China participates in the success of the world-famous Case IH Axial-Flow® combine

01 Feb 2018

Case IH Axial-Flow single-rotor technology has led the industry since 1977, becoming a legend in its own lifetime.

Chinese farmers recognise this revolutionary machine for its capability to produce superior grain quality and greater value than any other combine on the market.

Agriculture was revolutionised by a machine which recently reached its 40th anniversary and continues to have positive effects on farming productivity today. That machine is Case IH's Axial-Flow rotary combine harvester, introduced in 1977 with a single-rotor design that set new standards for grain quality, grain savings, crop adaptability and matched capacity. With fewer moving parts than rival machines, the Axial-Flow also boasted great reliability, ease of maintenance, and high resale values. And as many Chinese farmers will confirm from their own experience, the Axial-Flow still sets the standard for harvesting performance.

The Axial-Flow 4077 and 4088 are both designed to suit the specific needs of Chinese farmers. They offer best-in-class comfort, high capacity, and the unsurpassed grain quality consistently delivered by Axial-Flow technology. By developing 180 and 210 horsepower respectively, they extend the leading position previously held by Case IH in the market for combines above 250 hp.

The Axial-Flow 4077 and 4088 both have a 6.7-litre 6-cylinder engine from FPT Industrial, turbocharged and air-to-air after-cooled for exceptional fuel efficiency, achieving Tier III emissions standards and delivering dependable performance in all conditions. These powerful engines, together with large grain tanks of 5,000 and 6,000 litres, deliver exceptional capacity. In all crops and all conditions, they put tonnes into the trailer quickly.

Chinese farmers impressed by versatility, productivity and return on investment

With a variety of headers and kits available, the Axial-Flow 4000 Series can harvest a wide variety of crops including corn, wheat, rice, soybean, and rapeseed.

This unrivalled versatility is one of the strengths of the Axial-Flow appreciated by Li Aidong, chairman of the Xiweinong mechanised farming cooperative in Yuhong District, Shenyang Municipality. Mr Aidong comments: "In 2016, my 4088 harvested a total of 1,480 acres covering sorghum, corn, wheat, millet and soybeans. By changing the tile plates and sieve, I can achieve excellent harvest results for all of these five crops. The changeovers are really simple and can be carried out by two to three people within just one to two hours."

Another Axial-Flow advantage is its four-wheel-drive ability. Mr Aidong explains: "There is a depression in the land surrounding Shenyang, a big area of about 170 acres, which ordinary machines cannot enter without getting into difficulty - their tyres get stuck in muddy areas and then they are unable to get out. But with my Axial-Flow 4088 I was able to harvest these low-lying areas, earning several tens of thousands of yuan in extra income. I have recouped my outlay on this 4088 harvester within two years and it is helping me make substantial profits."

Mr Aidong hopes, of course, that the Axial-Flow's profitable productivity will continue to benefit his farming cooperative for many years to come - and the experiences of Zhou Guanghai can give him confidence this will be the case. Mr Guanghai is the general manager of the Hongyue family farm in Wangqing county, Jilin province, and when he points towards his Case IH harvester he smiles. "As soon as anyone looks at this," he says, "they can tell from its appearance that it is very old. In fact, this is a Case 1666, manufactured in 1995. In 23 years of operation it has not been necessary to disassemble or repair it. Its engine has clocked up 40,000 hours and it is still going strong."

These are just two of many farmers in China who express satisfaction at the performance and durability of Case IH Axial-Flow combines - and two of many thousands around the world. With so many agricultural experts singing its praises, this legendary machine looks set to carry on working hard on farms for at least another 40 years.

An award-winning game-changer

In 1977, when the unique single-rotor Axial-Flow combine was launched, it had a significant impact on farming across North America - and it soon became such a success story that by 1980 Axial-Flow combines were introduced in China. Nowadays this machine sells well in many countries around the world, and particularly in the Asia-Pacific region, where it is the favourite choice of farmers in Australia, Russia and China.

Since its launch in 2014, Chinese agricultural experts have formally recognised the market importance of the Axial-Flow. In 2015 and 2016 the Axial-Flow received no fewer than three awards:

  • In August 2015, the Axial-Flow 4088 won the Gold Award for Technology Innovation at China's Agricultural Machinery TOP 50 Awards;
  • In October 2015, the Axial-Flow 4088 also won the Product Innovation Award at that year's China International Agricultural Machinery Exhibition (CIAME);
  • In October 2016, the Axial-Flow 4077 won the Product Innovation Award at CIAME.

For customers in China, the Axial-Flow is manufactured at a factory in Harbin, Heilongjiang province. This is the largest agricultural equipment manufacturing facility in Northeast China, making a complete line of equipment - combines, planters, tractors, balers and hay tools - for mechanisation of the full production cycle of wheat, soybean and hay. The Harbin complex also houses Case IH's core research and development centre for agricultural equipment in China, with full development and testing capabilities. The Case IH Axial-Flow has been designed to deliver impressive performance in a variety of crops and conditions and to meet specific needs of customers around the world. The machine manufactured in Harbin not only serves the domestic market but it is also exported to Africa, Central Asia and Russia.

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