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How Does a Straw Baler Works?

Posted 06.26.2013

First, there are many different kinds of bales. There are straw bales and green forage bales, round and square bales, and large and small bales. Overall, as in other areas of agricultural technology, the trends with regard to balers are moving towards higher output, greater bale density and larger machines, so that baling services are increasingly being handled by agricultural contractors.

Thus the square bales of a QUADRANT 2200 have now reached the dimensions of 1.20 x 0.70 x 2.40 metres and weigh up to 380 kilogrammes. The round bales of the VARIANT are 1.70 x 1.20 metres and weigh 400 kilogrammes. But what steps are required to make a bunch of loose straw into a proper bale?

Step 1: The pick-up

First, the straw or green forage lying on the ground must make its way into the press. The pick-up takes care of this job. The pick-up's flexible design adapts it perfectly to the terrain, so that neither the ground nor the pick-up itself is damaged, and no soil gets into the baler, either. The large, oscillating feeler wheels support this adaptation. They are mounted on the centre axle of the pick-up and guide it safely over all uneven parts of the ground. The hanging suspension of the feeler wheels ensures uniform tracking.

Step 2: The feed system

Behind the pick-up, a fast-turning rotary impeller ensures that the bale chamber is filled evenly. Special forage can be chopped small with the 16-blade cutting rotor. Should a clog occur, the direction of the rotor can be changed quickly from the operator's seat in the tractor, so that the forage jam is cleared from the front.

Step 3: The bale chamber

The steel roll bale chamber forms the core of the baler. The Maximum Pressure System (MPS) guarantees the hardest bales and a high degree of compaction in the core of the bale. At the beginning of each baling cycle, three MPS rollers extend into the bale chamber. The chamber is thus initially much smaller than at the end of the baling process. The straw or green forage quickly comes into contact with the rotating MPS rollers and likewise begins to rotate. In this manner the bales are compressed from the core outwards. The hardness of the core can be adjusted, as dry straw can be baled more densely than moist green forage. As the amount of filling increases, the 16 rollers, which are all chain-driven, are pressed upwards against the tensile resistance of strong springs by the growing bales into their end position, until a diameter of 1.25 metres is achieved. In the VARIANT models, the diameter can be adjusted between 0.90 and 1.80 metres.

Step 4: The binding

Whether twine or netting, the ROLLATEX net wrapping saves lots of time; the binding of the bale is accomplished fully automatically in just a few seconds. The well-designed net wrapping guide ensures streamlined wrapping along the entire width of the bale and firmly binds the edges as well. If green forage is being processed, the bale can also be wrapped in plastic as well. For this purpose, the bale is rolled out of the baling chamber onto a tipping trough, which lifts it fully automatically onto the wrapping table.

Step 5: The wrapping

While the next bale is already rotating in the bale chamber, six layers of plastic are wrapped around the first bale in 35 seconds, sealing it into an airtight package. This ensures that fermenting proceeds correctly to achieve optimal silage quality. All processes are completely automated, and several sensors monitor the entire sequence. The operator can track the cycle on a terminal in the tractor cabin.

Furthermore, he can access any of the five menus at any time and manually change key settings quickly and easily. Binding, opening the tailgate, ejecting the bale, closing the tailgate – all of these processes can be managed via the COMMUNICATOR.