AGCO officials cut the ribbon Aug. 16, 2013, celebrating completion of a two-year, $40 million revitalization project to equip the Hesston, Kan., manufacturing facility with the latest finishing and paint technologies.
“We fully understand how important a high-quality finish is to our customers and dealers, and the impact it has on machine life and resale,” says Bob Crain, senior vice president and general manager for AGCO North America. “That is the reason we invested in this new E-coat and powder paint facility. It is the most advanced and extensive coatings application center in the North American agricultural equipment industry today, and we’re excited to start using it!”
The electrocoat (E-coat) and powder paint processes at AGCO are equivalent to those of the automotive industry and provide a thorough, consistent, durable finish on each part, enhancing the overall quality and longevity of the final piece of equipment.
The new 200,000-square-foot state-of-the-art dip and powder-coat paint facility consolidates AGCO Hesston Operations’ two paint stations into one streamlined, efficient building. Parts for all products manufactured in Hesston will be painted and finished there before being assembled into final products. Nearly 75 percent of parts will go through the 17-step E-coat process, which involves dipping parts in a series of solutions that remove all rust, scale and laser oxides, then applying a high-performance corrosion- and weather-resistant finish comparable to that used in the automotive industry. The E-coat primer is applied using a high-voltage and high-amperage charge for 180 seconds, ensuring thorough coverage. After curing in one of 10, 375-degree F ovens, parts receive a powder topcoat with one of five colors, then another final oven cure.
The remaining 25 percent of parts, including gearboxes and drives, components that cannot withstand heat, and parts that are best painted after they are assembled, will be painted using a liquid coating system.
Farm equipment has been built in Hesston, Kan., since 1947, and today, the Hesston manufacturing facility builds Hesston by Massey Ferguson hay harvesting equipment; Gleaner, Challenger and Massey Ferguson combines as well as White Planters; and its nine manufacturing lines produce as many as 45 pieces of farm equipment per day, depending on the season. Today, with more than 1,400 employees, AGCO is the largest employer in Harvey County and much of the surrounding area.
It was literally standing-room only as nearly 1,800 Gleaner dealers, customers and enthusiasts filled Wichita’s Hartman Arena as the Gleaner S8 Super Series combines were introduced Aug. 15, 2013.
The full line of Tier 4 Final, Class 6 through Class 8 platforms and the industry’s first Class 8 transverse rotary combine is built on the Optimum Harvesting Performance platform, and is the culmination of design refinements that further reduce the liabilities of weight, size, fuel consumption, wear and complexity while maximizing capacity, grain quality, reliability and durability. These attributes have been part of many of the brand’s design principles since it was introduced in 1923, and they heavily influence today’s Gleaner Super Series combines.
“Since the day we launched the Super Series, we’ve been developing the Gleaner combine platform so that all functional areas of the machine deliver optimum performance and efficiency,” says Kevin Bien, Gleaner brand marketing manager at AGCO. “We’ve created a light, nimble combine designed so that the horsepower is used to efficiently cut and thresh the crop, not to move a heavy machine or overly complex system through the field.”
Gleaner’s one-of-a kind combine platform gets its start on a unitized, welded mainframe with a low center of gravity and true centerline design. This provides the lightest, most balanced weight distribution combine in the world. In fact, the Gleaner S88 is as much as 12,300 pounds lighter than competitive Class 8 combines, allowing the Gleaner to get through muddy fields when others will require substantially more horsepower and tracks to get through similar conditions. The new Class 7 Gleaner S78 is as much as 8,200 pounds lighter than other Class 7 machines.
There are many exciting new features and even special purchase incentives available. You can learn more at www.GleanerCombines.com or see the S8 Super Series combine at the 2013 Farm Progress Show, Husker Harvest Days and the Big Iron Farm Show.
Last month, Aguimar DeSouza, Senior Global Marketing Specialist for the AGCO Technology Solutions (ATS) team, was quoted in Iowa Farmer Today discussing how precision ag usage increases as the user experience improves. Below are his thoughts on the topic.
“Since the first yield monitor systems were produced around 1996, two main challenges OEMs and precision ag companies faced on the adoption of their products were the interface between operators and the technology, and the understanding and management of the data collected.
Ag OEMs and independent precision ag companies discovered that the profiles of machine operators around the world were different and this difference created a natural barrier for operators to use the new technology. In South America and Eastern Europe the problem faced was the level of education of the operators; in North America the issue was the age of owners/operators.
By understanding these differences the ag OEMs and independent precision ag companies began to develop products that were much easier to use and more intuitive. Within the last few years new display interfaces have been introduced and products have become much easier to use. All these changes have increased the adoption of precision ag technologies around the world year after year.
Now ag OEMs and independent precision ag companies are working hard to make the data collection, analysis and management easier. The recent public announcements related to connected strategies such as AGCO’s Fuse™ Technologies and from other OEMs have indicated that the industry understands the value of data collection, analysis and management. The final goal is to provide a technology that will allow farmers around the world to connect their assets via a wireless network, receive and send data, make management decision, manage their fleets, etc., in more efficient ways.
I would say that the ag OEMs and independent precision ag companies understood the differences of their customers around the world and started to produce solutions that met their customers’ needs. Precision ag technologies will continue to guide the future of agriculture around the globe!”
Click here to learn more about AGCO’s Precision Farming offering.
Aguimar DeSouza is Senior Global Marketing Specialist for the AGCO ATS team based in Duluth, Ga. USA.
The 9th European Conference on Precision Agriculture held in Spain set the perfect stage for the EAME (Europe, Africa and Middle East) regional launch of AGCO’s new global precision farming initiative, Fuse™ Technologies.
The mid-July conference took place in Lleida, Catalonia under the auspices of the International Society of Precision Agriculture (ISPA) and the Universitat de Lleida (UdL).
Matt Rushing, AGCO Vice President of Product Management, Advanced Technology Solutions (ATS) and Electronics Functional Group presented the new global technology strategy at the conference: “Fuse™ Technologies will encompass all of AGCO’s core product brands, enable a deeper integration with our technology suppliers, and impact all stages of the farming life cycle from enterprise planning, planting, and seed growth to application, harvesting and grain storage.”
The Fuse strategy presentation was well received by the audience. ECPA participants appreciated the concept of an open approach – that data from one information system can be used on various systems. The AGCO team and conference participants had good discussions at the AGCO Fuse stand about the current product offerings and the strategy to bring the different technology solutions closer together.
During the field demonstration at ECPA the performance of AGCO’s technology offering was demonstrated on the Fendt 939 using the Varioterminal 10.4. The VarioGuide™ system showed the high accuracy that can be achieved when the VariotronicTI automatic function is used. In addition to accuracy, a high operator comfort is guaranteed.
Fuse Technologies encompasses current products like the one demonstrated at ECPA, and will include all future technology products and services. To learn more about our specific on and off board technologies and how Fuse supports farmers throughout the entire life cycle of farming, click here.
Dr. Bernhard Schmitz is the Commercial Manager of ATS Products for EAME based in Marktoberdorf, Germany.
AGCO executives visited the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) last week to highlight another strong performance year.
To mark the occasion, Martin Richenhagen, Chairman, President and CEO, rang the NYSE Closing Bell along with our Board of Directors and a few others from executive management at AGCO. Click here to watch the video of the closing bell.
Our Massey Ferguson 8670 and Challenger MT765D tractors were definitely show stoppers on Wall Street.
Check out the highlights of the afternoon here.
And be sure to watch Andy Beck’s, our CFO, interview on TheStreet.com – click here watch the video.