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Fieldays 2023: Duncan Enviro Triple Disc Drills

The new versions of the Air Triple Disc drill are the result of two years of Duncan engineers consulting with dealers and end users to develop a larger direct drill

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Farmers and contractors visiting New Zealand Agricultural Fieldays® were treated to a sneak peek of the next generation of Giltrap Ag’s Duncan Enviro triple disc drills.

The new versions of the Air Triple Disc drill, the six-metre ATD60 and the 4.2-metre ATD42, are the result of two years of Duncan engineers consulting with dealers and end users to develop a larger direct drill.

Both are folding models that give the ability to sow a full complement of crops in a wide range of soil types and conditions.

Giltrap Ag NZ national sales manager Matt Moodie says discussions with Duncan dealers and customers showed that there was a gap in the market for triple disc drills with wider working widths than the three-metre Duncan ATD30.

“To determine what larger farmers and contractors wanted in a direct drill, we got groups of customers and dealers around the table at meetings around the country. Once we had their input, our design team got to work,” says Matt.

“Over the next year, they went from the ground up to develop a completely new drill. We developed the six-metre version first, and it has now had its first full season of testing in Canterbury and Otago. We handed it over to contractors and farmers and then we got feedback from them.

“It was well received, and we made changes to address the shortfalls they identified when we built the 4.2-metre version. That version has now been tested in the South Island and it has gone up to the North Island for further trials.”

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The six-metre ATD60

Matt says the ATD drills have performed well everywhere, from flat, irrigated paddocks on the Canterbury Plains to steep, hard, stony ground in the Hakataramea Valley and Central Otago. In the North Island, it performed effectively in maize stubble.

User-friendliness was a priority for Duncan engineers when they designed the folding ATDs along with a focus on making them easy to calibrate, operate, and service.

ATD drills can sow all types of crops, from small seeds at rates less than one kilogramme per hectare to peas at upwards of 350kg per hectare. The ATD drills’ seeding units are on 125mm row spacings and the seeding depth is controlled by the press wheels. The folding wings lock down and the individual disc units follow the contour of the ground.

Both the ATD60 and ATD42 have two hoppers — a 1500-litre hopper in front and a 1200-litre hopper in the rear. Both hoppers can be used for either seed or fertiliser.

“Cost-effectiveness was another of the priorities we had when designing the new drills. They are built to be more cost-effective in the long run with low ongoing maintenance costs,” Matt says.

“To achieve this, we’ve retained some elements from our earlier drills, including the press wheels and our recently introduced Amazone seed metering unit and electronic components.”

Giltrap Ag will carry out further testing of the two ATDs in spring and is set to begin commercial production in 2024. 

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