Boekeman Machinery salesman Ben Boekeman (left) and Yerecoin farmer Cameron Waters were in a jovial mood last week when Torque snapped this shot during a quick break in Cameron’s harvesting program. Ben wanted Torque to check out the new Seed Terminator, which was installed by Boekeman service staff on his Case IH 7240 header. “It’s working brilliantly,” Cameron said. See lead story.
Article by Ken Wilson Farm Weekly
MANAGING weeds is like painting the Sydney Harbour Bridge. When you’ve finished the task, it’s time to start again. Which is the reason farmers are so keen to use any tool they can to reduce weed seed
burdens. And it’s even better if you can cut costs in the process.
That was the equation that appealed to Yerecoin farmer Cameron Waters, when he did his sums comparing an Integrated Harrington Seed Destructor against a Seed Terminator. “I’ll be honest, I was looking
at the Harrington model but I didn’t think I’d have enough horsepower with my header (a Case IH 7240 header rated at 300 kilowatts, 405 horsepower with a boost to 349kW, 468hp),” Mr Waters said. “And it was also a personal choice of going with a beltdriven model (Seed Terminator) because I’m not a fan of (extra) hydraulics.” The cost equation weighed in favour of going with the Seed Terminator which he had installed by Boekeman Machinery, Wongan Hills, earlier this year. Last week as he took off a healthy crop of Zen wheat (going Noodle), Mr Waters was over the moon at the performance of the Seed Terminator. “We’ve done about 200 rotor hours so far and it has worked brilliantly,” he said. “It turns anything that goes into it into powder, like flour, and that includes ryegrass and radish seeds.” As a back-up strategy, Mr Waters also is windrowing straw coming off above the rotor, which will be burnt after harvest. “I want to hammer the weeds to take the pressure off using chemicals and to get rid of volunteer cereals,” he said. “It’s all part of a long term plan because I haven’t got resistance yet and I’m using this two-pronged attack because we were getting a bit too tight on rotating chemical groups. “Hopefully this will give us more confidence in getting
cleaner paddocks.” Mr Waters also said the support of Boekeman Machinery tipped the scale for his purchase. “I would not have had the confidence to run the machine without the support of (salesman) Ben Boekeman and (Boekeman product support manager) Brett Asphar and the service team,” Mr Waters said. “They all made sure that the machine ran well and we had back-up service and parts available.”
The Seed Terminator has been designed as a simple onepass solution to harvest weed seed control. Weed and volunteer seedspresent in the chaff material leaving the cleaning shoe, are intercepted and pulverised using a new multi-stage hammer mill technology. It incorporates an efficient mechanical drive system that is driven by the harvester engine, with minimal moving parts, incorporating only shafts,
belts and gearboxes. The belt is driven off the chopper shaft. The hammer mill technology incorporates trade-marked Aero- IMPACT technology, for efficient low turbulence aerodynamic impact mechanism.
According to Seed Terminator Pty Ltd director Mark Ashenden, the Aero- IMPACT provides the impact needed to kill more than 90 per cent of annual ryegrass seed (as tested by the University of Adelaide) while
maintaining a low power draw. The mechanical drive system incorporates Smooth-Feed trademark technology to prevent material blockages. The most-asked question Mr Waters answers relates to power
draw-down. “We’re operating the header between 80 and 90 per cent engine load and I forget we’ve got the Terminator,” he said. “It doesn’t feel like we’re using any more power and it (Terminator) runs smoothly.”
Mr Ashenden, who is a “reformed banker and a recovering accountant” with an MBA, said the idea of the Seed Terminator came from his nephew, Kangaroo island farmer Nick Berry, who after completing an engineering degree published a PhD on eliminating weed seeds. “Nick came up with the technology and I assisted with gaining private funds to get the concept off the ground,” Mr Ashenden said. “We are ready to take it to the market and WA will be a major market for us. “We’ve also had massive interest from overseas, particularly in North America and Europe.”
The idea of the Seed Terminator came from Kangaroo Island, South Australia, farmer Nick Berry, who after completing an engineering degree published a PhD on eliminating weed seeds. Then he got busy making his Phd a reality.