UK manufacturer announces new and updated seeding and cultivating machinery, with plenty more to come

New and updated drills and cultivation machinery would have filled Weaving Machinery’s stand if the LAMMA show had gone ahead. David Williams visited the UK-based manufacturer for an exclusive preview.

Weaving’s popular GD-series trailed drills gain new features for 2021, including automatic working pressure adjustment for undulating ground.

There has been huge investment by the Weaving family in its production facilities in recent years, to keep pace with increased demand for its products in the UK and overseas. Steel fabrication and manufacture of plastic tanks and mouldings is contracted out to companies with the expertise and equipment to achieve a top quality finish, but design and assembly is at Weaving’s Worcestershire base. Select export dealers have been appointed, but all UK sales are direct to end users.

Sales director Simon Weaving said that demonstrating the range of drills and cultivators to potential customers remains an essential part of the sales process, and the company enjoys strong loyalty from long-term Weaving users.

Record sales

The company’s drill sales in 2019 broke all previous records, but 2020 was even busier despite reduced marketing opportunities at shows. The proven GD drills remain a strong seller, but have been equally matched by the Sabre drill this year since its relaunch 12 months ago.

“We are always happy to chat with new and existing customers about the products to make sure they are suitable for their situation,” explained Simon. “I think most like to buy British when they can.”

Weaving also manufactures electric gates which it supplies nationwide, and the company imports flails, hedge cutters and grassland machinery which are sold direct and through dealers.

GD drill updates

Weaving’s GD drills are designed for low-cost, low-disturbance drilling into cultivated or non-cultivated soils, and will also drill direct into thick cover crops. They are available in 3m mounted and 3–8m trailed versions. High coulter pressure ensures ground penetration in hard, dry or high trash conditions and up to 200kg per coulter is available on the mounted machine, and up to 300kg on trailed models.

Updated GD drills were launched in 2019, and for 2021 a new feature for trailed versions is automatic ground pressure control to maintain a constant seeding depth on undulating ground. Current models have manual adjustment, but the new automatic system uses a new valve block and oil flow from the hydraulic-driven cooling fan to constantly adjust weight transfer to the rear wheels. The system has been tested successfully in New Zealand this year, and can be retro-fitted to drills of any age. Extra benefits are available while working on banks, as the drill maintains a straight direction of pull.

A new trailed 3m version has been launched as an alternative to the existing mounted model to increase drilling capacity and coulter pressure, and reduce the weight on the rear of the tractor. The new model is already proving popular overseas.

Another new feature for 2021 is optional stone guards to prevent stones or clods jamming between the coulter discs. These are made from stainless steel to resist corrosion and mud sticking. Situations where they offer benefits include drilling into soft, cloddy ground, and for fitting to the second row of coulters where drilling at high speed in stony soils can result in stones being thrown from the front coulters into the rear.

New clod guards protect the disc coulters from becoming blocked by clods and large stones.

Asked whether Weaving will add wider models than the current biggest 8m to its range, Simon commented that most customers buying the GD drill are aiming for reduced tillage and simple but reliable low-cost crop establishment.

“A benefit of reduced tillage is that smaller fleets of less powerful tractors are needed. Many farms operate versatile tractors suitable for use through the year for field and transport tasks. We could produce wider versions but if farms then have to operate larger, more powerful tractors just to pull them, then some of the potential benefit would be lost.”

Sabre updates

Weaving’s Sabre drill comes in 3.0, 4.8 and 6.0m working widths, with four rows of tungsten-tipped, wide-spaced 12mm tines. Seed is delivered through stainless steel tubes to establish crops successfully even in challenging wet and high trash working conditions.

The Sabre drill can establish crops successfully in a wide range of soil types and conditions. For 2021, an updated design includes a new hopper, and tines mounted in two sections for accurate ground contour following.

The simple, rugged design allows the Sabre drill to be used for direct-drilling with minimum soil movement where conditions are suitable, or on pre-worked ground following reduced tillage operations such as low-disturbance subsoiling. It also performs well drilling into ploughed and pre-cultivated land, so it’s often regarded as a half-way house between minimum tillage and conventional crop establishment. “We have customers using GD drills for most of the season, but who have also bought a Sabre drill to work in wetter conditions. The Sabre drill also provides good depth control and seed placement accuracy, and leaves the soil in good condition,” stressed Simon.

Proven tine coulters

Since the autumn, there have been further modifications to the Sabre drill, but it retains its proven tine coulters.

A new graphite grey plastic hopper replaces the previous steel version and reduces total weight by 200kg, while offering the same 1.5t capacity.

The previous Sabre drill has seeding elements in three sections, with the two outers folding for transport, but the updated model has two carried on a rugged overhead linkage with a central pivot point….

CONTINUE READING in our January 2021 issue – dispatching 14th December!

Visit the Weaving Machinery website HERE

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