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The Bedford buys John Deere
The Bedford Golf Club at Great Denham has invested almost £250,000 in a fleet of new John Deere course machinery, bought from dealer P Tuckwell Ltd of Maulden, Bedfordshire on a John Deere Financial six-year finance lease.
On arrival at The Bedford almost a year ago from his previous course, Woburn Golf Club, head greenkeeper Simon Trotter was encouraged by joint owners Geoff Swain (who is the current world golf trickshot champion), Steve Kavanagh and Eamon McEvoy to upgrade the whole fleet as part of the club’s long-term leasing plans, rather than simply replace a handful of machines.
The new line-up includes a TE electric and two HPX 4x4 Gator utility vehicles plus a Pro Gator equipped with an HD200 amenity sprayer; a 260SL walk-behind greens mower plus trailer; two 2500E hybrid electric greens mowers with groomers; 7200 tees & surrounds and 7700 fairway PrecisionCut mowers; a 1600T Series II wide area rotary mower; an Aercore 2000 tractor-mounted aerator; a 3520 compact tractor with matching 300CX front loader and a Tru-Turf greens roller.
The 15-year old, 18-hole US resort style course boasts some of the largest tees in the region, in addition to big, undulating Augusta-style USPGA greens.
“Overall it was a case of wanting to invest in new technology that was best for the course,” says Simon Trotter, who leads a greenkeeping team of three full-time, one part-time and one seasonal staff, plus a full-time mechanic. “We have a lot of pretty wispy rough, which grows quite long, and previous machines just weren’t suitable.
“From tees to greens, including the driving range, we have approximately 15 hectares of grass to mow, plus about 35ha of rough. The John Deere 1600T was therefore a big factor in our choice, and proved on demo to be by far the best solution for us – it just blitzed the job. It provides a better quality of cut and plenty of power, which is certainly needed for the size of area it has to mow.
“The triplex ride-ons are used on the greens and tees, but the approaches are now mown by hand to give a better definition and quality of finish. There’s not been that much grass growth yet this year, but this has already improved the look and quality of all the approaches.
“The other key new machine is the Aercore aerator,” says Simon. “We have very good drainage that allows play all year round, but there had been no basic aeration done before I arrived, so this was immediately a number one priority. With 1.3ha of greens to manage, the 2m wide Aercore was needed for its speed of operation – ideally, weather permitting, we’ll spike the greens, tees and approaches once a month to two or three inches deep, and then use a sorrel roller every couple of weeks through the growing season.
“Due to the lack of maintenance and aeration in the past, there has been a lot of thatch and moss build-up to deal with, but since we got the Aercore in, the thatch levels have already been reduced by around 10 per cent. We’ll also be using it for hollow coring and solid tining, in addition to using scarifier units on the greens mowers, so we can really get on top of the thatch and moss and continue to improve the playing surfaces.
“Another important aspect of the deal is the dealer back-up and after-sales service, which is excellent. I’ve known the Tuckwell groundcare manager Martin Green since my Woburn days, and it’s very reassuring to know that the dealer and John Deere are there for us when we need them.”
NEW CAT TH 336C DEMO
NEW 6125M TRACTOR AVAILABLE FOR DEMO
New Cab For John Deere 5E Series Tractors
Designed to provide more comfort, performance and versatility, John Deere’s 5E Series three-cylinder utility tractors will be available from this spring with a new John Deere designed cab. A 5055E model was shown for the first time in the UK at LAMMA 2013, and in Ireland at the FTMTA Farm Machinery Show 2013.
The 5055E, 5065E and 5075E models from 55 to 75hp (97/68 EC rating) can be ordered with two new cab options, equipped with either basic roof-mounted heater/ventilation outlets and controls or a higher specification air conditioning and heating system. The cabs also feature opening front, rear and side windows for extra visibility when required. An additional new feature is a digital instrument panel, as featured on the bigger 5M Series tractors from 70 to 100hp.
All three models feature a John Deere PowerTech M Tier III engine, providing good fuel economy and low emission levels, and an open centre hydraulic system with independent pumps. A single rear SCV is operated by a dedicated lever as standard. Additional options include a second rear or mid-mounted SCV, operated by a joystick control.
The synchronised nine forward/three reverse inline transmission follows an H pattern and can be shifted on the move via side-shift levers within the range. A standard 540rpm pto operates at a rated engine speed of 2400rpm, while the 540E economy version runs at 1700 engine rpm.
The tractors can be fitted with a choice of two mechanical self-levelling or non self-levelling loaders, with lift capacities of either 873 or 989kg to a maximum lift height of 3.38m. Rear lift capacity is 1.8 tonnes at the hitch balls.
John Deere 5E Series tractors are suitable for a range of customers including smaller livestock or mixed farms, speciality growers and part-time farmers or private landowners, as well as the commercial groundscare market. Prices of the new models and cab option are still to be confirmed.
Gator features new power steering
Providing even greater performance in a range of environments, John Deere’s popular XUV 855D Gator 4x4 utility vehicle is now available with power steering. This is designed to reduce steering effort considerably, compared to models without this feature.
John Deere’s full Gator range, with the exception of the smallest CX model, is also available for the first time with PowerGard Protection. John Deere PowerGard is a straightforward solution to equipment servicing and repair work, designed to help Gator customers budget for the total cost of ownership. Thanks to the standard two year warranty and PowerGard Protection, it is possible to have up to four years of cover for the vehicle.
The new factory installed, electric power-assisted steering (EPAS) system is standard on models with olive & black livery, and optional on green & yellow models. The system has an anti-kickback feature and speed sensing – the faster you travel, the more responsive the steering becomes, controlled by a torque sensor and an on-board computer. The steering design also reduces tyre wear on hard surfaces, and is more turf friendly.
The 25hp XUV 855D Gator is the fastest and most powerful diesel utility vehicle in the John Deere line-up, with a top speed of 32mph (52kph). It features a true on-demand four-wheel drive traction system, activated by a dash-mounted electronic switch, and double A-arm front and rear suspension, which is adjustable at the rear. Ground clearance is 267mm (11in), total payload is 635kg and towing capacity is 680kg.
The Gator’s standard four post ROPS frame can be optionally upgraded to a deluxe full glass cab if required, and further options include tool carriers and cargo box dividers, a front mounted load rack, a bull bar and side extensions.
Price of the 2013 model John Deere XUV 855D 4x4 Gator utility vehicle with olive & black livery and power steering as standard starts at £12,288 (€14,805 in Ireland) for the base machine with Terrahawk tyres (excluding VAT), while the green & yellow livery model with optional power steering is £100 (€120) less.
New 6M Series tractors from John Deere
Available from December 2012, John Deere’s versatile 6M Series tractors provide more power, functionality and operator comfort than their 6030 Series predecessors, offering new levels of efficiency and performance from a standard tractor range.
The newly styled 6M Series (see table below) includes tractors from 115hp to a new top of the range 170hp (EC 97/68), and a 140hp model featuring the highest power level yet from a John Deere four-cylinder tractor. The existing 6130, 6230 and 6330 Standard Cab models from 85 to 105hp will remain in the range for 2013.
John Deere 6M Series tractors feature a full-frame design, three wheelbase sizes, optional Triple Link Suspension (TLS) and an optional front axle brake to deliver maximum braking power with minimal pedal force.
The 6115M, 6125M, 6130M and 6140M models are equipped with Stage IIIB compliant 4.5-litre four-cylinder PowerTech PVX engines, while the larger 6150M and 6170M are powered by Stage IIIB 6.8-litre six-cylinder PowerTech PVX engines – the same as the premium 6R Series tractors. All models feature a rated engine speed of 2100rpm (reduced from 2200rpm), a new cooling system and an increased fuel tank capacity of up to 405 litres.
Using field proven technologies to meet the latest emissions standards, these fuel-efficient diesel-only engines feature exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), a variable geometry turbocharger (VGT) and an exhaust filter. This last component includes a diesel oxidation catalyst (DOC) and a diesel particulate filter (DPF).
The enhanced cab offers numerous improvements, including a newly designed dashboard with an integrated onboard display to facilitate machine settings. The display can also be used as a performance monitor.
The proven PowrQuad and AutoQuad Plus 40kph transmissions allow smooth gear changes on the move, assisted by a standard declutch button. Thanks to the newly available EcoShift mode, engine rpm is automatically reduced when reaching high speeds, thus improving the tractor’s fuel efficiency and further reducing noise levels.
More power, faster response times, increased operator comfort and enhanced efficiency are provided by the 6M Series’ improved hydraulic system. Four-cylinder models feature an 80 litre/min pressure compensated system, with the option to fit a 114 litre/min pressure and flow compensated version, which is fitted as standard to six-cylinder models.
Other options designed to provide additional versatility and performance include larger tyre sizes of up to 2m diameter, an ex-factory front hitch and pto, and a choice of John Deere front loaders designed to match individual tractors.
In addition, the optional iTEC Basic headland management system helps the operator to automate multiple functions simultaneously. John Deere 6M Series tractors can also be optionally fitted with GreenStar and ISOBUS ready wiring, to further improve productivity, and come fitted as standard with CESAR Datatag and integrated immobiliser systems.
New John Deere 6M Series tractors
Previous 6030 Series Standard model
New 6M Series model
6130 (85hp 4cyl)*
6230 (95hp 4cyl)*
6330 (105hp 4cyl)*
6115M 4cyl small-frame
6430 (120hp 4cyl)
6125M 4cyl small-frame
6534 (125hp 4cyl)
6130M 4cyl mid-frame
6630 (135hp 6cyl)
6140M 4cyl mid-frame
6830 (145hp 6cyl)
6930 (155hp 6cyl)
6150M 6cyl mid-frame
6170M 6cyl large-frame
*Existing models remain in range for 2013
QA UNITS CUT PRECIOUS TIME
Appleby Golf Club’s long-serving course manager Steve Campbell and his assistant Grant Dougherty do all the mowing on this 18-hole Cumbrian moorland course. Time is therefore at a premium, and anything that saves this precious commodity without compromising course quality is a real bonus.
So when Nigel Hurst of John Deere dealer Henry Armer & Son gave a demonstration of the company’s new Quick Adjust (QA) cylinder mower cutting units to course managers in the area, Steve saw them as a highly practical addition to his armoury, and genuine time savers.
He already owned a John Deere 2500E hybrid electric greens mower, so he bought a second machine equipped with QA units from Armers. Impressed with their performance benefits, he also decided to upgrade the cutting of tees and surrounds by buying a new 8000 E-Cut hybrid mower.
“We usually do the adjustments in the shed, but the job can be done just as easily out on the course now,” says Steve, who has been in charge of course maintenance at Appleby for 27 years. “All you need is a gauge and a drill. It’s been easy from day one – anyone can do it.
“I reckon we save about an hour each time we make an adjustment, so over the year that’s a lot of time saved, which we can spend doing other vital jobs around the course. Obviously the biggest time saving is at the beginning and end of the main cutting season when height changes are more frequent, but spring and autumn are when there’s most of the other work to do anyway.
“Quick adjustment of the cylinders is a real benefit to us, especially because you don’t even have to take the units off the machine, which used to be pretty tough sometimes.”
Steve Campbell cuts the tees and surrounds twice a week during the summer and used to use a 72in triplex mower, but says his new 8000E is already giving better results. “I now get a wider 80in cut, and the five floating units tackle undulations so much better than the old machine,” he says.
“Before, I had to lower the cut just to reach some parts. Now, I can keep the cut up and get a really good, consistent finish. Turning on the tees without marking makes the job so much quicker too – I love the 8000E’s three-wheel manoeuvrability.”