Drum rollers and cambridge rollers are some of the most commonly used rollers in the world, but other interesting roller options are out there for the farmers that are willing to go out and look for them.
We recently spoke with TatraBears, a farm equipment manufacturer operating out of the Czech Republic, about its interesting addition to the global roller market.
The company has developed a drum roller with V-shaped rings that captures some of the primary benefits provided by both cambridge rollers and standard drum rollers, while also coming up with a few unique benefits of its own.
Drum rollers are often characterized by their simplicity. They are large and made up of few moving pieces which makes them both very durable and relatively simple to maintain. Durability and the simplicity of maintenance associated with drum rollers make them prime candidates for leveling fields and driving rocks into the ground, as these tasks often require an implement that can handle some rough treatment.
TatraBears’ offering shares similar physical characteristics to the drum roller, in terms of its focus on utilizing larger solid segments with few moving pieces, and, as a result, takes advantage of the maintenance and durability-based drum roller benefits. Fairly uncomplicated roller profiles with a limited number of moving pieces naturally make both rollers champions of remaining operational through some of the most hostile field conditions.
Cambridge rollers excel partially due to their ability to apply consistent pressure across field surfaces. Even in the face of highly uneven terrain, their shorter segments give them the ability to closely follow the contours of the land which is something that long-segmented drum rollers can struggle with. The TatraBears V-ring rollers are configured with a similar idea in mind. Their individual segments are short and abundant, giving them the freedom to flow more naturally over the contours of the land and apply relatively even amounts of pressure to the soil surface.
Additionally, cambridge roller segments often consist of many individual wheel and gear rings. These rings leave lines and divots on the soil surface which allow for effective erosion prevention and moisture retention in areas where soil has been freshly disturbed. The V-ring design on the TatraBears roller similarly leaves helpful patterns on the soil surface, leaving lines behind that both insulate much of a field from damaging erosion and capture moisture that may otherwise flow off a perfectly flattened soil surface.
The V-ring drum roller comes with a set of its own individual benefits as well.
TatraBears explained that a main feature of its roller is that it incorporates the benefits of a V-ring profile without leaving gaps between the individual V-rings. The segments of many rollers that leave unique patterns on soil surfaces are not entirely solid, they consist of a series of independent wheels, gears, and other devices. If gaps exist or eventually develop between the individual pieces, via the natural wear and tear of an implement, it can lead to uneven pressure application on the soil which can create various issues for crops, including uneven emergence. The risk of uneven pressure being applied by a TatraBears roller is minimal due to the individual V-rings being attached to a drum roller, making up solid segments without physical gaps between the rings.
Additionally, the roller puts both vertical and horizontal pressure on the soil. The V-rings press down on soil while also pressing it together from the sides. This action forms an exceptionally firm soil surface and is the main mechanism that limits soil erosion and prevents moisture already existing within the soil from easily escaping.
Several convenient adjustments can also be made to the roller that make it a rather versatile machine. From production the adjustability of the implement presents itself, as the rollers can be built using varying thicknesses that can decrease or enhance the potential durability of the roller to suit varying needs. The rollers can also be filled up with water to increase the rollers’ weight and allow for different pressure levels to be applied on soil surfaces.
Drum rollers and cambridge rollers can both add significant benefits to a farm operation when used correctly. However, each roller type provides benefits that do not always overlap, which can lead to some difficult decisions when it comes to choosing the roller that is best suited for a particular farm. Tatrabears is hoping to circumvent that difficult decision for growers with its V-ring drum roller, as it seems capable of providing many of the benefits provided by both drum and cambridge rollers while bringing a host of unique benefits to the table itself.
Contact Juraj Skolka at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on Tatrabears equipment.
All photos and graphics are courtesy of TatraBears.