With the introduction of its Guardian SPF sprayers, New Holland has joined the growing group of companies selling front boom sprayers.
The concept of mounting a spray boom on the front of the sprayer is not new, dating back to the 1960s when Ray Hagie moved the booms to the front of his model 435 sprayers.
Until recently, Hagie and Miller were the only companies with front booms, but that bandwagon has started loading up quickly.
Producers have been slow to accept that a boom can be up front, where they can conveniently see what’s happening without cranking their necks backward. However, producers are starting to accept the idea as more front boom sprayers appear on the market.
CNH got into the front boom business when it bought Miller, which included the proven Nitro design that had been a front boom sprayer from the beginning.
Andrew Chase manages the Mazer Group New Holland dealership in Roblin, Man. He has sold five of the units since the SPF was introduced.
“We got one up here as a demonstrator last fall,” Chase said.
“The first guy who drove it kept it. That’s how it’s been going since. We bring in a demo and the first guy who tries it buys it. Guys really like the visibility and the balanced ride. Weight distribution is 50:50. On a conventional rear boom sprayer, 70 percent of the weight is on the rear tires.
“The 50:50 balance helps the ride, but it’s especially important with these wet seasons we’ve been having. Balanced weight lets you drive through a lot of spots you’d sink into with a rear boom.”
A front boom has a few advantages:
- the engine can move to the back so heat and noise don’t affect the operator
- the tank is in the centre of the frame so the front/rear weight balance remains the same dry or full
- a front boom with nozzles on the back side gives the operator a good view of what’s happening
- the enhanced boom view lets the operator run the nozzles closer to the crop and avoid impacts with obstacles
- spray hits the crop before the tires do, thus reducing the dust cover on the leaves kicked up by the tires
Four Guardian models, powered by Cummins diesels, range from 240 to 365 horsepower. The hydrostatic drive uses twin pumps. Front direct drive wheel motors on all models are Poclain MW units. The rear direct drive motors are Dyna Plus on the smaller size sprayers and Poclain on the bigger sprayers.
Tank sizes are 1,000 to 1,600 gallons, in either poly or stainless. The rinse tank is 150 gallons. Boom widths are 90 to 120 feet.
Rather than using the conventional truss style boom, the Guardian employs a mono boom design that is a long tube made of high strength steel. The tube is less of a visual impediment to the operator than a truss. Nozzles are mounted on the back side of the mono boom, giving the operator even better visual contact with the field and spray patterns.
Keeping the boom level and preventing it from breaking in rough conditions requires a parallel suspension with extra long arms.
The four wheel independent suspension system has 20 inches of travel, contributing to a better boom ride and smoother ride for the operator. New Holland says the 15-foot turning radius is one of the tightest in the sprayer industry. There are 14 adjustable halogen lights for night spraying.
Guardian sprayers use a single-pass cooling system. Most ag implements stack the radiators and heat exchanger cores front to back.
The first exchangers to receive fresh air always benefit from this arrangement, but the air passing through the exchangers further back in the stack are already heated by the front cores.
On the Guardian, the heat exchangers are arranged bottom to top rather than front to back. As a result, each exchanger core receives only fresh, cool, unobstructed air. The fan pulls all air to meet the cooling requirements in a single pass.
For more information, contact Chase at 204-937-2134 or visit www.newholland.com/na.