Agrowplow AP91 offers greater deep ripping efficiency
Soil care and innovation has been the driving force behind the latest Agrowplow deep ripper. Researched and proven, the latest features can significantly cut farm costs and boost crop yields. The exclusive innovations built into the newly released Agrowplow AP91 will save tractor fuel and time spent working the machine in the paddock.
Agrowplow principal Shannon McNab said the company responded to requests from farmers and contractors for a machine that could work at deeper depths.
It began research work and trials last year with its own test rig in rocky country at the company’s headquarters at Molong in New South Wales. The company combined its findings on a new shank assembly design, shallow leading tines and wide wing points with studies on these tines by a team at the West Australian Department of Agriculture and Food.
The department’s studies showed that the benefits of deep ripping, from 35cm to 50cm down, can last up to three seasons, and up to 10 seasons on farm operations using controlled traffic systems in light sand.
Shannon said the new stronger AP91 models made ripping simpler and smarter for the farmer. They were easier to tow and would generate time and fuel savings and an increase in crop yields.
Deep ripping lifts and shatters hard-pan under the soil, allowing better moisture penetration and plant roots to access minerals, moisture and nutrients. The practice also benefits the soil’s microbiology. Research by the West Australian Department of Agriculture and Food found that “for every dollar farmers spend on ripping, they will get $6 to $16 back”.
“With the AP91 we feel we have a product with a lot of modern features not available on other ploughs,” said Shannon.
The machine features a single row of shallow leading tines working in-line and ahead at depths of up to 450mm. This then reduces the draft force required by the following deep rip tines, set to penetrate up to 600mm. The research shows this complementary in-line tyne system reduces the tractor power needed to tow an implement by up to 18 per cent.
Shannon said AP91 models were available in 6m to 12m widths and would require tractor horsepower ranging from a minimum of 300hp to more than 600hp, depending on the soil type to be worked.
The innovative No.9 shank assembly design, exclusive to Agrowplow, features a scissor action and full frame height shank extension. If the shank hits a rock or other obstacle it can’t destroy, the shank breaks back until level with the frame in a radial motion that allows the material to flow under the machine safely without attaching and damaging the shank or the robust 200x200x9mm RHS assembly frame.
AP91 models are available in widths of 6m, 9m or 12m for controlled farming operations and features a new level lift system and wings able to float up 20 degrees or down 10 degrees to follow ground contours. There are folding wings on two of the larger models to enable road transport.
Wide wing points are an option with the new No.9 shank assembly to produce a more complete fracturing of the ground.
An innovation with the AP91 models is the clip-on No.9 blade system that allows speedy fitting or replacement of the tips on the ends of the tynes. Clips behind the boots hold them in place, ending the time consuming need previously to belt each boot on with a hammer.
The first AP91 has gone to a West Australian grain farm, where it has been trialled against Agrowplow’s previous model machine.
Shannon said the farm manager was happy to have traded up and was impressed with the innovative features and performance of the new unit. With 450ha already ripped, we were pleased to be reported back that our No.9 blades were “still looking as good as new”.