IT'S a back-of-the-envelope thing, working out how much horsepower you need to pull a seeding bar.
In the case of an 18.2 metre DBS precision seeder, you work on seven horsepower (5.2 kilowatts) a tyne.
So with 70 tynes on 25 centimetre spacings that's 490hp (365.5kW).
And digging to a depth of 15cm in hard-setting grey clays, you're going to need every bit of that horsepower.
Which begged the first question to Pingrup farmer Wayne Tapscott, who farms with his brother Brad, about why they chose a 325kW (435hp) front-wheel assist (FWA) Fendt 1042 Vario as the prime mover for his seeding rig.
"To be honest the horsepower didn't put us off," Mr Tapscott said.
"We demo'd it 12 months ago and I took it into some of our hardest country to pull the rig and compared it to our tracked 520hp (388kW) 4WD pulling a 60 foot (18.2m) Bourgault with a Bourgault four tank 6550 air seeder.
"We put both bars in to a digging depth of seven inches (17.5cm) and the Fendt, with the Vario transmission, was sitting on 1450 revs while our tracked model with a powershift was between 1700 and 1800 revs.
"It was very convincing."
The brothers bought the 1042 in August last year, along with another DBS and are looking at another 1042 to replace the tracked model for their 7500 hectare cropping program.
That comes after comparing fuel use during this year's seeding program - averaging 40-45 litres a hectare for the 1042 against 50-60L/ha for the tracked model.
For the Tapscotts, having two Fendts on the property increases the flexibility to do multiple tasks year-round.
"It increases our options because they are so universal," Mr Tapscott said.
"They'll share the workload and we'll probably get about 1000 hours out of each of them a year."
The Fendt 1042 they bought last year was virtually thrown in to the proverbial deep end.
One of its first jobs was as a chase tractor servicing two headers.
"It was pulling a 25 tonne chaser bin and after last year's wind blow the paddocks were pretty rough so it was a good test for the Fendt and it showed why it is built for speed and comfort," he said.
Independent front axle suspension is standard which provides a load-carrying ability (9000 kilograms at 40km/h), traction and comfort.
The four-point pneumatic cab suspension is also a boost to comfort while the stability control adjusts the angle of the tractor when cornering so the tractor doesn't lean over when cornering at speed.
The four point pneumatic cab suspension also has level control enabling travelling at speed across steep or rough terrain.
The Fendt was used for four or five weeks cleaning dams with a cubic metre scoop and in February and March it was used to pull a Reefinator over 70ha of rocky country.
"We sat on 10 to 13km/h and you could feel the tractor sensing the load and backing off then re-apply the power within seconds," Mr Tapscott said.
"It sort of cushions the initial blow of hitting the rocks, preventing the tractor from bouncing and spinning wheels or power hopping."
The work didn't stop for the Fendt with the next task deep ripping in April before clay spreading and pulling offsets in to chop up the clay with following levelling packers.
Then came seeding.
"We haven't had any issues with the Fendt and with some of our paddocks 40 or 50 kilometres from the home block, there's no problems getting the tractor over there quickly (with a 50km/h transmission)," Wayne said.
"It's certainly faster than tracks."
The Fendt 1042 is powered by a 12.4 litre, six cylinder MAN engine with a unique cooling system.
It's provided by a specially developed fan and a Concentric Air System (CAS) cooling concept.
A new high performance fan in front of the cooler unit, sucks in cold, dense air, accelerates it over the concentrically-formed hood and presses it through the radiator.
The CAS has its own hydrostatic drive, so it can always deliver cooling power to each component according to need, independent of engine speed.
"It's obviously a very good system because we haven't had to clean out the engine bay and radiator," Mr Tapscott said.
According to Fendt, the MAN engine achieves maximum torque is achieved at 1100rpm and is maintained to 1500rpm, resulting in maximum fuel efficiency.
The Fendt stepless Vario transmission, which has been the industry benchmark since its inception more than 20 years ago, has also been upgraded and includes another industry first of being able to drive both axles independently.
In working mode, the Fendt operates in four-wheel drive but the axles work independently.
Optional weight packages are available with the Tapscotts opting for additional front and rear weights of 3.5 tonnes and 2.5t respectively for a total weight of 24t,
According to Fendt, all 1000 Series models feature a new cab boasting a considerably higher level of operator comfort with more visibility than ever before.