The H424 is a 4WD harvester head with excellent performance, adjustability, control and economy. Durability is improved through hose routing, and ease of service with location of grease points and hinged valve block cover. Greasing intervals are also longer.
New optional HD tilt frame available.
Tapiolan Kone Oy, Finland, had two men testing the new H424 harvester head, both on thinnings and regeneration sites. The seasoned operator with 30 years of experience in the industry was also impressed with the rerouting of the hoses. The hoses were the first thing about the H424 harvester head that caught Teemu Suvela’s attention. They had been routed in a different way compared to the H414, which Suvela had used before.
“Right away, it seemed that the harvester head had a better design than its predecessor. With the new routing, it seemed that the durability of the hoses shouldn’t be a problem anymore,” Teemu Suvela (in the picture) says. Tapiolan Kone Oy put John Deere’s cutting edge H424 harvester head to the test in October. Along with Teemu Suvela, Mika Suvela also got a feel for the harvester head. He has experience with 15 different John Deere harvester heads through the course of his career. “There’s usually some harvester head feature that starts to annoy you. There was nothing annoying about the H424,” Mika Suvela says. Mika Suvela says it was specifically the redesign of the hose routing that initially piqued his interest in the H424. “Someone sent me a picture of the harvester head, and I had to zoom in to get a good look at how the hoses are. Now they are as they should be.”
Ideal for regeneration stands
John Deere brought the H424 harvester head to the market in autumn 2020. Ideal for later thinnings and regeneration stands, the harvester head replaces its predecessor, the H414. Compared to its predecessor, the H424 has a greater backwards tilt angle and a new placement of the rear delimbing knives. These changes make it easier to work on slopes and in the handling of crooked stems. Additionally, the placement of the delimbing knives improves the accuracy of the color-marking knife. Teemu and Mika Suvela tested the harvester head in both regeneration stands and thinnings, and the experiences were positive.
“The harvester head has a lot of torque and can feed the trunks steadily and with force. Sometimes the problem with harvester head is that it wants to tip, especially when feeding the big trunks, and that makes the measuring roller spin empty and throw off the accuracy of the cut. The work is more precise with the H424,” Teemu Suvela assesses. Mika Suvela notes that the harvester head’s torque shines, particularly in regeneration stands with large timber.
“In a 600-liter spruce forest, I produced 10 cubic meters more in an hour with H424 than with the H413,” Mika Suvela says.
Chain replacement is easier
The H424 is equipped with the new SuperCut 100S saw unit. The saw unit’s next-generation chain tensioning unit, automatic chain tensioning, and mechanical bar locking give it added efficiency and reliability. “The long bar reduces the bar vibration, and it’s easier to replace the chain because the bar doesn’t have to be pushed against the spring,” Mika Suvela explains. The design also takes into consideration harvester head maintenance, which is convenient and easy to do without changing the position. So what did they think about the H424? “The H424 is a robust harvester head that is ideal for mid-size and bigger harvesters. Personally, I could see how the output of the harvester head is enhanced with the 1270G harvester,” Teemu Suvela assesses.
Mika Suvela, who has been logging for 30 years exclusively with John Deere machines, offers his clear assessment: The H424 is “a great performer”.
“The H424 is a good all-around harvester head – both for a one-machine contractor and for those whose logging leans more towards the regeneration felling.”
Source: In The Forest 1/2021, text: Maria Latokartano, photo: Kari Merikanto