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Machinery NewsPlenty of heritageAfter a change in distribution for the well-known brand Maschio, Huntingdon-basedimporter RECO is now the importer for Breviglieri power harrows. We got our hands on oneof the latest MekFarmer 220 models from the range.With the end of a relationship with Maschio, RECO will now import the extensive Brevi powerharrow range.It was last year when RECO announcedit would no longer import the Maschioproducts or parts after the manufacturerinsisted they bring in their whole productrange or nothing at all. To fill the gap inthe importer’s range, RECO is now solelyresponsible for importing the Italian-builtBreviglieri power harrows into the UK.Marketed under the Brevi name, the rangeof power harrows is built in Verona, northernItaly which is one of the most industrialareas of the country. In 1949 the familycompany started to produce machinerysuch as rotary tillers, toppers and stoneburiers, but it was 1956 when the first powerharrow was produced. Today, Brevi designsand manufactures all of its transmissioncomponents in-house at its 25,000m²plant. The structural frames and weldedcomponents are outsourced to local specialistsuppliers but are subjected to Brevi’s rigorousquality control checks throughout themanufacturing and assembly processes. Breviexports more than 70 per cent of its output toaround 55 countries worldwide and producesas many as 2,000 power harrows a year.RECO Managing Director, John Walls, says“While we are sad to see the end of our 33year relationship with Maschio, we are, at the34 Tractor & farm TraderP34-35 Brevi.indd 34 20/08/2012 13:20Tractor & Farm Trader (March 2012)

POWER CULTIVATINGW Rowell and Sons Case IH 280/6m Brevi power harrow combination covered 60 acres a day comfortably last season, to keep up with the output ofthe businesses five-furrow plough. “I operated the Brevi throughout the trial and afterwards; it had a lot of hard work to do and it sailed through it,”Andy Rowell (inset) says.A wide-working Brevi power harrow has enabled a Cambridgeshire farmingbusiness to increase output and improve timeliness of drillingHeavy ground throughout the landthey farm dictates W Rowell andSons cultivations policy. Basedat Abbey Farm, Woodwalton,Huntingdon, the 350-acre all arablebusiness is run as a partnership betweenHarold Rowell and his sons Ian and Andy,and practices a three-crop rotation: twowheats for milling followed by oilseedrape.Due to the soil type the usualestablishment regime is with a five passsystem. Straw is sold in the swath andthe first wheat land is ploughed after rapeand then cultivated with a power harrow/packer combination. Moisture retentionwithin the seedbed is critical so the groundis then consolidated immediately with aset of 6.3m-wide Twose rolls fitted withbreaker rings. The stale seedbed is thensprayed off and drilled.“Within the rotation this means that thewhole farm is ploughed every three years,which also helps with the control of blackgrass,” Andy explains. “And we alwaysknock down with a power harrow.”Second wheat is put in under a mintillsystem under which the cleared landis cultivated by a pass with a set of 3.5mSimba heavy discs, and then drilledimmediately and rolled. The oilseedrape is put in with a subsoiler-mountedbroadcast seeder.Good weather last autumn enabled theRowell’s to vary the cultivations policy.There was also the introduction of a 6mBrevi power harrow to the machineryfleet. “The good conditions meant that wecould plough the whole acreage to hit theblack grass and we had the opportunity totrial the Brevi in place of our 4m Maschiopower harrow and then purchase it,” Andysays.“It was supplied by Reco. We’vealways dealt with Maschio and Reco arelocal to us so it is easy to get spare parts.Assessing the performance of the Brevi inheavy land was also a learning curve forthem.”Increased outputThe 4m-power harrow was run behindthe farm’s Case IH MX155, the 6m Brevion a Case IH MX280. The combinationof the wider working width and the morepowerful tractor immediately gave anincrease in output. “With the smallercombination we were averaging 35 acreson a good day; the Brevi and MX280covered 60 acres a day comfortably,”Andy comments.That output meant the power harrowkept pace with the farm’s Dowdeswellsix-furrow vari-width plough, which canbe run in-furrow or on-land. “We alwaysplough at 14ins furrows and we like toplough on-top as you’re not batteringthe furrow wall down with the tractorwheels,” Andy says. “As the output ofthe power harrow was the same as theplough, we could consolidate and sprayoff in blocks and then drill the whole farmin one operation with our 4.8m WeavingCaddy tined drill, which we think is verygood drill, we’re extremely impressedwith it.”As to W Rowell and Sons’ assessmentof the performance of the 6m Brevi powerharrow, he says: “We power harrowthe plough down to 4ins and it did anexcellent job; the tines and the packer lefta nice tilth. The quick-change tines areexceptional and the gearbox is superb.”Road work is involved when movingbetween some of the fields and Andyremarks that the Brevi’s hydraulic foldingsystem puts the machine’s two 3msections neatly into the vertical and withinthe tractor width for transport.“Even being able to hold back due tothe good conditions timeliness of drillingwas improved,” he says. The 6m Brevi’soutput will also enable W Rowell andSons to maintain timeliness of drilling inseasons when they practice their standardestablishment regime.“We can’t fault the Brevi’sperformance,” says Andy, who adds:“There is only one thing missing; it wouldbe helpful to have a scale marker on thehydraulic roller to make it easy to go backto a set position.” Farm Contractor & Large Scale Farmer January 201261reproduced with kind permission from ACP Publishing Ltd

combination impresses fenland contractorwheel-steer, a 230hp 3230 Smoothshift,a 3230 Xtra and a new top-of-the-range310hp 8310 which has replaced a270hp 7270 model.“We have a good workingrelationship with Pecks, which weconsider to be an excellent dealer, andespecially with Jon Wareing who looksafter our account. The dealer providessuperb back-up and the service staffhave considerable experience of theFastracs,” he commented.“We get on very well too withJCB staff that are keen to hear ourfeedback regarding various models.We were asked to try out one of thepre-production 8310s between Apriland September last year and were veryimpressed, particularly with the fuelefficiency. Despite having a lot morepower than the 7270 and carrying outheavier work, the new engine was farmore economical and we were able tooperate for two days on a tank full.“The 7270 had a smaller tank buton heavy work struggled to operate afull day which meant we used valuabletime running around with a bowser forrefueling. We estimated that it used 5–ten litres/hr less diesel than the smallertractor, and its Adblue consumptionwas approximately four to five per centcompared to diesel on transport tasksand up to 12 per cent when workinghard on cultivations. Average wasapproximately 10 per cent,” pointedout Matt.“We had no hesitation placing anorder with Pecks for the new model fordelivery as soon as it was available, andwe believed the extra power it offeredwould enable us to get jobs carriedout more quickly which would be anadvantage.”The tractor was displayed by Pecksat its annual open day in February andthe business took delivery immediatelyafter.The extra power of the JCB 8310meant a fresh look was taken at theimplements on the fleet, and the orderwas placed with a local dealer for aused Vogel and Noot plough, withwide frogs and longer bodies moresuitable for the wider tyres.A lot of land preparation withpower harrows is undertaken by thecompany, and two 6.0m machineswere due for replacement. Pecks hadrecently taken on the Brevi range,and Matt was impressed with thebuild quality. “We spend a lot of timeoperating power harrows, and becausethey are used as the final operationprior to drilling, it is important thatthe finish is even, the land is left leveland that the reliability is very good asdown-time would hold up the drilling.Having looked at the Brevi harrows,and discussed them with the staff atPecks, I decided to trade in two 6.0mharrows we were using and replacethem with a single 6.0m Brevi.”Matt said he liked the appearance;the main gearbox looked verybeefy, it looked well designed andeasy to adjust, and the rear packerroller has a larger diameter than thecompany’s existing power harrowswhich sometimes struggled in wetconditions.“With the five year manufacturer’swarranty it looked an excellentpackage.”DEM took delivery of the newtractor and power harrow in earlyMarch and Farmers Guide went alongto see how they were performing. Mattwas preparing a seedbed for sugarbeet in the Cambridgeshire fens andsaid he was very pleased with theperformance.The previous crop had been peas,and the land had been ploughed andcultivated a few months earlier, andgranular fertiliser applied the daybefore. “The Brevi power harrow tookvery little setting up and in operationit is very smooth. The leveling boardis easy to adjust and the packer rolleris leaving a good finish ready for thebeet drill. I think the tines will last wellbut the quick-release feature means ifwe do break one, or when they needreplacing, it will be a quick job withminimal downtime.“Maintenance is easy; the greasenipples are all easily accessible. Thepower harrow folds quickly and thelock which secures it when it is foldedis very positive. It feels safe.”Matt had used the Fastrac for somehaulage work, but this was its first testin the field. “It has plenty of power forthe power harrow and I am surprisedhow quiet the cab is,” he said. “Thevisibility is very good forward and tothe sides, but the rear mudguardsare large and restrict the view ofthe implement, so I tend to use thelarge rear mirrors to keep an eye on itinstead. The tractor we tried was preproductionso our new tractor is betterfinished. I am very pleased with it.” ■Brevi power harrows are a new name in the UK. Reco started importing the ItalianBreviglieri brand in November 2011, and Matt said he had been impressed with thebuild quality and reassured by the five year warranty.5 year warranty *PINPOINTPRECISION.power harrows &rotary cultivatorsCall for detailson 01945 464909 orrecommended email new JCB and Brevi power harrow will be used to prepare land for peas, pumpkins,sugar beet and cereal crops for farmers and large scale producers in Cambridgeshire.Seedbed quality and timeliness are critical and Matt said the large diameter rearpacker will work well when conditions are less than ideal.NEW - GPS based Precision Farming control for accuratevariable rate OSR applicationChoice of controls - new Precision VR - precision farming capable, fully automatic,GPS based variable rate control system or existing Wizard - radar based speedrelated control with manual rate change.Both systems have full monitoring of all functions and are available for Turbo Jet pneumaticseeder for any machine up to 8m wide, and Micro Meter gravity seed box for smaller rigid Applicators - the word is spreading* t’s & c’s applyFarmers Guide May 2012 65reproduced with kind permission of the Farmers Guide

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