The powered axle and larger tyres on this Richard Western SF18 trailer allowed Danish contractor Gads Maskinstation to crack on in the wet and complete this season’s difficult maize harvest.

This autumn’s damp conditions have plagued the maize silage harvest across much of north-west Europe, and many contractors are still struggling to chop the last fields this side of Christmas.

Swapping the front wheels for tracks helps self-propelled forage harvesters to keep going. The big issue for many contractors is being able to run alongside it with a tractor and trailer.

Richard Western Suffolk SF18 trailers usually run on tandem axles with 560/60R22.5 tyres (600/55R26.5 option). Keen for a different configuration, Gads Maskinstation runs four (first two arrived in 2013 and the second pair in 2020) SF18s with a single hydraulically powered axle and extra-large 800/65R32 VF boots.

Supplied by the customer and fitted by the Suffolk-based trailer manufacturer, the drive axles with planetary driven hubs are believed to have come from a loading shovel or dump truck. The Suffolk-based trailer manufacturer also incorporated a cross member for the hydraulic motor mount (the tractor drives a hydraulic motor which drives the diff on the axle).

The Danish contractor’s New Holland T9.560 was on hand to keep the T7.315 and Richard Western SF18 alongside the self-propelled forage harvester in the wettest patches and to assist the tractor and trailer in safely getting out of a field with a full load of maize.

Danish contractors are not alone in struggling with water-logged maize. It is also wet in the UK and Ireland and Richard Western is keen to see if there is any interest for the single-axle solution.

“We can offer trailers from 11t to 18t with single non-powered axles in the wide- or standard body width format with 750/60R30.5 tyres on short delivery for the new year,” comments Richard Western’s Egidijus Kasparavicius. “For powered axles, we can either source the axles or fit axles and wheels supplied by the client.”

“The most common option for wet conditions are BWT20 trailers with tandem axles and 650/50R26.5 tyres (commonly found in sugar beet and maize silage harvest operations). The tri-axle on the SF20 and SF24 for the export market is usually supplied on 650/55R26.5 tyres.”

Pictures kindly supplied by: Agri Tech Media

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