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New ‘smooth Destructor’ limits weeds at Moonyoonooka

Treasure review McIntosh & Son Harrington Seed Destructor IHSD

WA grower Warren Treasure, Moonyoonooka, pictured with Craig Harrington, McIntosh & Son Geraldton, says with the new vertical, mechanical Integrated Harrington Seed Destructor (iHSD), the family now has the ideal system to help limit weed seed numbers

GROWER: Warren Treasure

AREA: Moonyoonooka, Northern WA wheatbelt

OPERATION: Cropping 2400ha to wheat, barley, canola, lupins and some hay. Main rotation includes two years of cereal followed by an oilseed or pulse break crop.

REVIEW: Harrington Seed Destructor (iHSD)

How was the switch to the new vertical, mechanical Integrated Harrington Seed Destructor (iHSD), installed on your New Holland CR10.90 harvester?

“It eliminated the bridging issue that occurred once conditions became damp in the evening [with the older hydraulic model] . It would block up over the openings into the mills and so we were having to stop every evening. With the vertical system, we had no bridging issues at all, so we would stop when we were ready to stop.’’

How was your harvesting capacity and operation of the harvester?

“With the horizontal unit, if we had a long day, starting at 8.30 in the morning, we had to refuel at dinner time to ensure we would go through the evening. We didn’t once have to refuel at dinner time with the vertical mill and we were doing bigger crops this year as well.’’

How were the maintenance levels compared with the previous Destructor?

“We were not having to stop every couple of hours and clean a radiator. With the hydraulic version, in the morning we had to warm the oil up, engage and slowly get up to full speed. You don’t have to do that with the vertical system – you just use the header as normal. You engage, go straight in and away you go – there’s much less stress on the driver. It’s so much simpler – and the parts are cheaper.’’

Were there other features you like about the Destructor?

“We found several rocks in the stone trap. We clean it out once a day in the morning. If we bulldozed a bit of dirt, we would check it – we would empty out the stone trap at the front of the header and on the Destructor. We took the hatch off, dropped a belt off and used a cover tray for grain loss checks. It’s also good to do the kill stall procedure with the vertical system to check how your calibration and machine is operating. We couldn’t do that with the horizontal machine.’’

Did the harvesting of all crops go well with the Destructor?

“The horizontal mills didn’t like green canola, but with the vertical system, tested with swathed canola and free standing, we had no issues at all. We didn’t even desiccate the canola and it handled it with no worries – we were impressed.’’

How was the wear of the mills with the vertical Destructor?

“We think we will get the same, if not longer, wear with the vertical mills.’’

Are you confident in the weed seed kill rate of the Destructor?

“We are confident, but you still have to get the weed seeds into the mills. Being close to the coast and with thick bulky crops, we have to get to that low (beer can) height to get the weed seeds.’’

Are you seeing any weed control benefits from using the Destructor the past four years?

“We are still seeing fewer volunteers, radish seems to be dropping off a bit and ryegrass hasn’t got worse. Once ryegrass dries, it falls on the ground, so if we come to some thick ryegrass, we put the front on the ground and slow down. We haven’t done a general knockdown over the whole program for four years with the lack of early rain, so it’s got to be having an effect in keeping the weed numbers down. In-season, we haven’t had any more weeds to deal with. We go with Sakura for the ryegrass and Velocity for the radish, and have had no post-em (emergent) grass control – it’s really good. The crops have been fairly clean.’’

For further information, growers can contact their nearest McIntosh & Son Dealership.