Training fields

Krone cultivates and displays its grassland fleet in County Kildare

Although Krone sells everything it can produce, and more, upgrading dealers and their staff with the latest equipment remains a vital part of the machinery business.

Recently, Farmhand held a series of training days for their distributors of the company’s machines at Lyons Farm, Co. Kildare, and took the opportunity to demonstrate it while standing together in a field.

Another busy year for Krone

Business is booming for the company, with the number of units sold far exceeding the number the factory intended to produce.

So much so that the company recently purchased an additional 25 hectares and intends to expand further over the next few years.

When lined up, the Krone range makes an impressive display

Krone is still a family business that prefers to grow organically rather than by acquisition, and it has achieved this goal, she says, by preserving family values.

In Ireland, this is exemplified by the close working relationship it has with the Scrivener family, who own and run Farmhand in a very ‘hands-on’ way.

Beer bottle length

Paul and Stephen Scrivener were present throughout the training days, ensuring that the dealers, the majority of whom are also family businesses, and their technicians were up to date with the latest equipment.

The benefit of getting the machines set up correctly was a major theme at this year’s event and leaving a bit more stubble than usual when cutting in Ireland featured prominently in the presentations.

Clover swards UCD
A good stand of clover was present in the grass

The tendency in Germany, apparently, is to leave a stubble the length of a beer bottle neck in the field, rather than trying to bring the harvest, along with the topsoil, home.

Leaving a little more behind not only relieves pressure on machinery, but encourages regrowth while reducing soil and fecal contamination.

Familiar areas

The fields in which the machines operated were exactly the same as those visited by Agriland back in February when we took a look at the latest Grasstec metered slurry system.

Krone Grass Clover Big X
With over 1150 hp on tap, the Big X was little more than nibbling the windrow

The crop had grown well with a very noticeable clover content that was present all the way up the rather open turf.

There was no sign of the slurry applied a few months earlier and growth was consistent across the field.

Powerful engine

Krone had brought a variety of grassland machines to demonstrate to dealers, the big item being its flagship forage harvester, the Big X 1180.

Forage harvester with krone engine
This is what 24L of Liebherr engine looks like in the back of a Big X

With 24L Liebherr V12 engine purring in the back, he barely noticed what was being put in front of him at the reduced operating speed necessitated by the presence of people in the field.

1156 hp may sound extravagant, but Krone has sold several of these units in Ireland, which remain contractor machines.

Mow with ease

The big, heavy crops of grass they’re designed for also require heavy-duty machinery to cut, haul and rake it, and there’s no mower bigger than the big M, with its 10m cut .

Although the self-propelled machine is getting all the attention, Krone also had a new trailed mower to show off that day.

Krone trailed mower
The latest trailed mower has several new design features, including wheels mounted inside the width of the frame

Although it is based on its predecessor, there have been several improvements, including moving the trailer wheels inside the chassis, making it easier to pass through narrow walkways.

tedders and rakes

The latest Vendro tedder has also been redesigned for this season. It appears to have been reinforced and is now fitted with new “C” type tines, which are said to be more effective at picking up grass.

Krone field grass
Latest Vendro tedders continue to be popular with farmers

As for raking, the Swardo TC 1370 was on display, a rake whose adjustable width extends from 13.7m to 10.8m. This particular model has also been fitted with section control, lifting the rotors in and out of the job as needed, to leave a clean finish.

Lawn cloverleaf rake
The Swardo TC 1370 can reach 13.7m and is fully equipped with section control

Harvesting grass isn’t the Big X’s only preserve. Krone still does a steady business in forage wagons despite other manufacturers dropping them from their product lines.

krone grass fodder wagon
Forage is still a stable seller for the crown, bringing in about 15 a year

The demand comes mainly from dairy farmers who want to retain the independence and flexibility to do it themselves. The machines also give a longer chop which many prefer, believing it to be gentler on a cow’s rumen.

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