The demand for a simple mechanical seed drill suited to sowing areas of crop such as wildlife margins and game cover has led Italian firm Matermacc’s new UK operation to bring a range of machines to the market here.
While such technology was the main method of establishing combinable crops a few decades ago, with the advent of new pneumatic drills and minimal or no-tillage crop establishment most machines were sold off, or retired to the back of farm sheds and yards to be drawn out occasionally for drilling cover or margins, notes Andrew Rabett, of Matermacc’s new UK operation. As most are now past their best, there is a market for a quality, low-cost mechanical drill for these tasks, he believes.
“Seed mixes are not cheap, and entrusting establishment to an old drill that may have worn seed flutes and coulters can put the investment in seed and time at risk,” suggests Mr Rabett.
“With the Grano seed drills we can now offer, there’s a low cost yet high quality alternative that can help ensure the investment made in specialist seed is given the start it requires. And, of course, these machines suit small farms growing any ordinary combinable crop.”
Linkage mounted, the Grano drills are available in sizes from 2.5-6.0m, and can be specified as seed-only or seed/fertiliser versions. Coulter choice includes conventional Suffolk, single disc, double disc and double disc with press wheel. Coulter pressure can be easily altered via a central adjustment.
The seed hopper, which is equipped with an acoustic low-level alarm and seed agitators, has a capacity of 283-670 litres depending on model, and is accessed via a full-width platform and an easy-to-open lid. Two different rollers allow the drill to handle small and large seeds, and a stepless continuously-variable gearbox takes care of metering, with calibration via a simple handle that allows seed quantity to be measured accurately. Seed emptying trays are supplied for this purpose.
Further specification includes a half-width shut-off and full transport lighting. Options include a split seed/fertiliser hopper, following harrow, hydraulic row markers and track eradicators, while automatic tramlining pre-emergence markers can also be specified. Tyres for the drive wheels are 6.50 x 15 units, with a 26.00 x 12 option. Price for a 3m double disc coulter Grano is approximately £12,000.