Test: Cosmo Bully BPF 180 Mulcher

By: Brent Lilley, Photography by: Justin Bennett


With the Cosmo Bully range freshly arrived in NZ, Farm Trader headed to Pukekohe to test the Cosmo bully BPF 180

The Cosmo Bully range is a new line-up of imported into New Zealand by Kiwi company Fieldmaster. The Italian-designed machinery is built in India, and although new to New Zealand, it has been sold in Australia for more than three years, proving to be popular.

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With the Cosmo BPF mulcher freshly arrived in the country, I headed to a Pukekohe property, near the company’s headquarters, to see how it performed in our conditions.

Being hitched up to a John Deere 6140M was definitely a bit of overkill for a 1.8-metre mulcher, but this was for no other reason than using the most convenient tractor available. Our test patch was some waste vegetable crop needing to be mulched and some rough grass around the edge of the field that needed topping.

Construction

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The Cosmo BPF range of heavy-duty mulchers offers three models, from 1.8 metres to 2.25 metres wide. As with other Cosmo machinery I’ve seen, first impressions are of how well the machine is built, with plenty of thick folded steel plate used in the construction and tidy welding and finishing with shiny powder-coated Cosmo orange paint.

The unit hitches to the tractor with a sturdy headstock that uses CAT I or II linkage pins. There is a choice of either a fixed hole for the top link pin or a slotted hole to allow ground contour following. Also built in where the mulcher mounts to the headstock are a hydraulic ram and slides. This allows the range to side shift up to 467mm, offsetting it to the side of the tractor for hard to reach spots.

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Along the side of the machine are heavy-duty side skids to prevent the mulcher digging into the ground. Although these can be easily adjusted to set the height of the machine, there are only two positions, which might not be enough for some requirements. Hinged steel plates along the front of the mulcher create a shroud, preventing objects from flying out and hitting the tractor.

Driveline

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Power from the tractor comes through a heavy-duty drive shaft to the main centre gearbox. This is rated up to 100hp and the PTO input speed is 540rpm. Inside the main gearbox is an internal freewheel clutch that prevents damage by allowing the rotor to freewheel when the power is disengaged.

Drive down the side of the machine to the rotor is through four XPB section belts, providing a safety mechanism to prevent damage to the gearbox and tractor if a solid object is struck. It is great to see that although the belts are enclosed in a steel guard for safety, a slot in the centre makes it easy to check belt tension with a screwdriver, and it can be adjusted, if required, without removing the guard.

Rotor

The rotor is the business end of the machine and uses a balanced steel 170mm diameter drum. The 16 large cast iron inverted T-shaped flails are mounted to this. Bearings on each end of the rotor are enclosed inside the drum, which allows for the maximum cutting width and protects the bearings from any material that wraps around the drum.

The design of the flails lifts and then cuts the grass to ensure an even tidy finish. Rotor diameter from flail tip to tip is 410mm, which gives ample room for material to move through the machine.

Rear hood and roller

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Behind the flails is a row of adjustable steel rake tines used to hold the material in the machine until it is chopped to the desired size. The length of the rakes is easily adjusted with a simple R clip and a series of holes on each one in place.

The rear hood, which holds the rake tines and encloses the rotor and flails, can be opened for easy access to clear blockages or safely replace flails. A large steel rear roller comes as standard on the machine. This helps to keep it following the ground and leaves a smooth tidy finish. It is also adjustable with two height settings. I’m happy to see that it has a scraper to keep it clean.

Verdict

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Overall, the Cosmo Bully BPF mulcher is a relatively simple but well-built machine. I’m the first to admit I was a little sceptical, as I’ve seen some inferior imported product, but to give credit where credit is due, my fears were needless. There is plenty of steel where it is required and the level of finish is tidy.

It’s great to see that the drive belts on the side can easily be checked and tensioned with the safety cover still in place, as I’ve seen plenty of mulchers where it gets removed once and never put back on.

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The standout for me was the price, which at $10,852 (plus GST) provides exceptional value for money on what is a well-designed and built mulcher.

Cosmo Bully BPF – 180 mulcher Specifications

Width 2000mm
Working width 1780mm
Weight 680kg
Gearbox rating 100hp
Power requirements 60–100hp
PTO speed 540rpm
Rotor shaft diameter 170mm
Number of flails 16

Pluses

  • Hydraulic side shift
  • Main gearbox includes an internal freewheel clutch
  • Rear roller and rakes as standard
  • Belts can easily be checked and tensioned with guards in place

Minuses

  • Limited height adjustment on skids and roller 

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