20 September 2022

Tyres raplacement

After almost 7,000 working hours on our John Deere 5720, it's time to change the front tyres. All these working hours were not carried out with the Continental tyres that you see in the pictures, because it worked a lot with narrow tyres in the parallel tasks related to garlic crop. John Deere’s main dedication was garlic crop until 2014 when we stopped sowing them and since then we have dedicated it to olive groves and as a second cereal tractor working mainly with the front loader. 

Therefore, we needed to update the front tyres as one of them, which we already vulcanised in January, after breaking on one sidewall. The another tyre would still have more hours of use, but ideally both tyres should be changed to have similar traction on both front wheels. Even with the front loader works, the tyre has to work with quite a lot of weight so the right tyre was showing more and more problems every day.  The choice was easy: Vredestein Traxion 85

A year ago we removed and replaced all four tyres on our Deutz-Fahr M600 Agrotron and the choice was Vredestein Tranxion 65 (you can see our video about that). At that time we were considering other options and brands, but after the whole year and about 700 working hours, we think the choice was the right one. So, if something works, it's best not to change it. We will keep you posted on how the new tyres are working. 

We visited the Vredestein website and were surprised by the large catalogue of agricultural tyres that the Dutch manufacturer offers, covering tractors, trailers, harvesters, implements, telehandlers and loaders, ATVs, etc. If we focus on tractors, the variety is quite complete: 

Our conclusion is clear, we have choose Vredestein because their quality and their variety. What do you think of these tyres? Do you know them? Have you used them?

Versión en español.

05 September 2022

Harrowing with the beam

Once the grain has been harvested and the baling work has been completed, we start with the planning and work for the next season. One of the tasks to be carried out is the incorporation of stubble and straw residues into the soil, with the aim of integrating this organic matter into the soil. 

In our case, the integration of straw and stubble residues is done in the following way: 

  1. Superficial work using cultivator implement. The aim is to break up the stubble. 
  2. Two works with the beam will finish mixing the straw with the soil while cutting it into small pieces. 

We will focus on the second step, as it is the most innovative and is performed with a beam which, as you can see in the photos, is a rudimentary implement but very effective tool. There are some more sophisticated beams (suspended with hydraulic folding, different thicknesses of iron, etc.), but ours is the most basic and therefore the cheapest, but it still does a good job. 

The implement consists of two joined beams, with a working width of 7 metres, which are pulled by two chains. When the beam carries soil and straw, the work is spectacular. In addition, the working speed is quite high and with the large width, you can work in a day a lot of hectares... it should be highlighted the very low fuel consumption because the tractor does not work very hard. Perhaps the only drawback is that this work has to be done on hot days, because the straw is more manageable when it is very dry. 

In terms of your experience, are any of you using any similar or better tool? We are looking to hear about your experiences.

Versión en español.

23 August 2022

Factory I. Gregoire

Last July we had the great opportunity to visit Gregoire's headquarters (Cognac - France) thanks to its official dealer in our area, Talleres Marsemar. It was a trip that we will remember fondly, due to its fantastic atmosphere generated by all those who attended the event. The warm welcome in France and the opportunity to visit the headquarters of the French grape harvester and sprayer manufacturer were part of our wonderful experience. 

During the training days, we were able to attend a talk explaining how the joystick works on the grape harvesters and how it is possible to configure and use the new iMonitor. The machines can be customized to be adapted to the best working conditions for each vineyard, almond or olive grove. They also explained in detail some of the adjustments, especially to the harvesting head. Besides, we talked about maintenance highlighting the most important and common spare parts that are usually used during a harvesting season. In another talk, we looked at Gregoire's extensive portfolio of grape harvesters and sprayers. We were also able to test the driving simulator of a grape harvester... they are developing it together with the universities of the area and taking into account an open-source software project.   

The next day, we visited the factory where all the grape harvesters are assembled. As they indicated, they do not manufacture all parts (such as chassis and everything related to cutting, bending and machining) that are made in external companies that are at most 300km away. Everything arrives at the factory ready for the first step, which is cleaning and painting. Once all this is done, the grape harvesters are assembled. As you can see in our video and photos, the cabins are also fully assembled there. We thought that the assembly line would be like that of tractors, where they go through different areas to assemble the different parts. In this case, the chassis is fixed, and the machine is fully assembled on site. Another thing that surprised us was the number of pieces it carries... For example, each GL series grape harvester has about 500 meters of tubes. 

It should be noted that we didn't have any restrictions when filming inside the factory. It should be mentioned that it is an interesting factory, very well equipped, clean and tidy. They are currently producing 2 grape harvesters per day, when the norm was to finish 2.5 grape harvesters per day. The current problem is that a year ago they suffered a fire (in the painting area) which is causing them to remodel the plant. 

Finally, we visited the prestigious Remy Martin winery, where we were able to taste one of their cognacs. We cannot offer you any photos or videos as filming was not allowed there, but we can recommend a visit if you are ever in the Bordeaux area. 

We finish again, thanking Talleres Marsemar, and also Gregoire, for the invitation and the pleasant experience. 

Versión en español.