Harrow design adds to safety

BRANDON — Safety was a key criterion at Pillar Lasers Inc. when it set out to design a new heavy harrow last year.

“Most harrows have the jack stand on the back bar, and they’re notorious for sinking in the ground,” says Dick Friesen of Pillar Lasers in Warman, Sask.

This can become a nuisance because it’s a lifting force instead of a downward force, he added.

Friesen said the negative force at the hitch is a hazard regardless of what type of implement farmers tow.

“Our new heavy harrows design puts 1,200 pounds down pressure on the hitch when it’s in the transport position, and we no longer have that hitch sticking up in the air,” he said.

“That was a general nuisance.”

Another priority for Pillar is the cab control of the hydraulic systems that run so much of the machinery: hydraulic down pressure control, hydraulic wheel adjustment between field and transport modes, hydraulic tine angle adjustment, harrow frame gauges and solid draw tubes.

The hydraulic tine and down pressure adjustments from the cab are the most significant features when it comes to getting the job done quickly and efficiently.

The rear transport wheels rotate hydraulically for moving in and out of transport and field modes. Manyheavy harrows use a set of wheels for transport and a set for the field.

“Some guys want to run their harrows more aggressively at the back,” Friesen said.

“If you do that, just watch the gauge. Your notches won’t line up anymore. It’ll be up or down.”

The front wheel on the new Pillar is also unique.

Most heavy harrows have their wheels mounted on the hitch, which means there’s always a knuckle on the main beam that has to pull when in the transport position.

That position is usually behind the wheels so it puts more negative weight on the hitch.

“Our hitch setup puts the wheels right underneath the frame,” Friesen said. “So now, the pivot point is in front of our wheels, which is putting weight down on our hitch. That’s what we want.”

Extensive field testing took place last year, with positive results. The first machines should be available this year.

For more information, contact Dick Friesen at 306-242-4955 or visit www.pillarlasers.com.

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