Drawing on its many years of experience gained in the field and through meeting the needs of 25,000 satisfied customers, CLAAS has shown its TERRA TRAC expertise at Agritechnica with enhanced versions of its crawler track system fitted to a JAGUAR forage harvester and an AXION large tractor.
Soil compaction reduces yields and takes a great deal of work to eliminate again. This is why CLAAS attaches great importance to soil protection, starting with measures taken during the machine development process. It was 30 years ago that the company presented the first series-production combine harvester with full rubber tracks. This was followed by the TERRA TRAC concept a few years later. Since then, CLAAS has pursued the systematic development of crawler track technology.
Due to have made its UK debut at this year’s Grassland & Muck event, the JAGUAR TT is the first self-propelled forage harvester to be available with a factory-integrated crawler track system with hydraulic suspension. The new concept offers optimal soil protection under all conditions and an intelligent headland protection system prevents damage to the grass cover and enables year-round operation.
Two JAGUAR models are available with the TERRA TRAC system – the new top-of-the-range 925hp JAGUAR 990TT and the 653hp JAGUAR 960TT.
In equipping its JAGUAR with TERRA TRAC, CLAAS is the first forage harvester manufacturer to present a factory-fitted integrated crawler track system for forage harvesters which protects the soil and grass cover with a unique, integrated headland protection feature. During a turning manoeuvre, the machine is supported on the middle support rollers, thereby raising part of each crawler track. As a result, the contact area and degree of soil pressure change briefly to a level comparable to that obtained with 800-size tyres. Earlier studies by Kiel University of Applied Sciences have shown that, by shortening the contact area in this way, it is possible for the undesirable shear effect (which is otherwise encountered when turning a machine with crawler tracks on grass) to be reduced to almost the same level as that which results with a wheeled machine. This innovative concept allows year-round operation with a high degree of machine utilisation and no time lost in conversion.
Tests conducted by Kiel University of Applied Sciences have confirmed that even when the crawler track system is used with the narrowest track version (635 mm wide), the resulting contact area of more than 1.3 m2 is over twice that provided by 800-size tyres. In combination with the tyre pressure adjustment system, which is also available ex factory for the rear axle, the JAGUAR TERRA TRAC offers optimal soil protection, one of the benefits being that it does not sink into the ground so deeply when operating in difficult, wet field conditions. Two other track variants with widths of 735 mm and 890 mm are also available.
The headland protection system of the TERRA TRAC crawler drive system comes into its own in grassland. When turning, the support rollers in each track unit are pushed down hydraulically, the front drive roller is raised and the contact area is reduced by about a third, so avoiding damage to the grass cover by the shear effect. Measurements by Kiel University of Applied Sciences have shown that the soil pressure with the support rollers lowered is less than that exerted by a wheeled machine.
As a result of the decades of TERRA TRAC experience which CLAAS can call on, this technology is integrated perfectly in the new JAGUAR. To accommodate the TERRA TRAC unit, the forager’s chassis has been extended by about one metre. This results in a significantly larger maintenance compartment and excellent accessibility by means of maintenance panels above the crawler tracks and enables the corncracker to be easily removed over the track unit on the right side.
Furthermore, use of the TERRA TRAC crawler track system can lead to fuel savings. Subsequent tillage can be performed with a lower tractive power requirement, as the soil compaction is more superficial than that which results when using other drive systems in the same weight classes. The good traction performance of the crawler tracks increases pulling power and thus also efficiency with the same fuel consumption.
The JAGUAR sets the standard for reliability, and improvements to the design of the new series raises the bar on machine longevity. A 30% stronger feedroll cabinet allows for smoother crop flow, more consistent chop quality and the highest reliability on the market. PREMIUM LINE wear plates, knives, and hard metal shearbar offer best-in-class service life. In addition, a larger fuel tank and LED service lights minimize downtime for refueling or maintenance.
All JAGUAR forage harvesters feature updated convenience features such as the new large CEBIS color monitor with touchscreen, a new armrest with integrated BlueTooth controls, and the new CMOTION handle. The touch screen monitor not only makes settings adjustments easier, but also integrates multiple monitors into the single screen to help eliminate cab clutter. The CEBIS touchscreen and CMOTION handle both feature Quick Key and shortcut functions to help operators save and access frequent commands for easier use.
The pivoting mounting system allows the machine to be operated in even the most difficult conditions, with the crawler track units able to oscillate upwards by 10° and downwards by 13° with robust end stops limiting their vertical travel.
On the road, when fitted with 635mm wide tracks the JAGUAR TERRA TRAC remains within an external width of 3.0 metres and is therefore very easy to move around. With wider 890 mm tracks, overall machine width is 3.5 metres. The suspended chassis enables a top speed of up to 40 km/h and provides an exceptionally smooth ride.
Soil compaction reduces yields and takes a great deal of work to eliminate again, especially in grassland. This is why CLAAS attaches great importance to soil protection, starting with measures taken during the machine development process. It was 30 years ago that the company presented the first series-production combine harvester with full rubber tracks. The TERRA TRAC concept, almost in its current form, followed a few years later. Since then, CLAAS has pursued the systematic development of crawler track technology on the LEXION large combine harvester.