A CROWD of more than 200 watched the first official public demonstration of the new Seed Storm seeding bar at Gnowangerup last week.
Manufactured by Duraquip, Gnowangerup, makers of the popular multi-purpose Tornado semi-trailer, the flagship 24.2 metre model was the centrepiece of a day demonstrating the bar linked to a Morris 9800 Air Cart with ICT and Topcon M2M Machine Sync and pulled by a 462 kiloWatt (620 horsepower) Versatile 620 Delta track tractor.
There was also a demonstration of the Tornado seed-fertiliser trailer.
But it was the Seed Storm that attracted most of the attention, with farmers from throughout the Wheatbelt making the trip, including from Kalannie, Nungarin and Salmon Gums.
According to Duraquip director Rod Richardson, the big attendance "confirmed the industry needs this bar".
"The support we've received has been overwhelming," Mr Richardson said.
"People have said to us that they know the quality build of the Tornado and they know they will get the same quality with the Seed Storm."
The bar will be sold through McIntosh & Son dealerships and the company's southern branch manager Devon Gilmour said the demonstration confirmed the bar "meets the expectations of what needs to work in WA conditions".
"Our plan in being associated with the research and development of this bar was to tick boxes such as trash flow, floatation, ground-following, floating hitch and a single frame lift," Mr Gilmour said.
"We've done that and the response by farmers has validated what we and Duraquip have done."
The Seed Storm comes in a range of models with working widths from 10.5 metres to 24.2m with three, five and seven frame sections, according to width and a choice of 250 millimetres or 300mm row spacings.
Farmer reaction was positive, with many happy another Australian manufacturer was in the market.
"I like the steering and turning and the fold is pretty good too," one farmer told Farm Weekly.
Another said the double-acting hydraulics was a clever idea for tyne lift and fold, while other comments related to frame strength and the single hydraulic ram and chain assembly for the leading castor wheels.
According to Duraquip director Garry Richardson, few seeding bars on the market have all of the features of the Seed Storm "and we've added extra features such as solid hydraulic lines across the bar to minimise the hosing to each Groundhog tyne assembly and seeding module".
"It's a fully braced frame with heavy duty wall boxed sections so it's a very strong bar,'' Garry Richardson said.
"It has a strong frame but we made it flexible enough so it would avoid cracking.
"It also has a floating drawbar, for contour following ability and excellent fore and aft frame stability.
"It rides where you set it, doesn't twist into the ground and doesn't skate along the top either, even in exceptionally hard digging conditions."
According to Duraquip, trash flow is maximised with the Seed Storm as all wheels sit clear of the seeding area, situated in front and behind the tyne ranks.
This ensures the maximum possible trash flow through the machine, without dragging up around the wheels.
The development of the retracting hydraulic tyne system and main frame lift has resulted in a manageable 7.5m transport width for 18m to 24m models and narrower for the smaller working widths.
It also provides more room to change points.