Back in 2013, the world got its first look at a near-ready machine designed to change the way farmers harvest. The Tribine, which has been under development by its inventor for nearly 20 years, is ready for Prime Time, and farmers can get a look at it running during the 2016 Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa; and Husker Harvest Days near Grand Island, Neb.
The company, from the start, has laid claim to the idea that this is the first fundamentally new harvester architecture since World War II, bringing a range of innovations to "help farmers operate in a more productive and efficient way," according to a media announcement.
The harvester is a kind of miracle marriage between a combine and a grain cart, which the company pulled together in just 18 months after bringing together a team of engineers. Notes Ben Dillon, president of Tribine Harvester: "The future of harvesting is now. The Tribine performs all of the functions of a combine, only better and faster. Incorporating a 1,000-bushel grain bin, the Tribine can eliminate the need for a grain cart and tractor running parallel with the combine."
When Ben Dillon developed the early idea of the Tribine, the aim was to improve efficiency and to reduce compaction. With four aligned low ground-pressure tires, and center articulation with a pivoting rear axle, the Tribine leaves but one trail in a field. That's compared to up to six tires of varying widths and spacing creating multiple paths through a field.
The company also lays claim to having the world's largest threshing and cleaning system, providing up to twice the cleaning area of any other harvester, no matter the brand. Adds Bob Matousek, vice president of engineering: "The capacity of major importance to producers is the crop throughput rate. Tribine's solution to this is a large diameter rotor with 270-degree concave wrap, which feeds a cleaning system of considerable width utilizing an advanced pneumatic cleaning method."
For faster harvesting, the 1,000-bushel grain tank can be unloaded in less than two minutes, and theres a 500-gallon fuel tank which the company claims allows for 24 hours of continuous operation.
This is a different looking machine from the outside, and in the cab operators will find there is no steering column. It's been replaced by a joystick on the side, and the cab floor is glass, providing plenty of visibility. The company also claims a tighter turning radius than most combines. It's a different kind of harvester that many will want to see in operation.
Dillon pulled the engineering team together in January 2015, all with experience in design and manufacturing, to create Tribine Harvester LLC in Newton, Kan. The Tribine is no longer a prototype, and you can see the machine at work at both the Farm Progress Show - Aug. 30 to Sept. 1 in Boone, Iowa; and Husker Harvest Days, Sept. 13-15 near Grand Island, Neb.
Key facts about the Tribine:
• 1,000-bushel grain tank that unloads in two minutes or less
• World's largest threshing and cleaning system
• Two engines provide 590 hp of continues power, no diesel exhaust fluid required
• 500-gallon fuel tank for 24 hours of continuous operation
• Full-time all-wheel drive with tighter turning radius than many combines
• Glass cab floor for enhanced operator visibility
• Steering column replaced by single joystick control
• 360-degree LED lighting for night-time operation
Learn more about this innovative machine - which is going to be available in limited quantities for the 2017 harvest - by visiting tribine.com.