Cover story: Fransgård rakes and mowers

By: Lisa Potter

Farm Trader takes a closer look at the Fransgård range of hay attachments and movers in NZ

While Forestquip is better known for supplying forestry equipment to the New Zealand and Australian market, its dedication to sourcing high-quality European machinery also sees it represent the Fransgård range of hay attachments and mowers in New Zealand under H and H Machinery.

Designed and made in Denmark and with a global reputation stretching back more than 50 years, Fransgård is renowned for both quality and performance. H and H Machinery imports and distributes the Fransgård range in both the North and South Island of New Zealand, under its parent company Forestquip.

Particularly popular on this side of the world are the TI-6000 Combi Rake, the RV300/390 rakes, and the new DM series disco mower.

TI-6000 Combi rake

The rakes treat the material gently to produce a light fluffy swath

The Fransgård TI-6000 Combi Rake single-handedly delivers a variety of options for the user. This extreme versatility is much of the reason for its popularity, particularly its ability to switch between raking and tedding.

With a working width of up to 6.2 metres, the TI-6000 is ideally suited to farmers or contractors specialising in conventional or round bales. The three-point semi-trailing rake makes it easy to move between paddocks and through the smaller farm gateways.

Raking and tedding

The working width is set by a hydraulic ram allowing the swath width to be altered

The raking function is excellent, and this is the ideal machine if you like complete control when raking.

When raking to the centre, the swath width can be adjusted so that the pickup can collect material. The greater the working width, the greater the swath width. The rake design treats the material gently to produce a light fluffy swath to the required width.

As well as the ability to rake into the centre or to the side, the TI-6000 can make two swaths in one run (it can make two individual three-metre swaths). The TI-6000 is fitted with a swath curtain to help form a perfect swath when raking to the side. Rubber bushings are fitted to the curtain arm to absorb any shocks.

By simply using the gearbox selector, the direction of rotation of the left-hand rotor can be reversed to allow side raking. The cam position and cam following rollers are easily changed by hand. The camtrack can be set to three different positions to suit crop conditions and working format. When changing from raking to tedding, the rake arms are easily removed by pressing the spring-loaded lever. The arm is simply inserted and clicked into place in the tedding position. The machine is tilted forward for spreading.

Despite its multiple options, Fransgård’s combi rake is easy to service, enhancing its low operating costs. Special hardened crown wheels and pinions offer high reliability with minimal maintenance.

While all models have a spreading function, it’s worth noting that this is more of an option for added versatility if spreading is not your main aim.

Design and performance

A swath curtain helps form a perfect swath when raking to the side

The TI rakes have two rotors with six arms each, nylon wheels, and closed ball bearings in the cam track that do not require lubrication.

When they need to be moved between the different work functions, arms are easily removed via the spring-loaded handle.

When switching between raking in the centre and at the side, the direction of rotation is changed for the left rotor. It’s important that wheels in the cam track are rotated 180 degrees when doing this.

All models rotate between the suspension system and boom, which lock automatically when the machine is lifted. When switching to the transport configuration, the machine is folded in behind the tractor manually.

For road transport, the rake is swung backwards. The rotors, safety guards, and rake arms can be moved to their narrowest position to reduce transport width.

RV-300/390 Tedder/Rake

Wheels under each rotor ensure excellent stability in the field and a safe and easy operation

The Fransgård combi-rake has been successfully produced and sold for more than 15 years in New Zealand. This combi-rake is suited for both lifestyle farmers as well as the farmer with smaller paddocks.

According to H and H Machinery sales manager Richard Henkleman, the Fransgård RV combi-rakes are among the strongest and most robust combi-rake on the market.

Offering the choice of two sizes are the Fransgård RV-300 combi-rake and the RV-390, with working widths of three or 3.9 metres respectively. Both are exceptionally straightforward to operate and built strong to last, with uncomplicated maintenance.

These hayflys can work in many different crops for both tedding and raking. The hayfly can also be used for raking existing swaths into one large fluffy swath.

With rear crop guards out of the way, the crop can be spread wide and even leaving a fluffy swath.

Two wheels under each rotor on the RV-390 allow cleaner raking on uneven ground. The rakes are equipped with Cardan drive transmission between rotors to prevent stoppages. Specially hardened crown wheels/pinions are above each rotor, with strong steel ring at the base where the spring-loaded tines are fitted. The tines can be moved from raking to spreading position without the use of tools. The centrifugal force presses the springs down into the working position, and if they hit a stone or hole in the ground, they move up instead of down into the soil.

The rotor is designed to be solid and robust for longer service life. The working height is adjusted by pinholes over the gearboxes and can be fine-tuned by the TopLink. The RV-390 is supplied with four ground wheels and as an optional extra for the RV-300.

During transport, the rake is folded in manually behind the tractor.

Fransgård DM Disc Mowers

The new Fransgård DM series of disc mowers are ideal for the NZ market

The new Fransgård DM series of disc mowers are ideal for the New Zealand market, bringing both quality build and top-notch performance to the table. After years of involvement and communication with operators from around the globe (including New Zealand), the new DM models boast a swag of exciting new features and updates.

The Danish-produced lift-mounted disc mowers are manufactured and designed to work in many different applications, from topping paddocks to hay and silage mowing in both heavy and light crops.

Worth noting is the new offering of a heavy-duty three-point linkage headstock. The galvanised subframe (supported at both ends of the cutter bar) also adds more strength to the overall construction quality.

Powering a Comer cutter bar with oval discs and 4mm knives, the mower lies a broad and even swath. Available in three sizes, working width options vary from 2.05 to 2.85 metres, depending on the chosen DM model (DM-2050, DM-2450 and DM2850).

The new DM disc-mowers are equipped with R/L face down blades, which make a better cut of the grass combined with now two discs with hat on each side, improving the flow over the cutterbar and allowing for more efficient cutting.

All DM models are also designed to mount the optional hydraulic parallel lifting of the cutterbar. This parallel lifting improves efficiency, as it means the disc-mower can be lifted by activating the handle, with direct access to the disc-mowers hydraulic.

Adding to overall ease of use is an overload protection, which is triggered by impact and minimises damage if an unavoidable accident occurs during operation.

Maintenance is kept to a minimum with features such as an enclosed oil bath for the robust cutter bar, and the oval discs can be removed separately and serviced individually.

The machine is driven by four to six V-belts and a free-wheel friction clutch on the PTO. Powerful springs on the three-point hitch ensure that the cutter bar follow the contours of the terrain and create an even cut.

There’s plenty of space above the bar, and the heavy safety curtain helps create a vacuum, which raises the material and enables a more even cut. It also helps prevent flying debris.

Meanwhile, the hot-galvanized steel frame for the cutterbar cover helps resist corrosion from strong grass acid.

Galvanized swathe deflectors assure an even swath and act as a guide for the next row. The mower is designed to work perfectly, even at very high speeds, and cuts at a width of approximately 60cm narrower than the working width.

All models have hydraulic folding for transport, which also ensures that the hitch is always in the desired position (it’s locked via the transport chain).

All Fransgård disc mowers are fitted with reversible grass cutting knives offering lower horsepower requirements.

Available in New Zealand from H and H Machinery, along with an extensive selection of Fransgård machinery.

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