RACINE, Wis. — The Case IH Robo-Sharpener – the first manually supervised “field-service robot” for sharpening wavy or regular tillage blades on the company’s True-Tandem™ 330 Turbo – has received a Silver Innovation award from the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) and Ag Connect Expo.
“We are honored that the innovation behind the Robo-Sharpener has been recognized by the agriculture equipment industry,” says Rob Zemenchik, Case IH Crop Production Marketing Manager. The Robo-Sharpener had been designated a 2012 AE50 award winner in recent months.
ABOUT THE SILVER INNOVATION AWARD
From the many entries submitted, an expert panel of engineers annually selects up to 50 “best of the best” products available for purchase or ordering during the calendar year to receive AE50 awards.
Presented every two years, the Gold and Silver Innovation awards are a new level of recognition for the ASABE’s AE50 awards. Recipients are chosen by a panel of agricultural equipment editors from leading farm publications and ASABE member engineers. Only products that received an AE50 award in the past two years are eligible for a Gold or Silver Innovation award. To qualify for a Gold or Silver award, the company that manufactures a product must be a 2013 Ag Connect exhibitor.
The awards were presented on Tuesday, Jan. 29, as part of the Ag Connect Expo opening ceremonies in Kansas City, Mo.
ABOUT THE ROBO-SHARPENER
The True-Tandem 330 Turbo features patented low-concavity wavy blades, which, like other ground-engaging tools, can eventually turn dull. Case IH recognized the opportunity to provide customers with further value by inventing a sharpener to extend the life of the wavy or regular tillage blades, and the Robo-Sharpener was the answer.
The system sharpens a Case IH Turbo blade in just a few minutes and also can sharpen standard concavity disk blades. Equipped with a trolley system, the Robo-Sharpener rolls along a rail from blade to blade for easy repeatability. Because it’s mounted to the implement, sharpening can occur anywhere, even on unlevel ground. A gang driver rotates the blades at the ideal speed while being sharpened. This balance also keeps heat away from the target blade, so steel integrity is not compromised.
After using the Robo-Sharpener, the blades will have a restored cutting edge that can slice through tough residue and penetrate hard soil.
“A gleaming, fresh edge emerges within seconds, giving the blade the full cutting capability it had when new,” says Zemenchik. “The toughest cornstalks will be no match for a freshly sharpened True-Tandem 330 Turbo.”
The economics are attractive, too. While sharpening labor and applicable travel costs vary by area, utilizing the Robo-Sharpener from a local Case IH dealer can save up to 85 percent of the cost to re-blade an implement.
“This offers tremendous savings for Case IH customers who want top performance from their vertical tillage tools or disks, because you no longer have to prematurely re-blade machines,” Zemenchik explains. “Resharpening multiple times for multiple savings is now feasible.”
Additional value is gained from having sharp implement blades.
Zemenchik adds: “Sharp blades enhance nutrient cycling of phosphorus and potassium in crop residues. And, tire damage is reduced because sharp blades help manage root crowns from stiff cornstalks.”
Case IH is a global leader in agricultural equipment, committed to collaborating with its customers to develop the most powerful, productive, reliable equipment – designed to meet today’s agricultural challenges. Challenges like feeding an expanding global population on less land, meeting ever-changing government regulations and managing input costs. With headquarters in the United States, Case IH has a network of dealers and distributors that operates in over 160 countries. Case IH provides agricultural equipment systems, flexible financial service offerings and parts and service support for professional farmers and commercial operators through a dedicated network of professional dealers and distributors. Productivity enhancing products include tractors; combines and harvesters; hay and forage equipment; tillage tools; planting and seeding systems; sprayers and applicators; site-specific farming tools and utility vehicles. Case IH is a brand of CNH (NYSE: CNH), a majority-owned subsidiary of Fiat Industrial S.p.A. (FI.MI).