Exapta is now the exclusive importer of Aricks row cleaners for John Deere 50/60/90 drills. These robust row cleaners have a 10-year track record in tough Aussie conditions and are great for helping overcome the tendency of these drills to hairpin residue into the seed slot. The row cleaners extend the workday, allowing the operator to start earlier and go later without fear of poor cutting of mulch when it gets tough from picking up dew. And to not miss days of seeding when the straw refuses to dry.
“John Deere 50/60/90 no-till drills have a big problem with hairpinning,” says Leah Lanie, Exapta’s Sales Manager. She explains that a lot of this can be overcome with sharper blades, and waiting for the straw to dry – as well as by installing Exapta’s UniForce hydraulic downforce system to increase the ability of openers to go down into mild depressions and cut better. But even then, in damp conditions, or when the thatch is extremely thick, there’s a big advantage to being able to move some of the residue out of the way – that’s where the Aricks row cleaners come in.
Exapta’s founder and president, Matt Hagny, says, “A few farmers in Canada have purchased these direct from Aricks/BPR Engineering in the past 10 years, but we decided to get involved to make it easier for farmers to purchase them by having a North American sales & service point. At first, I thought these would serve a niche market in the northern-tier states and Canada, but after looking more closely at the job they do, I realized that perhaps farmers as far south as Kansas might benefit considerably from them when the thatch is very heavy. Speaking as an agronomist with 25 years of experience working closely with no-tillage farmers, generally, we think it’s very desirable to have this heavy thatch and try to achieve and maintain it — but hairpinning with the John Deere 50/60/90 no-till drills can be severe at times.”
The Aricks row cleaner features an adjustable jacker bolt to limit downstroke. They can also be easily pinned up when not needed (they also need to be pinned up in corn stalks, due to plugging).
Although row cleaners for JD 50/60/90 drills are already on the market in North America, they lack the robustness and control that these have. Featuring a heavy-duty bearing that’s the same as what’s in the opener hubs of the 60/90 drills, plus hefty castings for the arm and bracket, and a maintenance-free pin. Despite conditions in Australia being generally worse than the USA & Canada, these commonly go tens of thousands of acres on 40-ft drills with no maintenance.
Aricks row cleaners are $485 ea. A slightly different version is used for the 50-series versus the 60/90s.