New round balers from Case IH convince with their powerful impact and clever details

26 jul 2016

With the RB 545 series, Case IH has a new generation of high-calibre fixed chamber balers on the starting blocks for the 2017 season: The RB 545 and RB 545 models are being joined by the substantially modified RB 544 Silage Pack HD. The RB 545 and RB 545 Silage Pack models deliver perfect round bales in 122 x 125 cm format, whilst the RB 544 delivers even denser bales in dimensions of 122 x 135 cm.

RB 545 and RB 545 Silage Pack
The many and diverse innovations in the RB 545 series include, first and foremost, the new 220 cm wide pick-up. This has a proven track record in balers with a variable bale chamber. The five tine supports and the steel tines, each with a diameter of 5.5 mm, pick up the harvested crops cleanly and without losses. The standard swath down-holder can adapt perfectly to suit each swath, it provides uniform pressure on the harvested crop, and this helps the flow through the pick-up. If customers so wish, they can now choose between fixed and idling sensor wheels; both variants can be adjusted easily without the need for tools, and if road traffic regulations relating to vehicle width make this necessary, both can be installed and removed as and when required.

Powerful drive, efficient harvesting
The performance capabilities of the driveline have been improved yet further, and designed for the highest of load ratings. The new drive chains for rotor and bale chamber also contribute towards this. Powerful springs, combined with two hydraulic cylinders, ensure that the pick-ups follow the terrain contour reliably and that they protect the soil. New components and improved routing of hydraulic hoses also boosts efficiency. The RB 545 models now enable even more functions to be controlled from the cab. To disconnect the rotor, as well as the three (RB 545) or four hydraulic lines (RB 545 Silage Pack), an additional non-return valve is required. For Maxime Rocaboy, Product Marketing Manager for harvesting technology at Case IH, this is one of the many important details that assure customers of optimum performance combined with maximum ease of operation in everyday operations. "With this function, known as 'Rotor Declutch', full motive power remains available even in the event of a blockage while the bale chamber is almost full. This facilitates problem-free completion of the baling process", he stated.

Cutter rotor with manual blade selection
The RB 545 and the RB 545 Silage Pack both have a cutting rotor with 20 blades in the standard version. Theoretically, this makes it possible to achieve cut lengths of 52 mm. Thanks to the passive folding floor mounted behind the rotor which can be operated from the cab, and that opens up an aperture measuring 80 cm in width parallel to the rotor, it is now possible to remedy or even pre-empt blockages quickly and easily. The manually adjustable bank of blades provides a choice. Depending on workplace conditions, it is possible to activate two groups of ten blades separately, or to activate all 20 blades at the same time. With the two groups of ten blades, the change to a new sharp set of blades is performed in almost no time at all using a rotary knob on the left side of the press.

New rollers keep the bales on the move
The new cold-shaped bale rollers now have ten ribs instead of the previous four. These deliver more grip and more effective rotation of the bales during the baling process. This makes the baling operation more uniform and altogether better. At the same time, the previous apertures between the individual bale rollers have been almost closed. This is an effective way of preventing faults when wrapping bales in plastic sheeting. In addition, a new folding blade behind the cutting rotor ensures that any plastic sheeting that may get snagged by the rotor cannot cause a blockage.

New system for net binding
The RB 545 balers now have a duckbill system to pre-wrap netting around the bales. This netting, 1.3 metres in width, extends over the edges of the bales, preventing the loss of material from the edges. This new system operates approximately 20 percent faster which contributes towards the enhanced productivity of the new model series. The net rolls are easy to clamp from the side. As well as the roll currently in use, there is also space for two spare rolls. A net measuring 1.3 metres in width is also used for the new net pre-wrapping feature on the RB 545 Silage Pack. The bales can be used to provide more effective protection of harvested crops. They can also be pre-wrapped with plastic sheeting measuring between 1.28 and 1.4 metres in width. In keeping with pre-wrapping with netting, the edges are encompassed to prevent material losses, and there is room for two spare rolls. For greater efficiency, there are two separate storage compartments on the RB 545 Silage Pack. These enable a supply of a further ten rolls of plastic sheeting to be carried on board the unit.

The very latest electronics and software
ISOBUS functionality comes as standard on the new RB 545 series. Also, if the customer so wishes, the baler can be ordered with or without an AFS 700 monitor. In conjunction with the optional camera at the back of the baler, the monitor enables the driver to keep a close eye on what is happening at all times. A host of new software features help the baler to operate perfectly. This includes end-to-end visualisation of the baling and wrapping process, a memory unit to store details of the previous 25 jobs and a diverse array of setting and diagnostic options. There is a clever detail involved here;  if the bales on the RB 545 Silage Pack are not wrapped in plastic sheeting, the winding table can be used as an intermediate storage point for a completed bale, parallel to which two bales can always be placed.

A clear focus on ease of operation
The ease of operation of the new RB 545 series is further ably demonstrated by other details such as the new support, now located on the right-hand side of the drawbar. With a stroke of 2.4 or 7.1 mm per crank rotation, it provides a choice of two speeds during deployment and retraction. The ladders and the service platform have also been modified. The ladders, provided to allow for easy and safe access, are still mounted on the drawbar, but the platform is now connected to the cross-member of the baler. During fieldwork, this permits a tighter steering lock and provides additional flexibility. Other innovations relate to the optionally available bale turner. This turns each bale through a one-quarter turn as they are being set down, which ensures that they do not roll away on sloping ground. The bale turner, previously designed to resemble a skid, now has a wheel. For on-road transport operations, it can be folded up effortlessly. For greater soil protection, the tyres on the RB 545 Silage Pack have been replaced. Previously, 380/55-170 tyres were fitted, now larger tyres measuring 560/45x22.5 are used to protect the soil.

RB 544 Silage Pack HD: Now even more powerful
A few key details were also improved on the RB 544 Silage Pack HD round baler, primarily intended for agricultural contracting businesses. These include modifications to the pick-up. A redesign of the area at the back effectively prevents bottlenecks in harvesting crops. The same is true of the wider gaps between the pick-up tines. A substantial improvement in efficiency results from the modified RB 544 Silage Pack HD, especially as a result of the faster transfer from bale chamber to winding table. This process now takes only 4 seconds, which theoretically, this increases bale performance by up to 5 percent. A new sensor on the transfer table also provides improved detection of pre-rolled bales. This prevents possible damage to the plastic sheeting.

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