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Drills debut at Essex demo day Two brand new drills were the highlight at an open day organised by J Brock & Sons in late November. David Williams was there. In 2015 the dealer held its first ever open day, which proved popular with farmers and contractors from across the eastern counties. The Brock family farms at Thaxted and specialises in buying and selling used farm machinery and also manufactures cultivation equipment, much of it designed for the heavy Essex clay in the area. Also in 2015 the company became the UK importer for Farmet cultivation machinery, which complements the Brock Ag cultivation and Brock TWB deep tillage ranges and the Brock Farmet brand is now well-established and popular with the largest farms, offering exceptionally wide working widths. The 2017 event was very well attended, most farmers in the area having finished field work and wet weather the preceding day making conditions too wet for spraying. As well as visitors from accross East Anglia many had travelled from further afield, some up to four hours from the venue. A parade of Brock Ag, Brock TWB and Brock Farmet products proved popular. Features and benefits were explained as they passed through the heated marquee. Brock Parts division supplies replacement genuine and aftermarket wearing metal for cultivators and ploughs as well as Bourgault drill coulters to easily convert conventional tine drills for

The Farmet Falcon drill range can be fitted with four different cultivation elements, to suit the season and conditions. The Falcon at the event had sprung levellers and two rows of discs, but tines or a power harrow are also available.

reduced disturbance seeding, and a selection of items was displayed.

There was no shortage of interest in the new Brock Campaign drill.

All-new drills The new drills were eagerly anticipated by visitors but had been hidden from view until their mid-day launch. Farmet drills have been in development since 2012 and were displayed at Agritechnica this year but the Essex open day was the first opportunity to see them in the UK. The Falcon range includes models from 3–8m with 4,000-litre grain only or 6,000-litre grain and fertiliser hoppers. The 3m model is rigid, 4m folding or rigid and larger 6 and 8m versions available as folding only but all offer transport widths under 3m.

Flexible modular design The drill’s modular design means users can select appropriate cultivation elements and swap them easily and quickly in-season if conditions demand. There is a choice of four cultivation elements to mount under the front of the hopper including a power harrow (3 and 4m only), tines, spring tines or discs. For cereals twin-disc coulters are stagger mounted at the rear. Seed is supplied through two metering units to alternate coulters, which means row spacing can be doubled by shutting off one unit. The design

also allows two different seed types to be drilled at once, to different depths and seed rates. Alternatively, the distributor heads can supply coulters on one side each, allowing half width shut-off from the cab. Automatic switching for tramlines is by re-routing seed from the appropriate coulter tubes back into the hopper, maintaining constant seed rates to remaining coulters. Precision drill seeding units with integral hoppers can replace the standard coulters on the rear tool bar at 75cm spacing for maize drilling, with fertiliser supplied from the main hopper, increasing the drill’s versatility. Muller controls with electricpowered metering units supply seed,

making it easy to vary rates on-themove and hydraulic drive is used for metering fertiliser which is usually supplied through centre-mounted coulters between 1–10cm depth, but the drill’s design provides other options too. “Farmet’s modular design allows one drill to cope with different soil types and seasons,” explained new machinery specialist Derry Morton. “Swapping cultivation units takes little time and they can be removed completely for drilling into prepared land. With autumn drilling pushed back later, heavy-land farms in particular can find themselves under pressure due to exceptionally dry or wet weather, but having the option to select the power harrow for extreme continued over...

Brock Wheel & Tyre supplies wheels, tyres and tracks to dealers and farmers across the east of England and was supported at the event by Bridgestone, which also owns Firestone. A demonstration of the benefits of high specification VF tyres proved popular. Two 650/65R42 tyres were fitted to a Fendt 700-series tractor loaned by a local dealer. A pass over a sand tray illustrated the extra contact area of the VF version operating at 9psi, against a standard MaxiTraction tyre at its recommended 16psi. “We have supplied a lot of Bridgestone VF tyres for self-propelled sprayers,” commented Brock Wheel & Tyre agricultural tyre specialist Alistair Pitcher. “Users report very good performance compared to tyres replaced, protecting soils while carrying heavy loads.” Pictured on the stand are Bridgestone tyre representatives Tom Gerring (left) and Steve Lamb with Alistair (centre).

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