Giltrap 5001 Fertiliser Spreader
The solution to increasing fertiliser costs is spreading more accurately, and the 5001 spreader from Giltrap Engineering has a lot to offer in the fertiliser spreading market
- Low centre of gravity ensures stability
- An electric engagement switch makes uneven shaped paddocks easy
- Multiple products can be spread
- Excellent driver visibility
- The proportional hydraulic valve constantly recalculates oil flow to keep kg per ha rate perfect
- In-cab monitor displays all the necessary info
- Sturdy and well-built
Giltrap Engineering’s 01 range of fertiliser spreaders, with more than 15 years in the development stage, have a lot to offer in the fertiliser spreading market.
The 5001 spreader tested is the middle child of the five-model line up, with capacity for six-tonne of super, 7.8-tonne of lime and 4.3-tonne of urea.
The 2501 is the smallest in the family, and holds three-tonne of super, 3.9-tonne of lime and 2.1-tonne of urea. The 8301 is the big daddy, with the capacity to hold 10-tonne of super, 13-tonne of lime and seven-tonne of urea. All models require a minimum of 60L/min oil flow to keep the spinners at 1000rpm and the belt speed adequate for optimum spreading.
The drive is mounted at the rear of the machine and drives the belt directly with no chains or sprockets. The motor varies the speed of the rubber belt determined by the computer in the cab, which the operator will punch into the console kg/ha rates, etc. The motor must constantly adjust to the variable ground speed, which will ensure a consistent flow of material is delivered to the spinners and onto the pasture.
The proportional hydraulic control valve sends a precise amount of oil to the hydraulic belt drive, which is determined by the computer, to keep the kg/ ha rate spot on. This is adjusted automatically and takes into account the ground speed, spinner rpm, the rear door height, product density and the desired kg/ha rate.
If I had to be critical of one part of the machine, this would be it. The screen was hard to read in the sunlight and its size didn’t justify the big heavy controller. Aside from that, it worked well and was relatively idiot-proof.
There are a lot of adjustments that can be made in the monitor, but all the key information is displayed on the main screen. While spreading, the rate per ha, with ha worked in that session, is in bold across the screen along with ground speed in km/h. I was spreading at 250kg/ha and with a few bumps in the paddock, and the screen display was telling me the rate fluctuated between 248 and 253kg/ha… not bad really.
Before using the spreader for the first time on a particular tractor you need to go through a calibration process. The calibration allows the computer to adjust the proportional hydraulic valve to the oil flow oil pressure and the balance of that particular tractor dictates how it will achieve the desired kg/ha rate.
If you change products, ie, lime to urea, you will need to change the four computer settings, which are rate, density, door opening, and width selection.
This was my favourite part of the machine. It is a switch on a small box connected to the wiring loom, but separate to the control box in the cab. When spreading I held it in my hand but you could mount it to the armrest.
The switch lets you have the hydraulic oil flowing constantly, and flicking the switch stops the proportional hydraulic valve giving the belt any movement, but the spinners remain constant at 1000rpm. The beauty of this feature is that you can spread the paddocks in runs with headlands rather than going around and around. This allows you to do runs up and down the straightest edge of an uneven shaped paddock, which will save on the amount of fertiliser used. Simply drive up to the headland, flick the switch, the belt stops but the spinners continue, then once you have turned around flick the switch and your back into it without stopping and the computer does all the work for you…brilliant!
Ideally when you calibrate the machine you want to adjust the spool so oil flow runs the spinners at 1000rpm. This will allow the material to be spread up to 24m (which has been Spreadmark certified), however depending on what centres you run it may not need to send it that far.
An optional feature is a valve on the right-hand side of the machine that allows you to reverse the direction of the spinners so you can spread mulch/solid effluent or chicken manure.
The 850mm belt and the high opening rear door allow you to spread a variety of material accurately, which means not only are you investing in a fertiliser spreader but also a solid effluent spreader.
The independent chassis is made from 350 RHS steel and is mounted to the 3mm 304 grade stainless steel bin via bolts to reduce risk of welds cracking and chassis twisting when operating in rough ground. Other key components such as belt adjusters and fert deflectors behind the spinners are stainless steel plus belt drive and idler rollers are hot dip galvanised to try and combat the threat of corrosion. The only pitfall I could see in build quality was that the spinners were already showing signs of deterioration even though this was only a demo machine, so maybe having stainless steel spinners could be an improvement?
The 5001 spreader is well built, with the stainless steel bin set low for stability on hills, and has perfectly suited tyres that don’t scuff the pasture. Combined, these components provide a user-friendly, sturdy machine that can adapt to a number of tasks with slight computer adjustments from the comfort of the cab, and will fight corrosion as good if not better than any machine on the market.
See a range of spreaders for sale.