John Deere X9 1000 harvester combines connectivity and capacity

John Deere X9 1000 combine harvester connectivity allowed the operator to see machine movements in near real-time for more accurate results

Third-generation New South Wales farmer Broden Holland commented on how the added capacity delivered by John Deere X Series harvesters proved its worth almost immediately

Connectivity and capacity paid dividends for third-generation New South Wales farmer Broden Holland at Koolpari Enterprises this harvest. 

It was a case of looking back with the satisfaction and relief after having completed a successful winter harvest in the 2023-24 season, one that may have not been as smooth or profitable without the efficiency delivered by Precision Agriculture technology. 

“I honestly don’t think we could live without it,” said Broden who farms alongside his partner Jess, and parents Chris and Kelly just one day after the final row of 4,300 hectares of wheat and canola had been taken off. 

“The John Deere Operations CenterTM mobile app is probably the most opened on my phone, and everything that happens in the paddock goes straight to Ops Center. 

“Having all of that data right there in your phone is just unreal,” Broden adds. 

The Holland family has been farming half-way between Grenfell and Young NSW since the 1960s, however, it was in 2020 that they committed to a fully connected farming system when they converted virtually their entire fleet to John Deere, in search of greater Precision Agriculture capabilities. 

The operators at Koolpari Enterprises farming were quick to complement the John Deere Operations CenterTM  for providing the ability to see machine movements in near real-time and help successfully take off 4,300 hectares of wheat and canola with ease

Today, that fleet includes an 8R 340 Tractor, a 9520R Tractor, two John Deere X9 1000 Combine Harvesters, John Deere 4240, 4440 and 4640 Tractors, a John Deere Windrower and John Deere N560 No-Till Air Drill, to support the Koolpari operation which also includes 6,000 Merino wethers. 

One of the greatest advantages of connectivity, from Broden’s perspective, is being able to see machine movements in near real-time. 

“Understanding where the machines are and their fuel levels is really handy, and this year we’ve even installed John Deere M Modems on our trucks, which has just been awesome – I think we’ll also put them on our telehandlers next season,” Broden added. 

“Throughout harvest, if I wasn’t in the header, I could look at my phone and see exactly what yield we were getting. Yield and other harvest information also come from the headers back into the Operations Center every five seconds. 

“You don’t have to input any information yourself at all, so there is no need for cumbersome USBs or data entry, which I estimate saves me two weeks of the year.” 

Working from 9am and through the night to 2am the next day the highest speed reached was 12kph and only dipped down to 6kph when conditions were at their harshest with up to 55 tonnes/hour in some paddocks

The Hollands farm almost the entirety of their enterprise at a fully variable rate, so PA tools and connectivity are also integral to mapping and efficient herbicide and fertiliser application. 

GPS-based guidance and machine controls such as AutoTracTM help to ensure the fleet can be consistently operated by Koolpari’s two full-time employees and team of seasonal staff, while Remote Display Access (RDA) means their dealer, Hutcheon and Pearce, can help with setup, optimisation and trouble shooting. 

“It’s just made life so easy because if one person needs to jump off a tractor and onto another, everything is set up the same,” Broden explains. 

“There’s been a couple of instances over the past couple of years where Dad or I weren’t home and we’ve had other people on the machines. Having RDA and being able to coach someone while I was 400 kilometres away proved to be priceless. 

“Our entire team has the app on their phone and we use the flag system a lot, so if there is a bog hole or a noxious weed that needs treating everyone knows. 

“It’s one of those things that until you have it, you don’t know what you’re missing out on.” 

Running two John Deere X9 1000 combine harvesters was the perfect fit for the Koolpari Enterprises farming operation to gather their 2023-24 winter crop

X Series earns harvest crown 

The jewel in the crown of the Koolpari Enterprises harvest fleet was the two X9 1000 Combine Harvesters that only arrived in June 2023 and were ordered after Broden was “blown away” at two local demonstration days. Together they powered through both the canola and wheat crops. 

“It was a bit of a tough year as we had just 370mm of rain, however, our canola still yielded an average 2.2 tonnes/hectare and our wheat 4.7 tonnes/hectare,” Broden added. 

“When it came time to harvest, both crops had suffered some frost damage meaning there was a lot of material that went through the header, and we were operating right on the limit of moisture. 

“We put a lot of bulk through, but never had trouble with our sample and our losses were always minimal, which was awesome.” 

In the canola, Broden estimated the X9s achieved 30 to 40% more capacity than a John Deere S780 or similar competitor machine, taking off up to 32 tonnes/hour, despite the bulky conditions. 

For the wheat crop, the machines averaged 42 tonnes/hour, up to 55 tonnes/hour in some paddocks, and needed to handle tougher threshing due to the frost damage that had been incurred earlier in the season. 

With GPS-based guidance and machine controls like AutoTracTM it ensures John Deere X9 combine harvesters run consistently fully aided by Remote Display Access (RDA) for any trouble shooting

“On our best day, we stripped 1,800 tonnes in 23 hours, all at 13.5% moisture, and filled up with fuel only once,” Broden offered. 

“On the other days, which usually ran from 9am through the night to 2am the next day, we did not fill up at all and took off 1,200 tonnes comfortably between the two machines. 

“The highest speed we reached was 12kph, and we dipped down to 6kph only once when the conditions were as tough as nails. The consistency of these machines was one of the best parts of the harvest.” 

Capacity pays dividends 

The added capacity delivered by the X Series proved its worth almost immediately. 

“We were getting to the point where we needed to either run two shifts with the two headers we previously had or go to three machines to start getting crops off more quickly, because we live in an area that seems to always attract storms at harvest. Our entire year comes down to these four weeks,” Broden added. 

The two X9s made the most sense as an alternative and eliminated the need for the Hollands to call in additional contract machines. 

“This year, we did the entire harvest ourselves with our two headers, but every other year we’ve had to bring someone in. “Plus, we now have the added benefit of having great yield maps and all our data flowed seamlessly throughout the season,” Broden concluded.

For more about John Deere GPS-based guidance and machine controls and product launch information from John Deere, find your nearest dealer on this link.

John Deere X9 Series harvester specs