North Star Robotics has developed a system capable of turning machines, including small tractors, lawn mowers and snow plows, into robots capable of performing tasks autonomously. The lawnmower in this picture is equipped with the company’s technology and is capable of completing precision mowing jobs without operator intervention. |  North Star Robotics photo

Man. company helps turn tractors into robots

A package from North Star Robotics enables farmers to more easily embrace autonomous operation of farm equipment

Spotting driverless-tractors working a Canadian field will be commonplace in the near future. Canadian growers are already retrofitting equipment with technology that enables machines to works autonomously, such as Brian Tischler’s Ag Open GPS and Matt Reimer’s tractor that pulls a grain cart up to his combine. These solutions require a fair amount of tech […] Read more

While most manufacturers promote their high-speed disc drills as 10 or 12 m.p.h machines, Todd Parkman says the 45-foot Norwood Kwik-Till is engineered to work at 15 m.p.h.  |  Ron Lyseng photo

High-speed cultivators get faster

Equipment manufacturers are building disc cultivators stronger so that they last longer at higher speed

FARGO, N.D. — The speed of high-speed disc cultivators seems to be getting faster and faster every year. One good example is the 45-foot Kwik-Till, which is designed to work at 15 m.p.h. The Kwik-Till vertical tillage machine is built by Norwood Sales in Cooperstown, N.D. It’s been on the market for six years, and […] Read more

What’s a GPS system doing on an irrigation center pivot? A pivot is the ultimate self-steering farm machine. It rotates around a central axis, automatically guiding itself without complex electronics. Reinke’s Vern Hinnenkamp was at the Big Iron farm show to explain that the precise variable rate farmers use when applying fertilizer and crop protection products can also be applied through a centre pivot, if it’s equipped with GPS.   |  
Ron Lyseng photo

GPS on centre pivot

FARGO, N.D. — Irrigation farmers have pumped fertility and crop protection through their pivots for decades. Most dryland farmers have come to depend on GPS for mechanical prescription application for about a decade. But seeing a GPS unit at the end of an irrigation leg can prompt a person to scratch his head. By its […] Read more


Calcium chloride: does it work with CIS?

Tire experts say the sloppy slush isn’t intended to work with central inflation systems because of its corrosive nature

LANGHAM, Sask. — Central inflation systems are coming on strong with tire companies designing special CIS tires and equipment manufacturers offering CIS as a factory option. But what about calcium chloride? How does CIS fare with ballasted tires filled with the sloppy slushy? Saskatchewan farmer Paul Heglund recently asked us that question in an email. […] Read more

Three factors are driving the latest generation of cultivators:  wet conditions, herbicide resistant weeds and farmer demand for multi-taking cultivators, according to K-Line’s Joe Symington.  |  Ron Lyseng photo

Tillage no longer a dirty word, or not as dirty

Manufacturers today don’t feel they’re soiling their reputations by introducing a new cultivator


FARGO, N.D. — The days are gone when tillage was a bad word and no-till was the prairie mantra. Farmers touring the recent Big Iron show in Fargo were treated to a heaping helping of fresh new cultivators. The surge in new tillage equipment was sparked by generally wet conditions, along with the need to […] Read more


The RFM Auspoint coils on display at Big Iron had seeded 8,000 acres in tough Australian conditions before being shipped to North America, according to PolyTech rep Pat Reinhard. These spring steel coil wheels are flexible to throw off mud and crop residue. The Australian-built coils are used both as closing wheels and also gauge wheels.  |  
Ron Lyseng photo

Spring steel wheel sheds mud better than rubber

FARGO, N.D. — Farmers attend farm shows to see what’s truly new, innovative and of benefit to them, such as the Australian-built spring steel coil closing wheels and gauge wheels that shed mud. Australian farmers set their autosteer to go in a straight line and then take a nap, or so the story goes. Straight […] Read more

The new Rubicon has a mid-mounted 2,220 gallon tank, front mounted aluminum booms up to 160 feet, independent air bag suspension and steering at all four corners, and a a full 72 inch ground clearance. | Ron Lyseng photo

Big sprayers keep growing

FARGO, N.D. — In the high-stakes contest to have the biggest self-propelled high clearance sprayer, Hardi’s Rubicon 9000 with a 2,200 gallon tank and 160-foot front mount aluminum boom is the new leader. In keeping with the latest sprayer technology, Rubicon booms are mounted out front of the cab and all liquids are carried in […] Read more

Sensors keep the chop unload on-target for the box, as the system moves through the crop. At nearly 1,000 h.p., the new Deere forage harvesters not only appear different on the outside, they have the option of more power and new features. | Chris McCullough photo

New Deere forage harvester touches 1,000 horsepower

John Deere has unveiled a new beast to the self-propelled forage harvester market in the form of the 9000 Series with the largest model touching 1,000 horsepower. Following intensive German farm association DLG’s testing in high yielding maize fields in northern Italy and in Germany, John Deere has unwrapped the new 9000 Series of harvesters. […] Read more


After their first year of UTV ownership, most farmers go back to their dealer for rubber tracks, which naturally leads to a snow plow, bucket or snow blower. Nobody expects to do heavy duty snow removal with their UTV, but these small machines are mobile and efficient working around buildings and in the yard.  |  CAMSO/Kimpex photo

Take your UTV from horse to mule

The Utility Task Vehicle (UTV) is no longer viewed as a farm toy. It performs a multitude of farm tasks and does real work. Little Brother ATV is still a handy get-around vehicle and more of a recreational machine, but Big Brother UTV is the one farmers rely on as a miniature pickup truck. Extracting […] Read more

At 3,200 gallons, the Dammann DT3200S4 is the biggest self-propelled sprayer in North America. With six-wheel drive and four-wheel steering it is also one of the most unique. | Michael Raine photo

That’s a big sprayer, even by Prairie standards

WOODSTOCK, Ont. — Kitted-out as a Canada Special, the new Dammann 3500 HS4 Profi-Class is the largest self-propelled sprayer in the North American marketplace. While not quite the widest, at 125 feet, it takes the prize for the most capacity, at 3,170 gallons. The machine’s ability to remain in the field longer between refills makes […] Read more