Alitalia Combination Drill: on farm £25,000
Anyone looking at replacing a power-harrow drill should seriously consider the current deal being offered on Maschio’s Alitalia combination. At £25,000 for a 3m machine it represents serious value for money, especially when compared with second-hand refurbished drills.
But this is no low-spec, budget machine – the package has been put together specifically for UK conditions. With a gearbox rated to 200hp, the power-harrow is built tough enough to cope with pretty much anything thrown at it and the drill’s single-disc coulters generate a cutting action that means even the worst trashy, cloddy conditions are no issue. There is no more reliable way of establishing a crop.
It might be capable of handling a wide range of conditions but the Alitalia is not an overly complex machine to set-up and use. The 1500-litre hopper feeds an inter-changeable segmented metering roller that can be swapped depending on the seed size.
The metering unit is electronic and uses a simple GPS receiver for forward speed monitoring. This means there’s no need for clumsy, mechanical land-wheel drives and if wanted, it can be set up for variable rate drilling. Its operation is handled by RDS’ time-proven, industry-standard Genius Lite in-cab control box which has the facility for automatic tram-lining and also includes blockage sensors and a headland priming system to ensure there’s no seed wastage at the start and finish of each bout.
Calibration is about as simple as it gets. Place a tray under the metering unit, press a button and then weigh what comes out. Enter that weight into the control box and it sorts itself out.
The standard coulters are Maschio’s single disc openers which are equally at home in trash-free ploughed seedbeds or in min-till conditions with high levels of crop residue. The bearings are sealed maintenance-free units and there’s a simple tool-less depth adjustment arrangement.
Individual rubber packer wheels are an option but these are not essential in maintaining a consistent, even seed depth as the drill is mounted on the power-harrow’s rear roller meaning that it faithfully follows ground contours as it travels over lumps and bumps. The three-point linkage arrangement means the drill can be detached easily in one to two minutes.
The other big advantage of the disc coulters is that the ability to handle trash means they can be arranged in two rows rather than three, keeping the rig compact and its centre of gravity close to the tractor. That way the minimum 140hp power-requirement is a true reality as smaller, light weight tractors are actually able to lift the fully-loaded machine.
For those working in more extreme conditions there is the option of Maschio’s Perfecta double-disc openers or more traditional Suffolk coulters.
For more details on the Alitalia package contact your local Maschio dealer Offer price of £25,000 includes single-disc coulters, DMR power-harrow, RDS Genius Lite controller and two year warranty. Standard RRP would usually be £44,951.