Farmer Iron
Feeling the need for speed?

Feeling the need for speed?

With at least four major planter makers offering new tech, 2015 could be a quick planting year.

There's that great line from the movie Top Gun - "I feel the need, the need for speed" and of course they were talking about jet fighters. But these days with less labor and bigger farms I'm thinking a few of our readers feel sometimes like they need some speed too.

Perhaps it started when tractor road speeds started to increase. In Europe, where truck taxes and other factors make transportation more tractor-based, faster road speeds are a must. Over that that meant 50 khp (kilometers per hour), which is about 30 mph here. One manufacturer - JCB - even operates their machine at 40 mph.

John Deere made a bold statement with the rollout of the ExactEmerge system - 10 mph planting speed.

As farms got bigger, and fields got farther apart, higher road speeds are starting to become the norm here. And tractor makers have stepped up.

But equipment engineers are always looking at key parts of your job and seeking new equipment opportunities. When Horsch launched its electric planter meters to market, accuracy and control was a key driver; the fact that you could run faster and maintain precision, well that was just an added benefit.

Last year at the National Farm Machinery Show in Louisville, John Deere made a planter speed statement noting the new ExactEmerge planter was "Accurate at 10 mph. Exactly." There are of course some skeptics out there regarding the need for so much speed. But new technology will help avoid overlap - and planting in waterways - so you can move as fast as possible to get the crop in.

With the spring weather that's been hitting the Midwest the last few years, every minute will count. If you're looking at moving faster at planting and you've invested in one of the newer electric meter planting systems from Horsch, Kinze, Precision Planting or the new John Deere, we'll be interested in what you learn.

Drop me a note at [email protected] or leave a comment here in this blog (and yes you have to register).

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