Posts Tagged ‘Hesston’
In 1978, Hesston Corporation introduced the Model 4800, the industry’s first large square baler, revolutionizing hay production and feeding practices at a time when labor availability and fuel prices were driving a need for innovations on the farm. Big square balers have come a long way since then, and on May 16, 2013, a large crowd gathered at AGCO’s Hesston Operations to celebrate the 25,000th large square baler built in Hesston, Kan.
Credit for the big baler idea is generally given to Allen White, who spent more than 25 years as a company engineer. White started his research by building a giant bale chamber in the engineering lab and manually packing it with hay. When the 4-foot-by-4-foot bale did not get hot or spoil, engineers went on to build the first prototype baler. They quickly realized that the side-feed approach currently being used would not work, and in 1975, the first prototype that fed hay into the bottom of the bale chamber was built.
After extensive field-testing, the Model 4800 was perfected and released in 1978. Field testing and working with farmers to meet their needs have always been a hallmark of equipment development at Hesston. These productive balers proved to be a more labor-efficient and economical way to harvest, store and feed forages.
Today, balers built in Hesston are sold in as many as 39 countries and used to bale everything from alfalfa and grass hay to wheat straw, miscanthus for biofuel production, and even recyclables such as newspaper and aluminum cans.
“It is amazing to look back at all that has gone into today’s big baler models,” says Dean Morrell, product marketing manager, Hay and Forage. “Building the 25,000th baler is an invigorating milestone and a great tribute to everyone who has been involved in its development. I know there will be even more innovations in the future large square balers built in Hesston.”
Tomorrow, May 16, the 25,000th large square baler will roll off the assembly line at the AGCO facility in Hesston, Kansas USA and be presented to its new owner. Here are a few fun facts about the large square baler to help kick off this historic event
• The first large square baler — the Hesston model 4800, produced at the AGCO facility in Hesston, Kan. — was introduced in 1978.
• Nearly 50 individual patents were awarded to the original baler.
• There are at AGCO 15 employees who were involved with developing and building the first large square balers and are still working at the Hesston facility today.
• Together, they have 610 years of experience working at the Hesston facility, with tenures ranging from 36 to 49 years.
• Large square balers built in Hesston have been sold under the following brand names: Hesston, New Idea, Massey Ferguson, Fendt, Challenger, Case IH, New Holland and AGCO.
• They have been used to bale everything from alfalfa and grass hay to wheat straw, miscanthus for biofuel production and even recyclables such as newspaper and aluminum cans.
• Large square balers manufactured in Hesston have proudly been sold and delivered to customers in as many as 39 countries all over the world.
• Hesston by Massey Ferguson Models 2170XD and 2190 create bales that are 4-feet x 3-feet or 4-feet x 4-feet, respectively, and can weigh up to a ton.
Hesston by Massey Ferguson (http://www.hesston.com) marked the end of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (WNFR) (www.prorodeo.com/series_home.aspx) watching its two sponsored cowboys, Luke Branquinho and Cody Teel, earn World Championship titles on December 15, 2012. In addition to sponsoring Branquinho and Teel, the 2012 WNFR marked Hesston’s second year back as a major sponsor of the event. Hesston staff and dealers hosted more than 400 customers from Dec. 6–15 in Las Vegas for rodeo’s biggest event.
The excitement was high as Hesston guests cheered on steer wrestler Branquinho and bull rider Teel during ten rounds of competition at the WNFR. Going into round ten, neither the steer wrestling nor the bull rider competition had a clear front-runner, making for an exciting evening.
Branquinho, a steer wrestler from Los Alamos, Calif., entered the 2012 WNFR as the reigning world champion. He put up strong runs throughout the ten-day competition, winning round four and placing second in rounds five and seven. Going into round ten Saturday night, there was no clear frontrunner among the steer wrestlers, allowing Branquinho to rise to the top and win a fourth world championship. Branquinho’s win marks the first back-to-back steer wrestling world championship since Ote Berry won in 1990–91. The only other steer wrestler to win more world championships than Branquinho is Homer Pettigrew, who won six world titles in the 1940s.
Twenty-year-old bull rider Teel, from Kountze, Texas, made his first trip the WFNR in 2012. The past high school and collegiate champion posted strong rides throughout the WNFR, including winning round four. After ten go-arounds, Teel was able to hold off his competition and win his first world championship Saturday night, an incredible achievement for such a young bull rider.
“We are very proud of Luke and Cody and their performances during the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo,” says Laura Lines, senior brand marketing specialist for Hesston. “Being a part of such a huge event, and seeing our competitors win, has been exciting for all of us. We’re looking forward to sponsoring them again in 2013.”
The WNFR, held in Las Vegas from Dec. 6–15, is sanctioned by the PRCA, the largest and oldest rodeo-sanctioning body in the world and the recognized leader in professional rodeo.
Ever ask yourself, “What were the engineers thinking when they designed this?” Well growing up on a farm I asked myself that question a lot. To help better answer, we interviewed our WR Series Windrowers engineering design team to see exactly what they were thinking in the development of an entirely new design of windrower. Find out what new technologies they were able to incorporate into the machine and what makes the new WR Series the most advanced windrower on the market. What do you think?
Recently I had a chance to demonstrate our new Hesston by Massey Ferguson WR Series windrower to hay & forage growers in the San Joaquin Valley in California. The responses from the demonstrations was so overwhelmingly positive that I had to capture it on video. The one thing I heard loud and clear from everyone was that our new WR Series didn’t just meet their expectations, it exceeded them in many ways.
One thing that I found very interesting about the San Joaquin Valley is that they still use mostly sickle headers to mow hay, instead of rotary disc heads. When I asked why, they said it was because they didn’t believe a rotary disc head could do as good of a job as a sickle head. But when we mowed their fields with our new 9196 TwinMax™ advanced conditioning disc head featuring our RazorBar™ low-profile cutterbar next to their sickle headers, they couldn’t believe the cut quality. To quote one grower “This machine is doing a beautiful job in alfalfa, I don’t think you could ask for a better job”.
But don’t just take my word for it, check out this video of WR Series test drive interviews.