Unique seeding rig delivers efficiencies in Southern Queensland
From seeding at high speed, to minimal downtime for filling and a strong focus on liquid fertiliser, everything about the Wise Farming operation in Southern Queensland is about efficiency.
In fact, so much so that when Lance Wise, with his parents Murray and Janette, decided to invest in new seeding equipment, they purchased a Simplicity TQSL3 13000 air seeder.
The liquid-capable machine has three bins – two granular totalling 9000L and one liquid bin of 4000L.
Lance says with a 1,570-hectare cropping program north of Bowenville, they need to do things quickly and efficiently.
“The machine is a good set-up for covering a large area without stopping to fill up too often - we can run the whole day with either one or two fills, so there’s minimal stopping and downtime.
We can basically plant most of our paddocks with one fill and possibly a top-up just to finish it off,” he explains.
Lance believes with the increased capacity allowing them to seed for longer before needing to fill up, they save up to three hours a day.
“Where we used to stop every 1-1.5 hours to fill up, a process that would take half an hour, we now fill up at the start of the day, which might take us an hour just to make sure everything’s right.
We can then plant the whole day and be home by 7 o’clock that night without too much hassle,” he says.
Lance has also found the Simplicity equipment can achieve an impressive range of seeding rates, from 1.4 kg/ha for summer crops through to 120 kg/ha for faba beans, without the need for changes in gearing.
Adding to the efficiency is the technology in Lance’s tractor cab, where he utilises a Simplicity X20 Seed Rate Controller.
“The X20 is variable rate capable, so as well as putting a liquid fertiliser through the system, we can change rates on the go - the whole machine can be calibrated and ready in 10-15 minutes when moving from crop to crop.
The interface is really good, very straightforward; it’s all there at the press of a button on the touch screen,” Lance explains.
Perhaps one of the unique differences in the Wise’s seeding gear is the liquid system they’ve embraced, which is unusual on the Darling Downs.
“The liquid system allows us to use a lower rate of starter fertilisers – in fact we have halved our rate, which means we can use the granular bin just for seed and cover a greater area, so it just gives us an extra efficiency basically.
This liquid system is exactly like a boomspray, it just could not get any easier - basically you type in whatever rate you want on your monitor and you switch it on and switch it off, it just runs well,” he explains.
When looking to purchase their new air seeder, Lance had another requirement beyond liquids – the machine needed to be tough enough to travel at speeds up to double the norm.
“We used to plant at the standard 10km/hr, but we found in trying to do bigger areas we needed to be more efficient, so we increased our speed to 12 km/hr, but our old planter just wasn’t built for it.
However we sourced a planter built in Forbes (NSW) that was going to go as hard as we wanted to pull it,” Lance says.
With a new planting speed of 25 km/hr, the Wise’s needed an air seeder to keep up, which is why they turned to Simplicity.
“Simplicity worked with us on a solution, which included slightly bigger tyres on the air seeder to take the weight at that speed and we’ve had no problem achieving a 25 km/hr plant speed.
A lot of people probably see us in the paddock and shake their head and say that’s not going to come up, but we’ve done it for 18 months now on summer and winter crops and it’s all come up.
From the tractor back, our rig is all Australian and we’re pretty proud of that – the whole system just works,” Lance explains.