Test: K Two Duo 1100

By: Brent Lilley, Photography by: Brent Lilley


K Two Duo 1100 The 100hp Valtra handled the K Two spreader with ease. K Two Duo 1100
K Two Duo 1100 The two vertical beaters consist of a spiral screw shaped upright with replaceable teeth bolted onto them. K Two Duo 1100
K Two Duo 1100 A hose arm keeps hydraulics out of harm’s way. K Two Duo 1100
K Two Duo 1100 The A-frame-shaped drawbar mounts under the bed of the spreader resulting in a solid setup. K Two Duo 1100
K Two Duo 1100 Custom-built greedy boards help contain light material. K Two Duo 1100
K Two Duo 1100 Steel box section’s stanchions and steel plates welded on the sides and bottom create a robust sealed loader bed. K Two Duo 1100
K Two Duo 1100 Maximum power is sent to the beaters via a direct PTO drive shaft. K Two Duo 1100
K Two Duo 1100 The width of the bed is divided with two sets of steel slats and four high tensile chains. K Two Duo 1100

As manure spreading in this country becomes more popular, decent machinery needed to spread it is in high demand. This month Brent Lilley discovers a machine that spreads accurately, is low maintenance and is built to last, the K Two Duo 1100.

Test: K Two Duo 1100
The K Two Duo spreads accurately and evenly over a distance of 10-12 metres.

Test

The test was organised by Matamata Ag Centre, which sells the K Two Duo here in New Zealand. The Matamata Ag team took me to a goat farm south of Matamata to test the K Two Duo 1100, a spreader that had been in permanent use on the farm, spreading a mix of manure and wood shavings that had been scraped out of the goat sheds. This is scraped out of the sheds on a regular basis and spread onto the paddocks they use for cut and carry feeding. The spreader was hooked up to a 100hp Valtra which is the recommended minimum requirement yet had no problems at all.

The teeth on the beaters at the rear of the machine were doing an excellent job chopping up the material and firing it out. Using a highly scientific method of stepping it out after a pass, I can conclude it was spreading evenly and accurately at a distance of between ten and twelve metres, with a few lumps going a bit further. Using a few more calculated guesses and doing a bit of math in my head, I worked out we were applying around 12 tonnes to the hectare, although this can vary infinitely by the forward speed of the tractor and the speed of the floor chains to suit any situation. The machine was taking around five minutes to empty so there is potential for a massive output over a day depending on the loading and the length of the haul to the paddocks.

Design

At the front, two lengths of box sections are used in the A-frame-shaped drawbar, which mounts under the bed of the spreader — a solid setup. A hose arm keeps the hydraulic hoses out of harm's way and also provides somewhere to store them when not in use. Lights on the back of the machine make it road legal and it's excellent they can be folded in when spreading to prevent them getting damaged.

The main body of the spreader is well built using steel box sections stanchions and steel plate welded on the sides and bottom to create a robust sealed load bed. Underneath, the spreader box section is incorporated into the bottom of the load bed to form a chassis that the axle and the drawbar both mount directly to, keeping weight and costs down. The spreader has been shot blasted after construction and then coated in a two-pack marine specification paint to hopefully keep it in top condition for longer.

Having the axle mounted towards the rear of the load bed helps keep the weight on the drawbar of the tractor for as long as possible, when the load is moving to the rear of the machine, to improve traction. The 520/85 R38 tyres stop the machine sinking in and damaging the ground in damp conditions while keeping the machine to a 2.7-metre overall width. As with most machines, there are plenty of options for other tyre setups, although they will increase the width as well.

Beaters

The beaters at the back are at the business end of the spreader and not somewhere you want to get too close to when working. The K Two Duo uses two vertical beaters consisting of a spiral screw shaped upright with replaceable teeth bolted onto them. A drive shaft the length of the spreader, under the load bed, drives the beaters through two 90-degree gearboxes and sight glasses on these oil-filled gearboxes make it easy for the operates to check them. This direct PTO drive ensures maximum power to the beaters and a shear bolt is used to protect the driveline if something gets jammed, although I would say the optional overload clutch is well worth the extra.

A hydraulically-operated guillotine door in front of the beaters keeps the material in the load bed for transport and away from the beaters at start up, keeping the power requirements low at only a recommended 100hp. An optional slurry door with a rubber seal makes it possible to carry wetter materials without leaving a trail behind you. A trap I can remember from my time in the UK is that the machine gets much higher with the door open, a hazard with low wires around.

Floor chains

In my past experience, the floor chains can be one of the problem areas on a manure spreader, as they can come under a lot of strain when shifting manure to the back of the spreader in somewhat demanding conditions. With this in mind, it was good to see K Two has divided the width of the bed with two sets of steel slats and four chains reduce the strain. The four high-tensile chains have a combined breaking strain of nearly 100 tonnes, which should be more than adequate to move even the heaviest loads to the back. The front idler for the floor chains incorporates slack adjusters into it and is definately something that wants to be checked regularly to prolong the life of the spreader.

The drive for the floor chains comes via a hydraulic motor coupled to a reduction gearbox on the rear right-hand side. The hydraulic oil flow to this gearbox can be adjusted using a tap on the front of the spreader, or through the tractor's hydraulics. An optional electronic in-cab control box for the bed speed is a worthy consideration. Trying to unblock a machine like this is a job that doesn't even bear thinking about, and luckily on the K Two the load bed can be reversed to bring the material away from the beater if you do break a shear bolt. With a few other manufacturers beginning to see the benefits of using twin hydraulic drive motors on the floor chains, it was a little disappointing to only see a single drive motor on the K Two.

K-Two -Duo -1100-2

Verdict

The K Two Duo is an excellent heavy-duty rear discharge spreader and it's great to see the manufacturers have stuck with a tried and tested twin beater design that provides simple yet accurate spreading with low on-going costs. The few negatives for me, such as the lack of drawbar suspension and twin drive motors are not deal breakers but just things that would have been a nice addition. These two points, however, are more than outweighed by the many positive features of the K Two Duo, such as the twin floor chains that can be reversed, a high quality heavy-duty construction and paint finish, and a direct driveline to the beaters to keep power requirements low. This machine is well worth a look for anyone with mountains of manure to deal with.

Positives

  • Twin floor chains
  • Robust steel construction
  • High grade two-pack marine paint job
  • Direct driveline to the beaters to maximise power
  • Floor chains can be reversed
  • Folding road lights

Negatives

  • Single drive motor for the floor chains
  • No drawbar suspension
  • In-cab control of the floor speed only as an option

For more information contact Matamata Ag Centre on (07) 888 6448 or visit matamataag.co.nz.

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