How times are chang­ing

AgLife - - News -

Wim­mera Machin­ery Field Days at Lon­gerenong have long been a ru­ral in­sti­tu­tion, pro­vid­ing the re­gion’s farm­ing com­mu­nity with a crit­i­cal an­nual up­date on the lat­est machin­ery and tech­nol­ogy.

Some of the mighty machin­ery used to sow and har­vest the crops of to­day, and on dis­play at Lon­gerenong, are the re­sult of evo­lu­tion­ary en­gi­neer­ing that in many cases have hum­ble ori­gins. What pa­trons at the field days will see dur­ing the three-day event have come a long way in a rel­a­tively short time.

The Katyil dis­trict near Dim­boola pro­duced a rare sight late last month when mem­bers of the Schilling fam­ily took a 1938 T. Robin­son and Co har­vester out of the shed to strip a 30-bag wheat crop to com­pare the ex­pe­ri­ence with what the job in­volved to­day.

The ex­er­cise, that also in­volved a 1950 John Deere Model D trac­tor, also pro­vided the farm­ers, some of whom had been busy with a heavy crop this sea­son and oth­ers who had re­tired, a chance to rem­i­nisce.

The Schillings had a lot of fun us­ing the equip­ment for the first time since a pre­vi­ous Schilling fam­ily farm­ing day in 1997, but were amazed how long it took to com­plete the job.

Us­ing the tech­nol­ogy of yes­ter­day, it took the team about two hours to strip the third of an acre plot, which pro­duced 10 bags of wheat in a crop that was run­ning at 30 bags an acre.

The same strip­ping project with to­day’s har­vest­ing tech­nol­ogy would have taken two min­utes.

The pic­tures show, top, from left, Bob and Paul Schilling in the process of strip­ping, bag­ging and sewing wheat bags by hand, and right, re­flect­ing on the project.

Pic­tures: KELLY SCHILLING

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