New generation HarvestLab system for John Deere foragers

John Deere’s stand (G19) at LAMMA ’18 will feature the company’s latest 8000 Series self-propelled forage harvester, equipped with a new generation HarvestLab sensing system. Other new products on show for the first time at LAMMA will include the S700 Series automated combine and V400 Series variable-chamber round baler, alongside the award-winning 6250R and 8400R tractors and the latest FarmSight precision farming technology.

Several new features have been introduced on the 8000 Series foragers for 2018, designed to enhance operator comfort and increase productivity. Chief among these is the HarvestLab 3000 crop constituent sensing system.

Introduced in 2007, HarvestLab was the first NIR (near infra-red) sensing system in the industry to measure silage dry matter and enable automatic length of cut adjustments. The system was subsequently developed to analyse crude protein, starch, NDF, ADF, sugar and other silage constituents, and can now be used for maize, grass and manure sensing.

HarvestLab 3000 requires less maintenance, can operate in a wider range of temperatures and features a much bigger data storage capacity of 2GB, compared to the previous 32MB. It also has a more operator friendly web interface when used for stationary measurements away from the forager.

Basic JDLink telematics are fitted as standard on all 8000 Series foragers, and contractors in particular can specify a choice of ‘connected farming’ packages to make the most of this technology. Connectivity Premium includes guidance ready functionality, JDLink Connect, the work order management app MyJobConnect and a GreenStar 2630 display.

The Connectivity Ultimate package additionally includes a StarFire 6000 satellite receiver and HarvestLab 3000 with constituent sensing calibration. Both packages can be optionally upgraded with John Deere’s Ag Navigation system and the logistics app MyJobConnect Premium.

Other new features include the optional Active Fill Control rear unloading system, which allows the spout to automatically fill a trailer when the tractor follows behind the forager, for example when opening a field. This uses the forager’s StarFire satellite receiver to ensure a quick response, reduces operator fatigue and helps avoids silage spillage, especially in high-yielding crops.

New forager customers can also choose between the optional 10in GS3 2630 display directly mounted on the seat armrest or the standard 7in Command Centre display. Use of the GS3 2630 reduces the number of displays in the cab and can save up to around £1800 (€2000) on the forager’s list price.

John Deere is also introducing the new 490Plus 12-row rotary drum maize header for 2018. This double-folding header provides better visibility during transport, and is specifically designed to feed high horsepower foragers working in high-yielding crops in all harvesting conditions.

In addition, the 3m 639 grass pick-up is now optionally available with John Deere’s premium reel, which is standard on the wider 649 and 659 pick-ups. This unit is designed for extremely tough harvesting conditions and includes a range of heavy-duty driveline and reel parts, while the main wearing parts are Dura Line coated.

John Deere offered Dura Line crop flow components on its forager range for the first time in 2010, and owners of these machines have experienced a dramatic reduction in the cost of wearing parts. Based on this experience, the company is now guaranteeing selected Dura Line wearing parts for 3000 engine hours or a maximum of five years on all new 2018 forager sales.


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About The Author

John Swire - Editor of Agronomist and Arable Farmer as well as responsibility for the Agronomist and Arable Farmer and Farm Business websites. After 17 years milking cows on the family farm John started writing about agriculture in 1998 and has since written for a variety of publications and has developed a wide circle of contacts within the industry. When not working John is a season ticket holder at Stoke City and also of late has become a fitness freak, listing cycling, swimming and walking as his exercises of choice.