NEWS RELEASE April 28, 2023
X9 Harvester Delivers Fuel Economy, Handles Harvest with Ease at Crystal Brook
Crestmead, Queensland (28 April, 2023) — DAVID Hosking was keen to test just how quickly his powerful new X9 1000 combine harvester could work, but Mother Nature had other ideas — intermittent showers on already wet fields made harvest a challenging period at Crystal Brook, in South Australia's Mid North.
"We had one decent hot day on the X9 Harvester when we reaped and delivered nearly 600t of wheat over 12 hours which was good, with two of us delivering nine or ten road trains for the day," Mr Hosking said from his home base at Narridy.
"It was tough going. It was so wet in September, October and November that the water was still running out of the ground, and a late start meant we finished harvest a month later than usual."
But despite the 2022 cropping year being bookended by a dry start and a wet and windy finish, it was a good harvest, and one where the X9 proved its worth in the paddock.
All of the Hoskings' dry-sown crops — 550 ha of bread wheat, 210 ha of durum, 790 ha barley, 100 ha of faba beans and 1150 ha of lentils — recorded above average yields.
"We averaged over five tonnes per ha for wheat and over three tonnes per ha on the lentils. Overall, we put as much grain through the X9 Harvester in one harvest as we have in the past two-and-a-half years, thanks to the good yields and expanded cropping area," Mr Hosking said.
More crop requires faster harvester
After expanding land area under cropping to 2800ha in 2022, the Hosking family replaced their John Deere S680 and 45-foot front with the X9 Harvester featuring a 50-foot hinged draper front, to get their crop off and away quickly.
The X Series machine effectively offered an extra half a header in power and capacity but in the same frame size as the S Series. With weather conditions becoming more variable, the X Series is designed to optimise harvest windows and enable farmers to harvest quickly and with minimal grain loss.
Fuel economy 'a pleasant surprise'
Mr Hosking said the new machine handled a variety of operating conditions with ease, with the biggest surprise coming from 350 separator hours being fuel economy.
"In the X9 Harvester we were doing around 60 to 70% more tonnes per hour than in the S680 but used the same amount of fuel, which was a pleasant surprise. We'd expected to use 100L per hour but it averaged out at 80L per hour," he said.
"We didn't need to upgrade our fuel trailer but having seen the X9 Harvester at a demonstration day, we knew our chaser bin wouldn't keep up. So, we invested in a bigger bin, upgrading from 18 tonnes to 36 tonnes."
Hinged draper front tracking and feeding 'far superior'
Mr Hosking admitted he was nervous about how the X9 Harvester's hinged draper front would handle the challenge of some rocky conditions and the difficulties posed by deep wheel tracks made in the wet, but was 'very, very impressed' by its performance.
"It was far superior to anything we've ever harvested with or seen in cereals. The front tracked the ground very well and the draper system was able to feed in cereals very smoothly. It was the highlight of the machine," he said.
"We harvested a lot of lentils on the ground with wheel tracks which was challenging, but the number of settings was very good. The ability to change knife angles and downforce settings from the cabin, as opposed to getting out to do it manually, was really useful and appreciated by the operators."
Local dealer helps deliver maximum impact
The Hosking family, having lived in the Mid North since World War II have developed an integral relationship with their local John Deere dealership, Pringles Crouch in Crystal Brook.
Mr Hosking said that relationship ensured the smooth running and secure parts service necessary for a trouble-free harvest with his new X9 1000.
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