The school of thought on grass cutting continually undergoes many changes in direction with a drift again at the moment towards cut and collect. No matter whether the application is golf, local authority, caravan parks or large estates, there is pressure on picking up the cut material, this might be for reasons of not wanting cut grass trampled into shower blocks or clubs in a camping or caravan situation or the need to stop the cut material feeding regrowth of the sward in a golf or local authority application.
On golf courses we are seeing a trend towards thinning out the bottom of the rough to stimulate the growth of taller, thinner varieties and to reduce the amount of lusher leaved grasses as these generate slow play through lost balls as well as taking considerably more maintenance. This also applies to fallen leaves where the composted leaf mulch feeds the sward creating more grass growth, more cuts required, more time taken and so more work, a vicious circle.
The Groundkeeper range of tractor-pulled flail mower/collectors, in widths of 1.35 m to 2.1 m, has always been popular in the golf course world as well as being used for estate work and in areas where the tractor size and height did not impinge on the access and manoeuvrability whereas the Profihopper self-propelled models offer a zero turning circle and an out-front mower deck enabling close-up cutting.
The unique feature on the Profihopper is that after the horizontal flail rotor has deposited the cut material into the cross auger running along behind it , there is a second vertical auger that physically conveys the cuttings away from the deck into the collection hopper; by which time the material is highly consolidated meaning that the hopper volume is effectively increased by about a 1/3 over a conventional air transported system. The twin auger system means that the Profihopper will collect in both wet and dry conditions so there is no need to wait for the grass to dry first thing, the mowing day can start earlier and there is no risk of blockages. In just a few minutes, the scarifying knives can be fitted allowing the machine to be used for simultaneous scarifying and collecting with no need to scarify, windrow and then collect as is the norm. Core collection is also not a problem with the cores being broken down at the same time ready to be composted.
The start of the grass cutting season this year clashed with the Covid-19 lockdown and Amazone Groundcare made sure that there was a full parts and service infrastructure through the lockdown period as unfortunately the grass kept on growing and the demand was high. We also had our sales team keep in touch with both end users and dealers to carry out demonstrations where safe to do so. This period also saw the delivery of the first of the new generation PH 1500; the PH 1500 runs alongside the existing smaller PH1250 but with the same unique auger feed. Both the PH 1250 and the PH 1500 are supplied already with Stage V exhaust compliant engines that don't need AdBlue and so are already equipped to meet the delayed new legislation on emissions.
The beauty of the new PH 1500 is that it keeps the same format of out-front cutting deck, the easy ability to switch to scarifying, the positive collection of long and short grass, wet or dry but, as the name suggests, with a 1500 mm cutting width as oppose to 1250 mm. The improved performance though doesn't just stop at the increased cutting width, the auger system is designed to pull more grass away from the rotor allowing for higher forward speeds when cutting, up to 11 km/h and the 45.6HP Yanmar engine ensure there is sufficient power to enable that the machine to be able to cope with that extra grass. The collection hopper capacity is increased to a theoretical 1,600 litres, 40% more than the PH 1250 and, between jobs on the road, the intelligent engine management system knocks the revs down to power on demand for reduced fuel consumption and less operator noise but still offers forward speeds of up to 20 km/h for swift journey times. The rear towing hitch can cope with loads of up to 750 kg and the all-round driver ergonomics make the PH 1500 a machine that can be comfortably used all day. The PH 1250 & PH 1500 also logs the job data for subsequent invoicing or checking efficiency and work rates on each job.
As the nights start to darken and thoughts turn to colder times the E+S salt spreader range, in capacities from 300 litres to 1100 litres, again offers some unique features of speed-related rate control as well as direction and width of spread.
Contact the Amazone Team on: 01302 755 725.