Home' Grower : February 2013 Contents The South Australian Grower -- February 2013
sets new pace
growers often experience
limitations in wheel
tractors because of very wet or
undulating ground conditions.
It was in the mid-1990s that
Kubota introduced the first half-
track tractors on the Northern
Island of Hokkaido in Japan to
help farmers overcome these
Now Kubota Tractor Australia
has unveiled the 92-kilowatt
M126X Power Krawler tractor,
after an extensive evaluation
Kubota product manager Lars
Pasedag said the tractor had
undergone extensive testing on
dairyfarms in Tasmania, Victoria
and South Australia, and
vegetable farms in far North as
Mackay in Queensland.
The half-track machine is based
on the M126X four-wheel tractor
and features 400-millimetre-wide
r ubber tracks on the rear axle for
a ver y light footprint and big
contact area on the ground.
"Whether the tractor was used
for feeding-out round bales
during the wet winter months or
spreading fertilizer in very hilly
terrain, our customers have
confirmed the fantastic handling
of the half-track tractor over a
conventional wheeled tractor,"
Mr Pasedag said.
"One onion farmer reported he
was able to plough the ground
two weeks earlier than he could
have done with his wheel tractor,
allowing him to plant his crop
earlier and improve the quality
and quantity of his crops."
Unlike full crawler vehicles, the
M126X Power Krawler's basic
manoeuvrability and speed is
nearly identical to that of
standard four-wheel tractors, so
there is no need for special
The longer wheelbase, lower
centre of gravity, and
independently oscillating rear
tracks improve stability and keep
operators from bouncing on
uneven terrain - dramatically
increasing operator comfort.
"The M126X Power Krawler
steers and drives just like a wheel
tractor," Mr Pasedag said.
"The front axle in fact is
identical to the wheel tractor and
rubber tracks on the rear do not
leave scuffing marks on the
ground when turning, which
protects the soil."
The larger track footprint offers
better traction, especially in wet
and hilly conditions, which makes
this tractor very safe when
operating on hills.
The M126X Power Krawler's
rear weight is distributed across
the larger surface area of the rear
tracks, which decreases the level
of ground compaction by an
estimated 60 per cent compared
to a standard wheel tractor of
comparable size, resulting in
better floatation with less damage
Traction and larger ground
contact area deliver superior
stability and straight-line
performance, making for a solid,
The rear crawler design is
central to the M126X Power
Krawler's special performance
capabilities. The synthetic rubber
track features hard rubber lugs
providing a smoother, quieter
ride at higher speeds than typical
Both sides of the tractor are
kept in contact with the ground
400mm rubber tracks on
Better traction in wet condi-
Extensive testing on dairy-
The Power Krawler's rear weight is distributed across the larger surface area of the rear tracks, decreasing
ground compaction by an estimated 60 per cent.
through independently oscillating
crawlers. The maintenance and
process for changing crawler
tracks is user-friendly due to the
split-type drive sprocket design
with rotating pins.
The first question always asked
about the tracks is: how long they
"Experience from overseas
suggests the answer is between
2000 and 3500 hours depending
on the work load," Mr Pasedag
"A set of replacement r ubber
tracks is priced at around $6000
through our spare parts
department, which is ver y
competitive as a set of rear wheels
costs the end user around $5000
The M126X Power Krawler is
equipped with Kubota's turbo-
charged Common Rail centre-
direct injection system engine.
The E-CDIS diesel engine
provides power, durability and
efficiency, not to forget low noise
levels, all the while meeting Tier
III EPA Emission regulations.
A dual-range transmission with
eight powershift gears offers 16
for ward and 16 reverse gears. A
hydraulic shuttle makes quick
direction changes easy.
Interested customers can
contact their local Kubota dealer
to arrange a demo.
VersaTool cuts down on duplication
By GRAHAM FULLER
AFTER lopping off a tree branch,
also noticing the hedge needs to be
trimmed, the chances are a blower
will be needed to tidy up after a
morning's work on a property's
Trudging to the shed it crosses
your mind that if a series of
attachments could simply be
plugged into one power head, it
would cut down on your ever-
burgeoning, and costly, garden tool
The solution may lie with
Honda's VersaTool concept - one
that allows eight core attachments
to be coupled to either of two
power heads, according to
The key to this versatility lies in a
simple one-click locking
mechanism that permits the
attachment range to be secured at
a moment's notice, according to
national sales manager, Honda
Power Equipment, Ray Briffa.
Users need only to lift and twist a
knob through 90 degrees, ready to
hear the comforting click that
signals the attachment has been
successfully 'mated' to the new
Developed as part of a five-year
research and development
programme, Mr Briffa says
customers can access the new
technology in January 2013.
Unveiled at a media briefing in
Victoria, the company's 25cc and
35cc UMC425 and UMC435 power
heads, also their attachments, look
to be a handy addition to any
So look out for a brush cutter,
'short' and 'long' hedge cutters, a
pruner, a blower, an edger,
cultivator, also an extension pole,
when they become available.
Interestingly, the noise associated
with many high-performance leaf
blowers is considerably lessened,
courtesy of Honda's blower
An Australian innovation, its
lightweight characteristic directs a
surprisingly powerful jet of air
without the decibel-breaking
intrusion of some rival makes.
And rubber, rather than foam, is
used or the grip area to lengthen its
durability in Australia's harsh
Honda's four-stroke engines drive
its power heads with the package
backed by a handy four-year
FOOTNOTE: Graham Fuller
travelled to Victoria for the
VersaTool product announcement
as a guest of Honda Power
Equipment. His video can be seen
The Essential First Step.
Log onto www.1100.com.au anytime or dial 1100 during business hours to request information on underground pipes and cables -- BEFORE you dig.
It's the essential first step of safe excavation.
TAKE A STAB?
Take the guess work out of digging. Locate underground pipes & cables first.
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