The new 1444 disk from Sunflower is designed to work well in rolling, terraced ground and rocky soils. The new four-section disk's linkage system allows each half of the disk to function independently, not only from side to side, but from front to rear. It comes in 30-, 33-, 36- and 40-ft. sizes. The transport width ranges from 18 ft. 2 in. to 19 ft. 9 in. Prices start at $35,000. Contact Sunflower Mfg. Co. Inc., Dept. FIN, Box 566, Beloit, KS 67420-0566, 800/748-8481, www.sunflowermfg.com .
Precise seed metering
Great Plains' two new planter models have a new precision seed-metering system. The 30-ft. planters feature a SingulatorPlusa meter that handles row crops such as soybeans and corn and can switch to volumetrically metering smaller grains such as wheat. An extra-large meter wheel turns slowly, allowing the meter to operate accurately at planting speeds up to 8 mph. Growers may change from planting 7½-in. rows to 15- or 30-in. rows by shutting off certain row units. The planters also may plant two row crops by turning two rows off, two rows on, etc. List prices for the planters range from $55,000 to $90,000. Contact Great Plains Mfg. Inc., Dept. FIN, Box 5060, Salina, KS 67402, 785/823-3276.
New Deere utility line
John Deere just introduced a new line of utility tractors designed to meet your small-horsepower needs. The new 4000 Ten series includes nine tractors with engine power ranging from 18 to 48 hp. The series is loaded with new features, including electronic controls that provide a wide array of options not found in other small tractors. For example, an operator may preset a maximum speed and a rate of deceleration. Another feature prevents engine stalls. Four-wheel drive is standard or optional on all the tractors. Retail prices for the new tractors start at $11,069 for the 4010 and $24,539 for the 4710. Contact John Deere, 800/537-8233, www.johndeere . com.
Cut and bale
AGCO introduces two new hay implements designed for lower-horsepower tractors.
Under the Massey Ferguson brand, a new pull-type swather has a 35-ft. cutting width. The MF 120 PT converts from swathing to transport position in less than two minutes without tools, according to the company. A tractor with 50 PTO hp is needed to handle the implement. Price range: $14,140 to $21,110.
The new Hesston 700 series Rounder balers produce high-density round bales. The bales are 39 to 47 in. wide and up to 52 in. tall. Hesston claims that the 730 and 740 balers are economical and ideal for growers with a limited budget and a lower-horsepower tractor. The 730 requires a 30-PTO-hp tractor, and the 740 needs only a 45-PTO-hp tractor. Both balers feature the open-throat, vertical-bale-chamber design found on other Hesston balers. The 740 model costs $13,200. Contact AGCO Corp., Dept. FIN, 4205 River Green Pkwy., Duluth, GA 30096, 800/767-3221, www.agcocorp.com .
Wide baling, raking
Claas introduces a new round baler and two new rotary rakes.
The Variant 280 round baler is designed for a variety of crops, including silage and dry hay. It features an extra-wide, 83-in. pickup, a roto cut option, and bale sizes from 36 to 72 in. with a width of 48 in. Suggested list price for the baler with the roto cut option is $29,163.
The new 650 liner twin rotary rake with a 20½-ft. swath retails for $14,954. A chassis that swings into different positions with double-acting hydraulic cylinder allows a grower to make one or two windrows.
The larger, 880L liner twin rotary rake clears a swath from 24 to 27 ft. A tandem axle undercarriage allows the unit to smoothly follow the contour of the field. Price: $23,227. Contact Claas of America Inc., Dept. FIN, 3030 Norcross Dr., Columbus, IN 47202, 812/342-4441, www.claasofamerica.com .
Rakes, balers and tedders
A number of new hay products are coming off the production line at Krone. Four new rotary rakes are available. Three of the models (KS345, KS421 and KS461) are rakes with a single rotor. These models offer working widths that range from 11 ft. 2 in. to 15 ft. and cost from $4,500 to $9,700. A new two-rotor, center-delivery rake (model KS-881) has variable raking width of 25 ft. 5 in. to 28 ft. 8 in. and lists for $25,715. This model features hydraulic fold from the tractor cab.
If you want square bales, check out two new models of Krone's Big Square baler line. Both models feature a new pre-chamber crop feeding system with five rakes and one feeder rake to generate consistent bales. The Big Pack 88 sells for $66,950 and produces bales that are 31.5 in. wide, 31.5 in. tall and 39 to 98 in. long. The Big Pack 128 retails for $78,355 and produces bales that are 47.3 in. wide, 31.5 in. tall and 39 to 98 in. long.
Upgrade your rotary tedder with the KWT-880 model that offers a working width of 28 ft. 8 in. The tedder features a hydraulic fold transport chassis, which allows the tedder to be used on smaller tractors. Retail price: $16,995.
The new KW-550T is a smaller, pull-type tedder with an 18-ft. working width. Price: $5,995.
Krone's new 13-ft., center-pivot-tongue disc mower conditioner, model AMT-4013CV, retails for $28,785. The center pivot tongue allows convenient up-and-back cutting in the field.
Contact Krone NA, Dept. FIN, Box 18880, Memphis, TN 38181, 901/842-6011, www.krone-northamerica.com .