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Agriculture Technology Podcast: Ep. 144 John Deere Model Year '22 Sprayer Update

25 May 2021

Host Tony Kramer and Product Specialist Ben Hilde discuss what growers can expect in John Deere's new Model Year 22 (MY22) Sprayers.


Each month, we share the latest in agriculture technology. Don’t miss an episode by subscribing to our podcast on SpotifyiTunesSoundCloud, or anywhere you listen to podcasts.

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This episode's full transcript:

Tony Kramer: Hi, I'm Tony Kramer with RDO Equipment Company. Thanks for tuning in to another episode of the Agriculture Technology podcast.

Welcome back to another episode of the podcast. This is episode number 144. Today we are going to be talking about the Model Year 2022, John Deere Sprayer Updates.

Now with that, let's get back to the show. I'm excited to bring back Ben Hilde to the show. Ben is a Product Specialist with RDO Equipment. Ben, we had you on the show not too long ago, at the beginning of the year, here talking about AutoPath, a new guidance technology that John Deere came out with.

When I was going through show topics and came across this Model Year '22 Sprayer Updates, I know you're passionate about your sprayers, you really enjoy that product. I wanted to get you on here and talk about this, but before we dive into that show, Ben, let's just remind our listeners a little bit about who you are, where you come from, and how you got to where you are today.

Ben Hilde: Yes. My name is Ben Hilde, Product Specialists out of the Hawley and Ada, Minnesota locations for RDO Equipment. Came from a farm north of here about a hundred and fifty miles, and moved down to this area about-- it's almost been six years now, and started with RDO Equipment as a Product Specialist, stayed in the same role the whole time down here, and I really enjoy what I do today for a living. It's a lot of fun helping farmers and in-store employees out with the latest and greatest on precision ag.

Tony: A hundred and fifty miles north, you realize that's practically Canada, right?

Ben: Yes. It could dang near throw a baseball in Canada for my backyard.

Tony: [laughs] All right. I have to throw that one in there. Northern Minnesota is a very, very far Northern Minnesota is where what Ben is referring to. With that, let's dive into this show. Two weeks ago, we had Erin Hightower on the show. She was talking about the See & Spray Select technology. That is not the only thing that is coming new for the Model Year, 2022, John Deere Sprayers.

What Ben and I are going to do here is talk a little bit about what those other changes are on top of that See & Spray Select. To get started, Ben, obviously the look of the sprayer has changed, but the numbering scheme has also changed. Why don't you tell us a little bit about that and what these new numbers mean, and how it's going to look?

Ben: Deere went to the 400 and the 600 series sprayer. The 400 series is taking the place of the smaller frame machines, your 4030, your 4038, your 4044, and then the 600 series is taking the place of the larger frame sprayers, the 4045, and the 4060. For example, if you go with the 412R, you're looking at a smaller frame machine with the class four chassis, and then the 12 stands for 1,200 gallons. That's the new numbering naming scheme in a nutshell, I guess.

Tony: Yes. Essentially we dropped a number, so we go from that four-digit sprayer, the R4038 to an R or- sorry, no, it would be a 412R or a 410R.

Ben: Correct.

Tony: We're going down to three digits and we're putting the R on the backside versus the R on the front side with a four-digit number. Very easy to understand once you know the chassis size and then the tank capacity, like Ben had said there's.

Ben: Yes, it seems it's a lot simpler naming scheme compared to what we've had in the past for a while, there was the four series chassis, and then you'd run it off of a leader's per tank and whatever, and now we're going off gallons, and then it's just the simple four for the chassis size, and then the 12 for the hundreds of gallons or the [unintelligible 00:04:56] to the 10, whatever it might be. Little easier to understand there.

Tony: The look of the sprayer is changing a little bit too in the cab. Tell us a little bit about that.

Ben: Yes. Deere is putting the command before cab on these machines. We're looking at, if you've been in a model year 228R or a model year 218R, you've been in the cab of a Model Year '22 Sprayer. Integrated StarFire 6000 receiver on the cab and all the bells and whistles inside of the cab, looking at your footrests, redesigned steering column, moved the air conditioner from the ceiling to the back of the seat.

New hydro handle, just like we've had in the sprayers in the past, customizable buttons on that, and the overall cab lighting system-- I'm trying to- the exit lighting is what I'm looking for, creates a halo around that roof and has a button on the floor or on the dumb by the steps to be able to light that cab up, so you can see what you're doing at night.

Also added the-- if you go with the John Deere signature edition, they got that heated and cooled massaging seat, that everybody likes so much in that 8R, and then the ultimate lighting package in that John Deere signature edition and claiming full 360-degree lighting on the outside of the cab. Very, very nice feature there.

Tony: I know what that John Deere signature cab, you talk about that, heated and cooled massaging leather seat. You put in a lot of hours in a tractor cab, but I don't think anything can go above and beyond the hours you put in a sprayer during the summer. That might definitely be the way to go when you talk a sprayer cab, but you're absolutely right, Ben, if you've been in a Model Year '21 8R, you've experienced the cab and the look, the design that is going to be on these Model Year '22 John Deere Sprayers. Very exciting stuff.

From that, let's move into some of the new technology that's going to be coming with these Model Year '22 Sprayers. First, starting out, BoomTrac Pro. On the legacy models, we've had BoomTrac Pro for a while, Model Year '22 incomes BoomTrac Pro 2. Tell us a little bit about that, Ben.

Ben: Yes. BoomTrac Pro 2 taken all the great features of BoomTrac Pro, but actually, what we're doing, or what Deere is doing is they're increasing the performance of BoomTrac Pro by adding an inertia monitoring sensor that helps correct for the chassis role on the machine. With that, we're able to achieve 22% greater spraying accuracy with that BoomTrac Pro 2 system compared to the BoomTrac Pro.

Hopefully, it's going to help us out in a little bit more hilly territory, or even in the valley here where we've got some steep ditches, the machine is going to be able to react a little faster with the roll in the pitch of the machines.

Tony: Yes, I think that'll be a great update to the BoomTrac Pro system. One thing I like to tell customers whether it's BoomTrac Pro or BoomTrac Pro 2, it is a height sensing system, not a ground collision avoidance system. No matter how good these sensors get, just keep in mind, it's meant to keep that boom at a consistent height with the changing of the terrain. It's not necessarily meant to avoid the ground collision that sometimes happens.

Moving onto the next piece, this one, I know you are very excited about. I'm really curious to see how this works. I think a lot of people will really like this technology pressure recirculation within the boom plumbing. Talk to us about that.

Ben: Yes. Everybody knows every time he switched chemicals or you do an air purge on your boom, you got to start the day by priming your boom. With 120-foot boom, you're looking at about 30 gallons, a little over. With 132-foot boom, you're looking at that 36-gallon range that you're wasting of chemical every time that you prime that boom.

Well, with the pressure of recirculation, we actually do not need to prime our boom anymore. It actually brings product through the boom and is able to bring it back into the solution pump without actually letting any product go out of the boom. It's going to greatly increase our cost savings when it comes to priming our boom because we actually are not wasting any chemicals. It's going to increase the agitation in that boom, so it is actually going to be able to flow through the boom. That allows a spray to go through the nozzles, and it's going to be able to recirculate through another set of plumbing to go back into the tank. It's going to increase that agitation, helping with that chemical buildup inside of that boom that we deal with quite often and with those nasty fungicides and insecticides.

Then also along that line, it will reduce our crop damage from that residue buildup in that boom. Pretty awesome feature coming down the line on these model year 22 sprayers with that pressure recirculation system. If you get some time, go out on YouTube and YouTube this system, they've got a really nice diagram out there on how this system works. After you watched the diagram on it, it seems like it could be a little confusing, but it's actually extremely simple.

Tony: Yes, you bring up a lot of good benefits to this new technology, this new feature, this pressure recirculation. Not only is there some cost savings there, but agronomically speaking, there's also some benefits to your crop with any potential residual buildup within that boom, it's able to continue flowing product to maybe clean some of that stuff out, but then also you talk about that essentially wasted product. Whenever you pull into the field, the beginning of the day that a new field, a new tank mix, whatever it is. Traditionally, we're backing into a corner somewhere to prime that boom, and we're just spraying that product out on the ground.

Whether it's potential crop damage or just a waste of that product, this pressure recirculation is definitely going to help with cost savings, as well as some agronomic benefits. One of the other things that comes with that is a feature of the pressure re-circulation plumbing and everything there, and is another piece when it comes to cost to savings, as well as agronomic benefits is a product reclaim. What is that?

Ben: Yes, what the product reclaim is going to do for you is you're actually going to be able to use that pressure re-circulation system and use the product reclaim feature to pull all of your existing product in the boom back into the solution system. After you've done that, you're then able to run a Boom Rinse and just pull fresh water out of the rinse tank and push it out of the nozzles to, at the end of the day, clean your sprayer out.

I know if you've been around me when I'm talking about these ExactApply sprayers, the number one thing I hammer [unintelligible 00:12:24] is, "Clean the sprayer, clean the sprayer. Every night, do a Boom Rinse at a minimum and air purge." This is going to help us save product and also keep that boom a lot cleaner because you're going to be more apt to actually run a product reclaim than you are going to be to run a Boom Rinse and do an air purge and wasting product.

Here we're not wasting any product anymore. We're pulling it back into the tank, we're rinsing that sprayer out at the end of the day, we have that increased agitation with that res-circulation system for the clean water going into the system, and we're able to pull up that clean water out on the ground, do an air purge. Those ExactApply nozzle bodies are going to be happy all year long instead of plugged up with chemical.

Tony: Yes, absolutely. There again, the cost savings, the agronomic benefits, but then also just the general upkeep of your sprayer, keeping that boom clean, keeping those ExactApply nozzle bodies clean and away from any issues or plugging. A lot of great benefits coming from the pressure re-circulation, as well as that product reclaim feature. Now with all of these benefits of pressure re-circulation, product reclaim, BoomTrac Pro 2, there's obviously some availability and compatibility things that we need to go over. Let's talk to our listeners a little bit about the availability, as well as the compatibility with this technology.

Ben: Yes, with the pressure re-recirculation and the product reclaim, it is factory installed on all the ExactApply sprayers that have the automated solution system for the model year 22, 400, and 600 series machines. Product degree claim is not compatible with the manual solution control, and the pressure research and the product reclaim are not compatible with the carbon fiber booms. It is not going to be compatible with that 132-foot machine as of yet.

At this time, direct injection is not compatible with the pressure re-circulation or the product reclaim. Just a couple of things to keep in mind if you are looking for that on your new sprayer. Keeping in mind that the EOP is starting on sprayers here in early June, so if you are looking at getting yourself into one of these 400 or 600 series of machines, come visit us up at RDO Equipment and we'll talk about some specs and some new sprayers.

Tony: Yes, you bring up a really good point with the EOP coming up right away beginning of June. They'll give you some time to think about some of these technologies. Like Ben said, there is some compatibility downfalls with the carbon fiber boom, similar to what we talked about with the See & Spray Select. There's just a lot more going on with See & Spray Select, as well as the pressure re-circulation plumbing that the carbon fiber booms are not capable of handling that at this time.

Keep that in mind. Like Ben said, if you're interested, you're curious, get into your local RDO Equipment or your local John Deere dealership and get talking sprayer specs. Now, prior to potentially ordering during the EOP, Ben, if somebody wants to learn more about any of these features or technologies we've talked about, where can they go? Who can they talk to?

Ben: Obviously, come into your local audio equipment company store and come talk with the product specialist through your account manager, or service manager, or parts manager, whoever you want to talk to in the store, and we can get you pointed in the right direction there. Go out and visit our RDO's website. Go to John Deere's website. We got YouTube, they're social media channels out there. There's all kinds of different resources out there. Like I mentioned earlier, Deere has some good YouTube videos on this pressure re-circulation system and just a good overall showing of the new 400 and the 600 Series Sprayers with the product released just this year. There's just some really good YouTube videos out there.

Don't forget about the other technologies that we didn't talk about today. We still got vision and roll sense, top of the line guidance across the industry with those two features right there, new this year, and if you listen to my previous podcast AutoPath, just hopped in a sprayer with a guy the other day and we loaded his AutoPath file off his fresh planner files, and boy, that is sweet. If you haven't seen it, check out the YouTube videos, talk to a neighbor if they're running it, see if you can jump in the cab with them. Hopefully, we're going to be able to set up some demos on this stuff somehow to be able to train customers and internal employees on this AutoPath system. Don't forget about the other great technologies, but yes, we got a lot of channels out there to be able to learn more about this stuff between us and John Deere.

Tony: Well, thank you, Ben, for sitting down with me again talking about these model year 2022 John Deere sprayer updates. It's going to be really exciting to get some of these out in the field. We'll hopefully get some demo units to run next year. It's going to be a great sprayer, some great additions to the technology. Thanks again for doing this.

Ben: No problem.

Tony: Thanks again for tuning into another episode. If you have questions about the technology and products discussed or have ideas about future episodes, please leave them in the comments below. You can also subscribe to RDO's YouTube channel and be in the know about each episode, or tune in on any streaming service. Thanks again for listening.


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