With those farms committed to dairy and beef farming continuing to grow in size, many now require greater capacities than the largest models in the existing Powermix Pro diet feeder range are able to provide, without compromising mixing and feeding times. This has led to the creation of new 24 and 30 cu m Powermix Plus models to complement the Powermix Pro machines of up to 25 cu m, which remain in production. Key features include replaceable lower tub liner sections, a first for Shelbourne Reynolds, aimed at helping maximise machine life and minimise lifetime running costs.
“With many farms increasing herd sizes around existing buildings, Powermix Plus machines have been designed to offer higher capacities and swifter processing and feed-out times without greatly-increased dimensions,” explains Neil Smith, sales and marketing director at Shelbourne Reynolds.
“To meet the needs of businesses that may be mixing up to 150t/day of feed, we’ve created a machine that’s been beefed up in a number of key areas, ranging from the axles to the tub design and from the feed-out conveyor to the gearbox. However, machine size has been kept compact, with the 24 cu m model only 3.0m tall and 2.8m wide at the top of the tub.”
Mounted on a separate chassis, in a design concept used on existing Powermix Pro models, the tub on Powermix Plus machines sits on six two-inch weigh cells, for high-accuracy weighing. Further chassis specification includes a 24-tonne capacity tandem axle with parabolic spring suspension, 435/50 R19.5 tyres and robust steel mudguards. Air braking and a steering rear axle are optional.
“The key wear area and the point which often determines length of life of many diet feeders is the lower tub wall, where the mix comes into closest contact with the steel,” points out Mr Smith.
“By designing the new Powermix Plus with a bolted-in lower liner which can be replaced relatively quickly on farm, we are aiming to help users maximise the life of their machine and the value of their initial investment, while minimising operating cost over its lifetime.”
The new heavy-duty 2,800mm diameter augers are powered by a similarly heavy-duty planetary gearbox. Auger speeds of 13, 24 and 43rpm, selectable via Shelbourne’s proven wireless electric control system, enable faster chopping, mixing and dispensing of feed.
Dispensing is taken care of by a new webbing conveyor system incorporating increased roller diameters and uprated food-grade belting. The new conveyor is 800mm wide and, coupled with a larger door, has been designed to allow significantly faster feedout rates, particularly when feeding fresh grass in zero grazing systems.