Available to order now is the biggest speed disc available from Czech tillage specialist Bednar with a 18.4m working width and ultra clean finish
The Bednar Swifterdisc Mega XE18400 disc cultivator with a 18.4m (60ft) cut is now claimed as the most productive speed discer available to local growers.
This model is already proven across large tracts of European farmland where it has offered greater productivity for large-scale farm operations and contractors with a breezy 230ha a day within the scope.
This model will be hotly sought after following this season where it is expected some of the heaviest crop residues will lay and the Swifterdisc with its 18.4m (60ft) wide cut is made to run at a working speed of 15kph to create an ideal seed bed.
For any grower or contractor running a 430 to 460kW (580 to 620hp) tractor the Swifterdisc Mega XE18400 is the dream combination for a minimum or no-till operation that needs to clean-up the trash or simply requires a lessening of compaction.
The big iron builders that have been with us since the start of farming had to take somewhat a back seat to the fad of minimum and no-till that eventually went on to become the norm at seeding time.
But with all good things, there sometimes needs to be some minor corrections along the way, and that happened when compaction started to steal yield levels and growers realised there was still a role for conventional cultivation machines.
Strategic tillage methods were born and the big iron builders that had survived the cut and were scattered through-out the main growing regions were thrown a survival lifeline as growers began to put in new orders.
Makers of big cultivation machines were back and began to build a line of models that worked in with current seeding methods to unlock higher yield benefits across no-till operation paddocks.
These current day iron machines deal with trash at speed and set-up the most ideal seeding conditions, while there are also options to contend with compaction, and rid any water run-off issues.
With stubble now incorporated to retain more organic content and improved water penetration with reduced run-off, big iron cultivators are becoming a more cost-effective alternative to control weeds in some operations and as a result chemical applications can be reduced.
And while makers of big cultivators live-on their build has been adapted to some extent.
The Bednar 18.4m (60ft) Swifterdisc for instance has 147 discs across its girth, spaced 250mm apart with 1m between the two rows of discs.
The 5mm thick discs come in diameters of either 520 or 560mm and can work down to a depth of 20 to 140mm, and in addition there is a V-ring packer sitting out back.
The disc combination offers the cutting and mixing of soil and nutrient bearing crop residues up front while the V-Ring packer at the back consolidates everything into a finish that allows the water in while reducing the chance of wind erosion.
Growers will also notice some distinct difference between the old iron design of the models their grandfathers tore across the paddock. The Bednar Swifterdisc Mega XE18400 for instance has been designed to ensure even pressure on all discs regardless of conditions.
The tandem axles sit well forward of older design models and there are also two undivided side frames that keep an even pressure for constant soil contact.
And with such a wide machine, Bednar engineers have made sure headland turns are not an issue by incorporating rollers and swivels into the design to reduce the load on the tractor.
And in another major design win, in transport mode the Swifterdisc Mega XE18400 runs on a tandem axle and folds down to 3m while also being less than 4m high and 12m in length. For most states no escort is required.
The local distributor for Bednar for a number of years now has been Powerace operated by Grant Borgward who expects the Swifterdisc Mega XE18400 to provide growers with the opportunity to get everything finished much faster.
Grant wants to make this point, “It’s the biggest cultivator available in the world, not just in Australia.
“And the number one reason farmers want it right now is to kill summer weeds without relying 100% on chemicals, particularly because glyphosate prices have gone up so much.
“This big Swifterdisc is 18.4m (60ft) wide and you can do around 15kph with it. A faster work rate and a wider machine means you’re getting over the ground much quicker and lessening the workload.
“There are obvious benefits such as killing your weeds, cutting up and incorporating your stubble, with the ability to incorporate lime and manures and to level the ground off, that in some cases hasn’t been tilled for up to 30 years since no-till has been around.
Grant also wanted to point out the V-ring packer design of the Swifterdisc and how this addition provides an ideal levelling of paddocks.
“A key feature of the Swifterdisc is the V-ring packer and because they’re two wings that fold up, you’ve only got two sections you need to keep level and, therefore, you get a very level finish, whereas most other machines are either three or five section and they’re very hard to keep level,” Grant added.
“The actual size and shape of the V-ring packer and the two-frame design is what gives the superior levelling.
“You just assume your paddocks are level until you buy a Swifterdisc and realise they’re not even close to being level. The more even your crops, generally the higher the yield.
Grant Borgward understands how the big paddocks on our local farms have a strong reliance on glyphosate and how the Swifterdisc can go part of the way to reducing that reliance.
Grant adds, “Now more than ever we need to find a way to sort out the tram lines, we need to fix the paddocks, we need to be able to not only kill but manage the bulk of the summer weeds while taking care of all stubble at the same time.
“With the Swifterdisc you can chop it all up and incorporate it and you’re getting back to a much better seed bed than you can achieve from just no-till.
“Pre-emergent chemicals work much better when they are sprayed onto stubble that is incorporated and when the seedbed is uniform in size and level.
“The Swifterdisc will turn paddocks around. If they’ve got heavy stubble loads or there is a weed burden, or they need levelling, one pass of the Swifterdisc and it’s ready for seeding.
“All seeders will also perform better, whether it’s a precision model or not, because there is a more even paddock to seed into,” Grant concluded.
This breakthrough model is manufactured by Bednar in the Czech Republic with over 20 years of experience in agricultural machinery, and while the XE18400 is the biggest Swifterdisc presented to local growers, other Swifterdisc models are already in operation here.
There have been Swifterdiscs XE12400 models with a 12.4m (40ft) cut working paddocks successfully for a wide range of broadacre crops.
There are Swifterdisc XE12400 models available for immediate delivery. While the Swifterdisc Mega XE18400 disc cultivator with an 18.4m (60ft) cut can be ordered now.