Compatibility key factor in guidance decision

The West Australian

Compatibility of equipment is becoming and increasing concern for producers, according to Case IH.

South Australian farmer John Rohde says he now believed it was "important to standardise".

"Like every farm, we have bits and pieces of everything stuffed in the back of the shed because it is not compatible with something else," he said.

Mr Rohde has a 127-hectare property that is mainly producing wheat, legumes, hay and canola.

The Rohde family has been growing crops in the area for a great many years, although in the early 1950s, John's father split away to buy the present property, which is only five kilometres from the family farm.

In April this year, Nr Rohde bought an FM-1000 guidance system from Lyndoch Motors which he installed on his Case IH Magnum� 340 tractor. He says that quite a bit of research went into the decision especially as he wanted something to control the TrueGuide system which he purchased for his seeder.

"Much of my existing equipment comes from Case IH. In fact, I haven't bought a different coloured tractor or harvester for a very long time," he said. "The FM-1000 was compatible and I thought that we had to stick to the one product - especially as we swap stuff over from headers to tractors to sprayers, and so on. A-B lines created by the Case IH Pro 700 can be followed by the FM-1000 and vice versa.

"Importantly, I needed equipment that was accurate enough to sow between the rows, which are only 300mm apart. So, after quite a bit of research, I bought the FM-1000 with the TrueGuide facility - which virtually provides two guidance systems in one.

"The bar does a very good job but, with wheels at the front and the back, it moves much more than a normal one would. This has been one of our issues.

"The TrueGuide certainly has overcome the problem on the work we have done with the unit so far - some seeding and spreading urea. This year has provided us with a really good trial. However, the real test will come next year.

"The guys who work for us set it up and I haven't heard any complaints so far. So they must be very happy with it."

Mr Rohde said that having a flash drive facility on the unit had the potential to be very useful, as it enabled them to build a database when they were ready to do so.

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