HAR­VEST­ING per­fec­tion

New Austoft har­vester com­bines best of its pre­de­ces­sors with a raft of new fea­tures and im­prove­ments

Farms & Farm Machinery - - Front Page -

As the na­tion’s cane farmers pre­pare for the an­nual crush later in the year, Case IH is giv­ing them some­thing else to con­sider in their plan­ning for the sea­son.

The re­lease of the Austoft 8010 Se­ries is a ma­jor up­date to the com­pany’s sug­ar­cane har­vester prod­uct of­fer­ing, with 28 new fea­tures and im­prove­ments that came out of more than 18,000 hours of field test­ing.

“The last Austoft se­ries re­lease was the 8000 Se­ries, and we’re con­fi­dent grow­ers will ap­pre­ci­ate the im­prove­ments in these new ma­chines and what they have to of­fer in the test­ing en­vi­ron­ment of an Aus­tralian cane pad­dock,”Case IH gen­eral manager for Aus­tralia and New Zealand Pete McCann says.

Among the new fea­tures are LED work lights, a raised cab po­si­tion for bet­ter op­er­a­tor vis­i­bil­ity which doesn’t add to the over­all height of the har­vester, a re­frig­er­a­tor in the cab and new rear-view mir­rors, footrests and op­er­a­tor seat to im­prove driver com­fort.

Other fea­tures and im­prove­ments in­clude:

• ‘Auto Float’ func­tion (crop di­vider height con­trol): This func­tion au­to­mates the con­trol of both crop di­vider lift cylin­ders, keep­ing the toe in con­tact with the soil at all times, while also pre­vent­ing ‘plough­ing’. It can stop in­ex­pe­ri­enced op­er­a­tors from ac­ci­den­tally low­er­ing the crop di­viders too deep, while let­ting ex­pe­ri­enced op­er­a­tors fo­cus more attention on other har­vest­ing func­tions. Ac­ti­va­tion has been in­te­grated into the Auto Tracker con­trol, so no ad­di­tional op­er­a­tor ac­tions are needed to use the sys­tem.

• Larger diesel fuel tank: The tank has 29 per cent more ca­pac­ity and an ad­justed po­si­tion within the machin­ery to in­crease the num­ber of hours in the field, re­duce main­te­nance costs and im­prove ser­vice­abil­ity. • Three op­er­a­tional video cam­eras: These are now stan­dard, positioned on the sides and lower part of the ma­chine and are able to be eas­ily mon­i­tored on the AFS Pro700, with adjustable screens that pro­vide easy in­ter­ac­tion and switch­ing of views. • Im­proved en­gine pro­tec­tion soft­ware: This soft­ware im­prove­ment is de­signed to re­duce the risk of en­gine dam­age due to a high cool­ing sys­tem tem­per­a­ture, and these events are now recorded to help iden­tify is­sues with im­proper op­er­a­tion or in­ad­e­quate main­te­nance.

The fore­run­ner of to­day’s Austoft was con­ceived and de­vel­oped in Aus­tralia and is now used in coun­tries as di­verse as India, China, Brazil, Su­dan and Pa­pua New Guinea.

The com­mit­ment to the Aus­tralian cane in­dus­try that re­sulted in the cre­ation of that first me­chan­i­cal har­vester back in the 1960s is as strong to­day as it was all those decades ago, with Case IH in­vest­ing sig­nif­i­cantly in prod­uct re­search and de­vel­op­ment.

“We pi­o­neered the in­tro­duc­tion of hy­draulic sys­tems on har­vesters and con­tinue to in­vest in sim­pli­fy­ing and up­grad­ing the ef­fi­ciency of these sys­tems,” McCann says. “This lat­est Austoft com­bines the best of its pre­de­ces­sors with a raft of new fea­tures and im­prove­ments to cre­ate a ma­chine that of­fers the most ad­vanced so­lu­tions to the sec­tor. For the sug­ar­cane in­dus­try it helps con­trib­ute to on­go­ing strength and pros­per­ity; and for the in­di­vid­ual farm busi­ness it de­liv­ers a health­ier bottom line through greater ef­fi­ciency and over­all yields.”

The first ship­ment of the new model har­vesters are due to ar­rive soon, ready for the 2018 cane har­vest­ing sea­son.

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