the level of service our customers expect.”

The family owned business, which employs about 60 people working out of four branches, covers the west of England and Welsh borders. It is a long established CLAAS dealership, having sold their first CLAAS machine, a trailed SUPER 500 combine, in 1963.

The new MORRIS CORFIELD Hereford branch sits on a 0.8ha site, providing plenty of space for the display and storage of machinery. In addition to offices and a sizeable shop area, stocking a wide range of tools, clothing and agricultural sundries, the new 80 x 100 ft building also incorporates a far larger parts storage area than at Docklow and a 5-bay workshop, capable of easily accommodating the largest CLAAS machinery.

The new MORRIS CORFIELD Hereford branch replaces their smaller Docklow premises near Bromyard, which the company had outgrown. “This site really is ideal in all respects and will enable us to provide our customers with a far better service,” says managing director Norman Duppa. “Its location is far more accessible for customers but also logistically easier for us. Just as importantly it gives us a purpose-built

Looking forward, a further benefit of the site is the availability of good, high speed broadband. This is not only necessary for everyday communication, but essential for online parts ordering systems and the future use of cutting-edge remote diagnostics of CLAAS machinery which is being adopted by MORRIS CORFIELD.

OLIVERS – over 70 years selling CLAAS Bedfordshire based OLIVERS is celebrating over 70 years of selling CLAAS machinery, having in 1947 been one of the first independent dealers to be appointed to sell CLAAS combines by the then importer, J Mann & Sons Ltd. OLIVERS itself is nearly 200 years old, and was established in the early 1800s by Archibald Thomas Oliver and the seventh generation of the Oliver family are still involved with the business. Originally based in Luton, the company moved to its current Wanden End Works site outside the town in the late 1800s. Today, in addition to its Luton base, the business also has branches at Tingewick in Oxfordshire and Cane End near Reading.




CLAAS SOUTHERN take on Abbey Machinery Following the appointment of CLAAS WESTERN as Abbey Machinery dealers last autumn, CLAAS SOUTHERN has also now taken on the franchise for the south east of England. “We had been looking for a like-minded partner in Kent, East and West Sussex and Surrey so we could get closer to customers and develop relationships with new customers,” remarked Michael A.O’Grady, Sales Marketing & Business Development Manager, Abbey Machinery. “CLAAS Southern is an ideal fit, both companies put back-up and support at the top of the agenda. Customers need the reassurance they are going to get a good quality product, backed up with excellent aftersales service.” Russell Hallam, Sales Director, CLAAS Southern outlined that “Abbey Machinery have the full suite of additional products we are looking for, including Slurry Tankers, Applicators, Slurry Pumps, Diet Feeders, Manure Spreaders, Toppers and Shakers. We wanted a quality brand to offer to our expanding customer base.”

William Montgomerie (seated second from left) received the DEALER of the YEAR Award at the Dealer Council Meeting held this March in Scotland.

GORDONS named CLAAS ‘Dealer of the Year’ GORDONS, the CLAAS UK main dealer for the south west of Scotland, has been awarded the highly prestigious ‘CLAAS Dealer of the Year’ award for 2017. The long established family owned dealership, which was founded in 1865, is based at Castle Douglas in Dumfries & Galloway and operates from six branches, covering a large area from Dumfries across to Stranraer and up to Glasgow. The ‘Dealer of the Year’ award recognises the high overall level of performance by a CLAAS dealer in the UK and Ireland. In making the award, CLAAS take into account three key areas of the dealership’s performance: finance, investment in service, parts and sales, and customer feedback through the annual CLAAS customer survey.

Left to right: Michael A. O’Grady, Sales, Marketing & Business Development Manager – Abbey; Ross Gibbon, South UK Sales Representative – Abbey; Thomas Hancock and Russell Hallam of CLAAS SOUTHERN and Clodagh Cavanagh, Managing Director – Abbey. Photo courtesy of Farmers Guide.

This latter aspect is a particularly important part of the overall assessment, and for GORDONS as a large multi-branch dealership to have received such high levels of customer praise for its sales, service and support from its large number of customers throughout its trading area is a considerable achievement. Trevor Tyrrell, CEO of CLAAS UK, commented, “We are extremely proud of GORDONS, as a like-minded family company, they invest heavily in their after-sales support and it is great that this is recognised by their customers. The net result is a financially strong company that continues to grow even after 150 years.” To win the 2017 CLAAS Dealer of the Year award is not only a great credit to the whole of the GORDONS team, but also to their customers who obviously hold them in great esteem.



New CORTO drum mowers In order to provide drum mower customers with some of the latest innovations previously only available on the DISCO range, CLAAS has updated its long established CORTO range of drum mowers.

is at the centre of gravity and this, combined with the ACTIVE FLOAT suspension, guarantees optimum ground contour following across all terrain.

The latest features include the ACTIVE FLOAT hydraulic suspension system, adjustable swathing discs and central pivoting, all of which will result in greater ease-of-use and improved performance, especially in more difficult conditions.

The breakback protection system incorporates an angled pivot point so that the mower body is lifted up and over the obstacle. The belt drive also acts to cushion peak loads, so avoiding damage to the drive train.


The design of the new CORTO 3200 CONTOUR includes standard features such as double link-arm guides and KENNFIXX grips on the hydraulic hoses. For transport, the mower is carried at 120 degrees so as to provide optimum weight distribution and enhanced visibility to the rear.

The current CORTO 3200F front mower has now been joined by the new CORTO 310F, which has a working width of 3.05m. The CORTO 310F features three-dimensional ground contour following, resulting in a clean cut and protection of the sward. This system is based on an integrated lateral and longitudinal linkage geometry, which allows the mower to pivot freely for accurate ground contour following. The process for adjusting the swath width has been made easier, and where particularly narrows swaths are required, a second set of swath discs can now be fitted. Other new features include improved crop flow through the mower and flexible rubber collision protection that prevents damage should an obstacle be hit. All these improvements have also been incorporated into the current flagship CORTO 3200F, which also features a new design and improved crop flow. A new option available on both the CORTO 3200F and 310F is the ACTIVE FLOAT hydraulic suspension system. As ground conditions change, using ACTIVE FLOAT the operator can alter the ground pressure imposed by the mower by transferring the weight of the mower from the ground to the tractor while on the move. This results in improved ground contour following and protection of the sward, and a reduction in soil contamination on rougher ground. Higher forward speeds are also possible and fuel consumption reduced.

NEW CORTO 3200 CONTOUR REAR MOWER A new addition to the CORTO range is the CORTO 3200 CONTOUR, which has two large and two small drums giving it a working width of 3.05m and replaces the current CORTO 310. The CORTO 3200 CONTOUR is designed so that the main pivot point

Options include hydraulic locking of the mower when in the transport position and a parking frame is also available so that the CORTO can be stored in the transport position. A castor wheel version is also available so that the mower and frame can be rolled into the final storage space. The smaller CORTO 190 rear drum mower, which has a working width of 1.85m, has also been updated. New features include folding protective covers on both sides, mechanical breakback protection and a parking stand. Optional features include spring suspension to reduce wear and tear and ensure improved ground contour following, plus hydraulic headland lift for an improved lift height.



Integrated bale weighing and high-end lighting for CLAAS QUADRANT balers The option of an integrated bale weighing system is one of a number of new features now available on QUADRANT 4200, 5200 and 5300 models. Other updates include a high-end LED lighting system and the availability of the pull-out knife drawer for the QUADRANT 4200.

BALE WEIGHING WITH NO LOSS OF VALUABLE TIME Integrated bale weighing is a function that will appeal to all farmers and contractors who want to keep a close eye on bale quality during baling. The scales are fitted in the bale ramp, allowing weighing to take place automatically as the bale is formed. Bales can be weighed at speeds of up to 20 km/h and the maximum measurement value error under normal working conditions is +/-5 kg. Individual bale weights can be viewed on the ISOBUS control terminal display in the cab, and all bale weights are saved according to job or area, as valuable supporting data for the contractor when billing the customer. In addition, using the TELEMATICS system it’s also possible to use the bale weight data to generate the total area yield and the yield distribution by individual field, showing the bale location and the individual bale weights, along with the bale moisture level.



Being able to simply pull out the knife drawer dramatically reduces the time required for knife cleaning or to completely change over the knives – from one hour to around 15 minutes. This time saving will be a real boon for contractors, particularly at the height of the harvesting season, making it easier to care for the knives, resulting in a better cut quality and throughput.

As an option, the QUADRANT 4200, 5200 and 5300 models can now be fitted with a new high-end LED lighting system, consisting of seven additional high-quality lights. These lights are fitted on key operating components of the baler, for example at the drawbar, on the flywheel, on the feed rake and at the end of the bale chamber, ensuring userfriendly operation and maintenance when working at night.

A new optional feature for the QUADRANT 4200 is the pull-out knife drawer that has already proven its value as standard equipment in the QUADRANT 5200 and 5300 ROTOCUT & FINECUT models.



New netwrap option for ROLLANT 455 UNIWRAP ROLLANT 455 UNIWRAP operators now have the option of film wrapping bales in the chamber instead of using net. Net wrapping still remains possible, and a fast changeover system makes it easy to alternate between net and film wrapping. Another new feature included as standard is a roll ramp, making it much easier to load new rolls.

LESS FILM, EASY DISPOSAL The film wrapping process remains exactly the same – only the material is different. Once the bale in the bale chamber has reached the desired size, it’s automatically wrapped in up to eight layers of film. Unlike the net system, the film layers project a few centimetres over the side edges of the bale. During the subsequent wrapping of the bale on the wrapping table, this means it’s no longer necessary to apply six layers of wrap in the usual way, thereby saving on the amount of film. Film wrapping also does away with the laborious process of separating net and film when the bale is opened, resulting in easier handling and disposal of the bale wrap. The system allows the selection of anything from 1.2 to 8.0 winding layers and this is easily adjusted at any time by the driver in the cab. Along with the savings in the quantity of material used, another advantage of using film wrapping rather than net is that less oxygen tends to end up in the bale, with potential benefits for the fermentation rate.

FAST CHANGE BETWEEN THE TWO SYSTEMS For customers who prefer to use different wrapping systems, the operator can change over from net to film wrapping and vice versa in a matter of moments. The driver simply has to change the setting on

the cab terminal, and load the required wrapping material in the baler. The film feed and start of wrapping processes take place completely automatically. The extent of film stretching required can also be set on the terminal in the cab. To simplify the process of loading a new roll of film or net into the baler, the new ROLLANT 455 UNIWRAP includes as standard a foldable roll ramp mounted at the side. This provides a fast and easy way to load the rolls – which can weigh up to 50 kg – into the machine. CLAAS recommends the use of CLAAS COATEX film, which has a roll length of 2,000 m, with a film width of 1.40 m and thickness of 17µm.




MAX SPREAD for new VOLTO 55 New 3.2m LINER

The updating of the VOLTO tedder range has been completed with the addition of a new 4-rotor model, the VOLTO 55. This includes innovations such as the PERMALINK drive and the MAX SPREAD crop flow concept, previously only available on larger models in the range. The new VOLTO 55 replaces the VOLTO 52 and has a working width of 5.2m. This makes it ideal for use in combination with 2.1m or 3.0m wide DISCO mowers on small to medium sized farms, looking to run their own machinery and have control over this aspect of their hay or silage making.

MAX SPREAD CROP FLOW CONCEPT The new VOLTO 55 is the latest VOLTO tedder to feature the well proven MAX SPREAD crop flow concept. Unlike conventional straight tines, on the MAX SPREAD the tines are angled by 29 degrees. This has the benefit that more crop is collected as each arm has a longer sweep. Once collected, the crop flows between the rotors in a straight line, so reducing crop damage. This also creates a greater space for the crop to flow through, so helping increase throughput, but results in a wider and more even spread pattern, ensuring fewer lumps and more even drying. A new single-rotor swather has been added to the green harvest range. The LINER 320 has a working width of 3.20 m, and its lightweight design makes it the ideal entry model for use with smaller tractors and in awkwardly shaped fields or on difficult hillsides. As with larger LINER models, the rotor drive including the cam track is completely sealed and continuously lubricated. The rotor is fitted with eight tine arms, each with three 9mm diameter spring tines that are clamped in place using a cotter pin. Working height is quickly and easily adjusted using a lockable hand crank. The LINER 320 is carried on a single axle fitted with large 16/6.58 tyres and a tandem axle is available as an option. Each of the robust arms incorporates a defined bending point, so in the event of the arm striking a solid object, this will bend to avoid the drive system being damaged. A ‘U’ shaped stabilising frame incorporating the three-point mounting to attach the LINER 320, guarantees smooth contour following, even in difficult conditions and on hilly terrain. Having removed some of the tine arms, the LINER 320 can be folded down to as little as 2.25m for transport or storage and the protective covers can be easily folded out the way for ease of access or maintenance.

Overall, the spreading arms work for 65% longer and the increase in pick-up rate and flow through the tedder results in higher throughput and increased forward speed. This also allows the VOLTO 55 to be run at a reduced engine speed, so saving fuel. The new VOLTO 55 features the CLAAS CLK headstock which transfers the weight of the machine onto the tractor’s lower linkages. The CLK system ensures accurate following when turning and is ideal on hilly terrain as it prevents the tedder from overrunning when travelling downhill. When raised, the CLK system will automatically centre the tedder and fixes it in position for transport, but the suspension system remains active so that it rides smoothly on the back of the tractor. The drive system on the VOLTO 55 uses the well-proven and patented CLAAS PERMALINK finger clutch at the pivot points, which is maintenance free but allows the arms to be folded by up to 180 degrees, so ensuring a compact transport width. Each of the four 1.50m diameter rotors on the VOLTO 55 is fitted with heavy duty 10.5mm tines and for different crop conditions the spreading angle can be adjusted by between 12 and 16 degrees without needing tools. For transport, the arms are folded hydraulically and locked in position, and protected by a flexible frame fitted with fibre-reinforced polyamide brackets. Options include a guide wheel and edge-spreading guard.



Spreading success in Galway Galway farmer and agricultural contractor Pat O`Connor has just completed his first season with a pre-series CLAAS VOLTO 55 tedder. Pat is based just outside the small village of Barnaderg in Co Galway where he farms 24ha all of which is grassland. “I`m the 3rd generation to farm the land here in Barnaderg which I have been doing for the past 35 years or so. I keep approximately 60 cattle here which I sell off at two years to the beef industry.” 25 years ago to help with the farm work and to earn an extra income, Pat branched out into agricultural contracting, purchasing a baler and wrapper initially to go behind the tractor already used on the farm.

“My only regret is that I didn’t buy a CLAAS sooner!” Pat O’Connor, March 2018 POPULAR BALING “We were making a lot of bales ourselves on the farm for our own use initially and then neighbours asked if we would do some for them. It just grew from there really.” At his peak Pat was producing 9,000 bales each season which has fallen to 6,000 today due to competition. “I started off with a different baler which I kept for 5 years or so before changing to a CLAAS ROLLANT 46, which was a very good machine for me. I have had three ROLLANTs in total, so I am no stranger to the CLAAS product.” As well as baling silage, Pat also bales a substantial amount of hay for his customers which led him to invest in a tedder. “In recent years a lot of customers have requested that the grass be tedded before it is baled in order to help it wilt and increase the dry matter content. I started looking into buying a tedder three years ago and ended up buying a competitive brand, which I only kept for two seasons as it fell apart. A friend suggested CLAAS and because I already had the balers, I was confident in the product. I made the trip to the local dealer QUIGLEYS and was offered a pre-series VOLTO 55 machine to test.”

EASY SPREADING WITH VOLTO Pat opted for the 4 rotor machine as the fields and laneways in his area are quite small, so a 6 rotor would be awkward to operate. “We have done about 40ha of silage with the VOLTO last season without any problems. The way it evenly spreads the grass is superb even in heavy first cut. It also doubles up when making hay which is a great advantage for us.”

Pat O`Connor | Contractor & Farmer Tuam, Co Galway By Darren Bailey

“Operating the VOLTO is child’s play, it’s very simple and user friendly. I can just set it and go as it follows around behind the tractor perfectly. On the road it folds neatly while the suspension takes any shock from travelling through the machine.” “I cannot praise the VOLTO enough; it really is a super machine which is complemented by a second to none back up service from QUIGLEYS. My only regret is that I didn’t buy a CLAAS sooner!”




Matched set

W & J Mair | Farmer & Contractor | Cumnock, Ayrshire

A new set of front and rear DISCO mowers join a 6-rotor VOLTO 800 tedder and LINER 2700 and 3100 rakes, for contractors W & J Mair. While the Mair’s have been buying CLAAS foragers from GORDONS since 2007, the addition of the VOLTO tedder with its MAX SPREAD tines, and DISCO mowers represents a change in colour for them, a decision that was based on build quality and reputation.

VOLTO TEDDER “When it came to buying the VOLTO last year, I particularly liked the way that it folds up into itself, so that it stays fairly low and compact for transport, unlike our old machine where the arms were fairly high,” explains Jim Mair. “In addition, I like the way that you can just fold the swath guard down for the headland rather than having to go round altering the tines.” “Also having the mesh system for the drive to the arms is far better than a knuckle and shaft, and from a health and safety perspective is far safer as it avoids any risk of the rotors turning when the arms are folded should the PTO be accidentally engaged. I can’t fault it, the VOLTO went well, spread very evenly and I expect that it should be pretty reliable as it is a far stronger machine.”

The amount of tedding done can vary considerably and depends on the weather. In hot, dry years, Jim says that little silage will be tedded, but they will do a larger amount of hay and haylage. In a wet year, the situation is reversed with little hay or haylage made, but more farmers will want their silage spread to help raise dry matter. Jim’s VOLTO 800 fits in well for working ahead of both the balers and the foragers. “The 7.7m working width will also give us the capacity to cover the ground, without having to go too fast,” he says. “A lot of folk just go at it too hard. To do the job properly you have to be steady and be patient so that the tines have a chance to pick the grass up cleanly and spread it evenly without leaving lumps. As the forager driver I can always tell when someone has gone at it too quick.”

A MOVE TO CLAAS DISCO MOWERS The new DISCO 3200F Profil and 3200 CONTOUR front and rear mower combination will mainly be used ahead of the Mair’s’ balers as most of the silage mowing ahead of their JAGUAR 970 is done by a neighbouring contractor, who also runs two sets of DISCO mowers. “It was mainly down to seeing how good a job his and other people’s DISCO mowers had done that we decided to also go for CLAAS mowers this time instead of staying with what we had been running. They certainly seem to be reliable and leave a good clean finish. We have never faulted the cut quality and finish of the mowers working ahead of the forager.”



TUCANO and a luxury hire business

It’s not just combining and cultivations that keeps Charlie and Jim Knifton busy during the summer months.

found a tidy 8-year old LEXION 570C with 1,000 hours on the clock. But when you compared the old style VARIO cutterbar with the latest versions with their larger auger, integral filler plates and clip-on side knife, there is no comparison, and it was that that pushed us towards buying a new machine. Also by buying new you have the asset value of the machine, plus exchange rates were in our favour, but we are looking for it to be here a long time.”

From June through to September, Knifton’s Mobile Toilets are to be found at weddings, parties, fetes, carnivals and other events throughout Derbyshire and surrounding counties, with up to 25 units being moved a week. Mostly they work within a 50 mile radius of their farm at Morley near Ilkeston, but units have been sent as far afield as London and Norfolk.

“We did price up another machine, but for the equivalent capacity it was far more money, plus even though our old LEXION was extremely reliable and didn’t cost us a lot, we know that we will always get very good service from Eastern.”

LUXURY HIRE BUSINESS “I started hiring out toilets in 1989, mainly to fund my rally car,” explains Charlie. “We gradually expanded initially to 15 units and now have 30 trailers, which we build ourselves over the winter months. It ties in quite well with farming, as virtually half of the jobs we deliver to are either to farms themselves or to events being held on farm sites, so it gives us a connection.” The drawback with mobile toilets is the need to deliver or collect them always in the morning, leaving only the afternoons for farm work and harvesting their 100ha of winter wheat, 50ha of oilseed rape and 28ha of beans. Until last year, the Kniftons had relied on a year 2000 LEXION 430, with a 6.0m wide cutterbar, which they bought at eight years old. However, at 16 years old they decided it was time for a higher capacity replacement, which would enable them to make best use of combining time. The result was the arrival for last harvest of a new TUCANO 570 HYBRID, equipped with the latest VARIO 680 cutterbar, bought through CLAAS Eastern at Markham Moor. “It was the cutterbar that sold us the TUCANO,” says Charlie. “We really wanted a VARIO cutterbar and had looked at used machines and

VARIO CUTTERBAR Even though the VARIO cutterbar on the new TUCANO is only marginally wider, its improved flow into the TUCANO, combined with the higher capacity of the HYBRID threshing system, has made a considerable difference to harvesting throughput. “Apart from the new VARIO cutterbar, which makes a big difference, I do also like the latest CEBIS control system, especially the HOTKEY which makes it very simple to quickly tweak the cutting height or change other settings and the yield meter gives an accurate guide to what’s coming in.” “Compared with the old LEXION, which generally averaged around 20 tonnes an hour, we are getting nearer 35 tonnes from the TUCANO, which makes a considerable difference,” says Jim. “We sell all our straw, but the HYBRID system is fine for that and it gives us the capacity we were looking for. The weather certainly seems to be getting more catchy and everything is stored on-floor, so the drier the grain is the better. But with the capacity the TUCANO gives us, we are quite prepared to wait for the right conditions, as we know we will be able to push on when we do go.”

Knifton Farms | 220ha | Morley, Derbyshire




Noticeable benefit from ® SHREDLAGE The improvement in grain processing and the extra fibre in SHREDLAGE® maize can have a huge impact on both milk solids and overall yield, as Buckinghamshire farmer Andrew Paton found out when he trialled the technique. “We heard about the concept through our contractor, P&R Burbage, and the theory made good, sound, logical sense,” he explains. “But it’s not until you actually try something on your own farm with your own cows that can really know how it will work out.” So in September 2016, with 40 ha of maize to chop, a plan was hatched that would see half the crop run through a standard crop processor and the other half dealt with by a SHREDLAGE® cracker. What that meant was that for the first half of the year the herd would receive maize in the ration with longer chopped leaf and stem, but more thoroughly processed grains. Then, as that ran out, the diet would switch back over to standard, short-chop crop, requiring 1-1.5kg/head of chopped straw to be added to the mix each day.

But it wasn’t just yields that flourished. Butterfat levels rose from an annual average of 3.4% to over 4%, massively increasing the value of each litre of milk produced. With 50% of the crop used up, by spring it was back to silage that had been through the standard cracker. “Pretty much immediately after we went back onto the normal maize silage we saw butterfats drop back to our previous levels and, because to counter that we had to start adding chopped straw back into the mix, intakes started to drop and yields began to tail back off.”

I’D PAY MORE FOR SHREDLAGE® EVERY TIME “That illustrated perfectly the value of the SHREDLAGE® crop and without doubt I’d pay more to have my maize SHREDLAGE® processed every time, after all I’m saving on the cost and hassle of putting chopped straw in the ration and the cows were performing better on it.” Having struggled for a number of years to find and retain decent staff, in late 2017 the Patons made the difficult decision to sell their dairy herd, continuing with their arable enterprise and retaining youngstock with the ultimate aim of running a South Devon suckler herd and rearing and finishing dairy cross Angus calves. Working on the theory that what’s good for a dairy cow should be good for any beef animal, Andrew is of the opinion that SHREDLAGE® maize should be part of the ration as long as the crop remains part of the rotation.

A CLEAR DIFFERENCE IN THE CLAMP “Looking in the clamp you could quite clearly see the difference where the SHREDLAGE® silage stopped and the standard stuff started. With the former, the grains were completely smashed and the plant fibres were clearly evident, but had been scuffed lengthways.” “The back half of the clamp was a completely different picture. The grains were just cracked and of course the chop length was that much shorter.” As the fresh maize crop was introduced into the ration, immediately things started to change in the herd. Because there was no need for chopped straw in the diet, thanks to the extra fibre in the longchop SHREDLAGE® silage, palatability improved with the result that intakes increased. “With the grains properly smashed and distributed evenly through the mix, we were seeing no sorting and nothing left in the feed passage. Our nutritionist did a Penn State separator test and said it was the best sample he’d ever seen.” “Critically with every last gram of starch readily available to the cow’s gut, they were able to use it all effectively and we saw yields rise from a daily average through the lactation of 34-35-litres to 37-38-litres per cow. As far as I could see that was down to two factors – better grain processing and a ration that didn’t have appetite-suppressing chopped straw in the mix.”

TM Paton & Son | 445ha | Newport Pagnell


I’m saving on the cost and hassle of putting chopped straw in the ration and the cows were performing better on it.� Andrew Paton, March 2018




Butterfat boost from ® SHREDLAGE Based near Dorchester, Tom King runs a herd of 650 Holsteins, producing fresh milk for Sainsburys using a primarily indoor-based system, milking three times a day.

Tom King | Vortex Holsteins | Dorchester

“We aim for about 13,500-litres per cow per year. With that in mind we’re pretty focused on making the most of our forage, especially maize.” “We’re growing about 180ha of maize here which makes up about 60% of the cows’ ration. I’d first heard about SHREDLAGE® on a study tour to the US when we visited a herd that was doing incredible levels of solids without compromising yield. They put much of this success down to the more thoroughly processed grain and extra fibre in their SHREDLAGE® silage.” This sparked Tom’s interest in the concept, he was keen on the idea of getting more fibre into the diet without adding chopped straw or other products that could have an impact on intakes. “We have never liked adding chopped straw to the ration because it waters down the intake potential of the diet. The maize plant already has a lot of fibre in it and so the idea of processing that fibre in a slightly different way so that it can be used as a butterfat promoter was the attraction for us.”

SHREDLAGE® MAKES BUSINESS SENSE “That coincided with our silage contractor – Joe Foot – looking into the concept for his family’s own dairy herds and pretty quickly he put together a business case to invest in a CLAAS SHREDLAGE® cracker.” “After two years of using SHREDLAGE® processed maize, it’s an investment that seems to have paid off. Although there are a number of factors to take into consideration, it’s enabling us to produce higher levels of butterfat without reducing yields.” Alongside that, the more fibrous structure is felt to aid rumen function and help to hold the ration components back long enough to make sure all the good stuff is properly absorbed by the gut.

LONGER FIBRES MEAN MORE BUTTERFAT “Completely processed kernels mean all the starch is going to be available to the cow – totally smashed rather than just cracked. Previous foragers using a conventional corn cracker had to chop all the fibre to nothing to get the kernels properly processed. Now, using the SHREDLAGE® processor, we can get longer pieces of fibre through which increases the butterfat percentage in our milk.” The reasoning for this is that by not adding extra fibre to the ration, the energy portion of the diet is not diluted. That’s enabled the herd to maintain high daily litreages with acceptable levels of butterfat – the only milk constituent that Tom feels he is really able to manipulate to improve the farm gate price. Currently butterfat levels are averaging 3.8% with protein at 3.2%.

“Butterfat is the only part of our milk contract which we can really use to increase value as a liquid producer. SHREDLAGE® is a relatively cheap way of increasing our overall income.” “It’s enabled us to maximise our milk price by keeping butterfat high without spending extra money on buying and processing straw to put into ration. It also doesn’t hit intakes and therefore reduce our overall litres.”

FEED MAIZE EARLIER The other thing that the concept scores highly for is the ability to feed the maize earlier than you would normally. “Because the grain is so thoroughly pulverised and distributed through the ration, if you’re in the less-than-ideal situation where you have to start feeding maize when it’s still a little bit green, the cows can still process the kernels.” “We try to have at least two months’ worth of last year’s maize to feed the cows before we get into the fresh-cut crop. But because of logistics that doesn’t always happen. Because the grains are so well processed, although it’s not ideal, you don’t waste the starch you would normally lose when feeding fresh maize.”



The ideal forager

Paul Frater, D & S Frater | Farmers & Contractors | Alnwick, Northumberland

JAGUAR forage harvesters have always been at the heart of D & S Frater’s foraging team since Stoker Frater first started contracting in 1977. However, the 510hp JAGUAR 860 the company runs today is far removed from their first forager, a trailed JAGUAR 60. “The first field we worked in took a day and a half to harvest,” recalls Stoker Frater. “Today we’d do it in about 30 minutes! We eventually changed that forager for a JAGUAR 62E with its own 106hp Ford engine, which was a tremendous machine and had double the output of the JAGUAR 60.” The first JAGUAR self-propelled forager to arrive in the Frater’s yard at Abberwick near Alnwick, where they also farm 720ha, was a JAGUAR 690 bought in 1990. This in turn was replaced by a JAGUAR 695 MEGA prior to their first JAGUAR 800 series machine, an 840, which was bought in 1997.

GREEN HARVEST LINE-UP Supporting the JAGUAR 860, now in its fourth season, is a DISCO 3200 F PROFIL and 3500 CONTOUR front and rear mower combination, with everything raked up using a LINER 2900. “In all the DISCO mowers will mow around 960ha of silage and hay, but because they follow the ground so well, we also use them for topping in the right fields, as they leave a very even finish and result in good thistle kill,” says Paul. “The MAX CUT disc mower bed leaves a really good, even finish. With our previous make of mower, we used to get complaints that it ripped the grass and often would have the tractor on its knees. The DISCO leaves a far cleaner cut and the front mower in particular follows the ground really well. Now all we get are compliments on the finish.” All the silage harvested is for beef units and of the 800ha harvested each year, around 720ha will be from just a main single cut.

“We get all types of leys and grasses, and fields from 3ha up to 16ha, but there is an increasing amount of Westerwolds grown, which provides plenty of bulk but also leaves a very even stubble.”

40HA PER DAY “The JAGUAR 860 is the ideal size for us. We aim to average up to 4.0ha an hour and 40ha a day. There is a happy medium as to how fast we can go before compressing the clamp is affected, and it is the clamp that determines the speed of foraging.” “For this season we have replaced our four old 12 tonne trailers with three of 16 tonnes, complete with LED lighting, air brakes etc., which should give the pit man more time.” “For us the JAGUAR 860 is ideal for the work we do. We have been really pleased with it, plus the support from RICKERBY is excellent and Paul in the workshop is very good. The driver comfort is exceptional and features like the autolube system and onboard compressor make maintenance really easy. The new style header is far better and allows us to push on and still leave a clean finish.”

STOP ROCK “I have cameras on the spout and to the rear, which work well, but one of the best investments was STOP ROCK stone detection. It was quite expensive, but has more than paid for itself, when you consider the cost of having a foraging team stood idle, let alone replacement parts. Very few people seem to roll these days, so we bought a set of 6.4m rolls and offer this as a service, which pays as it means we can confidently push on when harvesting and it covers the customer.”



Double the output With their distinctive cow-hide livery, Metcalfe Farms’ two JAGUAR 980s are a well-known sight across north– east England. The latest forager is the most recent in a long-line of 23 CLAAS foragers that have served the family’s dairy herd and contract customer base. The company has run JAGUAR 980s since 2007, due to the unparalleled output the flagship model offers. “With our own 1300-head dairy herd and a big round of contracting customers, we need maximum capacity,” explains Richard Metcalfe. “If we get some tricky weather then we can’t afford to get caught out – the JAGUAR 980’s output gives us a bit of insurance to make sure we can get the ground covered.”

IMPROVED CROP FLOW “And this latest machine is a step up from our last one too. With the latest grass pick-up there’s no holding the new JAGUAR 980 back. Where previously intake could be the bottleneck, we’re now finding we can do almost double the output in certain conditions because the crop flow is so improved.” “In lumpy swaths on new grass leys we would struggle with the old header – the slip clutch would go off and we were having to replace it on a regular basis. With the new one this year we’ve only had to change the clutch once all season,” says driver Luke Walker. “It’s also that much better at contouring on uneven ground – we’ve only had to replace one pick-up tine this year.”

Metcalfe Farms | Farmers & Contractors North Yorkshire By Nick Fone


“Crop flow is so much smoother through the new JAGUAR 980. That’s thanks to a combination of factors but primarily the new variable speed header drive that matches itself to the feed-rollers pace so that you’re always getting a consistent chop length. That’s been especially good where we’ve been chopping maize down to 6mm for anaerobic digesters.” “In tough, new ley grass it works really well with the new pick-up too, ironing out the lumps and doing away with that horrible surging effect that you can get.” “Both of our LEXION 670TT combines have LASER PILOT so I know how well CLAAS’ camera steering system works. Having it on the forager makes life a doddle – I just set it going and it follows the swath off up the field.”

“In combination with AUTOFILL loading the trailers it takes all the stress off me. It’s brilliant in big fields – I can just get on and eat my sandwiches in peace!”

WHY CLAAS? “When it comes to foragers there’s nothing that can match the JAGUAR for all round usability and output – there’s nothing on the market that’s quite as refined,” says Richard. “But critically, on top of that, the back-up we get from CLAAS EASTERN is just brilliant. They’re out to us at the drop of a hat and any issues are sorted as quickly as they possibly can be.”




New tractor treat

Chapman Foods | 18ha | South Armagh

After decades of farming, apple grower Harold Chapman has bought his first ever new tractor, a NEXOS VL narrow-width fruit tractor. The damp, mild climate and fertile loamy soils of County Armagh, Northern Ireland are ideal for apple orchards. First introduced to the area in 1884, the Bramley accounts for about 90% of varieties grown there today. Harold Chapman has been farming at Battlehill Farm near Portadown for the past 54 years, and the farm has been owned by the Chapman family since the late 1700s. He is one of around 90 commercial growers and has been growing Bramley apples since the early 1990s after restructuring his mixed farming business from dairying and fruit growing, to exclusively apple production.

500 TONNES OF BRAMLEYS PER YEAR “We were predominantly dairy farmers but also grew a small area of apples,” says Harold. “Then in the early nineties I decided to quit dairy farming and move wholly into apple production. That decision was boosted by new outlets opening up when we decided to start marketing our own products. Most of our business is carried out with customers in the Republic of Ireland, largely around the Dublin area.” “We produce around 500 tonnes of apples per year. We normally harvest in September or October and sell mostly to the bakery trade for pie fillings,” he explains.

By Chris McCullough

With 18ha of orchards to cover Harold runs a small fleet of fruit tractors that he uses to maintain and harvest the apple crop. However, last year disaster struck when their main tractor, a 4-wheel drive Renault, accidentally caught fire while out spraying the apples in the orchard.

NARROW NEXOS FITS THE BILL “I was enjoying a visit to the Balmoral Show last May when I got a call to tell me there was a problem at the farm,” says Harold. “We had used that Renault tractor for a number of years and it was very useful in the orchards, with its 4-wheel drive system.” “I got home to find the tractor had completely burned out. Everything was destroyed and in a very quick timeframe too. The sprayer was also destroyed in the fire which left us without a tractor or a sprayer.” Urgently needing another tractor Harold started his search knowing the options were not so plentiful for decent second-hand tractors of the type he required. Initial searches weren’t so successful but thanks to a personal friendship between Harold and his local CLAAS dealership, ASHFIELD & WILSON based at Dungannon, he was introduced to the brand’s range of NEXOS fruit tractors. Having carefully looked at Harold’s specific requirements they concluded he would be best suited to the 4-wheel drive NEXOS 210VL. Powered by a 75hp turbo charged FPT Tier 4i engine with a minimum width of just one metre, the NEXOS is a very compact and agile tractor, perfectly suited to restricted movements in fruit orchards.

NEXOS PLENTY OF POWER With its long wheelbase and optimum 50/50 weight distribution, the NEXOS 210VL has plenty of pulling power and has a maximum lifting capacity of 3.1 tonnes at the ball ends on the rear linkage, which can be used with most implements. The main job for Harold’s NEXOS is to power the sprayer for the majority of the season which has already started with tree spraying underway. “This is the first new tractor I have ever bought in my life,” says Harold. “I had never bought CLAAS before nor ever done business with ASHFIELD & WILSON, but the NEXOS 210VL ticked all my boxes in terms of tractor requirements.” “Downtime is a major drag on any business so the service backup was a very important influence in my buying decision, as both CLAAS and the dealer have a good reputation for this.” “The NEXOS has a very comfortable cab for the operator with excellent visibility. This will be my main sprayer tractor so I needed power, traction, visibility and reliability all in one tractor and the NEXOS seems to fit the bill,” concludes Harold.

“This will be my main sprayer tractor so I needed power, traction, visibility and reliability all in one tractor and the NEXOS seems to fit the bill.” Harold Chapman, March 2018





ARION 460 – a key machine for Daniel Harries Of all the jobs a tractor is expected to do, powering a TMR mixer day-in and day-out has to be one of the toughest. This is certainly the case for Daniel Harries’ 140hp ARION 460 PANORAMIC, which since he bought it in November has already clocked-up over 1,500 hours powering a large 30m3 Siloking twin vertical auger feeder, which in addition to feeding the main herd three times a day, is also used to feed dry cows and youngstock, so feeds out over 50 tonnes of silage a day. Located near Fishguard in Pembrokeshire, apart from 68ha of whole crop virtually all of the WJ & GA Harries’ 440ha farm is down to grass harvested for silage using their own JAGUAR 830-based foraging team for the 860 herd of pedigree and commercial Holsteins, that are housed all-year round. Milked three times a day through a 70-point rotary parlour, the herd averages 11,800 litres with all the milk going into the liquid market.

Harries | 860 Holsteins | Pembrokeshire

Bought from RIVERLEA, the little ARION 460 PANORAMIC joins a more powerful ARION 640 that arrived in March 2017, which is mainly responsible for fieldwork.

“Unfortunately I had also just replaced the mixer, and gone for the option of being able to start one auger before the other. If I had known we would be getting the ARION I wouldn’t have bothered.” Another feature that Daniel likes is the ability to change the PTO speed from 540 to 1,000 RPM at the press of a button, instead of a lever as on his previous tractor. “At the end of feeding out there will always be some silage left sat on top of the auger, so we flick the PTO to 1,000 just to clean it off.”

ALL OUR DRIVERS LOVE THE ARION “Also being able to save the engine speed settings for mixing is extremely useful,” he adds. “There are four different drivers that use the tractor, and they all love it. By being able to set-everything up and save engine speeds for mixing, all they have to do is press the button so as to ensure that each mix is being mixed the same for consistency.”

MORE TORQUE AT LOWER REVS “The ARION 460 replaced another similar sized tractor that in two and a half years did 7,500 hours, and has now gone onto lighter duties, but is there as a back-up if needed for the ARION,” explains Daniel. “I originally intended to buy the same again, but Carwyn (Evans) at RIVERLEA offered me an ARION 450 to try.” What immediately stood out about the ARION was that even thought it was the same size and power to their previous tractor, its FPT engine had far more torque at lower revs, generating 870Nm at just 1400rpm. “Fully loaded, the mixer holds 13 tonnes of silage. With our previous tractor, when you engaged the PTO to start mixing you would have to have the engine revving quite high and then feather the PTO in as it would often struggle to start the augers.” “Due to the way the ARION’s engine is mapped, because of its lowdown torque you could probably start mixing at tick-over. It’s far easier and obviously will be far less strain on the engine.”

They have also found that due to the tractor’s equal weight distribution and resulting high levels of traction, no extra weights are needed to handle the mixer, which when fully loaded has an all-up weight of 23 tonnes. By comparison, even with additional weights and water ballasting the tyres, their previous tractor would still struggle at times. “Even without any weights, the ARION seems to handle the mixer far better. The stepless transmission is extremely good and easy to use and the cab layout is very good, plus the tractors compact size means it is extremely manoeuvrable, which is important. Also being able to swing the steering column up out the way makes it far easier to get in and out of the ARION.” “However, knowing the hours the tractor will do, just as important is the back-up we receive from RIVERLEA, because we are reliant on the ARION which will not get much rest from 4.00am to 12.30 at night. For a key item of machinery, however good it is I will only buy it if I know the support will be there.”


Customer benefits from technology


D M Carnegie | Farmers & Contractors | Brechin

CLAAS machinery has been at the heart of D M Carnegie’s harvesting operations for many years, with service and support from their local dealer SELLARS second to none. Alongside this, the practical electronic management and operating systems that CLAAS offer, such as TELEMATICS, the CEBIS terminal and GPS steering systems benefit not only the company themselves, but also their customers. Based at Northwaterbridge near Brechin, D M Carnegie offer a wide range of contract services. Their extensive machinery fleet includes three LEXION combines (a 570, 750 and 760) that harvest around 1600ha a year, a JAGUAR 870 and 940 harvesting both silage and rye for AD, plus three AXION 800 tractors (820, 840 and 850) with a fourth AXION 870 due in the spring.

DEALER BACKUP “The back-up we receive from SELLARS and CLAAS is key to us,” says David Carnegie, who alongside running his business is one of Scotland’s leading competition ploughmen, and has won Scottish Reversible Champion nine times and has also the World Championship. “Any machine at some stage will break down and its how that breakdown is handled which is important to me. For instance, we had an engine problem in a JAGUAR, where it was decided the best option was to fit a new engine, which had to come from Germany. The whole operation was done in the field and from the decision to change the engine on the Monday, SELLARS had us back up and running by the Wednesday lunchtime. That’s what counts.” “SELLARS are an important part of our business – we are all a team. I like the fact that Peter (Stewart) is also a practical machinery man. Unlike some salesmen you come across these days, he is not just selling for the sake of selling but he knows what he is talking about and can operate the machinery that he sells, and will help us to get the best out of it.”

TECHNOLOGY AND DEVELOPMENT The technology and machinery development that CLAAS provides benefits both David’s own business and the service that the company offers its customers. “CLAAS has always led the way in machinery development and electronics. For instance the CEBIS screen on our LEXION, JAGUAR

and tractors is very similar to that on our old LEXION 410. You can access a lot more information now, but the basics are all still there, which makes it easy for the operator as they are familiar with the layout.”

TELEMATICS “Developments such as TELEMATICS make it very easy to monitor machines, gain a good idea on yields and see if you have enough trailers. We have been offering customers yield and spreading mapping and GPS variable rate spreading for about 20 years, and now with auto recognition of fields it makes it very easy to upload and save accurate field data for our clients, which as a contractor is essential for variable rate spreading.”

VARIO CUTTERBAR “The VARIO cutterbars have made a considerable difference too. The first VARIO we had was on a LEXION 570 and we still had the LEXION 410, which had the same size cutterbar but the 570 had twice the output. This was largely due to the VARIO cutterbar because if you feed the crop into the combine correctly, everything else that follows will be smoother and benefit output.”

OUTPUT AND RELIABILITY “We have run CLAAS combines for so many years, starting with a DOMINATOR 98, because they give us the output and reliability, plus they can cope with our conditions. Even though 80% of what we cut is baled, having gone to HYBRID machines we would never go back to straw walkers because of how well they cope with difficult conditions,” states David. “Last harvest the weather just never let up – I think it was worse than 1985 and despite shorter varieties and PGRs, there was a lot of flat wheat. We were cutting crops at up to 30% moisture and at times having to constantly unload on the move, but the combines coped and when we did have some reasonable conditions, we can get a lot cut.”



A ‘CLAAS’ Act in Roscommon

Kennedy Brothers | Agricultural Contractors | Co. Roscommon

The Emerald Isle – Ireland is renowned for its lush grass and mild climate. In the small village of Ballyforan in Co Roscommon there is another shade of green, CLAAS green, thanks to the Kennedy Brothers who have no less than 10 CLAAS tractors operating within their agricultural contracting business. The business was established back in the 1950s by Tom Kennedy who started off with a Fordson tractor which is still in the fleet today, together with a single chop harvester, mainly carrying out work for neighbours making silage and hay. In the 1980s Tom’s three sons, John, Pat and Willy joined the business, growing it in size by offering new services to the community such as tillage work and plant hire. Today the 3rd generation of Kennedys, brothers Tom Jnr and John are at the helm and have expanded the business even further.

BUSINESS EXPANSION The business harvests approximately 1,000ha of pit silage, produces 35,000 bales and empties 347 slatted tanks of slurry which alone keeps them busy for 7 months of the year. On top of the contracting

By Darren Bailey

side of the business, the brothers also farm 60ha of grassland where they keep a combination of suckler beef and sheep. To keep up with the ever demanding workload the Kennedys have an impressive fleet of 10 CLAAS tractors which comprises five ARION 650s, three ARION 640s, an ARION 630 and 620, in addition to a JAGUAR 860, DISCO 3500C and two LINER rakes. “We purchased our first CLAAS tractor, a new ARION 640, off local dealer QUIGLEYS in 2011. We had run two other brands of tractor up until then and between mechanical issues and dealer support we wanted a change. Seamus Quigley gave us a demonstration tractor for a few days to see what we thought, and we were immediately impressed with firstly the comfort of the CLAAS as well as its performance in a nice compact tractor frame.”

CLAAS TRACTORS ARE IDEAL “After a bit of ‘friendly negotiation’ we had a new ARION 640 bought which we only traded this year with 11,000 hours on the clock for a new ARION 650. We find the CLAAS tractors very user friendly and compact, which makes them ideal for all the work we do, as field sizes can be quite small. They are very easy to maintain and to be fair haven’t given us many problems. All tractors can have a problem at some stage but what is important in our line of business is how quick we can get back working and the cost to repair.”



“We plan to start implementing GPS technology to help optimise our performance and improve efficiency.” Kennedy Brothers, March 2018

In the relatively short time that the Kennedys have been dealing with QUIGLEYS, they have purchased a total of 11 CLAAS tractors, two LINERs, a 2700 and 2900 and a DISCO 3500C mower. “We have a great working relationship with QUIGLEYS, they will never see us stuck. If a tractor goes into the garage for whatever reason we always get a replacement if needed, it’s that kind of level of customer service that matters to us.”

JAGUAR MILESTONE 2017 marked what the brothers themselves refer to as a milestone in the business, when they took delivery of their very first CLAAS forager, a new JAGUAR 860, purchased through their local CLAAS forager dealer KELLYS of Borris. “We had run other makes in the past, but opted to buy a CLAAS mainly because we were very happy with the products we already had and knew the forager would be the same. We have done 1,000ha with it in its first season at silage, and cannot praise it enough. The operator comfort is what really stands out to us; you can cover 40ha a day easily and not feel it. All the controls are ergonomically located which makes running the JAGUAR a pleasure. With a new forager reliability is not an issue but one thing that is important is cost to run. After its first year it has only cost us between €3,000-4,000 (£2,2003,000) to maintain, which is half that of what it was costing us before.”

So what are the future plans for Kennedys? “We aim to continue our working relationship with CLAAS into the future and plan to start implementing GPS technology to help optimise our performance and improve efficiency.”



Machinery rethink for gas AD Considerable change for the Stracathro Estate sees a move from predominantly arable farming to cropping for a new Gas-to-Grid AD plant. Until recently arable cropping accounted for around 1,200ha on the largely arable estate near Brechin, mainly growing wheat and barley for the whisky distilling market. However, that has now been reduced to nearer 400ha, with grass (mainly 2-year Italian ryegrass leys), whole crop wheat and rye, and fodder beet added to the rotation to feed the new 450 m3/hr (roughly 2.5Mw) plant that has been developed in conjunction with Qila Energy. “We have looked at various renewables options in the past in order to reduce our reliance on the wheat market and the risk from growing cereals, in order to obtain greater price security and reduce our carbon footprint,” explains director Gordon Cairns. “We also have very moisture retentive soils, so by using digestate to bring organic matter back into the soils, this should also benefit our soil structure and bring a balance back to our rotation.”

ENTIRELY SELF-SUFFICIENT Having previously considered solar and small scale AD, the presence of a main high pressure gas pipeline on the estate dictated both the plant’s location alongside the main A90 to Aberdeen and its scale. It was also important to the Estate that the plant should be entirely self-sufficient and a concious decision was made not to rely on crops grown on rented land, to avoid distorting the local market for seed potato ground. All the cropping for the plant has come out of acreage

Gordon Cairns | Stracathro Estate Ltd Arable & Gas-to-Grid | Brechin, Angus

JAGUAR 800 & AXION 900

that would have grown wheat or barley for distilling, so not reduce the area used to grow crops for food. 320ha of grass has been introduced, which is treated like an arable crop and recieves regular fungicide and trace element applications, along with 320ha of whole crop and 120ha of fodder beet. As a result Gordon has had to completely review the farm’s machinery fleet, and worked closely with local CLAAS dealer SELLARS. With a reduced amount of cereals to harvest, the farm’s 2-year old LEXION 770 has been replaced by a smaller 6-year old LEXION 760. A new JAGUAR 870 with a 28-knife V-CLASSIC chopping cylinder has been added to the fleet, equipped with a 3.0m pick-up and 5.2m DIRECT DISC header for the whole crop. The farms’s existing 340hp XERION 3300, which was used for heavy cultivations, has also been equipped with a dozer blaze and compactor for compacting silage in the 1.5ha of new clamps. In addition, their 3-year old 385hp AXION 940 will be used for spreading digestate with a 3,500 gallon tanker fitted with a 16m Vogelsang dribble bar. It has been joined by a new 325hp AXION 920, which in addition to taking over ploughing duties from the XERION using the farm’s 9-furrow plough, will also power a new set of DISCO 9200C triple mowers. Both the AXION are fitted with GPS steering, using the latest S10

terminals receiving a signal from the farm’s own RTK mast. Taking this a stage further, for harvesting whole crop, one of these terminals will be transferred to the JAGUAR, which has been fitted with a steering system, to ensure optimum efficiency when harvesting.

THE JAGUAR CAME OUT TOP “SELLARS have helped us a lot,” says Gordon, “and it is important to have that working relationship. Before buying the JAGUAR, I did look at all options and various trials results, which all showed the JAGUAR coming out top, and there is a very good reason why so many contractors run JAGUAR. Peter Stewart at SELLARS was very good and called in experience from within the company to look at what our requirements were going to be, and what would meet those requirements. Also I know from experience that if we have a problem, they will be there to sort it. The reason we run CLAAS machinery is due to SELLARS.” “Overall we will be harvesting about 1,200ha in four cuts, but it is the whole crop that really dictated the need to run our own forager, and its size. Gas production is dependent on producing top quality silage and with whole crop it is vital that we harvest at between 33-35% dry matter. But it can change very quickly so it’s important we have the capacity to be able to have control of the harvesting process.”

“Before buying the JAGUAR, I did look at all options and various trials results, which all showed the JAGUAR coming out top, and there is a very good reason why so many contractors run JAGUAR.” Gordon Cairns, March 2018




Integrating wheat with eggs

Duncan Farms | 3,200 arable & 650,000 hens | Turriff, Aberdeenshire

Next time you tuck into a free-range egg bought from a Morrisons store in Scotland, there is a fair chance that it will have been supplied by Duncan Farms. With 2,400 of their 3,200ha of arable land down to combinable crops, Duncan Farms are the largest arable growers in the northeast of Scotland. While distilling is an important market for cereals in the region, outlets for feed wheat are limited and the nearest feed compounder is at Cupar in Fife, over 100 miles away. It was to reduce price volatility and risk from limited outside markets, that the decision was made in 2009 to invest in the development of an egg production enterprise, which by the end of this year will total 650,000 birds, of which over 300,000 are free range.

EXPANSION INTO EGGS “Egg consumption has risen 5% every year for the last few years, and this offers a great opportunity to expand,” explains chief executive Dave Green, winner of the 2014 Farmers Weekly Manager of the Year award. “For us it provides a fully integrated model, where virtually all the cereals can used for poultry feed and then utilise the poultry litter to put fertility back into the land. This allows us to maximise the assets we have and optimise output from both the arable and poultry enterprises.”

Dave Green, Chief Executive



difficult field conditions when loading hen litter, yet it was also smooth on the road.”

DEALER HELP DURING HARD TIMES Last year’s harvest proved a particularly hard test of both man and machine. Typically harvest will start in late July with wheat ready in early September, but conditions were so difficult last harvest that one machine ended up spending 3 weeks in the same field before it was finished. “Wheat was a particular challenge as there were small sprouts in the head and it was waxy, so very difficult and slow to combine. We had a lot of challenges, but SELLARS were exceptional in helping us out when necessary.” “Over the years I have been resistant to big headers, but four years ago when we bought the LEXION 780TT we went to 40ft, and it is a real animal with the capacity to clear a lot of ground, especially when in large 100-120ha blocks.”

Three LEXION combines – a 780TT with a 40ft VARIO cutterbar and two 30ft 4-wheel drive wheeled 760s – are responsible for harvesting the 500ha of winter wheat, 800ha of winter barley, 600ha of spring barley and 500ha of oilseed rape.

RELIABILITY AND CAPACITY Supplied by SELLARS, the farm has now run around 15 LEXION, which are replaced on a 4-5 year cycle. “The only reason we keep buying LEXION is due to their reliability and capacity, along with the service we receive from SELLARS,” states Dave. “Obviously when we change a machine we do look at alternatives, but come back to CLAAS because of SELLARS. The price has to be right, but we know that when the conditions are right that we can work the LEXION hard.”

IMRPRESSIVE TELEHANDLERS More recent additions to the Duncan Farms machinery fleet have been two SCORPION telescopic handlers bought in 2012 and 2014. “We run four handlers in all and when we had a demonstration of the SCORPION were impressed by its ‘grunt’ and ability to work well in

“We have stayed with large tyres and 4-wheel drive for the other two combines, because generally our soils are light and hills are usually more of a problem than field conditions. Thanks to the poultry litter, the soils contain a lot of organic matter so are very rich and healthy. I am also a great believer in ploughing so as to help maintain a healthy root structure, which is important for crop growth.”

LOOKING AFTER OUR CARBON FOOTPRINT “Good management with wall-to-wall cropping and maximising output is by far the best way to reduce for our carbon footprint. We are looking to keep our cost of production low and maximise wheat production for egg production, and via the egg business get as close to our customers as we can.” “Its important to have control and manage risk. Timing is the key and that comes with experience, but the capacity of the LEXION certainly helps when it comes to harvest.”



New SCORPION impresses

A & A Robinson Ltd | 260 organic Holstein Friesians | Wigtown, Galloway

One of the first of the new Leibherrbuilt SCORPION telescopic handlers has been bought by organic dairy farmer Andrew Robinson. The arrival of the new 136hp SCORPION 736 on his farm near Wigtown in south-west Scotland reflects a change in make of telescopic handler for Andrew, a decision based largely on the fact that the new SCORPION series is manufactured for CLAAS by Leibherr.

A REPUTATION FOR QUALITY “I looked at and considered a few different machines available locally, but was impressed by the fact that the new SCORPION is built by Leibherr,” explains Andrew. “They have a reputation for the quality and reliability of their machinery. Added to that I also get on well with GORDONS and trust them to provide a good service.” The farm currently supports a 260-cow Holstein Friesian herd, which has been organic for the past 10 years and is split between autumn and spring calving.

“Ultimately I would like to grow the herd to around 300 and we have recently invested in new buildings and parlour to support this. The SCORPION has plenty of power and capacity for what we want, but I have also taken the opportunity to equip it with a new larger sheargrab, pallet forks and buckets and ‘specced’ everything up, as all our old attachments were at the end of their life.” “The SCORPION, with its 7.0m lift and 3.6 tonne capacity is the ideal size for our needs. It has plenty of power and is a far more nimble machine than our previous handler.” Since its arrival on the farm in February, the new SCORPION has so far clocked up 160 hours mainly loading the farm’s feeder wagon, doing three mixes a day for the milking herd and a further mix for the dry cows.

ALL-ROUND VISIBILITY For operator Scott Forrester, one of the best features of the new SCORPION is its excellent all-round visibility, helped by the low mounting of the boom that sits flush with the body of the SCORPION when lowered. “There is no comparison to our previous machine,” states Scott. “The SCORPION’s brilliant. The all-round visibility is fantastic and the

SCORPION 736 lower position of the boom makes a great difference. The cab is an extremely nice place to be, the controls are clearly colour coded so easy to identify and everything falls to hand well. It was very easy to quickly get used to it.” “The SCORPION also has the higher capacity pump (160 l/min) so the hydraulic reaction is extremely quick and it handles the new larger grab with ease. It has plenty of power and even though I have not done a great deal of roadwork yet, it seems to ride well.”

SMART ROADING All new SCORPION are fitted with the latest SMART ROADING function, which automatically adjusts the speed while accelerating and when maximum speed is reached. Another new feature on the SCORPION is DYNAMIC COOLING, whereby the fan speed is automatically controlled to provide demand-driven cooling to the engine. Other new features on the latest SCORPION range is an additional fourth manual crab-steering mode, which allows the front axle to be steered while in crab mode, for instance when working close to walls or clamp edge. A new option within the SMART LOADING system is automatic bucket return, which allows a specific bucket return height to be set using a button on the joystick.

Andrew Robinson and Scott Forrester

“The SCORPION, with its 7.0m lift and 3.6 tonne capacity is the ideal size for our needs. It has plenty of power and is a far more nimble machine than our previous handler.” Andrew Robinson, March 2018


Spread the cost of your Green Harvest 3 + 33 monthly payments @ 0% Offer available on all new Green Harvest machinery, while stocks last.

Offer ends 31 May 2018 Finance for business users only. Terms and conditions apply.*

Spread the payments on new Green Harvest machinery this year. Contact your CLAAS dealer for more information today or call the CLAAS Hotline on 01284 777666.

*Finance for business purposes only. Subject to acceptance and affordability checks. Applicant must be 18 or over. Promotion valid until 31st May 2018. Based on funding 50% of RRP. The finance product available under this promotion is Hire Purchase. A documentation fee of ÂŁ75 will be collected with the first rental. Full VAT is due on signing. First payment due on signing on monthly profile. First payment due September 2018 on annual profile. An option-to-purchase fee of ÂŁ50 (plus VAT) will be collected with the final payment. You will own the machine when all payments have been made. Alternative finance options are available, terms apply. Images are for illustrative purposes only. Finance provided by CLAAS Financial Services Limited, Northern Cross, Basing View, Basingstoke, RG21 4HL. Registered in England No: 5854271. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

HarvesTimes spring 2018  

The spring 2018 issue of the CLAAS HarvesTimes magazine with all the latest product and company news from CLAAS UK and customer features fro...

HarvesTimes spring 2018  

The spring 2018 issue of the CLAAS HarvesTimes magazine with all the latest product and company news from CLAAS UK and customer features fro...